Diani Beach

Kenya's Indian Ocean doorstep


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Despite the talcum-powder sand and seawater that runs a dozen different shades of blue, Diani is one of those beaches that always has you looking skyward: at the black-and-white colobus monkeys swinging through the trees; at the skydivers and kitesurfers hovering above the strand; and if you're up early enough, at those incredible sunrises over the Indian Ocean.

Located about 30 miles south of Mombasa, Diani seems more like a tropical-island escape than a slice of the mainland. Framed by coconut palms, the beach is wide, white and very long. Coral reefs protect it from heavy surf and create perfect conditions to swim, float or snorkel the ultra-warm water. Beachside bars and cafes provide snacks and liquid sustenance. After dark, Diani flaunts some of the best nightlife along the coast.

Diani is also diehard Africa, and one of the few places in the world where you can combine surf and safari. Shimba Hills National Reserve and Mwaluganje Elephant Sanctuary lie just behind the coast. Tsavo National Park can be done as a long day trip.

Diani is also Kenya's leading adventure sports hub, renowned for kitesurfing and skydiving, as well as deep-sea fishing and jetskiing. Overnight digs at Diani run the full range, from backpacker hostels and modest B&Bs to cool beach boutiques and posh private villas.

Photos: Hemis / Alamy Stock Photo, Jurgen Feuerer, Shutterstock

Did you know?

Diani Beach hosts the annual Kenya Kite Cup, attracting the world’s best kite surfers.


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