Lamu

Lamu Tamu

I love coastal towns! I love the beach! I love Swahili culture! As a child we would take family vacations to Mombasa and so for me being near water or a beach, creates a certain sense of nostalgia, a longing for the past, but also an investigation into memory and place.

So when I got an assignment from Airbnb to go to Lamu and review one of their properties, I was so thrilled. Seriously you guys, I never in a million years thought I would get paid to do what I love, what a time to be alive!

After landing at the airport, I was welcomed by Captain Cappuccino who was waiting to take me to shore. If you have been to Lamu you know that there are no cars on the island except two, so the only way to access the island is by boat.

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When I got to Shela I was super excited, but when I saw the house I was staying in, I could have cried at how absolutely beautiful it was.

Dream house for sure

Dream house for sure

When in heaven….

When in heaven….

I was obsessed with all the lines.

I was obsessed with all the lines.

The view from the roof

The view from the roof

The rooms were divine

The rooms were divine

I spent the first day by the pool, just taking in the beauty of the property. By the next day, I was ready to venture out and explore. I wanted to see if there were any visible changes on the island from when I was last there in 2014.

The path down to the beach

The path down to the beach

The mood in the morning was so serene, but also Lamu uber!

The mood in the morning was so serene, but also Lamu uber!

Girls walk along the shore of the beach on their way to school.

Girls walk along the shore of the beach on their way to school.

Donkeys are still the main mode of transportation on the island.

Donkeys are still the main mode of transportation on the island.

One of the biggest visible changes I observed was the influx of boda bodas on the island.

Boda bodas parked waiting for customers.

Boda bodas parked waiting for customers.

Colorful clothes hanging on the line.

Colorful clothes hanging on the line.

I was eager to venture back into town, specifically old town, because I have found that I always learn something new. It is so culturally and historically rich, and chatting to the locals gives you a real sense about life on the island.

Market scene.

Market scene.

Young boys walk through the alley.

Young boys walk through the alley.

A man and his cats.

A man and his cats.

A man sits outside the mosque.

A man sits outside the mosque.

A sheep eavesdropping on the conversation.

A sheep eavesdropping on the conversation.

Morning gossip.

Morning gossip.

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I’m so sad that I only got to spend a couple of days on the island, but I was grateful for the opportunity to go back and visit nonetheless. If you are visiting Lamu and have time, my host suggested a bunch of cool things to do! So here goes:

  1. Dhow sail

  2. A visit to the Takwa ruins

  3. A day trip to Manda toto (It is another small island where you can have a barbecue and hang out with baboons)

  4. Tour of Lamu Old Town (My fave!)

  5. Lunch at Kipungani bay

  6. Attending a Swahili wedding (I would SO love to do this)

  7. Donkey Ride (Listen those donkeys look stressed out already, I wouldn’t recommend doing this)

  8. A day fishing trip

  9. Visit Kinyika to swim with the dolphins (I can only imagine how rad this is!)

Blue hour from the roof.

Blue hour from the roof.

That’s all for now folks! Peace and blessings!