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Raymond's Blog

I will use this space to add news and photos from Kenya. It will be updated regularly so please visit often.

2015-11-20

November 2015 Blog

November 2015 Blog

Jambo from Raymond Kingi and Kalamo Kitsao

Sorry to all that we have not been in touch lately but tourism has been very quiet in Watamu for the last couple of years. This is due to the troubles in Kenya and the travel bans from lots of countries but Watamu is still a very safe and friendly place to visit.

We have been busy planting maze, potatoes and other crops to eat on our plots of land and doing the a few safari and local trips to Mida Creek and Gedi ruins.

Since all travel bans have been lifted especially to Malindi we have been getting more requests for safaris and local trips. The Christmas and New Year period is expected to be busy as usual but mainly repeat guests but hopefully we will get something small to do to celebrate the New Year?

The re opening of Hemingway's on the 1st December will be good also. So if you still want your dream Trip to Kenya we are still here waiting for you to arrange for you.

Hoping to meet old and new friends back to Watamu soon.

Kwaheri Raymond & Kalamo

2014-10-20

October News

October 2014 News

Jambo everyone

Sorry I have not written for a while but Kenya is very quiet and there is not too much going on.

The volunteering of the beach boys accompanied by the Watamu youth, with the school children helps in maintaining and keeping the beaches clean by collecting all the plastic materials and driftwoods which were deposited by the wind.

 


Now the sea calmed down completely which makes to be a good season for dolphin watching, snorkelling and deep sea fishing.

Now the weather is very hot with a lot of humidity after the few rains and sea weeds is being swept away and buried under the soil thus making the beaches clean.


We got a few tourists and guided them to safari and was brilliant as usual...

Kwaheri and bye for now

Raymond

2014-05-05

May News

May 2014 News

Jambo everyone, here I am again to tell you some news from Watamu area.

The touristic season is nearly at the end, due to the incoming rains; many resorts will close soon after the Easter holiday and few will go throughout the year.

The new high speed road that links Kilifi to Nairobi is proceeding well; thanks to this new road, not passing through Mombasa, it will take only 7 hours to get from Malindi to Nairobi and also Tsavo West and Amboseli parks will be reached more quickly.

There are rumors regarding the possibility that Malindi airport will become an International airport; two airlines, Ethiopian Airways and Emirates, have already said that in case this is confirmed they are interested in setting a new line ending in Malindi. This will help tourism and so let's hope that the government will start soon the new hub creation.

Some interesting health news; the Kenyan bee venom has been found to be very effective in curing some diseases, thanks to its anti-inflammatory properties. By taking half a teaspoon a day before breakfast it can reduce the joint pains and it's also very effective for skin deseases and for colds. Moreover, according to a study from the Medical Research Center of London it can even cure HIV virus.

And at last some interesting news for tourists: Kilifi Governor has decided that very soon beach boys regularization will be in place; tourists will be more secure and less disturbed while relaxing on our beaches.

Did some few safaris and excursions here are the pics. Man showing Tourists how to climb a palm tree without steps to climb on. And the palm wine how is made or how is tapped.

 

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Kwaheri

Raymond

2014-03-06

March 2014 News

News from March 2014

Jambo! Here I am again to tell you some news from Watamu area.

After 30 years, the Safari Rally is passing again through Malindi. The Safari Rally is a rally race held in East Africa. It was first held in 1953 as a celebration of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. In 1960 it was renamed the East African Safari Rally and kept that name until 1974, when it became the Safari Rally.

The event was part of the World Rally Championship calendar for many years until being excluded after 2002 (due to lack of funding and organisation) until this year. It’s a great opportunity for people in Watamu area thanks to lots of tourists arriving from all over the world to watch it. (pic 1,2)

Touristic high season seems already finished: after Christmas and New Year holiday period, less tourists are arriving. Hotels and resorts are half-full and local shopkeepers are complaining because lots of goods remain unsold and no more bought by restaurants and hotels.

