Meals of Lamu:
The seafront restaurants in Lamu Town offer excellent seafood at reasonable prices. Delve further back from the dock for more traditional Swahili fare. The Seafront Cafe is an excellent value and the locals eat there. Try the garlic crab or crab soup.
Also, if you are there more than a couple days and you look like a tourist, you will likely be approached by a short, stout, elderly man who will introduce himself as "Ali Hippy," who will offer you the opportunity to eat in his house for a fee. Don't be afraid to take him up on his offer. The food is good, and his family will perform musical numbers for you afterwards. An interesting experience that is worth having under your belt. However, think about bringing your own utensils, otherwise you will find yourself trying to eat oil-soaked rice with your fingers - not the easiest task.
Drinks and nightlife of Lamu:
Meet up and drink beer with fellow travellers,at 'Petleys' one of the few bars in the town.
You can also enjoy a Tusker at the Lamu Palace hotel, but this is more expensive than Petley's, and very quiet, but OK if you want to hear the waves crash against the sea wall and read a book.
However, the cheapest beer on the island is at the Social Club, hidden away in the bush, down the coast after the power station.
This is where all the locals go, and thus has the best music and cheapest beer and pool table.
DEFINITELY go to the social club on a Saturday night for boogie boogie disco! - A mixture of traditional african and reggae. Everyone screams and goes crazy when Bob Marley is played!!
When you find the music too hot and loud, go round the side and enjoy a game of 8 ball pool. The locals willingly play winner stays on, but you might have to pay for their game too, but at 50c a game who cares! There will be a pool attendant to keep you cue well chalked and to set up the table for you (buy him a couple of tusker for his trouble!).
The walk to the social club can seem a bit daunting especially as the sea wall isn't lit too well, but basically just walk away from the town centre towards shela keeping the sea on your left, go past the hospital, past the power station, and keep going until you see a sand path through the mangroves into the bush on your right, and a few dim lights at the end of it. On a Sat night you will definitely hear the music before you arrive!!
If you are still concerned about taking the walk, ask one of the local beach boys (Staboy, Mburu or Issac) to show you the way just buy them a beer for their trouble. Make sure that they realise that you are only buying them 1 beer otherwise they will keep asking for more!
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