Coastal Islands: Zanzibar, Pemba, Mafia, & Mnemba | 11 Days

Tropical Elegance & Barefoot Luxury


Destination: Mafia Island
Accommodations: Mafia Island Lodge
Activities: Marine Park Dive

Fly to Mafia from the last stop of your wildlife safari (Arusha, Dar es Salaam, Nairobi, Uganda, or points in the Western Circuit—see our complimentary itineraries) to begin an exciting and indulgent diving adventure featuring the coast’s world-class diving destinations, a sublime conclusion to your East African holiday! The Mafia Island region, which includes the Rufiji River Delta and Mafia channel, is legendary as a world-class diving destination. This area forms one of the finest complexes of estuarine, mangrove, coral reef, and marine ecosystems in the world, all lying in an area of around 1500 km². The coral reefs are especially diverse for all of Eastern Africa. As well, divers have the opportunity to explore the Kuwa ruins and the underground city of Kisimani. Boasting a captivating terrestrial reef and ecosystems, miles of white sand beaches and clear waters, Mafia is a wonderful place to both adventure and experience life at a slower pace. In the late morning, you will check in to Mafia Island Lodge, which stands amidst tall palms on a sandy beach in Chole Bay in the heart of the marine park near Utende village on South coast of Mafia—an ideal location for diving and whale sharks trips. Enjoy lunch at the beach bar. After lunch, depart on your first dive at one of the sites swimmable from the Mafia Dive Center next to the Lodge. Depending on your level of experience and sense of daring, you might want to visit Nudi City, Frogfish Town, or Chekechea. [NB: If you are new to diving, need a refresher course, or want to take your diving to a new level, your stay on Mafia and the other islands can be structured around PADI diving courses or a combination of courses and guided dives. We will customize your itinerary accordingly.] Enjoy a delicious dinner in the restaurant and watch the sunset with your favorite cocktail in hand. Get a good night’s rest in your room with views of the sea and the tropical garden and the sound of waves lapping the shore.

Destination: Chole Bay and Chole Island
Accommodations: Mafia Island Lodge
Activities: Chole Bay Dive; Chole Island Tour

After breakfast, depart on a diving exploration of one of the varied sites in Chole Bay. Return for lunch at the lodge restaurant. In the late afternoon, take a short, 5-minute boat ride to Chole Island, the oldest, still inhabited settlement in the archipelago. While you are here, you will discover a number of trees containing colonies of Comoro Flying Foxes, a protected species of fruit eating-bats. As well, you can explore Arabic ruins from the 12th Century and German ruins from 19th Century. The ruins have surrendered to mother nature and are almost all smothered with green foliage and brown vines. Chole island is home to the skilled men who build the traditional Swahili dhows by hand—visit these men at work and marvel. Enjoy a simple dinner featuring freshly caught fish at the Red Herring, Chole’s beautiful bar, which is also the only west facing bar on the Eastern side of the Island, allowing for truly magical sundowners and, of course, lovely cold beverages to go down with it. Return to the lodge for a good night’s sleep.

Destination: Southern Sandbanks
Accommodations: Mafia Island Lodge
Activities: Southern Sandbanks Dive

Venture out on a full day excursion to the Southern Sandbanks, offering a once in a lifetime adventure. [NB: These excursions are very tide and weather dependent, but when conditions are perfect, have the potential to be an exceptional experience.] After a cup of coffee or tea and a biscuit, depart at sunrise with your expert guides for a two hour sail south into the open sea, passing by Bwejuu and Jibondo. On the way, it is common to pass by dolphins, and depending on their species, you can attempt to swim with them. Another natural marvel is the humpback whale migration which takes place across your route. One can see them breach magnificently, slap their fins and coo at their calves attempting the same. Once arriving on either Mange or Kitutia, your guides will set up mats and shaded areas for those less fond of the sun to lay, whilst others have the opportunity to sunbathe on pristine white sand in the middle of the ocean. At lunch, fish is barbequed traditionally and served along with coconut rice, vegetables, and tropical fruit. The dives here offer gentle sloping reefs with plenty of hard and soft corals. Mange is known for its big schools of fish and Kitutia for its massive rays. There are plenty of macro-critters, as well as the usual scorpion fish and lion fish friends. Return in time for dinner and a relaxing final evening on Mafia Island.

