Five of the country’s beaches — Diani, Mombasa, Watamu, Chale Island and Shela — featured in the Top 50 African Beaches.
The publication ranked 400 of the world’s top beaches with the help of 1,000 of the industry’s leading travel professionals.
This comes at a time when security and cleanliness have been improved at the popular Jomo Kenyatta Beach thronged by hundreds of visitors.
Hotel owners have praised the move, saying it will improve business. Lido Beach Resort director Nasir Osman Ali welcomed the clean-up and regulation of activities at the beach, noting that visitors can now enjoy a good environment, and without harassment by beach hawkers.
“Previously, walking along the beach was not a very pleasant experience because of the hundreds of plastic chairs. They have been removed. We also could not do good business because of traders selling wares in front of hotels. There were very many of them, and some were selling illegal things,” he said.
Mr Ali said business will certainly improve since the high number of unregulated vendors used to scare away tourists.
“Our Christmas gift has come early. The beach is very clean. Before, there was no place to walk with the family; now the sands are very clear and families can move freely,” he said.
“The beaches are also being patrolled to monitor what is going on,” he said.
Mr Ali urged property owners to regularly clean-up their beachfronts to reduce pollution.
“We will do the same and clean from our end all the way to the water mark. I encourage all property owners along the beach to do the same on a daily basis to protect the environment,” he said.
He welcomed the Mombasa city beautification project, noting that it had led to an increase in the number of visitors to the resort city.
“This season is very good. It is very busy and the Mombasa beautification project has also worked nicely,” he said.
Hotel owners said the beaches are regaining their aesthetic value and would attract more visitors.
Mr Ali said the holidaymakers would never enjoy relaxation at the beach as thousands of beach traders prowled the beaches some forcing visitors to buy their merchandise.
Mr Ali noted that if the beaches are free of illegal vendors, it would help attract many tourists to the resorts lining the beach.