Kisite Mpuguti marine national park is one of the unique protected wilderness of the Marine that inhabits coral reefs and other 4 small islands found on the southern coast of Mombasa. This is one of Kenya’s amazing national parks that have aquatic features. It is named “Home of the Dolphins” with unspiled, sun-kissed and beautiful park. The park is a combination of over 4 square miles that covers Kisite Marine National Park and 11 square miles of Mpunguti Marine National Reserve. The park is also famous for the great number of dolphins, sea birds, turtles and innumerable fish species like Triggerfish, angelfish and other species.
The Kisite Mpuguti marine national park is established in 1973 and its governed by Kenya Wildlife Services. Its located on the Southern coast of Kenya a few kilometers away from Shimoni and Wasini Island on the south all in the district of Kwale which is close to the border of Tanzania. Kisite Island is one of the small waterless coral islands which is 8 kilometers offshore in the Marine park. The other 3 small islands for the Kisite Mpuguti marine national park are Mpunguti ya Juu, Liwe la Jahazi and Mpunguti ya Chini.
How to get to Kisite Mpuguti Marine National Park
The location of Kisite Mpuguti Marine National Park is Kwale District in the coastal province of Kenya. It lies around 11 kilometers off Kenyan Coast and 8 kilometers North of Tanzania making it easy to be accessed on both sides Kenya and Tanzania. The park is found 574 kilometers away from the capital Nairobi through good tarmac road. If one is already on the coast of Mombasa, its 90 kilometers. After the road one has to use the boat which takes you to the park. There is a Kenya wildlife Kisite Mpuguti Marine National Park which can be booked in advance through the Kenya Wildlife service’s warden. Other private boats are also available as per the guidelines of your tour operator or Hotel which has organized the trip for you.
Attractions in Kisite Mpuguti marine national park
The main aim of the Kenya wildlife service on establishing the park was to conserve and protect the scenic beautiful Islands with their unique habitats. The park homes a good endemic marine wildlife as well as a breeding place for most of the migratory birds. There are 3 small coral rag forests found in the park.
Below are the key attractions of the little angle park:
The Kenyan Barrier reef: The Kenyan Barrier reef is one of the most unique and outstanding feature found in Kisite Mpuguti marine national park. The coral barrier reef spreads to all the 4 small islands from Shimoni to Malindi in the North. The coral reefs join together with no breaks except along the mouth of the rivers. The tourists have nicknamed the coral reefs as the rainforests of the sea as they have form the most fascinating ecosystems on the plate earth. They are also renown as the oldest ecosystem on the sea dating back around over 1 million years ago.
Enchanted underwater kingdom: An enchanted ream of the famous coral gardens that are considered living sculpted islands that spark clear waters and wheeling seabirds. This is one of the world’s famous underwater marine park that has very strong vibration and unbelievable color. They are termed as gardens after discovering a high dependency of the local community on the coral reef as a means of survival. Gifted with a large number of species like the rainbow of small fish, celestial-blue parrotfish, octopus mention but a few.
Shimoni caves: These are located in the small fishing village along Shimoni. They are ancient coral caves that were formed centuries ago and they are considered as sacred sites where the locals go and worship their traditional gods. The site attracts both cultural and historical tourists who want to know much about the locals and the slave trade that happened along the coast.
Turtle Territory: The Kisite Mpuguti marine national park is famous site for spotting large population of turtles. The park has a wide range of turtle species like Green turtles, Hwaksbill turtles and many more.
Dolphin and whale spotting: Kisite Mpuguti marine national park is a home of over 200 dolphins with the most common sited species being Humback, spinner and bottle-noised dolphins. The dolphins can be in groups or sometimes you can get a chance to get singles or individuals as they break above the water waves. The best time of viewing the dolphins is between July to December where more whales come with their newly born claves to search for warm waters. This is the period of the largest whale and shark migratory period in the world.
Birds: With the help of the Kisite Island birding association called an Important Bird Area (IBA) the park has become one of the best birding destinations in the world. It inhabits both permanent and migratory birds that come across the world to search for a warm breeding place. The birding population is alarming as it is favored by the flat, sandy and treeless rocks that are found in the park.
Activities that can be done in Kisite Mpuguti marine national park
With a wide range of attractions in Kisite Mpuguti marine national park, there is a good number of activities guests can enjoy. While on your trip to this nice island park you can enjoy a wide range of activities which most of them are a very active way of travel experience as listed below:
Bird watching: The park is the best destination for birders especially from July to December when the weather is warm hence attracting more migratory birds across Europe and America. The birds come to breed at the four different islands that make up the park. There are both aquatic birds and land birds but mostly feed on water habitats like fish.
Snorkeling: Kisite Mpuguti marine national park is the best snorkeling destination not only in Kenya but the entire world. Swimming together with the whales and sharks under water is the best experience.
Diving: There are different diving spots at the park with the guidance of the park rangers. There are some private operators who have opened up diving schools where they provide diving lessons to the guests before one tries to do the actual activity.
The Kisite Mpuguti marine national park is a gifted park with over 200 dolphins, more than 252 fish species around 56 genera of hard corals and 2 species of seagrass not forgetting numerous sponges.The most sighted fish species include rubber fish, butterflyfish, scorpionfish, sergeant major fish among others.
The park can be visited throughout the year with only 20$ per adult who is non-resident and 15$ for children