Whale shark encounters, dazzling marine life and gorgeous coral gardens
Mafia Island is a world-class diving destination, home to some of the richest coral reefs on earth. Set apart from the semi-autonomous region of Zanzibar, Mafia Island is governed by mainland Tanzania. The pristine ocean waters around Mafia are protected by the Tanzanian government, and are filled with an abundance of dazzling marine life.

Mafia Island and its smaller islets (Jibondo, Juani, Chole and Bwejuu) are globally recognised as a critical site for marine biodiversity. The Mafia Island Marine Park covers a massive 822 square kilometres and claims the title of the biggest marine protected area in the Indian Ocean.The concave sheltered waters of Chole Bay are open to diving all year, however the diving sites outside the bay are only open to seasoned divers between October and February.

A diving or snorkelling adventure will give you the opportunity to discover 40 kinds of beautiful coral and over 400 species of colourful fish. You’ll have the chance to find Nemo as clownfish are common here, and you’re also likely to spot octopus, groupers and cod fish.

Nearby you’ll find The Pinnacle, an impressive rock formation, home to moray eels, lobsters and occasionally manta rays. The further you venture into the deep, the more chance you have of crossing paths with playful dolphins, sharks (including the majestic whale shark) and turtles, which come to nest on the more remote beaches of Mafia Island.

The Mafia region is also renowned for deep-sea fishing, as large populations of tuna, sailfish, marlin and other big game fish can be found in Mafia’s waters. The best times for a fishing trip are between September and March.

The protection of the marine park extends to the land and its natural forest, estuarine and mangrove ecosystems. The island is strewn with exotic flora including coconut palms, baobabs, and cashew, papaya and mango trees.

Mafia Island is home to 17,000 inhabitants across ten villages, who rely on the marine life for income. Therefore, the park is classified as a multi-use area, so that local communities are encouraged to adopt sustainable practices, resources and conservation.

A trip to Mafia Island provides world class dive spots, a beautiful insight into diverse marine ecosystems and the humbling opportunity to witness an abundance of marine wildlife thriving in their natural environment.

chole mjini, Mafia island


Our selections of luxury beach holidays across Tanzania’s pristine coastline and tropical islands are tailor made for your taste and style. We use personally chosen, high-end beach front properties in luxury holiday destinations across Tanzania and East Africa. Whether your idea of a 5 star beach holiday consists of a beach resort on a white, powder-soft sandy shore, with your own private infinity pool, 24/7 personal butler service, a 5 star spa resort or the option of a romantic dinner either on the beach or in the privacy of your own balcony or terrace, we will suggest exquisite accommodations which match your exact requirements.

Our luxurious seaside escapes in the Indian Ocean offer the height of exclusivity. With white, sandy beaches around its circumference and surrounded by an atoll of diverse coral reefs, this magnificent island resort welcomed famous celebrity guests. 

From family resorts to private, romantic honeymoon beach hotels, whatever your preferences are, our Luxury Travel Specialists will create a tailor made beach holiday that you’ll be dreaming about for years to come. Enquire today to begin planning your holiday to the beach.

Tanzania’s approximately 1,400 km long coastline is blessed with amazing beaches which are perfect for relaxing your mind. But if you are looking for a tropical paradise and some of the most beautiful, pristine beaches in the world, the archipelago of Zanzibar,Pangani and Mafia is your perfect choice. These islands are located off the Tanzanian coast, not far from the largest city in Tanzania, the metropolis of Dar es Salaam.