Luckily enough still some tourists are coming and I had the opportunity to bring some Italian tourists to Safari Blue (we were very lucky to spot lots of dolphins, ball fish and lots of other very hungry coloured fishes- pic 3,4,5) and to Tsavo east for a 2 days safari (pic 6,7,8).

 And last but not least a very good news: Kenya has been voted as Best Safari destination for 2013 during the World Travel Awards (pic9)…so come and visit us…Kenya is awaiting you all :-)

Kwaheri

Raymond

2014-01-30

January 2014 News

News from January 2014

Happy new year to you all from Watamu.

We had a busy time over the Christmas and New Year period. On the 30th December there was the annual dhow race from Ocean Sports organised by the Watamu Marine Association, it was an exciting race won by the dhow called Samael and a sum of 30 thousand Kenyan shilling was shared between the 6 dhows in the race.

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We had had good friends from England and Italy over Xmas and New Year which was nice to meet old friends again and we had a good time.

I arranged friends from England on the 2nd Jan to visit the Masai Mara to the Governors Camp which they enjoyed very much taking lots of photos with my camera to post on here.

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Watamu has been very peaceful over the Xmas period but we could do with more tourists please to come and visit our beautiful country beaches and the friendly people ofWatamu.

We also had tourists arriving on the 7th Jan at TBBC and I arranged for them to go to the Royle Mara also having a good safari time in the Masai Mara.

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On the 23rd January we had the first ever leatherback turtle nest on Turtle Bay beach  leaving 97 eggs.We normaly  get green turtles / hawksbill and olive ridley so this was very exciting for the people of watamu. Watch the video here.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pr2JoaLlr4w

Kwaheri

Raymond

2013-12-06

November 2013 News

November 2013 News

Jambo everybody

Kenya is again a safe place for tourists: after Nairobi attack, security has been improved in all touristic places and we then hope that tourists will start coming again and visit our beautiful country.

In Watamu, an agreement between Aquarius resort administration and beachboys has been reached: beach operators will be in place and will check that tourists will be no more disturbed by illegal tourists operators. Tourists are now welcome to relax on the beach and beach operators will keep malicious people away from them.

Plastic recycling has been put in place in some restaurants and resorts of Malindi, thanks to the support of the Regeneration Environment Service.

In one month time nearly 427 kilos of plastic have been collected and this activity has also employed some unemployed kenians. This project will be presented also to Watamu resorts and let’s hope it will also be put in place here!

NEMA agency has confirmed that Galana/Sabaki river has been polluted due to some chemicals drained inside the river after a dam rupture in Tsavo national park .

The emergency situation is now under control but NEMA recommends to stop drinking water from the river for sometime.

The good season is now approaching and tourists have hopefully started to come again. Last week some Italian friends have visited Tsavo East and they have been very lucky since they managed to spot a leopard, together with lions, elephants and zebras. Along the Tsavo East Road on our way back we stopped at one of the schools where they take their learnings under trees with big shadows because of lack of school buildings.

Kwaheri

Raymond

 

2013-08-21

August 2013 News

News for August 2013

Jambo to everybody

Despite the “normal” seasonal climate, there are still sudden heavy rains affecting Malindi area.The storms arrive very quickly, heavy rains are poured but in a short time the bad weather is over, even if the temperature may be reduced by several degrees.

Based on the local fishermen’s weather forecasts, heavy rains will be affecting Malindi area still for some days but then the weather will become again the one we are used to in this season: warm and nicely windy, giving the tourist the possibility to sunbathe and relax under the sun.

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In order to attract more tourists and to increase the economy, the Government has decided to improve infrastructures and to organize a tender for a new railway, connecting Mombasa to Kampala (Uganda) and maybe also to Addis Abeba (Ethiopia). At the same time a new highway will be built between Mombasa and Lamu, where the second Kenyan harbour is foreseen to be built.

