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Dhow boats in the making & braiding mats

Matondoni Village, population 3,000, is close to a 1,112-acre (450-hectare) mangrove forest that contains seven of Kenya’s nine species of mangroves. 

The best place to see dhows being built is the village of Matondoni, in the island's northwest. It’s a peaceful little fishing village that receives few visitors, so the welcome is always warm.

To get there from Lamu Town, you can walk the 6km (about two hours – ask for directions from the back of town and follow the telephone poles), slogging your way through sand part of the way. Alternatively, you can hire a donkey or take an organised dhow trip (which normally continues onto Kipungani for a swim and, sea conditions depending, then loops around the island and back to Lamu town via Shela). Jambo House organises guided walks to Matondoni.

Look at the braidings of the mats

See how Dhows are being made

Matondoni: Tours
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