One of the most exciting encounters sea lovers can dream of. A short trip by car will take you from Pole Pole to Kilindoni harbour, buzzing with daily activities in a kaleidoscope of colours. From here Kitu Kiblu, a responsible whale shark encounter operator in Mafia, runs half-day encounter trips allowing visitors to interact with whale sharks in a safe, relaxed and respectful way. In spite nobody can assure that they will be seen, in the period between October and March the chances are extremely high. Swimming with whale sharks, the largest fish on the planet, requires no special skills but even looking at these beautiful creatures from the boat is an unforgettable experience.
MAWENI - SNORKELING
Coral rocks emerging from the bay surrounded by an extremely interesting reef which can be reached even by less expert swimmers.
MARIMBANI SAND BANK
A strip of dazzling white sand which appears during low tide, surrounded by crystal-clear water.
The oldest, still inhabited settlement in the archipelago, with the ruins of old Arab buildings used by the Germans during the World War I.
The island is covered by extremely varied lush vegetation.
JUANI ISLAND - KUA RUINS
On Juani Island, one of the largest and most characteristic islands in the archipelago, are the ruins of the ancient city of Kua, whose decline, as yet unexplained by archaeologists and historians, is the object of many legends. The island's fauna is quite unusual and includes wild pigs, monkeys and small antelopes (blue duiker).
JUANI ISLAND - BLUE LAGOON
The southern point of Juani Island is divided in two by a long channel linking the big inland bay with the open sea. At the end of the channel is an enormous natural swimming pool whose water level varies according to the tide. After a short walk you can enjoy its clear waters.
The island of Jibondo is about an hour boat trip from Utende village and is characterised by the unique conformation of the western tip and the surrounding emerald green waters. The village is mainly inhabited by fishermen whose fish and octopus drying and net mending activities are of great interest to tourists together with the traditional shipyard, one of the most famous in Tanzania.
Kitutia Reef is one of the archipelago's most beautiful coral reefs with two strips of fine white sand which stay above the water during the low tide. The trip includes snorkeling and diving activities and allows time for walking along the reef, sunbathing or swimming in the natural pools formed around the sandbanks. Depending on the tides, lunch is served on Kitutia Reef or on another beach en route to the reef.
Considered by many to be the most beautiful island in the archipelago thanks to its position and its sandy banks, Bwejuu Island is less than 2 kms long and no more than 200 meters wide at its widest point. Its position, halfway between the main island of Mafia and the delta of the Rufiji river, makes it a handy base for diving and snorkelling on the nearby Mange Reef as well as for trips along the Rufiji River.
An hour by 4x4 car along a track passing through one of the most characteristic landscapes of the island and an easy trek though a stretch of virgin forest take you to one of Chole Bay's most inaccessible beaches. You will be able to admire wildlife and vegetation untouched by human settlement and cultivation. Those taking part in the trip may decide to eat lunch on the beach or in one of the cool clearings along the route.
RAS MKUMBI – THE LIGHTHOUSE
Situated on the northernmost point of the island of Mafia, the lighthouse can be reached by car. It is an exciting journey that takes you right across the island and its changing landscapes. Wide stretches of savannah studded by baobab trees, small seaside villages, bush populated by monkeys and birds climax in a unique view of the open sea.