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Other communities include the Akamba and Taita Bantus as well as a significant population of Luo and Luhya peoples from Western Kenya.
The major religions practised in the city are Islam, Christianity and Hinduism.
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Families associated with the Twelve Nations are still considered the original inhabitants of the city.
Mwana Mkisi was a pagan queen who founded Kongowea, the original urban settlement on Mombasa Island.
Shehe Mvita superseded the dynasty of Mwana Mkisi and established the first permanent stone mosque on Mombasa Island.
Mombasa's oldest extant stone mosque, Mnara, was built c. Shehe Mvita is remembered as a Muslim of great learning and so is connected more directly with the present ideals of Swahili culture that people identify with Mombasa.
It is connected to the mainland to the north by the Nyali Bridge, to the south by the Likoni Ferry, and to the west by the Makupa Causeway, alongside which runs the Kenya-Uganda Railway.
The port serves both Kenya and countries of the interior, linking them to the ocean.
Its trade links reached as far as the Indian subcontinent and modern-day China and oral historians today can still recall this period of local history.
History shows that there were trade links between Mombasa and Cholas of South India.
Importantly, both of these names have linguistic and spiritual connections with Central Africa.
"Mkisi" is considered the personification of "ukisi" which means "the holy" in ki Kongo.
The founding of Mombasa is associated with two rulers: Mwana Mkisi and Shehe Mvita.