Days begin slowly on Lamu, with silently sailing dhows heading out to sea in search of fresh fish. Sometimes the jolly chatter and laughter of fishermen on board can be heard across the water, but mostly all is peaceful. Life on Lamu is lived according to the rhythms of the sea and the cycles of the sun. It’s a place to escape routine and restriction, somewhere to wander and spend days exactly as you please.
You can easily pick up the pace going fishing and snorkeling, trying so many different watersports, or walking the long golden beaches of Lamu island. And then there’s possibly the most enchantingly and atmospheric town on the east coast of Africa to visit too. Lamu is a UNESCO World Heritage Site for the ancient culture and traditions it embodies, with cultural roots in Arabia, Portugal and India. Life here is unfettered and unaffected by the outside world. In little shops and alleyway streets, business continues with friendly banter in the warm-hearted Swahili way.
A deeply relaxing option is to simply stay put in the comfort of exclusive use Beach House in Shela village, a place of peace and understated elegance where time stands still. On the southern tip of Lamu island, beautiful Beach House literally has her toes in the ocean – you’re that close to the sea, and the space is all yours. The majestic house has five en-suite bedrooms and every single one has ocean views – of the channel and deep open sea. It stands on the finest spot on the beach, and just a few minutes’ walk from quirky Shela village.
Days at the house are dreamy. Spent in the infinity pool overlooking the ocean, sunning alongside the pool, or on the rooftop terrace with offerings from the bar close by – or relaxing in one of many cosy spots calling you to curl up with a book, take a nap, or let your mind drift wherever it pleases. The spacious layout and live-lightly feeling of the house allows pure freedom of thought and movement. You will feel thoroughly rejuvenated just by being here, and there are massages on offer too.
As evening approaches, take a cruise on a traditional dhow and watch the sunset on another perfect day in Africa. You may be joined by wild dolphins, or suki in Swahili, that seem to enjoy the company of sailors, and will often swim and dive alongside the dhow as you travel. It’s a completely different life here, yet all so real.
What we love!
- The built-in furniture creates refreshing flow in the house.
- Magnificently carved, four-poster beds, draped in netting are so eternally romantic.
- Because there are sea views from every room, you feel connected to the ocean at all times.
- Meals prepared by the in-house chef are delectable and you will taste the best Swahili recipes. The freshest local seafood, fruit and vegetables are used.
Need to know…
- You will be transferred from Manda airport and back again for your return flight.
- There is wifi in the house.
- Laundry is done on request.
- The house is cleaned daily.
- Beach House’s manager will also assist with booking excursions for you.
- The house is for exclusive use only.
Reviewed by Keri Harvey