Grab your copy of this month’s Nomad Magazine for a guide to everything Kilifi County ranging from things to do, places to stay, exciting humpback whale watching adventures and more. In this feature, Kilifi resident Adam Kiboi rounds up a few favourite spots to eat around the region:
1. Crab Shack, Watamu
Crab Shack on Mida Creek is proof that collective effort can result in great cuisine. Owned and run by the Dabaso Creek Conservation Group, access to the Crab Shack is via a 200-metre boardwalk through a mangrove forest. The boardwalk and restaurant support local community conservation efforts. The restaurant itself sits on stilts in the creek and offers stunning views of Kirepwe Island providing an excellent sundowner setting. Crab Shack can sit about 15 people comfortably so they do insist on making a reservation at least 24 hours ahead of time. The food is incredible and as their name suggests, your best option off their menu is, of course, their crab. The crab samosas, for instance, are delectable to the point of being sinful.
2. Bahati Gelateria, Watamu
Bahati Gelateria on the bustling Watamu Road is touted as the go to spot for the best artisanal gelato in East Africa. Opened in 2006, it is a small unassuming place surrounded by tailors and woodcarver shops but it is busy from morning to evening. You might find yourself in a queue due to their popularity but it’s well worth the wait. They use fresh fruit to ensure rich natural flavours in their products, and favourites include passion, lemon, coconut and pistachio gelatos.
3. Distant Relatives Eco-Lodge and Backpackers, Kilifi
Their Friday pizza night is a weekly event that also serves as a Kilifi community get together complete with good music. They have classics like the margherita as well as truly unique options such as their pumpkin avocado pizza. Another great dining option from Distant Relatives is the moonrise sail with dinner on a secluded temporary beach. A jolly Captain Issa will pick you up from Fumbene Beach for a sail down the creek while treating you to a delectable Swahili dinner cooked on the dhow. If you’d like to book the moonrise dhow cruise, check your calendar for the next full moon and call ahead ; cast off is usually at 6pm.
4. The Food Movement, Kilifi Plantation
This eatery is run by Warren Wilson, a man truly passionate about his food. Formerly a chicken farm, the quirky and rustic restaurant is surrounded by fig and baobab trees and one wall has a striking mural by 4shore design whose studio is right next door. The innovative dishes on the menu are constantly changing, and each is a carefully curated blend of flavours that one might either not think to put together or an entirely new take on a classic. They use fresh locally grown vegetables, free-range organic beef and fowl and freshly caught seafood from Kilifi Creek to create their meals. With menu options such as “Free range poached eggs served with caramelised balsamic onion jam, deep fried sweet potato balls stuffed with mozzarella and basil pesto.“ The Food Movement has got to be on your bucket list of places to eat. They’re open Monday to Saturday from 8:00 am to 4:00pm.
For the full list of places to eat as well as a comprehensive guide to everything Kilifi, Watamu, Malindi, Vipingo and more, be sure to grab the latest issue of Nomad Magazine or log on to www. nomadmagazine.co for some wanderlust.