Posted in travel

Mombasa Valentine Escape-Old is Gold

If you wander carefully around Mombasa town after Mama Ngina drive by observing, you will come across Treasury Square. In this Square lies an engraved map that showcases the whole of Old Town Mombasa. If Geography was a non-issue you should be able to navigate with ease to some of these vintage colonial buildings dating back to the 1900’s.

The architecture is something to marvel at. Most of these buildings had carved balcony supported by carved brackets and covered with a wooden eave. Those Omani doors! To cut the long story short for those who walk blindly, just opposite Fort Jesus are two roads that will lead you to some of these historical habitations.

The treasury square– The treasury building now houses the municipal offices. Another fine building is occupied by the Kenya Commercial Bank.

A bronze statue of Allindina Visram born in 1851 in India who arrived in 1863 in Mombasa at the age of 12. He became a rich merchant and planter, encouraged education and took up an important place in the public life until his death in 1916. Originally, a statue of Sir William Mackinnon (1823-1893) the founder of British East Africa stood here. It was removed at independence.

Mazrui Graveyard belongs to the Mazrui family who controlled the town in a sovereign way between 1741-1837. The Mazrui family seized power by acting as locally based governors. The earliest dated grave is 1715 and members of the Mazrui family are still buried here today. The gate was closed but I don’t know if they open it to the public because inside this cemetery lies an old ruined mosque of the Mazrui community.

Sanaa Gallery. Inside it you will find vintage furniture as well as jewelry. It was in the past the main office of Allidina Visram (remember the statue at Treasury Square?)

Old Post Office- It housed the post office which opened in 1899, used by Indians who built the railway to send news and money home to their families. Trolley tickets were also sold here.

Swahili resource center

Africa hotel Kenya’s first hotel in 1901. Inside it are pictures dating back to the 1900’s but without reason I did not step in and for some reason I feel stupid writing this. For more about it read here👉🏾 https://www.businessdailyafrica.com/lifestyle/travel/Inside-Kenyas-Oldest-Hotel/3815716-5004786-wc6hkk/index.html

Others include: Marhaba gift shop, Forodhani restaurant, Ali curio market

This is where I insist hire a local guide as some buildings are not marked but have a story to tell. Also a tour of all the 23 places of interest in this Town require a whole day of commitment, which I didn’t have. (180 acres!) We shall revisit.