Explorason screams as a monkey darts out of our dressing room holding onto our bag of leftover snacks from our harrowing bus trip from Tanzania.
We have our room door closed, but we forgot to lock it, and this cheeky monkey has pushed the double doors open and then headed into the dressing room area where I had unpacked last night.
Staying in Kenya has already started with some excitement.
AND, this naughty monkey has great taste!
He scored a nice bag of cashews (and they were giant sized cashews too that I bought from a seller who came on our bus), and he also scored a huge of pack chocolate chip cookies, and darted up onto the rooftop to enjoy his stash. He, however, left the Vegemite sandwich behind – obviously not an Aussie food fan!
We were sitting out in one of the most beautiful locations in the world – on the balcony of Kenyaways enjoying the morning sun as we looked out over the Indian Ocean, and our balcony doors are open wide.
However, I was unaware I hadn’t locked the bedroom door that led from the upstairs foyer area. It is completely my fault! When we checked in last night we had been advised to keep the doors closed because this is Africa, and monkeys are part of the African way of life.
Lesson learned on Day One! Lock your doors in Africa or you could expect some ‘monkey business!’
I do recall last time we stayed on the coast of Kenya in 2015 (different location) and looking up to see a baboon who had made his way into our resort suite. He had opened our fridge and removed some of the contents. He was sitting on our lounge settee having quite the feast!
But don’t worry. They have a guard at Kenyaways who is on the lookout for monkeys, and patrols the grounds with his slingshot to scare them away should any venture near the property.
Monkeys and baboons are pretty harmless, but there are wooden signs at most hotels and resorts advising guests NOT to feed them. First, it makes them territorial, and also it means they rely on humans for their food, and we may leave, or not provide them with the right foods – our foods can damage their stomachs and cause them all sorts of medical problems.
Not only that, but cashews are expensive so why waste good food on the local wildlife? Only one cashew nut is produced inside each pod, so they are rare and a treat to me. A treat I no longer was going to be able to consume, thanks to this ‘monkey business’.
Last time we came to Kenya, Kenyaways was the first place we stayed at and we chose it because it is right on the beach front, with a view from our room out over the palm trees to the sea, and it is very relaxed and chill.
I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of the view from upstairs. It is one of the most relaxing places on earth.
Explorason loved the hammock that was suspended between the palm trees, and I loved the furniture made from local woods, especially the double bed that was in our room.
I also remembered how friendly Steven the receptionist of Kenyaways was to us, and I remember clearly a positive conversation we shared that really impacted my life.
This is a small property of just eleven rooms, but it does have a swimming pool and it is right on the beach front which a lot of properties aren’t. It has a very relaxed and casual African feel to it, which is the complete opposite of one of the big resorts that are dotted along the coast.
We liked it here in this area last time. It’s near Ukunda on the east coast of Kenya, so we thought to ourselves ‘why not come back to where our amazing experience of Kenya all began?’
Talking about food (or the lack thereof thanks our ‘monkey business’) we headed down on our first morning to Lymington’s Bistro. It’s located in the gardens of Kenyaways where we are staying.
This is a separate identity owned by a friendly Expat named Dave, and we remember him from last time too. Moreso, I recall how great the food was, and that the bistro attracted local Expats from all around, as well as other travellers and tourists staying nearby.
For me, I think Lymington’s Bistro is one of the most reasonably priced places we have dined in all of the coast of East Africa. The prices are a welcome change to Zanzibar Island, Tanzania where we found a lot of places completely overcharged for food, with one place that will forever stick in my mind when they were trying to charge guests at a non-luxury hotel $140 US for a seafood platter! Certainly NOT here.
It’s great to dine here where the food and drinks were priced quite low, but where the variety and quality are very high. One thing I loved was their use of cheese. Cheese is a bit of a treat in Africa, but Lymington’s had some lovely dishes with all kinds of amazing cheeses.
Exhausted And Unwell
Explorason has been recovering from gastro whilst we stayed here, and I feel quite fluey (with a bit of an upset stomach that peaked at 3:00 a.m. on the second night here), so we didn’t go out onto the main road or surrounding area as we had planned, and explore at all.
Our room was our haven for most of the time, or we’d venture downstairs to eat. It was days of relaxation and recovery for both of us.
I did however still manage a few beach walks, Being the rainy season, Diani Beach this time was quite different from the white sands I remembered in 2015. Just like Zanzibar, we found the seaweed washes to shore in the wet season.
However, I enjoyed a morning and afternoon walk every day that we stayed at Kenyaways and found this was a great time to think. This area of Diani Beach (which is also close to Galu Beach) has a lovely stretch of pure almost snow-coloured sand that seems to go on for miles, unlike some areas closer to the main shopping strip.
Touts, Hawkers, and Beach Boys are all over the world. Love them or hate them, they are part of the tourism world.
In Asia or in Africa, they seem to find a way of siding up to you as soon as their eyes are upon you which is fine if you are looking for what they are selling.
To them, you are a ‘walking wallet’, and it doesn’t matter if you have nothing in your hands and are wearing a swimming costume, they will want to sell you anything from a trip in their wooden dhow to a coconut.
You can even get yourself or the kids a fun camel ride on the beach.
The funny thing was that the coconut-selling ‘tout’ was the same man I remembered from our last visit, so I was able to support his little business.
I don’t mind buying off the touts if they are friendly and nice. It supports local industry, but I do not like it when some of the touts get rude or abusive if you don’t buy from them – this can occur anywhere, but thankfully, it seemed less common here.
After the ‘monkey business’, Explorason wanted to make sure he was safe when he went into our room, but somehow he found the door open and was alarmed.
Our lovely housekeeping lady Josephine came to the rescue. I loved the fact that she was proud she is a Christian, and that nothing would have been taken from her in our room, and that we could totally trust her.
She told us how safe the property is, and how much she takes good care of guests rooms. She has been here for years, and I noticed, so have many of the other staff. Why? Because management can trust them.
To me, that is very reassuring indeed.
Tourism On The Rise For Kenya
I was pleased to see that tourism has improved on the southern coast of Kenya since our visit in 2015, and that there seemed to be a good number of tourists around.
I noticed too a much larger number of Kenyans also taking vacations, which shows that economically the country is improving, which I think is great.
Kenya And World-Schooling
Kenya and the Kenyan people have always had a huge place in our hearts. We are not sure if it is the friendliness of the Kenyan people or the fact it seems to have a better economy than Tanzania so it has a more westernised and progressive feel, or even that it was a British colony. It could be a number of reasons, but it feels more like ‘home’ for us as Australians.
We are going to take our time to slow down a bit whilst we are travelling here in this area of Kenya, and see what we discover as we do love it so much.
We want a chance to do a bit of world-schooling once more here on the coast of Kenya too. Explorason last time was educated by several of the locals about marine biology in particular. This time we might study biology. I think we might study about the monkeys!? Here’s something we’ve already learned – Male monkeys have a bright anatomy and can have aqua blue balls that look like bright blue bird eggs!
Very colourful and educational photographs!
of our latest stay at Kenyaways here
Address: Diani Beach Road, Diani Beach, Kenya