If you are looking for a good way to continue your holiday in Tanzania after a safari, you can spend a few days on Mafia Island, about 130 km south of Dar es Salaam, a paradise of quiet rhythms, diving activities and cultural excursions. The island is famous for its marine park and whale shark and is a real gem as well as being the largest in the archipelago that bears its name, despite being no more than 55 km long.

Mafia Island: a diver’s paradise with its protected marine park

The main town and capital is Kilindoni and its seabed is one of the most spectacular on the East African coast due to a combination of factors, including the nutrients brought by the delta of the Rufiji River, which are very important for the marine ecosystem, and the mangroves, which protect the coast. The island’s SEA PARK was opened in 1995 and is home to over 400 species of fish.

The ideal destination for snorkelling and diving enthusiasts, but also for those who want a destination out of the ordinary.

Mafia Island: an authentic experience away from the tourist routes

The archipelago includes other small islands, as remote as they are interesting. Chole, where time seems to stand still and where, walking along the tiny paths, one can make interesting encounters in terms of flora and fauna and still admire the ancient art of building dhows, the characteristic Arab boats that dot the entire coastline. For those interested in history and culture, there are also some archaeological sites from the Shirazi period.

Two other islands in the Mafia archipelago are Juani and Jibondo where green turtles go to lay their eggs and, depending on the season, the hatching can become an exciting excursion. Several islets and atolls complete the almost unbelievable panorama of this part of Tanzania. Taking in these natural beauties after a savannah safari can only add charm to an already extraordinary holiday.