Diani resort town in Kwale County has been voted the sixth best destination in Africa in 2017 by a US travel website, TripAdvisor.
It comes a month after Diani beach was ranked seventh best in Africa by TripAdvisor.
The US travel website, remarked: “Diani is a destination with sparkling white sand beach and lush green vegetation.
“Diani invites you to relax under a beach umbrella with a refreshing drink. Try a camel ride for the tourist experience or book a bike tour inland for a glimpse of life of local villages.”
On continental rankings, Morocco’s Marrakech was voted the best destination in Africa while Merzouga, also in Morocco took second position.
Cape Town Central in South Africa was ranked third, Fes in Morocco took fourth position while Arusha in Tanzania was rated fifth overall.
Diani town took the sixth position, Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe was seventh, Zanzibar Island was eighth, and Livingstone in Zambia was ninth while Nosy Be, Antsiranana completed the list of top ten destinations on the continent.
Kwale Governor Salim Mvurya was delighted by the recognition of Diani just a month after Diani beach was ranked seventh best beach in Africa.
“We feel greatly honoured by travellers from across the globe, who chose Diani as one of the best destinations in Africa,” the governor said.
Speaking to the Nation by phone, Mr Mvurya attributed Diani’s recognition to efforts by hoteliers, residents and the county government in taking care of the environment.
“Diani beach is a stunning beach because the locals and tourism players have been protecting the marine surroundings from pollution,” he said.
“Diani is clean and green. That is the reason why both local and international tourists prefer to visit the South Coast for leisure,” Mr Mvurya added.
The governor said the County has also been marketing the destination in global markets such as Germany and the United Kingdom in a bid to attract more international holidaymakers.
Kenya Association of Hotelkeepers and Caterers (KAHC) Coast executive officer Sam Ikwaye said the recognition was an endorsement that the country has best destinations for global travellers.
“It is time we marketed our local destinations to the international source markets to woo back tourists for the sector to recover,” he said.
Diani Reef Beach Resort Managing Director Bobby Kamani said the town deserved the recognition since it has one of the best beaches in Africa.
Mr Kamani added that hotels in Diani have been protecting the beach from pollution as well as preserving its pristine nature.
“Diani is in a class of its own due to its powder-soft white sand beach and its alluring turquoise waters. That’s why tourists prefer to come here for lifetime dream holidays,” he added.
In global rankings, Bali in Indonesia was voted the best destination in the world while London and Paris were ranked second and third best respectively.
Rome took the fourth position, New York City in the United States was fifth, Crete in Greece was sixth while Spain’s Barcelona was seventh overall.
The TripAdvisor’s best destinations in 2017 were voted based on millions of reviews from travellers across the world.
The American travel website has more than 60 million members and over 170 million reviews and opinions on attractions, hotels, restaurants and other related travel-related businesses.