While tourists quietly and peacefully relax in their resorts, there are anyway some strikes on-going in Malindi area. More than one hundred Malindi, Watamu beach boys have also been on strike lately to complain against the decision of KWS to block their entrance on beaches, in order to keep them away from tourists. This decision is also affecting Kenyans owning a shop on the beach; discussions are on-going but tourism is not affected by the strikes

Teachers in Kenya have called off a nationwide strike, ended in mid-July to request, among others, for better salaries and better schools. Some 240,000 primary and secondary school teachers have been striking for more than three weeks for higher pay but also to point out that many schools are kept in real bad conditions and would require some renovations.

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While these strikes are been held, there are locals and tourists who take care of Watamu beautiful environments: at the end of July roughly 200 volunteers have started cleaning the beaches and some areas in Watamu and Malindi. The cleaning day was a real success and the organisers are aiming to perform it more regularly, in the incoming months.

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At the end of July a hippo has been killed by KWS in front of Marine Park in Malindi. It’s the sad story of an African hippo that was taken away from his quiet life in Sabaki river (maybe because of the rains) and forced to the sea. Once here, he  didn’t manage to go back home, due to the strong streams of these days, and KWS were forced to kill him in order to avoid him hurting people.

I took some Italian clients to Amboseli and Tsavo West  in the last week and they were lucky enough to spot some leopards that are known to be very shy and difficult to be seen and many other animals.

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That’s all for now

Kwaheri

Raymond

 

2013-07-04

July 2013 News

June \ July 2013 News

Jambo to everybody

The rainy season is nearly over, at last!

This year heavy rains have affected the Kenya and Watamu area, causing some troubles. Hundreds of residents have been marooned following flash floods caused by days of heavy rains in the country. Many of the affected residents were making desperate attempts to move from their houses to safer areas.

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In Watamu, residents rushing to their respective working destinations were forced to stay indoors since roads were rendered impassable. Many people who were displaced in Malindi area have received food relief from the Government. The residents were displaced by floods after the Sabaki river burst its banks last week when heavy rains pounded several parts of the country, thus resulting to floods. While over 500 acres crops planted by the local residents in the two districts were equally swept away by floods and several roads were also rendered impassable by the floods.

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Investors in tourism in Watamu protested over heavy damage on access roads in the town and appealed to the government to repair the roads. They also sought to have the tourist resorts cleaned up to rid them of the growing heaps garbage and seaweeds which gave a bad impression of the town to local and international guests. 

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Among these bad news there are hopefully good ones: beginning of may Malindi residents have a reason to smile after the Italian hospital San Matteo with the Kenyan Government built an operation theatre at the Malindi District Hospital worth seventy five millions. 

And another good news for all tourists: a new international airport will be built in Lango Baya, 50 km from Malindi, on the road to Tsavo East. In a few years’ time it will be easier to reach Watamu area thanks to this new airport. 

The good season is approaching and tourists are coming back to Kenya to visit our parks: I took some English people from Turtle Bay Hotel to Tsavo East this week and we spotted many animals and beautiful landscapes along our way. 

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The roads to the parks are now in good conditions …. 

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….so I long to see you soon in my beautiful country

 Kwaheri

Raymond

 

2013-04-05

April 2013 News

News for April 2013

Hello Everybody!

On the 24th of Feb we had an anti-poaching walk along the main road from Mida Creek to Watamu beach. Over 350 were people taking part and most of which were school children. We were protesting against the killing of our elephants and rhinos in our lovely parks.

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February was still low with few tourists because of the elections which were held this year in March.

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Still were happy to do a few excursions and safaris with those who managed to come. We had a few tourists for snorkelling with the glass bottomed boat with which we went to the marine park and finally to Mida creek to get delicious BBQ of sea foods.

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Along the way on Mida Creek many birds can be seen.

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Other tourists went to Mida Creek with Marafiki glass bottomed boat that was sponsored by good hearted tourists, the money gathered is used to pay school fees for the poor children in the community and also to buy stationary for the Marafiki primary school.

