Tiwi Beach, starfish, and Africa-shaped pool

Cover Image for Tiwi Beach, starfish, and Africa-shaped pool
Lisa & Pol
by Lisa & Pol
This post is linked to the following video :
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Camping on a deserted beach, donkey racing & swahili culture

Filmed on : december 2023

Filmed in : Coast of Kenya

diani beachtiwi beachstilts tree housestwiga lodgemombasalamushelacoast of kenya

Tiwi Beach is situated on the coast of Kenya, between Mombasa and Diani, and in our opinion, it should definitely be included on your itinerary if you've got the time. It's affordable, very unique and so relaxing. When we visited (november 2023), we were alone in the camp, alone on the beach and although it was raining every afternoon (rainy season !), we enjoyed every moment there.

Lisa is happy on Tiwi Beach
Lisa is happy on Tiwi Beach

How to get to Tiwi

We came from Diani's Stilts Treehouses accommodation directly with a Tuktuk. The ride takes 30 minutes or so, and the road is quite bad on the last stretch, which makes for quite an adventure. We paid 600 KES for the ride.

From Mombasa (we actually did the reverse), you can hire a tuktuk for 2000 KES. The journey is quite long (around 1h30), and includes a ferry ride. The fare of the ferry is included in the price you negotiate with the driver.

Twiga Lodge

We've been told that it's the only beach camping in Kenya !
We've been told that it's the only beach camping in Kenya !

Tiwi Beach is so enjoyable especially because of this accommodation. It's a campsite and features a few rooms as well (we camped), directly on the beach. Being there feels like being fully immersed in nature. You're exposed to the wind, the rain, the monkeys, and it feel amazing. The beach just in front is untouched, so the experience is very different than what we had in Diani just a few kilometers south.

We paid 2100 KES per night for 2, including the tent rental. It was raining a lot so we moved our tent under the common area to get some extra protection. We were mostly alone, although a 4x4 with a roof tent came to camp for one of the nights.

The restaurant is the perfect place to read while sipping a tea
The restaurant is the perfect place to read while sipping a tea

There is a restaurant that serves food and drinks, for a okayish price. We could get away with spending around 1200 KES per meal for 2.

The location is quite remote, so prepare enough cash to be able to pay for the accommodation and your food.

Eddy, the groundskeeper, was super nice and helpful and contributed to a great experience, he built the tent and was always around.

We didn't book in advance, we just got there and asked if they had some availability. If you have your own tent, there shouldn't be any problem. If you want to make sure ahead of time, you can try calling (+254 721 577 614).

Trip to the continent shaped pools

The famous Africa-shaped pool in Tiwi
The famous Africa-shaped pool in Tiwi

So one of the "famous" things to do in the area is to go checkout some pools that become apparent on low tide, that are shaped like continents. There is Africa and Oceania. These pools are accessible or via the beach or via a trail on the shore, it's a short walk from Twiga Lodge, and there is no need to hire a guide, you won't get lost, it's straightforward.

However, we found a guide on the beach who convinced us to let him show us, and we accepted to support him. It was a bit reassuring, there are many sea urchins on the way, and he knew the best path to avoid them, but to be fair, if you pay attention, again, you don't need the guide.

The pool is here (there is a tag on Google Map that is quite accurate at the moment) (-4.235033, 39.605493)

In the Africa pool, you can jump and even go through an under water passage to reach the Madagascar part. It's narrow and "deep", so if the visibility is not good, it's a challenge. By the way, make sure to go there when the sun is shining and it's warm. We were there just before the rain, it was grayish and cold, and the vibe was a bit off.

A few meters later, you end up at the Oceania pool, larger, with a cave only accessible through the water, letting some rays of light in. It's romantic place but there's no where to settle, so you need to keep swimming the entire time.

On the way back, next to the African pool, we went up to the shore and came back to the lodge following the trail.

It can be a fun short activity if you're around, but it's not exceptional by any means. The best in Tiwi it's to sit at a table of the restaurant, and relax, read a book and observe the storms and rainbows around.

Pol, dogs and rainbows in Tiwi
Pol, dogs and rainbows in Tiwi

Once you're ready to leave, Eddy can arrange a Tuktuk, but make sure to negotiate a price already via the phone, because they will come from far and the situation is awkward if you don't find a compromise.

What about the starfish ?

Well, to be honest it's one of the reasons we came tot Tiwi, we had seen amazing pictures of colorful starfish and thought we might be lucky. In the end, we didn't see any at all along the entire beach. Not sure if it's about the seasonality, but November 2023 was not a great time for finding starfish on the beach :)

Tiwi was a very happy moment for us, far from everyone and everything
Tiwi was a very happy moment for us, far from everyone and everything

Lisa & Pol
Lisa & Pol
We're a Slovak-French couple in our twenties currently backpacking across Africa for a year. One of our goals is to inspire travellers to go explore this often forgotten continent. On this blog we're focusing on providing up to date info about prices and itineraries, especially geared towards backpackers on a budget. We also create content on Youtube and Insta if you prefer a more visual approach 😉
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