Gedi Ruins

The Gedi (Gede) Ruins were declared a national park in 1948, and they are one the top tourist attractions in Kenya, especially for those enjoying Kenya beach vacations near Mombasa and Malindi. The Gedi Ruins are all that remains of Gede Kenya, which was a Swahili town that thrived hundreds of years ago. Gede Kenya once had mosques, palaces, and homes, and these structures were quite sophisticated during their day. The inhabitants here, which were of Muslim descent, had established quite a trading system as excavations have shown, but sadly, no written records have been found that can give absolute insight into life at Gede Kenya. You'll just have to depend on the information at hand and your imagination! It can be quite fun to conjure up ideas about what life would have been like when enjoying tours of the Kenya Gedi Ruins, that's for sure.

The city of Gede Kenya was founded sometime in the late 13th or early 14th century, and according to academics, Gede reached its zenith in the mid-15th century. Because of the fact that Gedi Kenya was not of elite importance during its time, Swahili, Portuguese, and Arab historians more or less omitted it from their annals. It is understood that Gedi was particularly prosperous, however, so that is not to say that it was merely a simple outpost. Excavations of the Gedi Ruins that were carried out between 1948 and 1958 have uncovered porcelain from China, an Indian lamp, Venetian beads, Spanish scissors, and other interesting vestiges that show that some of Gedi's past citizens were engaged in quite a bit of international trade. It is not largely understood as to what caused the downfall of Gedi Kenya, but by the 16th century, the city was abandoned. Warring factions are believed to have been a possible cause for Gedi's ultimate demise, as it was caught in the general crosswords of past struggles between cultures in Mombasa and Malindi.

Gedi Kenya was re-occupied by the Galla tribe in the 16th century, though this nomadic Somalian tribe would abandon the town much the same as its original inhabitants. The ruins of a palace, mosque, and several houses are what visitors can explore on trips to the Kenya Gedi Ruins. One thing that is so great about the Kenya Gedi Ruins is that they are just 10 miles south of Malindi and only 2 miles north of Watamu. Those enjoying the beaches and marine parks at these popular destinations will certainly want to consider adding them to their relative list of tourist attractions in Kenya. Strolling through the streets of the Gedi Ruins is a joy, especially for those who enjoy history, and there is a museum here worth making time for. The Fort Jesus museum in Mombasa has artifacts from the Gedi Ruins as well. If you need a little time to reflect during your trip to the Gedi Ruins, there is a little cafe` at the museum where you can take a time out. For those without a rental car, day trips to the Geti Ruins can be arranged easily in Watamu, Malindi, and Mombasa. Besides your transportation, a trip here costs little to nothing at all, which makes it one of the more affordable tourist attractions in Kenya. This is especially true if you are staying in one of the Kenya beach resorts in the proximate vicinity.

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