Practically within shouting distance of Lamu town, Manda island – with next to no fresh water – was only recently almost uninhabited but is now the site of several new luxury homes and a couple of boutique resorts. Aside from the allure of the pristine beach, it is also the site of the main airstrip on the islands, and the location of the old ruined town of Takwa (favourite destination of the dhow-trip operators). Significant archeologically for the ruins of Takwa and Manda, the north side of the island is also the location of the fabulous Manda Bay lodge.

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