Magical Kenya is a statement the stunning country of Kenya goes by. The reason why? Kenya is a nation of beautiful contrast, from the bustling streets of Nairobi to the pristine coastal beaches. It boasts a rich culture and natural beauty, making it a top tourist destination worldwide.
If you want to enjoy all Kenya offers, a road trip from Nairobi to Mombasa is what you need. Your drive will take you through stunning landscapes, a national park, and a wildlife corridor before ending in the best beaches in Mombasa.
In the tropical coastal city, you’ll experience various cultures, cuisines, and wildlife. You’ll also soak in the sun or jump into the Indian ocean for a swim, snorkeling, or any water sport.
In this article, we provide a five-day travel itinerary for a Nairobi to Mombasa road trip. So, pack your travel gear, grab your camera, and prepare for the best African adventure.
Tip: Here are 5 Exciting Things to do on a Roadtrip
Day 1: Leave Nairobi for Mombasa
Hit the open road for your road trip from Nairobi to Mombasa around 9 am, when traffic on Mombasa road has cleared. The trip will take 6 hours and take you through one of Kenya’s most stunning and diverse regions.
You can stop at Mtito Andei, a small center halfway between Nairobi and Mombasa, for breakfast. Get the chance to stretch your legs and freshen up. The best part of the journey is about to start.
Pass through lush green scenarios before you hit the open savannas. You’ll see elephants, antelopes, giraffes, and more without going into a park!
Once in Mombasa, check into your hotel or resort and take a while to relax. Later, you can stroll and relax by the beach or explore the vibrant city.
Day 2:Exploring Mombasa City
Mombasa is a kaleidoscope of cultures with many fun things to indulge any tourist. While you can navigate the city alone, having a local licensed guide who knows the best spots is better.
Start the day with a visit to the world-famous Fort Jesus. This fort is a UNESCO World Heritage site with Portuguese military architecture. You’ll also see cannons and battlements, explore the underground passages and learn its history.
After that, hit the Mombasa old town and explore the rich Swahili culture. Walk on the narrow Arabic-style roads and marvel at the wooden balconies, coral stone walls, and carved doors. The market also offers a lively vibe, spices, and souvenirs.
There are plenty of kid-friendly attractions in Mombasa. You can visit a wildlife park, marine park, or one of the beautiful Mombasa beaches.
In the evening, try out Mombasa cuisine. Choose between African dishes, fresh seafood, and any international cuisine. Whatever you want, one of the top restaurants in Mombasa has it.
Day 3: Explore Malindi and Watamu
Day three is about leaving Mombasa for a trip up North to Malindi, around 120 km.
On the way, stop at the Gedi/Gede Ruins for a quick dive into Kenya’s history. The ruins were a 13th-century Swahili settlement whose inhabitants deserted four centuries later. You can still see a mosque, palace, and other structures, making it a museum and archeological site.
Gede also has an exciting snake park you can explore.
After Gede, hit the tarmac for Malindi and explore the town’s vibrancy. Check out the Malindi Museum for the town’s history and the Vasco da Gama pillar, where the Portuguese explorer set foot in 1498. The local markets and hotels also offer a unique local experience.
On the way back, make a detour to Watamu for an evening at Watamu Marine National Park‘s protected white sand beaches. This park features azure waters and rich marine wildlife. You can scuba dive or swim to explore the colorful marine life to see dolphins and whales on a boat ride.
After a long day, drive back to Mombasa, hit the showers, and rest.
Day 4: Island Excursions and Water Sports
Hit the Indian Ocean for an Island hopping adventure. Start with the little idyllic Wasini Island just off Mombasa. Prepare to immerse yourself in tranquility and beauty.
Get a guide to take you around the village and experience the local’s culture. The island also has coral gardens and vibrant marine life, where you can snorkel. You can enjoy a local delicacy in one of the beachside restaurants for lunch.
In the evening, head for Nyali beach for an evening on the beach. You can try out various water sports in Kenya, such as jet skiing, parasailing, and kitesurfing. You can also relax on the beach and enjoy a drink as the kids play in the sand.
For the last evening, try out a fancy, romantic, or intimate dinner with your loved one or the family. If it’s you and your partner, you can try the various floating dinners offered on dhows and boats. You can then return to your hotel room or explore the explosive Mombasa nightlife.
Day 5; Drive Back to Nairobi
On the last day, wake up early and enjoy a sunrise breakfast before checking out of the hotel. However, before starting the journey, you can visit the Mombasa Butterfly House. This house features a stunning butterfly garden with many butterfly species. You’ll learn about their behaviors and life. You can also check out the reptile house with lizards, snakes, and other reptiles.
You can now hit the road and drive back with a stopover for lunch along the way. Calculate your time well to avoid the Mombasa road evening traffic jam as you enter Nairobi. But, if you don’t have to pass inside the CBD, the Nairobi Expressway is a welcomed relief.
Have a Safe and Funfilled Nairobi to Mombasa Road Trip
A Nairobi to Mombasa road trip is a great way to explore Kenya’s rich beauty. You’ll experience diverse landscapes, cultures, and wildlife. Whether you are solo, with friends, or with family, our five-day Mombasa to Nairobi road trip itinerary is for you.
Ensure you pack all your necessities (map, extra cash, identification, and gear) and drive safely. With proper planning, you’ll have an adventure of a lifetime.
If you want more information about traveling in Kenya, please visit our blog. We also showcase some of the best tour packages and deals in Kenya.