- Among the newly introduced fetes are the Amu Seafood Cuisine Festival, Governor's Dhow Race Festival, and the Amu Triathlon Contest.
Lamu County has introduced new annual festivals as the latest strategy in marketing Lamu's old town as 'The Island of Festivals’ and a tourist destination.
Among the newly introduced fetes are the Amu Seafood Cuisine Festival, Governor's Dhow Race Festival, and the Amu Triathlon Contest.
Existing festivals include the famous Lamu Cultural Festival, Maulid, Lamu Yoga, the Lamu Art Festival, the annual Fishing Competition, Kite and Paint, the Shella Hat Contest, and the Lamu Food and Expo Festival.
All these festivals are marked annually and have been the region’s biggest tourist attractions as thousands flock in every year to take part in them.
While announcing the introduction of the three new festivals, Lamu County CEC for Tourism and Culture Aisha Miraji said the festivals are a sure way of increasing the number of global and local tourists visiting Lamu.
She said the two-day Amu Seafood Cuisine Festival will be marked every 23rd and 24th of April every year.
The official said Sh.1.5 million has already been allocated for this year’s fete.
“The festival will be marked during Idd-Ul-Fitr and will include Taarab traditional Music, plays, and skits among others. All these will happen on the seafronts so that the seafood can be well displayed,” said Miraji.
The Governor’s Dhow Race Festival will be a one-day event and will be marked every 19th of August each year in Lamu Island.
The fete will involve coxswains in the archipelago, a chance to compete and showcase their skills in dhow riding and navigation.
Winners will be rewarded in cash and trophies.
The Lamu Triathlon Contest will be marked every 31st December of every year and while an ordinary triathlon involves swimming, cycling, and sprinting, the Lamu version will be unique as the races will take place aboard donkeys.
The triathlon was first witnessed during the 20th edition of the Lamu Cultural Festival in November 2022 but now it gets to be a festival on its own.
All these festivals will be taking place within the Lamu old town, a UNESCO world heritage site where the only mode of transport allowed is donkeys and on foot.
Vehicles are totally banned save for a few belonging to the hospital, the county, and national and county governments.
In a well-balanced approach, the county government has at the same time introduced new annual events in the mainland areas.
They include the Farmers Field Day which will be held on the 14th and 15th of April in Mpeketoni, Lamu West, and the Mpeketoni Agricultural Show which will be held from 28 to 30 September each year.
At the same time, the county government of Lamu has unveiled the dates of the various festivals set to be marked this year.
This year’s 136th edition of the Maulid Festival will be held from 20 to 22 October while the Yoga Festival will take place from 25 to 29 October.
The Lamu cultural festival will run from November 30 to December 2.