Destination: Zanzibar; Mnemba
Accommodations: Green and Blue Zanzibar Ocean Lodge
Activities: Mnemba Atoll Dive

After an early breakfast, fly to Zanzibar airport where you will be picked up and driven to Green and Blue Zanzibar Ocean Lodge, situated in a luscious garden directly by the ocean on the northeastern side of the “Spice Island” of Zanzibar. A short distance across the ocean you will find the small atoll of Mnemba, perhaps the most famous conservation area and most coveted diving spots in Zanzibar. Mnemba, consisting of seven by four kilometers of reef, is well-known for encounters with green turtles and common dolphins, its wide variety of corals and associated species. Visibility in Mnemba is usually great, with an average of 10 to 30 meters. Check into your breezy bungalow and perhaps indulge in a massage at the spa before lunch at the excellent, open-air hotel restaurant where you can savor a Swahili-style meal featuring the island’s spices and fresh seafood. Your guide will take you on a late afternoon/early evening dive to one of Mnemba Atoll’s many sites. Return for a delicious dinner in the restaurant and enjoy a sundowner on the beach. Sleep well to the sound of the sea.

Destination: Mnemba; Stone Town
Accommodations: Green and Blue Zanzibar Ocean Lodge
Activities: Mnemba Atoll dive; Stone Town tour; Forodhani Gardens night market; Pange Reef night dive

After breakfast, depart on a morning dive at one of Mnemba’s world-class sites. Return for a shower and lunch at the hotel restaurant. Depart for Stone Town where a local guide will take you on a walking tour of the historic area. Follow the trail of the sultans, slaves, and explorers through the labyrinthine alleyways. Marvel at the Islamic architecture. Learn about the events that shaped the island as you pass through the buildings where it all happened, such as the former Slave Market and Anglican Cathedral, the House of Wonders and the Sultans’ Palace Museum, the Old Arab Fort and Dispensary. Explore the markets: seafood piled colorfully in the fish market, fresh loaves of bread in wicker baskets, and the neat stacks of fruit and vegetables as traders sell their wares from their stalls. In the evening, dine under torchlight at the most spectacular street food display at Forodhani Gardens Food Market on the seafront, an iconic Zanzibar experience. From Stone Town, depart with your guide on an adventurous dive off Pange Reef where, at night, the corals transform and the most amazing critter life wakes up. Hundreds of shrimps, crabs and eels come out to hunt, while squids flash their brilliant colors in the dark waters. Return to Green and Blue for a restful night.

Destination: Tangawizi Spice Farm
Accommodations: Green and Blue Zanzibar Ocean Lodge
Activities: Spice tour; Mnemba Atoll dive

After breakfast, drive to the village of Dole bordering the Masingini Forest for a tour of the Tangawizi Spice Farm. Zanzibar is known as the “Spice Island”, a name that evokes a romantic past infused with the particular aroma of cloves, cinnamon, cardamom, and lemongrass. Today, these, and many other spices, herbs, and tropical fruits are cultivated on the same plantations that have been producing them for centuries. A tour of the Tangawizi spice plantation starts with a drive through a profusion of greenery in the countryside and follows with a walk through the plantation where you will see and taste a variety of mouth-watering tropical fruits such as: jack fruit, pineapple, banana, green coconut (madafu), durian, love apple (matufaa), litchi (shoki-shoki), sour sop (mabungo), and star fruit (carambola); spices such as cloves, cardamom, cinnamon, black pepper, turmeric, and nutmeg. A full tour involves much more than edible plants—you will also have a chance to see the iodine plant, heena bush, ylang-ylang, lipstick tree, cacao, and coffee trees. The tour additionally includes a bit of history with a visit to the Kidichi Persian Baths built in 1850 by Seyyid Said bin Sultan for his Persian wife Princess Sheherezade, granddaughter of the Shah of Persia, and to the Maruhubi Palace Ruins built by the third Sultan of Zanzibar Seyyid Barghash for his 99 concubines. After the tour, walk to the outdoor kitchen to a sumptuous Swahili meal prepared with many of the spices and fruits you have just sampled. Return to Green and Blue and unwind before going on a late afternoon Mnemba Atoll dive. Enjoy one more fabulous island-to-table dinner and stargaze on the beach before retiring to your bungalow.

Destination: Pemba
Accommodations: Fundu Lagoon
Activities: Exploring; Relaxing; Choose from diving, kayaking, cruising, and more!

After an early breakfast, fly to the island of Pemba for the last leg of your coastal island diving adventure. Another diver’s paradise, Pemba is a quiet, sleepy island with an off-the-grid feel. Historic fishing villages and banana and coconut plantations sparsely pepper the miles of undeveloped, sublime coastline. On the west coast of the island, the sea mountains rise up creating incredible dive walls, drop-offs and rich coral gardens and a variety of colorful fish. Swim with bottlenose and spinner dolphins, paddle the warm shallows, and enjoy being unplugged! From the airport you will board a boat to the remote and phenomenal Fundu Lagoon, voted Best Marine Safari Property in Africa, where you will check in to your makuti-thatched beachside bungalow with breathtaking views of the Indian Ocean. Staying at Fundu Lagoon, exploring the sublime grounds, is an experience in itself, so we have left you space in your itinerary to do a great deal of exploring this remote paradise. In addition to taking a dive with Fundu Lagoon’s in-house dive center guides, you can choose among a number of island activities such as: walking to nearby villages; kayaking the mangrove forests; excursions to Misali Island; sunset dhow cruises; and indulgent treatments at the spa. Enjoy lunch and dinner at the fabulous open-air restaurant.