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When the rainy season approaches many sardine fishes arrives in big groups close to the seashore. Luckily the children manage to catch them using fishing nets for meals at home and they also get a little cash whenever they are able to sell them.

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Kwaheri...

Raymond

 

2013-02-16

February 2013

News for February 2013

Hello everyone

December and January haven’t been very busy as in the last years. Watamu is very beautiful in these months, the sea is calm and the beaches are clean with no seaweeds and long and very warm days.

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Due to the economic situation and the upcoming elections very few tourists are around at the moment and even the tuk tuk drivers have no clients to transport.

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There is plenty of fresh farm produce but there’s no good market since there are no tourists.

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 As I said it’s very calm but also sad around as the beaches are empty.

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and only local people are seen around

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Thankfully some tourists have decided to come and visit our country and I have organized a nice safari to see Masai Mara that is full of animals in this period.

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These tourists were very lucky as they spot the kill which is not so easily seen.

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After the game drives the tourists enjoyed the beautiful sunset of Masai Mara. securedownload-30.jpeg

That’s all for now

Kawaheri Ray

2012-10-20

October 2012

October 2012 News

Hello Everyone!

August and September haven't been very busy compared to last year as less tourists have decided to come to Kenya. Maybe it was because of the Olympic games in London or maybe it's the European crisis... In any case I haven't made many safaris as I thought but still made some pictures for you to see.

The weather has been very nice in the last 2 months; no rains at all and so you could see many children playing happily once their lessons were over.

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 Thanks to the lovely weather conditions, people relax on the beach until sunset immagine 374.jpg

Here is the new Medina Palms Apartments which borders Turtle Bay Hotel and shares the same beach with the Turtle Bay.

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Definitely it's a nice period to come and see our beautiful country. The temperature is not too much warm and from time to time some rains occur even if this happens the rain doesn't last too much and soon after it has finished you can still sunbathe or enjoy a nice safari.

As you can tell from the following pictures taken lately in Tsavo East and West there are plenty of animals to be seen.

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sdc11981 (small)[1].jpgIn the park

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 There are also nice highlights to be visited:

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immagine 251.jpgHippo skull at Mzima spring

In the last months my clients have been taken to safaris and excursions either by myself or by my guide Kalama.

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That's all for now

Hope to see you soon in Watamu ….

Raymond

 

2012-07-29

July 2012 News

July 2012 News

Hello everybody

May and June have been rainy months and so I haven't done any safaris.

I thus took the opportunity to go to Europe and visit new places and friends.

This time I have been to the Alps in Dolomiti (Italy) where I enjoyed myself in climbing these beautiful mountains  like Val di Fassa.

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During this holiday I saw a small but very colourful lake called Lake Carezza.

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 I also climbed high mountains such as Pordoj Mountain (3000 meters).

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Torri del Vajolet.

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Catinaccio Mountain (2300 meters) and Marmolada glacier (3100 meters) which is the second glacier in Alps.

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Now the holiday is over and soon I'll be back to Kenya to take new tourists and old friends around my beautiful country.

That's all for now

Kwaheri

yours Raymond Kingi

2012-04-29

April 2012 News

April 2012 News

Jambo Rafiki

April has been a little busy for me and even though the rains are approaching some tourists have come and visited us. I took my clients to see not only the highlights of Watamu on the Blue Safari ......

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but also the Marafa Sunset .......

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and also Tsavo East.......

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but also an orphanage where homeless children are taken care of by competent and enthusiastic teachers

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The last week of April I had a 4 days safari with some German tourists to see Tsavo East, West and Amboseli where we were very lucky to see Mt Kilimanjaro's peak full of snow as it's the rainy season.

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We were also fortunate to see many animals.

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I also took some clients on a bush tour where we passed by a bush doctor and also saw how local people live.

