Kenya Tourism Board welcomes UK lifting of travel advisory to Lamu Island and Manda Island

Forodhani House Lamu
Forodhani House Lamu Seafront Terrace. Photo: East African Retreats

The lifting of the travel advisory for Lamu Island and Manda Island by the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has been welcomed by the Kenya Tourism Board (KTB).

Last week’s announcement is expected to increase number of tourists as the tourism sector continues to recover with both areas now open for access by air via Manda Airstrip.

Airlines currently serving this airport from Nairobi include Air Kenya, Safarilink, Fly 540 and Jambojet from Nairobi, with Mombasa Air Safari flying from Mombasa.

“This latest announcement means visitors to Kenya have the opportunity to visit this unspoilt area of the coastline, including the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Lamu Old Town, the oldest and best-preserved Swahili settlement in East Africa.” – Jimi Kariuki, Chairman of Kenya Tourism Board

Following the news of the travel advisory being lifted, British expat Andrew McGhie of Lamu Island Property and East African Retreats told Brits In Kenya: “A sensible distinction has been made between the islands which have always been safe, peaceful and welcoming – and Lamu County which is a large and completely separate mainland area stretching all the way up to Kenya’s border with Somalia.”

Manda Airstrip
A JamboJet flight touches down at Manda Airstrip in 2015. Photo: Twitter/KenyaAirports

According to the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS), tourism was the best performer in the first half of 2016, growing by 15 per cent. This latest news is expected to help the industry grow further for the remainder of 2016 and beyond.