Seated on the shores of Kipungani Bay and on the southwestern edge of Lamu Island, the Kipungani Explorer is host to a luscious island vacation. With 12 spaced out banda cottages and beach lined by palm trees, the hotel aims to go beyond expectations in both hospitality and comfort. Feast on the culinary expertise of one of the most recognized chefs in Kenya and relax in the shade or take part in some of the infinite activities offered at Kipungani, including sailing, fishing and waterskiing.
Our 12 spacious bandas sit at one end of Kipungani Bay, which is Swahili for “the place of fresh air”. Shaded by the palm trees that line our 600-metre beachfront, the bandas are constructed entirely from local materials, with mkeka grass floors and makuti thatch roofs woven by the residents of neighboring Kipungani Village. The large interiors area a picture of rustic simplicity, with giant king-sized beds and furniture all handmade from local mangrove and palm roods. Each banda has an ocean-facing veranda with local funzi sofas and chairs piled high with colorful cushions. Amenities include freshwater shower and separate dressing areas with wash basins.
The stunning bandas, cushion-piled driftwood furniture, attentive staff, and spectacularly good seafood have proved a recipe that continues to entice guests back year after year. Enjoy the delectable catch-of-the-day seafood and continental cuisine.Thanks to the legacy of Eric Munyasia, himself one of Kenya’s best-known chefs (and now executive chef for the Heritage group), the seafood is still among the finest on the African coast. The sunset-facing lounge and bar at Kipungani Explorer are furnished for complete relaxation, with large driftwood furniture, hanging Swahili beds a bit like a hammock but much more comfortable and a variety of natural discoveries combed from our shores. The dining room sits in a small tropical garden, with an adjoining library offering guests a broad selection of novels, magazines, and board games. In front of the building is a horizon-touching swimming pool, which offers the perfect venue for the ultimate romantic sundowner.
Activities include snorkeling and swimming with Africa’s friendliest dolphins on reefs of Kinyika and Manda Toto, waterskiing and kayaking in the sheltered Kipungani channel, sailing and sunset cruises abord our Arab dhows. There's also barracuda fishing from the beach, dhow, or speedboat, deep sea game fishing (please book in advance), crab-catching excursions with expert fisherman, bird walks in and around the property and beach dunes, visits to Lamu’s historic mosques, markets and museum, Kipungani has recently taken on the services of a full-time cultural guide, who takes visitors on day trips to the town’s bustling markets and memorable maritime museum, as well as the evocative ruins of the 14th century fort on neighbouring Manda Island. More energetic visitors can partake in a host of adventurous options, including kayaking in the Lamu channel and coast-hugging voyages.