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Deaprts daily

The marine park is located on the south coast, 40km from Ukunda town in Msambeni District of coast province.  The ecosystem covers a marine area with four small islands surrounded by coral-reef. Kisite island is covered in low grass and herbs while Mpunguti Islands have dense coastal equatorial forest. Sea grasses Cymodocea serrulata and Syringodium isoetifolium cover a large area of the sub-littoral zone of the reef. Marine algae include Padina commersonii, Dictyota bartayresiana, Bostrychia binderi, Ulva lactuca, Dictyosphaora sp., Udotea indica, and Halimeda opuntia. Major attractions include the Dolphins, coral gardens and it is an important site for snorkelling, diving and bird watching. The beautiful sandy beach is good for  enviromental friendly recreational activities.

ACTIVITY OPTIONS

  • Snorkeling
  • Sunbathing
  • Recreational activities that are enviromentally friendly
  • Licenced filming
  • Bird watching
  • Dolphin Watch
  • Diving

Code of conduct;

Like all wild animals, dolphins, whales and whale sharks are unpredictable. They may spend many minutes in surface waters or may be seen for a few seconds then suddenly disappear. We are careful not to disturb them as we are, after all, in their territory and must treat them with RESPECT. We approach them slowly keeping our distance, gaining their TRUST and appreciating the chance to view these wonderful creatures. The captain’s considerate boat driving is also important.

As members of the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society and International Dolphin Watch we ensure that we follow their CODE OF CONDUCT when encountering these wonderful creatures of the wild which reads as follows:

Interaction with marine mammals:

  • Do not chase or harass. Allow them to take the initiative. If they swim away do not continue to pursue them.
  • Do not crowd around them. If more than two boats move away.
  • Do not make sudden changes in speed or direction. Maintain boat in neutral gear.
  • Take special care when young ones are present.
  • When feeding or mating keep your distance and observe quietly.
  • Move away if you notice any signs of distress.

Transfers to Shimoni

Pick up and transfers from either north coast or south coast shall depend on each hotel location and to be confirmed at the trip booking.

North Coast pick up times are;

From 05:40 hours to 06:30 hours

South Coast pick up times are;

From 06:45 hours to 07:25 hours

0815 hours to 0830 hours

Arrive in Shimoni jet

0830 hours to 0900 hours

Prepare for the cruise start, use of wash room, a boarding the boat, welcome by our crew and take off

0900 hours to 1100 hours

Cruise to Kisite Mpunguti Marine Reserve, soft drinks are provided on the way with a possibility of dolphins spotting and measure masks as cruise on

1100 hours 1215 hours

Snorkelling in Kisite Mpunguti Marine Park

1215 hours to 1315 hours 

Sailing to Wasini Island as you take soft drinks

1315 hours to 1430 hours

Lunch in our ocean facing restaurant

Lunch includes:

  • Crab
  • Fish
  • All drinks are inclusive
  • Sea weed
  • Rice with coconuts sauce
  • Vegetarian and chicken is possible
  • special food available if ordered in advance could be arranged

1430 hours 1600 hours

  • Relaxing in the restaurant enjoying the ocean view and breeze
  • Relaxing in the restaurant enjoying the ocean view and breeze (this is online so below to be added)
  • Visit Shimoni Slave Caves Community project (optional at an extra fee of K.Shs.400)

Also included are

  • Beer and wine
  • Snorkelling equipment
  • Marine reserve fees
  • All our transport has insurance
  • Prescription masks, snorkels, fins and diving equipment. Soft drinks (sodas), mineral water and fruits served on the dhow.

What is not included?

  • Gratuities for the service
  • Entry in to the Shimoni Sleve cave
  • Things of personal use

End of the excursion

What to bring

  • Water friendly Shoes
  • Hat
  • Swimming Costume
  • Towel
  • Good Sun Protection
  • Money for souvenirs and cave visit

SHIMONI DIRECTIONS SELF DRIVE ROUTE INSTRUCTIONS

To arrive at Shimoni jetty by 8.30a.m at the latest

From Mombasa to Ukunda

Take the through road across Mombasa Island to the Likoni ferry. Board the ferry service to the South Coast and then drive along the main coastal road which is a straight continuous route. This passes through Likoni on towards Ukunda. Pass the Shimba Hills/Mwaluganje sign posts at the Kwale junction and pass sign boards to your left for Sand Island Cottages, Capricho Beach Cottages – drive straight on towards Ukunda and continue through Ukunda.

From Ukunda and Diani

Join the main Lunga – Lunga road going south towards Shimoni.  Pass through Ukunda driving straight on. The road continues through Gazi and Msambweni. Pass the Funzi Island signboard. You will cross the Ramisi River and pass the closed Ramisi Sugar Factory, and lots of cassava shambas. 2.6kms from the Ramisi Bridge you will see a turning on the left at the Shimoni junction, 30 kilometres from Ukunda.

