I had never kayaked the Indian Ocean before so we hired a double ‘sit-on’ and paddled out towards the reef a couple of miles offshore. There was quite a swell but the water was warm and very blue. Although
has a major deep water port, the coral the reef provides a sheltered and fairly shallow lagoon, marked by a line of white breakers, running the entire length of the beach. Mombasa
I wished that we could have hired proper sea kayaks, as the double sit-on was heavy and made it a hard paddle to do any distance. As you get closer to the reef you can see where it actually breaks the surface. Although we didn’t get out of the kayak we returned later on a snorkelling trip and you could walk on it in ankle deep water.
Poverty and seaweed
is an affluent city, there is serious poverty, so the locals tend to give you the hard sell for shells and carvings as soon as you set foot on the beach. The warm water and the reef also means that the black seaweed grows in a thick band just offshore. Mombasa
The enduring memory, however, is of blindingly white sand, palm trees and some of the bluest ocean for kayaking you will find anywhere in the world.