Mombassa, Kenya – June 2013

In June 2013 Putney BSAC travelled to Mombassa, Kenya for 2 weeks of sun, diving and safari. Staying at the Bamburri Beach Hotel, located a few kilometres North of Mombassa, we enjoyed the luxury of a sea view from our room, the beach on our doorstep and most importantly a free bar!

Our hotel

We spent most of the first week diving. Each day consisted getting up at the crack of dawn to make the short stroll down the beach to the dive centre. We boarded our two small boats and headed out to the reef located just off the beach. The diving was superb, the reef was in fantastic condition with an abundance of reef fish as well as crustaceans, turtle and sharks. With the reef being so close to shore we could do two dives in the morning and be back in time for lunch. Leaving the whole afternoon free for sun bathing and making the most of the free bar.

This was Justine’s first time diving in the open sea, she said she’d be fine “as long as there aren’t any sharks,” so she wasn’t overly enthused to learn that our first dive would be at ‘Shark Point’. Needless to say Justine took it all in her stride. Our dive guides said, if they hadn’t known otherwise, they would have thought she’d been diving for sometime and wasn’t just a beginner. Which our club instructors naturally assumed was entirely down to their excellent teaching.

The whole gang

The second week was all about the safari. We split into two groups, John and Rob went by land to Tsavo West and Amboseli national parks. By all accounts they had a fantastic time, seeing lots of animals including a very close encounter with a herd of elephants, just don’t ask Rob about his experience of sharing a room with John.

The rest of us got a flight to the Maasai Mara to see the famous savannah where so many wildlife documentaries are filmed. We were treated to scenes straight out of the movie the Lion King. The view from our lodge alone was of expansive plains with antelope, wilder beast, giraffes, zebras and buffalo all together. On our tours out from the lodge we got to see these animals up close and personal as well as some of big predators including a pride of lions. The trip highlight was without a doubt when two cheetahs stood on the roof of our Jeep. The cheetahs used our Jeep as a vantage point to look out across the savannah seemingly unaware of the six terrified tourists hiding in the open top Jeep trying to take photos unsure if they were about to become the cheetahs’ dinner.

Tim with a Cheetah

After our safaris it was back to the hotel in Mombassa for a few more days of relaxing by the pool before the flight home and the return to England and reality.

Lastly a big thanks to Darren for not only organising another superb dive trip but acting as our tour operator throughout the holiday arranging day trips, diving and the safari. Keep up the good work mate.