There is a Telkom signboard there at the time of writing. A Kenya Wildlife Service signboard is a little way in, off the road. Turn left here and travel on this dirt road for 12 to 13 kilometers to Shimoni village. Bear right at the T junction near the Shimoni cave and drive for about 20 meters. Then turn left into the main Shimoni jetty enclosure. There is adequate parking space.  Parking in this enclosure now costs K.Shs. 100/- for the day.  If the gate looks closed somebody should open it for you but if not just open the gate yourself.

Take the usual precautions of leaving the vehicle locked with no visible possessions inside. Proceed to the main Shimoni jetty, straight ahead, where you will be met by a member of the Crew wearing our T Shirt/Navy Shorts.

We will be ready to leave the jetty at 8.30 a.m. but will wait until 8.45 a.m for any latecomers. Please ensure that you allow enough travelling time to arrive in Shimoni by 8.30a.m.

If you have a Celtel mobile phone you will only get network up until Msambweni.

Safaricom network is available throughout, including Shimoni and Wasini Island.

You may contact us case of any problem or delay. This will help them decide whether there is enough time to wait for you. 

Humpback Whale Facts

Description

The Humpback Whale is one of the most recognized of them all due to the hump over the dorsal fin. They have an average size of 52 feet long. There is quite a difference in their sizes depending on location when it comes to weight. Those that live in cooler regions can be up to 40 tons whiles those in the tropical areas are about 30 tons.

They have a very long tail that can be up to a third of body length. They also have huge flippers that are often referred to as wings do to the position of them as they leap out of the water. An interesting fact is that the heart has four chambers.

Behavior

These are enjoyable whales to watch. They tend to do plenty of great moves and flips in the air effortlessly as they rise to the surface for air. As a result they are often trained when it captivity to do more advanced forms of acrobatics. Another characteristic is to lift up the head and not the rest of the body. This gives the appearance that they are very curious about their surroundings.

The Humpback Whale is very social, and sings louder than most of the others out there. Their songs can be heard for several miles which is amazing. They form very small but intimate groups. They tend to stay within the same groups for most of their lives too.

Diet/Feeding

The Humpback Whale has a more detailed feeding system than any other whale out there. They feature grooves on the throat that allow it to open up and to expand when they eat. This way they can take in huge amounts of water. The filtering system keeps the food and pushes the water out. They are seasonal feeders and then they cut down to almost nothing when they migrate. They will consume from 3,000 pounds of food daily if it is available.

They have a very detailed system within their pod to help them with hunting for food. This is called bubble net feeding and is interesting to watch. They create a circle under the water with their bodies and then blow bubbles. The bubbles are able to trap the small sea life that they would like to consume. This mass of prey will rise up and then the Humpback Whales can eat it with ease. This is very helpful since they don’t swim very fast, up to 9 miles per hour, but they can reach up to 16 miles per hour at times.

Distribution

You will generally find Humpback Whales at the surface of the ocean waters. They migrate a very long distance and since they move very slow it takes them a while to complete the process. Even though they move slowly, they do move steadily towards their destination with almost no time to stop and rest.

Reproduction

After conception it can be close to 11.5 months before the calf is born. Caring for these calves can be hard though due to them consuming many gallons of milk every day. There isn’t very much really known about the mating process for these whales other than the deep, eerie songs that the males will belt out for courting process of it.

Conservation

Sadly, there are very few Humpback Whales left. It is estimated that there can’t be more than 15,000 of them in the world. Conservation efforts have been initiated to help them to climb back up there. One can live up to 50 years in the wild if they have the umbrella of protection that they need.

Trip price snorkelling for non resident’s;

Including transport is US$ 135.00 (including Marine Park Fee of US$ 25.00)

Excluding transport is US$ 95.00 (including Marine Park Fee of US$ 25.00)

Children 03 to 11 years is half price

Children under 03 years is free of charge

Trip price snorkelling for resident’s;

Including transport is KES 7,300.00

Excluding transport is KES 6,800.00

Children 03 to 12 years is half price

Children under 03 years is free of charge

(Includes 2% tourism fund and 16% VAT)

Diving;

Certified divers, one dive pay additional of US$ 40.00

Certified divers, two dives pay additional of US$ 70.00

Fun dive, pay additional of US$ 50.00

The price includes;

All drinks and snacks on boat, crab and seafood lunch (chicken and vegetarian, wine, beers and sodas, marine park fee, use of snorkelling and diving equipments and prescription lenses. Please residents and citizens of Kenya to bring ID. Cards or valid alien’s pass for Kenya wildlife service personnels inspection (KWS).

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