The Wondrous Island of Lamu

Come with me on a virtual journey to the island of Lamu in Kenya, where Lela Goldsmith, the author of Bibi’s Blessing and Not Too Little to Make a Difference, grew up.

The island is just off the coast of Kenya and has beautiful traditional architecture with Portuguese, Indian, and Arabian influence. The region has long been on the oceanic trade route between Africa and the Arabian Peninsula and beyond.

The Islamic influence shows in the region, with 23 mosques all over the island and Islam being the major religion. The town is seven centuries old and it feels like a time capsule without any cars on the island. The people of Lamu move around by donkey or by foot, and the island itself is just a two hour walk from coast to coast!

The island is covered with sandy soil and thousands of donkeys. The beaches are a playground for the boys and girls, with girls have special swim days. On these

days, women prepare pots of food and gather at secluded beaches for a day of fun and feast.

The community in Lamu is like an extended family. They support each other and visit and chat together frequently.

Lela beautifully captures the vibe of the island in her stories. The close-knit community, the flavours of mofa and tamarind, and the donkey races mentioned in her books bring you to those sandy shores of Lamu. It’s a wondrous place!

If you can’t visit in person, check out Lela Goldsmith’s books and take your children on a journey with their imagination!


Click the title to purchase Lela Goldsmith’s books: Bibi’s Blessing and Not Too Little to Make a Difference

Spin to win Spinner icon