Kenya's historic town to set up USD6,000 cultural center to celebrate diversity and boost tourism

Lamu is one of the oldest and best-preserved Swahili settlements in East Africa, dating back as far as 1370BC.

Kenya is planning to construct a US $60k cultural centre in Lamu County in the course of this year in a bid to promote different cultures in the region.

Lamu County Executive for Tourism, Trade and Industrialization, Mr. Dismas Mwasambu confirmed the reports and said that the centre to be built at Mokowe, will be used to promote the cultures of the various communities living in Lamu.

“We have set aside US $60k for the establishment of the cultural centre at Mokowe. We are in discussions with the Lamu Museums and LTA on how to develop the centre for the benefit of the Lamu people. The centre will bring national cohesion among tribes and also act as a tourist attraction site,” said Mr Mwasambu.

The County official said the centre will also be used as an attraction site for tourists visiting the region and that the idea to construct the cultural centre is part of the county government’s plan to revive the ailing tourism industry which has suffered over the past five years due to security challenges such as the 2014 Mpeketoni terror attack.

Mr Mwasambu also pointed out that the centre will also act as a unifying factor for the various communities living in Lamu.

Lamu is one of the oldest and best-preserved Swahili settlements in East Africa, dating back as far as 1370BC. It is also a United Nations World Heritage Site.

The Lamu Archipelago boosts some of the most breathe taking sights one can ever imagine and the County holds colourful festivals throughout the year to celebrate diverse and unique cultural practices.

The Cultural Centre comes barely three months after President Uhuru Kenyatta flew to Mozambique to link the Swahili cost to Maputo.

Further to the cultural centre, plans are also underway to develop a special communication centre that seeks to help tourists navigate their way around the region. According to Mwasambu, the centre is being set up in Manda Island and will help to document details of all tourists visiting Lamu and keep the tourist sector in check.

“The communication centre will also help tourists quickly acquaint themselves with the region for ease of movement whenever they visit. The centre will also offer details and directions to various tourist attraction sites in the county in order to make the stay of any visitor more memorable and easier,” he said.


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