How to Spend 2 Days in Mombasa
With two days in Kenya’s oldest city, you can visit UNESCO-listed landmarks, spend time in a nature or water park, and dance the night away—but some planning is essential. From safari tours to sunset cruises, here are some ideas for optimizing your time in and around Mombasa.
Day 1: Sightseeing and City Life
Morning: Familiarize yourself with Mombasa’s unusual layout, taking advantage of tours offering private transport and guidance to find your way among island and mainland attractions with ease. Explore the Old Town, home to landmarks such as Fort Jesus, Mandhry Mosque, and Lord Shiva Temple, before heading into the modern suburbs.
Afternoon: Full-day sightseeing packages eliminate the hassle of advanced planning and generally continue into the late afternoon or evening. Alternatively, Wild Waters park and the city’s public beaches offer water sports and entertainment, while Haller Park and Mombasa Marine National Park draw nature lovers with their wealth of flora and fauna.
Night: Head north to Mtwapa for a sunset dinner overlooking the Indian Ocean. Afterward, stay in town to drink and dance among locals, or catch a tuk-tuk or taxi to Bamburi or Kisauni, where the nightlife caters to a more touristy crowd.
Day 2: Beyond the Island
Morning: Full-day tours from Mombasa typically include round-trip transport, allowing you to take a break from the city and widen your perspective of Kenya with ease. Head out on a safari tour of Shimba Hills National Reserve, home to species such as antelope, elephants, and leopards. Or, embark on a full-day cruise, ideal for unwinding, coastal sightseeing, and spotting native marine life.
Afternoon: Lunch is generally included on day trips, along with hotel drop-off in the late afternoon. If you find yourself back in town with time to spare, visit the city’s often-overlooked galleries and museums, such as the Swahili Cultural Centre, Akamba Handicraft Industry, and Mombasa Butterfly House.
Night: After a busy couple of days, relax on a dinner cruise, with food, drinks, and live music usually included.