Rusinga Island

Rusinga Island

Rusinga Island

In this article, we shall explore Rusinga Island which is located in the eastern part of Lake Victoria, Kenya. It’s known for its elongated shape, stretching approximately 10 miles from end to end and 3 miles at its widest point.

Rusinga Island Directions

Rusinga Island is a beautiful and culturally rich island located in the eastern part of Lake Victoria. The island is connected to the mainland at Mbita Point by the Rusinga-Mbita bridge.

For those traveling from Nairobi by car, the distance is approximately 407 kilometers. You can drive via the B7 and B6 roads, which is the most direct route.

Brief history of Rusinga Island

Rusinga Island is a hidden gem waiting to be explored. With its breathtaking natural beauty, rich cultural heritage, and abundance of outdoor adventures and it offers travelers an unforgettable experience.

The island has a fascinating history and is home to the Luo people, although it was originally inhabited by the Suba people who migrated from Uganda.
Many place names on the island, including Rusinga itself, reflect this Suba heritage. It is known for its important fossil beds of extinct Miocene mammals, dated to 18 million years.

Rusinga Island offers travelers an unforgettable experience. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a history buff, or simply seeking relaxation, there’s something for everyone on this enchanting island. Here are the top 10 activities that one can engage in at Rusinga Island.

1. Birdwatching

Rusinga Island is a paradise for birdwatchers, boasting over 369 species of local and migratory birds, within its diverse ecosystem. Grab your binoculars and set out on a birdwatching expedition to spot colorful avian residents such as:

  • African fish eagles
  • pied kingfishers
  • malachite kingfishers

Keep an eye out for rare migratory birds that visit the island seasonally providing the best view of the island and making it worth a visit.

2. Explore Rusinga Island National Reserve

Rusinga Island National Reserve is one of the tourist attractions sites that have widely maintained its tourism. This reserve is home to diverse bird species, including fish eagles, kingfishers, and herons. Ensure you take a guided nature walk on the game drive to spot native wildlife such as impalas, giraffes, and zebras.

3.Tom Mboya Mausoleum

Tom Mboya was a prominent Kenyan politician and a key figure in the country’s struggle for independence. His mausoleum located on Rusinga was dedicated to his life.

By visiting the place, you will learn about his life and legacy through informative exhibits and displays at this historical site.

4. Relax on Rusinga Island’s 

Rusinga Island offers a cool environment that has a breeze off the island where one gets to relax without any disturbance. With its soft white sand and crystal-clear waters, the island offers the perfect setting for a day of relaxation. You can still freshen up by swimming in the refreshing lake waters.

5. Culinary hospitality

Rusinga Island is a beautiful and culturally rich island that offers the best hospitality that is facilitated by the following restaurants:

  1. Rusinga Island Lodge: Rusinga Island Lodge is widely known for its serene atmosphere and delicious home-grown with luxurious accommodations, delicious food, and a chance to explore the island’s natural beauty and wildlife view.
  2. Rusinga Blue Ridge Hotel: Offers mouth-watering meals including local fish delicacies and international cuisine.
  3. Green Pearls Restaurant: Green Pearls Restaurant is another dining option that is located at Rusinga Island. It’s a perfect spot for a break during an adventure.

The restaurant provides a range of culinary experiences, from local to international dishes, ensuring that visitors can enjoy a variety of flavors during their stay on Rusinga Island.

6. Swimming and Water Sports

For those looking for a place to relax presents the opportunity for swimming. Get your adrenaline pumping with water skiing, surfing, and diving to enjoy the water sports.

 Ensure you take a dip in the lake’s refreshing waters where you swim in the refreshing lake waters, then later relax under the shade of a palm tree with a good book.

7. Paleontology at Rusinga Island

Discover the island’s prehistoric past with a visit to fossil sites where early primate fossils have been found. Rusinga island is well known for its fossil primates, particularly the medium-sized ape Ekembo.

8. Cultural Visits

Are you looking for the best place to immerse in the culture? The Island provides you with the local culture with a visit to the Abasuba Peace Museum or participate in the Rusinga Festival.

Participate in traditional dance performances, witness captivating storytelling sessions, and browse artisanal crafts created by local artisans.

9. Hiking

For those who enjoy hiking, you can visit neighboring Mfangano Island and discover its ancient rock art sites and also take a gentle stroll to archaeological sites near Rusinga Island Lodge.

You can trek through lush forests and rugged terrain to reach hidden caves adorned with prehistoric paintings dating back thousands of years.

10. Fishing 

Try your hand at catching fish like the Nile perch with the help of local fishermen. With these, you will have an insight into the traditional fishing techniques practiced by the local Suba community. Learn how to cast nets and traps while soaking in the scenery surrounding the island.

These activities offer a mix of relaxation, adventure, and cultural experiences that make Rusinga Island a unique and exciting destination.


Rusinga island is known for its important fossil beds of extinct Miocene mammals, dated to 18 million years. It captivates visitors with its natural wonders, cultural treasures, and boundless adventures.

Whether you’re seeking wildlife encounters, historical insights, or moments of relaxation, this island paradise offers an array of experiences to satisfy every traveler’s wanderlust.
Initiate on a journey of discovery and create lasting memories on the Island, where paradise awaits at every turn.

Rusinga Island Location:

The eastern part of Lake Victoria, Kenya.

Rusinga Island phone: 

+(254)791 800 525


1. What is the significance of Rusinga Island?

Rusinga Island holds great historical and cultural significance, particularly due to its rich archaeological finds, including fossil remains of early human ancestors.

2. What are the main attractions on Rusinga Island?

Visitors who visit theIsland can explore its stunning natural beauty, the notable attractions include the Tom Mboya Mausoleum, the Island Museum, and opportunities for birdwatching, fishing, and boat rides on Lake Victoria.

Check out:

1.Islands in Kenya 


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