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Kilifi, Kenya Dive Sites

In the Creek

The creek itself is a kindergarten and macro paradise. As it is a breeding ground for many species of fish, you will see large shoals of silver sides with trevally and barracuda hunting them.  And for those who like nudibranchs, shrimps, juvenile lionfish, pipefish, ghost pipe fish and leaf fish this is heaven. Best dived on slack high tide.  For divers of all levels.

Creek Mouth

Situated on the south part of the creek mouth this is a shallow dive from 1 meter to 10 meters with huge coral bommies and plate corals.

You can find all the fauna mentioned above.

 

Ras Mafumbini

A series of walls from 3 meters to 30 meters on which you can find the above mentioned fauna.

 

Mnarani Club

There is a shallow reef  on the left of the jetty from 1 meter to 8 and a gentle 45 degree slope from 1 to 15 metres with  some coral bommies on the right.

Again you can find all the above here plus flying gunnard and frogfish! Sandy beach is perfect for training dives at high tide.

Ellen’s Reef

A shallow reef  next to Ras Mafumbini, from 1 meter to 8 meters on a gentle 45 degree slope. Below that there  a sandy slope with coral bommies down to 17meters. You can find all the fauna mentioned above and the seahorses if your eyes are sharp!

 

Buccaneer Reef

Two walls from 10 to 17 meters and from 18 to 25 which are covered in  beautiful, very fragile white corals. Above this there is a beautifulhard coral garden. A large shoal of snapper and barracuda can sometimes be seen cruising  up and down.

 

8 Sites North of Creek Mouth

All eight areas named below consist of fringing reefs with gentle sloes going from 8-10 meters down to 23-25 metres. Here you will find a mixture of soft and hard corals with many of the Indian Ocean fish species present;  blue and yellow grouper, coral grouper, peacock grouper, coral grouper, antheas, chocolate dips, crocodile fish, anemone fish, six striped soapfish, dart goby, angel fish, butter fly fish, wrasse  and moray  to name but a few. There are also green turtle and hawksbill turtle.  Sites are good for divers of all levels and can be dived at any time.

Starting south: Mlangoni, Baobab, Black Marlin, Kilifi Bay, Blue House, Tower House, Casuarani,Swahili House.

Deep Dives

There are deep reefs coming up from the sandy plateau in front of the fringing reefs and we dive on two of these. Good at all times but best on incoming tide and slack high tide. For advanced and above only.

Barracuda

This is a mound in front of the Kilifi creek mouth that starts at 30 meters and levels off at 18 meters. Here you will find a profusion of plate coral and many fish! Glassfish, blue trigger fish, leopard sweetlips, silver sweetlips, mangrove snapper, five line snapper, big eye snapper. If you look closely you will also find some holes with honeycomb moray and partner cleaning shrimp. Cannot be done in rough weather.

 

Swahili Deep

Situated in front of the fringing reef Swahili House, this site resembles a cutting in the sandy bottom from 18 meters to 26 meters.

Along this mini wall you will find a resident Napoleon wrasse, many potato groupers and large shoals of blue trigger fish, five line snappers,surgeon fish.

 

Wrecks

There are two wrecks in the creek, a ferry and a freighter which we recently discovered the former. The freighter starts at 22 meters and goes down to 30 meters. She is lying on her side and about a third is buried in the silt. A very interesting dive but no penetration as the hull is very shallow. Advanced and above only.

The ferry sits between 3 to 15 meters and is close to the freighter. It is covered with batfish and can be done by all divers.

We now have a new wreck , the Karibu, a 13 metre motor yacht sitting at 20metres on the sandy bottom in front of Takaungu reef. It has already attracted  cardinal fish, glassfish, batfish, cleaner shrimp and a resident honeycomb moray. Can be done by all divers.

Vuma Cliffs

The Vuma cliffs continue below the waterline to 5 meters (tide dependent) and then there is an extended ledge away from the cliff face. This drops gently down to between 8 and 10 meters and from there is a wall which drops down to between 17 and 20 meters.  Area is good for divers of all levels in flat, calm sea but only experienced in heavier weather. The area is usually off limits during the South East Monsoon from May to September. There are 4 dive sites here.

Big Rock

An area situated at the point of the cliff head with some very large boulder shaped coral heads massed below and above water.

As it is a meeting point of currents there are many shoals of fish to be found here; leopard sweetlips, blue lined snappers, soldier fish and mangrove fish.

There also large amounts of Kuhl’s stingray on sandy bottom south of point. Max depth 20m.

 

Vuma Caves

North of big rock there are many overhangs and shallow caves concentrated in one area. Here you can find all the fish mentioned above plus the odd Jenkins whipray. Max depth 20m.

 

Canyon Ndogo

Ndogo means little in Swahili and the site gets its name because there is a vertical cleft in the ledge.

There are is also an overhang with two chimneys which are excellent for panoramic photos.

On the upper part of the wall there are often napoleon wrasse and a huge shoal of big eye trevally.

In addition there is a deep cave with large shoals of leopard sweetlips and mangrove snappers and if you are lucky a giant grouper.

Max depth 20m.

Bruce’s Grotto

Named after the owner of Buccaneer diving because this is where he as a young whipper snapper  discovered a series of large overhangs with  some large brown marbled groupers. Great for panoramic photos! Max depth 20m.

 

Takaungu

In front of the Takaungu creek mouth there is a reef formation which extends in a crescent east then south. At the beginning it takes the shape of a deep wall, probably formed by thousands of years of outwash from the river, but then becomes a gently sloping fringing reef.  Area is for good for divers of all levels but best dived at incoming tide or slack high water. Not in rough weather. There are three dive sites here.

Winnie's

Sitting infront directly in front of the creek mouth this site is a mixture of a shallow wall (8-10 metres), sea grass ( 10-14 metres) and sand ( 14-18 metres).

This combination of different habitats means that you can view diverse fish and animals including glassfish, scorpionfish, seahorses, pipefish and nudibranchs.

 

Takaungu Wall

As the name indicates there is a wall which goes down from 8 meters down to 27 meters. On this you will find large shoals of glassfish, baby barracuda, blue triggerfish, sweetlips, anemones and nemos and scorpionfish. The reef above the wall has many kinds of beautiful soft corals with the odd cowrie nestling amongst them.

 

Takaungu 1

Further south from the wall the barrier becomes gently sloping going down to sand at 25 meters. Between 20 and 25 meters there are shallow indentations with glassfish, scorpionfish and lion fish. Further up there are some large heads of coral with many orange sponges dotted around them. Look closely at these because one might be a frogfish! Further up again it becomes the soft coral garden again.

 

 
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