Four Twenty South
is located in Diani Beach
on the South Coast
This stunning 15km stretch of white-sand beach has acted as a magnet to visitors from the very earliest days of tourism in Kenya. These days it is very much a major centre for mass-market packaged tourism, but its not quite so heavily developed as one might imagine. Although the inland town of Ukunda, with its airport hub, is something of an urban sprawl, the network of roads that runs closer to the ocean are generally more relaxed, with a sprinkling of modern infrastructure, including, shops, restaurants, shopping malls and even a golf course.
Along the ocean itself, large sections of the beach are backed with low density private plots dotted with palm trees and modest houses, small hotels and the occasional resort. Only in a couple of core areas are there serious clusters of very big and often quite downmarket resorts, many of which are either on their last legs or long since closed down.
Situated on a relatively peaceful stretch of beach around 3km south of the main airstrip, Four Twenty South comprises six modest cottages ranging from two to five bedrooms, all with a separate lounge, kitchen and verandah. They are set on a large and rather pleasant plot, fronting onto a gorgeous white sand beach. Essentially self-catering, the house comes with a full complement of staff including cook, askari and cleaner. The property is hosted by owners John and Hilary, who have their own house here and are keen to host you for meals if you wish, as well as overseeing the whole operation and make sure you have everything you need. The cottages are very good value for money indeed.
Activities include diving, snorkelling, paddle-boarding, body-boarding, sailing, kite-surfing, wind-surfing and kayaking. plus golf, sky-diving and other facilities in the greater Diani area. Day trips further afield are available for excellent diving, snorkelling and swimming with dolphins in the Kisite Marine Reserve to the south.
The main potential downsides are the busy nature of the Diani area, the hustle that one can encounter when out on the beach or around town, the slightly old-fashioned and simple nature of the houses themselves, there is no swimming pool and the fact that most of the activities are off the property.