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This is the new gate for Amboseli entrance and is called the Kimana Gate.

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This river is at Observation Hill and is a result of the snow melting from Kilimanjaro's peak.

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That's all for this month.

Kwaheri

Raymond

2012-03-31

March 2012 News

March 2012 News

Jambo Friends!

In the last months I've been busy with some personal issues and this is why I haven't written anything lately. Now I am back and sending you an update regarding the latest news from Watamu during the past 3 months. 

Not many tourists have visited us both because of the European financial crisis and worries over the Somalian situation even though Watamu is a very safe place and not too close to the Somalian border. 

Thankfully I had some tourists I took to some safaris in Tsavo East, Tsavo West,  and Amboseli as well as others to Masai Mara.

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Now the rainy season will be starting very soon and tourists are once more leaving us but I hope many will come as from July, for the migration period in Masai Mara.

Watamu is very quiet now; hotels are closing down for renovations this week and I have some tourists at the Aquarius Hotel but soon it will be closed as well until July.

Locals come from fishing and women buy the fish to sell it in the villages to make a living ....

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while the children play at the roadside.

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That's all for now

Kawaheri

Raymond

2011-12-30

November and December 2011 News

November and December 2011 News

Hello everyone!

It has been a good year to me with my family and I am very much happy to give you many thanks for your bookings with Kingi Safaris. All the profit has been very useful to me and you have helped me to pay the school fees for the children and do attachments to my house which I thank you for very much.

This month, the re opening of the Watamu Villa and the Pole Pole Bar and restaurant at the gate of the Turtle Bay Hotel creates jobs for the locals and also many people go for a cold Tusker. It is also like the Medina Palms which borders Turtle Bay Hotel which is under construction and also creates many needed jobs for the locals so we are happy for that.

I organised for 4 Swiss clients from the Salama Paradise and 2 English clients from Turtle Bay Hotel to go to the Masai Mara game reserve and stay at the fantastic Governors Camp. They had a good time and took these pictures for us to enjoy.

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I also took the group to dolphin watching and Mida Creek tour and they much enjoyed watching the dolphin swimming to the larger waters with their spectacular scenery.

One of the highlights of the month was when I picked 2 Italian clients from Nairobi Airport. I guided them to Masai Mara where we stayed for 2 nights at the Camp Oloshaiki. Then 1 night at Nakuru lodge situated in the Great Rift Valley. Then 1 night at Amboseli in the Kibo Safari Camp. And finally at Tsavo West National Park at Rhino Valley  Lodge. Was a wonderful 6 days safari.

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Thanks all my friends and a have a merry Christmas and a very happy and healthy New Year and success the whole year through.

Kwaheri

Raymond

2011-10-29

September and October News

Filed Under:

September and October 2011 News

Hi everyone

I had a quiet September so this will be my September and October blog.

I had bookings from 4 English tourists at Turtle Bay Hotel. I accompanied two tourists for a 2 days safari to Tsavo East and I organised the other two people to fly to the Masai Mara for 3 days with accommodation at the fantastic Governors Camp. It was brilliant for them to see the migration. 

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I booked 2 Italian tourists from Garoda Resort in Watamu to go on a 3 day safari to Tsavo East and Amboseli and snorkelling and then a relaxing cruise down the river for lunch at Mida Creek.

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The local people do their fishing in the creek as it is calm while the main sea is rough with big waves.

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The solo group of 10 ladies that have booked with me for the last 2 years came back to stay at Turtle Bay Hotel and entrusted me again with their bookings. We went snorkelling and visited Mida Creek with a BBQ and watched the spectacular flamingos. I booked two of the ladies to have 3 days at the Governors Camp in Masai Mara and I also accompanied 6 of the ladies to Tsavo East for 2 days. They had a great time!

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That's all for now.

Kwaheri

Raymond

2011-08-31

August 2011 News

August 2011 News

Jambo everyone

Had a wonderful 2 days safari to Tsavo East with 4 Italian people and 2 English people from Turtle Bay Hotel and had an overnight at Voi Wildlife Lodge.

