ALL DETAILS ON DIVING SITES AROUND ZANZIBAR
On the east coast of Zanzibar lies the idyllic Mnemba Island. A large circular reef perfect for scuba diving and snorkeling surrounds this small, privately owned island. The reef we dive in Mnemba is a marine conservation area supporting a great diversity of marine life. No fishing means huge schools of fish and bigger individual fish. We often see Bottlenose dolphins in the sea around Mnemba and green turtles lay their eggs on its white beaches. From July until September humpback whales pass through the sea in this area. Mnemba is famous for it’s marine environment and one of our most popular destinations.
Mnemba - Wattabomi
Depth: 6 – 40m
Mnemba - Kichwani
Depth: 6 – 40m Kichwani is a steep wall dive with a moving forest of mostly soft corals. Drifting slowly along the wall you will be amazed by the great diversity of fish: clownfish defending their anemone homes, trumpet fish hovering near the coral and odd shaped swimmers like batfish and boxfish all around. Look away from the reef into the open ocean to see the busy blue world of large schools of fish and into the depths to see larger predatory fish. This wall is a stunning site for both beginner and experienced divers. Lucky divers sometimes see pods of dolphins or reef sharks passing by!
Mnemba - Big Wall
Depth: 14 – 60m At the Northern edge where Mnemba Island is exposed to deep open ocean, there is a long stretch of reef, with a wall dropping off to around 40 meters. This is an exhilarating dive with a good chance to see big open water things like pelagic fish, sharks, and large rays. Big Wall is an excellent dive site that, due to depth and current, is not suitable for beginners.
Hamdus or Leons Wall
Depth: 12 – 40m Leons wall is a beautiful unspoiled reef, covered with soft corals and sponges. You can avoid the crowds at this dive site, while you enjoy all kinds of marine life. Look for the conspicuous leaf fish, that can be found all along the wall, in an array of colors – from green to white or purple. Great place for big stuff, great place for divers!
Depth: 12 – 40m Misoli is a large coral island located in a big area of white sand typical to Zanzibar. The fish life is less abundant here compared to other sites, but many nudibranches and other small critters can be found here making it a treasure for photographers and macro life lovers. Test out your spotting skills carefully looking among the corals of Misoli for the small hidden creatures that are numerous at this dive site!
Depth: 12 – 18m Big rolling stretches of plate corals with small schools of fish, such as yellow snapper, darting in and out, and interesting creatures within. Healthy patches of soft corals make up the center of this dive site where we find scorpion fish, electric rays, stonefish, leaf fish, and other camouflaged marine life. At this place there is a good chance to see green turtles. There is also a large sandy area close to the site, which makes it a good training ground for diving courses!
Depth: 10 – 18m Haji is a stretch of healthy reef, home to abundant coral formations. We often see green turtles here. The surrounding sandy areas make it a good place to see blue spotted stingrays gliding along the bottom.
Depth: 2 – 18m A wall of corals on the west side of Tumbatu island with the most healthy and colorful coral reef in Zanzibar! Dive here and see stunning hard corals, turtles, cuttlefish, rays and other marine life. Tumbatu is also a wonderful shallow reef for snorkeling.
Mwana Wa Mwana
Depth: 2 – 15m A staff favorite! The name of this site means baby of the baby in Swahili. Mwana wa Mwana is a small island north of Tumbatu; in low tide the two islands are connected by a sand bank. Mwana is truly amazing for the hard coral life. This shallow dive is one of our most colorful, healthy reefs. In the sand below the reef you can search for seahorse and other rare, strange creatures; a fun adventure for photographers and macro life lovers. Enjoy small groups of silverfish and Sweepers, and if you are lucky some cuttlefish and seahorse will be diving with you!
Depth: 10 – 18m Hunga is a large patch reef (an isolated platform of coral) displaying hard coral formations spread over a big reef. Turtles, shrimp and other crustaceans are common. Hunga also displays interesting fish diversity; groups of yellow snapper, crocodile fish, unicornfish, groupers, etc. can be found here. Of course we love to search for colorful nudibranch in the corals here!
Depth: 6 – 16m Another patch reef, this is a more concentrated area than Hunga. Nankivel is dense with very colorful corals and schools of fish like yellow snapper. It generally has excellent visibility and is a pleasure to dive while exploring the reefs of Zanzibar.
Depth: 6 – 25m Shane’s is one of the most special reefs to us. It is a favorite local dive site, Shane’s can always surprise us with weird, rare marine life such as weedy scorpionfish, unique nudibranches, leaf fish, ghost pipe fish, stone fish, crocodile fish, scorpion fish, harlequin shrimp, seahorses, etc. We also see sea turtles, remora and other fish. This is a must dive for photographers and macro lovers!
Depth: 14 – 40m A coral mountain deep in the open ocean, this unique dive site has very diverse marine life. Honeycomb eels, octopus, triggerfish etc. You can follow this reef deep down to a sandy area where there is a very good chance to see big open ocean animals such as marbles rays, napoleon wrasse, large groupers, tuna, and other large pelagic fish. This site is only suitable for experienced divers due to depth and current.
Coral Garden, Nyumba Ya Kasa, Mwabgawa
Depth: 6 – 18m A group of lovely local reefs with large sloping plate corals in Mbangawa home to many blue spotted stingrays, scorpion fish, stone fish, and batfish. This is our special site for sea turtles. There is a chance to see many turtles here; in Swahili “Nyumba ya kasa” means “house of the turtles.” Coral garden is a shallow, pretty patch of mostly soft and encrusting corals home to a variety of marine life. It is worth searching in the rubble area outside the reef for interesting rare animals; ghost pipefish, sea horse, nudibranches, etc.