Destination: Pemba
Accommodations: Fundu Lagoon
Activities: Diving

Pemba’s tranquil surroundings are home to an abundance of marine life and breathtaking fields of coral. Its 25 kilometers of unique snorkeling and dive sites remain untouched thanks to the Misali Island Marine Conservation Area, and the waters around Misali contain twice the number of coral than found elsewhere in Tanzania. Pemba is also fortunate to have the most exhilarating drift diving in East Africa. Pemba’s diving is predominantly drift and wall diving with regular sightings of schooling barracuda, giant trevallies, napoleon wrasse, huge groupers, turtles, blue-spotted, blotched fantail eagle and manta rays as well as thousands of reef fish. The underwater terrain holds stunning gorgonian sea fans, giant sponges, ancient cabbage corals and the odd shipwreck. Average visibility ranges from 20 to 40 metres, peaking from October to March, when the sea conditions are calmest. The water temperature is a warm 27 to 28°C all year round. Explore some of this magnificent diving with the guidance of the in-house dive team. Enjoy all meals at Fundu Lagoon. Shirt and shoes not required.

Destination: Pemba
Accommodations: Fundu Lagoon
Activities: Diving; Open

For this last day of your diving safari, do whatever you please! Conclude your amazing journey with a private, candlelit dinner on the beach, and savor your bungalow for one more night.

Destination: Dar es Salaam

Accommodations: Hotel Slipway

Activities: Open

After an early breakfast, board the plane to fly to Dar es Salaam. Check in to Hotel Slipway, a luxurious hotel ideally located on the Msasani Penninsula in Dar es Salaam. Explore Dar es Salaam, the biggest and busiest city in Tanzania, take a walk and go shopping on the Slipway, or stay at the hotel and relax at the pool and at the spa. Enjoy lunch at The Waterfront and Dinner at the Terrace Restaurant. If you have anything left in you, let it loose at Paparazzi night club!

Destination: Departure

Today you will be transported to Nyerere Airport for your international flight home. If you have a late flight, we can arrange a day room at Hotel Slipway. Kwaheri!

Safari Includes:

  • Transfer/flight from the last leg of your safari; pick up/drop off at all island airports; and transfer to your international flight home
  • Stone Town Tour
  • Spice Tour
  • Snorkeling & Kayaking
  • Safari Blue Tour
  • Dives (1-2 per day)
  • Other boat rides
  • Government Taxation
  • Flying Doctor services in Tanzania
  • Plentiful drinking water (mineral water)
  • Service charges

Safari Excludes:

  • International airfare & flights
  • Passport & visa fees
  • Personal health insurance
  • Travel insurance (highly recommended and offered upon making your deposit)
  • Dinner at Forodhani Gardens (purchase from individual food stalls)
  • Alcoholic beverages & sodas, except as stated as included above (all-inclusive beverages optional for additonal cost)
  • Optional massages and spa services
  • Laundry services, except as provided by the hotel and resort
  • All items of personal nature
  • Gratuities to guides and lodge staff

Please note: Adumu Safaris makes every effort to customize your safari itinerary in order to cover areas where wildlife habitats are known to be plentiful during the season and precise time of year that you are traveling. However, since wild animals move freely in their environment, we cannot absolutely guarantee sightings of every species. We also use our best effort to provide the lodging set out in this itinerary, but occasionally there are circumstances that occur which require lodging substitutions. We reserve the right to make comparable lodging substitutions or upgrades whenever necessary or in your best interest to do so. Fortunately, we have vetted all of our lodges and stand by their ability to provide an amazing accommodation experience.


Based on double occupancy, peak season…………….………7319 USD

Single person, non-sharing supplement……………………………………………………………………1158 USD

**NB: This particular itinerary varies more than our other offerings in structure and price based on the dive activities that you elect to do on this trip. Other price variables include the necessity of flying to Mafia and Pemba. When you contact us and we gather details about your travel dates and preferences, we can calculate a more precise cost for your holiday. As well, prices are significantly lower in mid-season and lowseason, and when traveling with larger parties and children.

To reserve this trip we require $500 per person. The remainder is due 59 days before departure. All major credit cards and PayPal are accepted. We will send a secure payment link when you are ready to confirm this trip.

Please note that we offer these variations to demonstrate some of the ways that we can modify an itinerary to suit your preferences (destinations, activities, level of luxury, type of accommodations, length of stay, budget, etc.). If none of these options looks best for your group, we are more than happy to gather more information from you and customize the perfect trip. You can call us at +1 530 574 9519 or email us at to discuss this itinerary or others on our website.

Karibu Africa!
The Adumu Safaris Team