Watamu Marine Association, Kenya: Managing Kenya's premier beach resort.

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Kenya, Wildly Appealing Watamu

Kenya cares. If you had joined our press trip last November, you would have learned that an extensive private-public sector commitment is underway to conserve Kenya's wild heritage and enhance the well-being of this country's local communities.

Carla Hunt, Recommend Magazine and an international media team, joined the Kenya Tourist Board adventure in Kenya which ended in Watamu with Watamu Marine Association's eco activities, while staying in luxury Medina Palms. From Relaxation to Recycling

Fresh from sightings of (almost) all the Mara's, "Big Five" we fly on to learn about their equivalents, the "Marine Big Five": whales, dolphins, whale sharks, billfish and sea turtles living in and around the Watamu Marine Reserve. We deplane in Malindi and our destination is Watamu, a small village on the palm-fringed Indian Ocean coast, home to Medina Palms, a spectacular resort positioned above beach-fringed Turtle Bay.

Its elegant accommodations include garden- and sea-view suites, tree-top penthouses, and beach villas, which appeal to groups of friends, honeymooners, and families (an excellent kids club here). All are decorated in a mix of modern design and locally carved wooden furnishings, and appointed with WiFi, satellite TV and small kitchen. A series of infinity pools cascades through the property, linking guest quarters, public areas, a spa and tropical gardens to the beach. Guests dine on Mediterranean, Moroccan and African dishes,al fresco in the Coffee Garden, or informally but elegantly in the Amandina Restaurant.

Active guests can go snorkeling, diving, kite-surfing, paddleboarding, or deep-sea fishing with a tag and release program. The hotel arranges trips to the fascinating Gede ruins, a nearby well-preserved 12th century Swahili village, and to championship golf an hour away. They can also plan a safari in Tsavo East National Park (two hours away).

Medina Palms is a member of the Watamu Marine Association, a nonprofit whose members come from the community, tourism and environmental sectors, working together to protect the environment and promote quality tourism. WMA staffers lead guests on snorkeling trips in Wamatu Marine Reserve; on dolphin spotting excursions;there are whales out there, too; or drifting through the mangrove forests of Mida Creek.

Must-see is one particularly neat WMA effort;the Community Waste Management Project, whose beach cleanup duties are part of a new community industry that focuses on recycling beach rubbish of plastic waste and flip-flops for arts and crafts production. Even art has a conservation message in Kenya.

For the full story see here Kenya-Wildly Appealing

Also see: http://www.watamu.biz/


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