Mombasa Marine Park administered and operated by Kenya wildlife services is a marine park situated along the Kenyan coast in Mombasa. Mombasa national park is a popular Kenya tourist destination offering aquatic safaris in Kenya. The park was established in 1986 and covers an area of 210 square kilometers. The park is divided into sectors i.e. a marine sector that covers 10 square kilometers and reserve covering the rest of the area i.e. 200 square kilometers. Mombasa Marine Park lies between Mtwapa and Tudor creeks is flooded with thousands of tourists who come to enjoy and witness the beauty of the park and is made up of ever blue water, amazing coral reefs, white sandy beaches, and coconut palms.
Mombasa Marine Park is bordered by magnificent beaches such as Bamburi Beach, Shanzu Beach, Nyali Beach and Kenyatta Public Beach which you can visit as additional destinations to your safari, the park is one of the busiest Kenya’s offshore reserves protecting mangroves, seagrass beds, sandy beaches, and coral reef. Mombasa Marine Park is famous for offering fantastic water activities i.e. diving and snorkeling. The park also has rich coral garden houses fish species like groupers, sweetlips, snappers, and surgeonfish.
Attractions in Mombasa Marine Park
Marine life: Mombasa marine national park is one of the marine national parks along the Indian Ocean where much marine life is supported. Marine species include crabs, turtles, starfish corals, urchins, jellyfish, sea stars, sea cucumbers, seahorses, stingrays, and eels and crabs in the park are in different types which include Acropora, multi-colored angelfish, green parrotfish, butterflyfish, zebrafish, lionfish and small damselfish, turbania and porites. In the park. You can also see larger marine life such as shark, rays, various turtle, including loggerhead, leatherback, hawksbill and green sea turtle and dolphin, including bottlenose, spinner, and humpback. The marine life can be viewed while diving and tourists who wish to stay dry can view the animals a glass-bottom boat which helps you experience the aquatic life of the ocean without getting wet.
Vegetation: Mombasa marine national park is endowed with beautiful water vegetation which are unique and amazing to look at, vegetation like seagrasses and marine algae are enjoyed by the tourists.
Birds: Mombasa marine national park is a home a variety of sea birds which are internationally important and loved by many tourist, these sea birds such as crab plovers and roseate terns.
Sea features: Mombasa Marine Park is made up made coral reefs which add more beauty to the scenic of the park and play a significant role in the ocean ecosystem by providing safety and food, coral reefs in the park vary in colors, shapes, and size. Coral reefs seen include brain coral, pavona coral, Favia coral, Acropora coral, open-branched stag’s horn coral, and others.
Visiting Mombasa is best during the turtle breeding and hatching season, in this season you get to enjoy watching large slow-moving tortoise lay their eggs in the sand and leaving back to the ocean. Notably, the hatching happens around 60 weeks later.
Activities in The Marine Park of Mombasa
Diving: Diving is one of the amazing ways of enjoying the aquatic part of Mombasa Marine Park, Kenya is recognized as one of the top three dive sits on earth, diving at Mombasa Marine Park is offered for both single and double dive. Diving is categorized in two, for beginners you dive from coral gardens at 23 feet to kasa that ranges from 32 to 65 feet. For experienced divers you can do drift, night dives or wreck dive which takes place at MV Dania which ranges from 82 to 115 feet.
Snorkeling: On the Snorkeling safari you sail on a glass-bottom boat on the Indian Ocean where you get a clear and uninterrupted view of the aquatic life of the Indian Ocean, you also get to enjoy corals of various colors, textures and shapes.
Sunbathing: Sunbathing in Mombasa marine national park take place on the sandy beaches along the shores of the Indian Ocean where tourists get to enjoy the warm sun rays and beautiful cool breeze at the ocean.
Other activities include Water skiing, Windsurfing and Boat trips
Marine national park and Mombasa as a region experiences humid climatic conditions that is the park is usually hot and humid, the park experience two rainy seasons with rains in the months of April and May to be the longest rain period and a short period in November to December. Dry seasons take place in the month of July to October, the park experiences average temperatures in the 70 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit and relatively high humidity levels.
The best time to visit Mombasa marine national park and Mombasa at large bases more at your interests as a tourist, if you are interested in Humpback whales a period from the month June to December is the best time as they migrate. For anglers’ interested tourists the months of August to October is the best time to visit the park as you get to enjoy catching the enormous yellowfin, the months of December to March is the best time for tourists interested in all three species of Marlin. For scuba divers and snorkelers, the months of October to March are the best time to explore the marine life of Mombasa Marine Park. The southeast monsoon winds that blow from April to October and northeast winds from November to March majorly affects the diving conditions
While going on a marine safari in Mombasa marine national park accommodation is got from various hotels which offer various amenities like bedding, food and beverages and many more according to the interest of the tourists, these facilities include Mombasa Marine Campsite, Hotel English point, Mombasa continental resort shanzu, Azul margarita beach resort Mombasa, Severin sea lodge and many more.
Note: for budget travelers the period of April through June and November to the first three weeks of December is the best time to visit Mombasa Marine Park since this period receives long and short rain beach accommodation prices are reduced.
Mombasa Marine Park can be reached by road from Mombasa city centre which is 487 kilometers from Nairobi and from the city centre you get to the park using a boat. Mombasa Marine Park is accessed using various entry points along the beach which include Serena Gate on the beach of Serena Hotel, Severin Gate on beach of Severin Hotel, Travellers Gate on beach of Travellers Hotel, Nyali Gate at Mombasa Marine Park Headquarters and Voyager Gate at Voyager water sport Area.