Ordinary day somewhere

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Vasco da Gama's fleet landed here in 1498 and Malindi has had its fair share of fortune hunters ever since. It's a bustling town that doesn't quite have the architecture of Lamu or the easy-going charm of Watamu, but it makes up for it with several worthwhile historical sights, its own marine national park and some fantastic stretches of beach. Beloved by Italians – many of whom have been settled here for years – Malindi has been feeling the pinch lately, with economic depression in Europe impacting on much of its visitor market. Still, it remains a melting pot of local cultures with a rich and fascinating history. Wander through the alleys of the atmospheric old town, dine on terrific Italian food beside the Indian Ocean or take a plunge into the crystal-clear waters of the national park, and you'll discover for yourself that Malindi is quite the charmer.


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