Planning a trip to Kenya and curious about how much you might be able to relax along the sandy shores of Lake Victoria? Maybe you’ve come across some towns in the area?
No matter why you are interested in visiting Kenya and the area of Homa Bay county, you should know that Mbita is not actually an island. Instead, it is known as Mbita Point is a section of the Kenyan mainland that juts out and connects to Rusinga Island via a causeway.
Keep reading if you’re interested in learning more about Mbita, its history, what there is to do in the area, and more.
What is the Size of Mbita?
Mbita is a relatively small town by many people’s standards, with a population of about 6000, but the area is rapidly growing and developing thanks to access to clean water and electricity since 2005.
The area’s main source of income is fishing since it is right on Lake Victoria, but tourism is becoming increasingly popular as international visitors seek out more secluded areas with great access to sandy beaches.
Mbita has several key institutions, like some primary and secondary schools, as well as a small hospital, but many things are still located in the neighboring town, Sindo, which is almost 11 miles away.
When Was Mbita Founded?
Mbita was part of the Nyanza province before the country reorganized and regrouped much of its territories. This was done over a decade ago, back in 2010, but it is likely that the area was settled earlier.
Unfortunately, there isn’t much information about the exact date when Mbita was founded, but it is likely to have been established in the mid-1900s or even earlier.
Because of the relative ease of living in the area with access to water and the ability to do subsistence farming and fishing.
How to Get There?
There are two ways to access Mbita, by car or by boat. If you’re traveling by car, you will need to follow roads from Kisumu to Ahero, then head toward Katito and Kendu Bay before reaching Homa Bay county and arriving in Mbita.
Unfortunately, not all of these roads are paved or tarmacked.
Alternatively, you could depart from Kisumu and head to Luanda Kotieno to hop on a ferry that will carry you across the Winam Gulf and to Mbita Point. This option has a road that is tarmacked for a smoother travel experience.
What Can You See There?
Mbita has some interesting sights to see if your goal isn’t simply to sit back and soak up the sun. Perhaps what most people visit Mbita for is the wildlife.
Mbita provides easy access to places like Rusinga Island, Mbasa Island, and Takawiri Island.
These islands are known for their rich bird life, especially Mbasa Island. So if you’re a bird enthusiast or are a little afraid of seeing Africa’s larger beasts, this is a good place to visit.
Another point of interest includes Tom Mboya’s Mausoleum. His final resting place and a small museum stand as a testament to his achievements in Kenyan politics and history.
Is it Worth Visiting?
If you’re looking for a place to escape the hustle and bustle of city life while spending some time by the water, Mbita and the surrounding area are excellent options. One or two of the small resorts in the area boast some of the best-stocked bars in all of Kenya.
Staff and locals in the area are welcoming and friendly, but this means that the area could become a popular destination soon, so if you do choose to visit, it may be best to go sooner rather than later.
Final Thoughts on Is Mbita An Island
Mbita may not be an island, but it is connected to Rusinga Island by a causeway and has access to several other islands in Lake Victoria for you to explore on tours.
A visit to this area is surely a memory for years to come but remember to book well in advance and plan around visiting during the typical off-season times, so you don’t have crowds and oppressive temperatures.
If nothing else, you can say that you visited the old Nyanza province, where Barack Obama Sr. was born before he moved to the United States.