The Zanzibar Islands of Pemba Island and Mnemba Island are perhaps best known for their fantastic diving, but the gorgeous beaches and good travel connections to Zanzibar make it ideal for tagging a beach holiday to an East Africa safari.
To the north of Zanzibar, only a 30 minute flight away, lies the largest of the satellite Zanzibar islands, Pemba Island. A favourite haunt for scuba divers, Pemba Island is renowned for its dive sites. But it deserves to be on the “must see” list for other savvy travellers too. The beaches are pristine and an 800m deep channel divides Pemba from the Tanzania mainland making this one of Africa’s greatest deep sea fishing destinations.
The rich and alluring smell of cloves hangs in the air through much of Pemba Island and the locals remain friendly and interested in conversation with overseas visitors who make it to their shores. We would recommend staying at Fundu Lagoon in Pemba if you are looking for lodging for a night or two.
Mnemba Island is the most serenely private, untouched and tropical of the Zanzibar islands, and is only 20 minutes from Zanzibar by boat. Mnemba Island is described by some as a “therapy for the spirit”. Pristine beaches wrap around the island’s small 1km circumference (less than one hour’s walk) while an outer protection zone surrounds it, conserving magnificent coral reefs where giant turtles, ghost crabs and spectacular tropical fish drift through the lagoons.