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A fantastic 4 days safari with 4 English clients from Turtle Bay Hotel firstly to Tsavo East where we stayed at Voi Wildlife Lodge then onto Tsavo West and stayed at Rhino Valley Camp and in Amboseli we stayed at Kibo Safari Camp with the beautiful view of Mt Kilimanjaro from the swimming pool.

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I organised for 3 tourists from the Turtle Bay Hotel to fly from Mailindi Airport to the Masai Mara to stay at the Fig Tree Camp. They told me they had a fantastic time which is really good for me to know. 

That’s all for this month.

 

Kwaheri

Raymond

 

2011-07-31

July 2011 News

July 2011 News

Jambo everyone! 

It has been a busy July and I was on safari with many clients. I went for 2 days in Tsavo East National Park with 4 Belgium tourists from Dream of Africa Hotel and 2 English people from Scorpio Villas.

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We went to the Board Walk and bird hides walking on the suspended bridge like Indiana Jones at Mida Creek and spotted many birds including flamingos. We passed through Gede Ruins and looked at the Museum.

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Took other tourists to the Turtle Hospital in Watamu and saw a turtle with a deformed limb and another suffering from fibropapillomas, which is a tumour in the turtles eye and flippers caused by pollution in the sea which makes it difficult for the turtle to see, eat and swim and eventually dies.

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I organised for 2 English people to go to Lamu Island by air to stay at the Jonathan Hotel for one night, it was great!

Had a wonderful 2 days safari to Tsavo East and staying at Voi Lodge with 3 clients from the Turtle Bay Hotel. On our way back from the hotel we passed through a school where they do the learning under the trees.

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 Bye for now

Kwaheri

Raymond

2011-06-29

June 2011 News

June 2011 News

Jambo everyone

Had a wonderful safari with 4 clients from Turtle Bay Hotel to Tsavo East and Amboseli which was very good to see hundreds of wildbeests grazing with a view of Mount Kilimanjaro. We had an overnight at Kibo safari camp.

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Two days safari to Tsavo East national park with 3 clients from Turtle Bay Hotel. They had a good time and we were lucky to see the lion as we were just about to exit.

Elephants crossing the road
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Verreaux's Eagle Owl

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Black Baked Jackal

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Hell's Kitchen for the sunset with 2 Belgium tourists from Dream of Africa Hotel in Malindi and was amazing to see Baboons with other types of birds.

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Sunset at Hell's Kitchen

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Baboons

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On the 24th June we did some beach cleaning and road cleaning as organised by the Watamu Marine Association which was attended by many people to keep Watamu clean.

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Kwaheri

Raymond

2011-05-30

April and May News

April and May News 2011

Jambo

It has been pretty quiet here in Watamu as the rains have started and the tourists have stopped!

The Turtle bay Hotel is closed for 1 month due to renovations as they want to be a better place for the tourists.

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They fenced the hotel temporarily to prevent strong wind from damages.

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The Turtle bay beaches is still free from sea weeds creating a good place for a walk to the wishing rock.

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and its waters are calm for a bath near the Turtle rock.

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Took some other friends to Mida creek for a half day Trip and we passed through the turtle Clinic [turtle watch].

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Went to Marafa Hell's kitchen and spotted the Black Smith plover.

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 I am now busy cultivating as its raining season...

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Well that's it for now.

Kwaheri

Raymond

 

November Blog

Posted by Administrator at 2008-11-23 16:35
Hi Raymond, thanks for the news! I love to hear about what is going on in Watamu and I look forward to your December news. Great website by the way :-)

our visit

Posted by Patricia McCabe at 2008-12-20 15:25
Hello Raymond - we are really looking forward to our visit next week!! Can't wait to see Watamu again and catch up with friends. Looking forward to seeing you on Saturday bright and early
Jackie and Trisha

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