Mafia Island


With its pristine coral reefs, turquoise waters, and tranquil beaches, Mafia Island is a paradise for snorkelers, divers, and nature enthusiasts seeking an off-the-beaten-path destination in East Africa.
About Mafia Island

Mafia Island, located off the coast of mainland Tanzania in the Indian Ocean, is a pristine and relatively undiscovered destination known for its natural beauty and diverse marine ecosystems. The island is surrounded by clear turquoise waters teeming with coral reefs, making it a paradise for snorkelers and divers.

Visitors to Mafia Island can explore protected marine parks, swim with whale sharks (seasonally), and enjoy relaxing on secluded beaches away from the crowds.Apart from its stunning underwater scenery, Mafia Island offers opportunities to experience authentic island life and local culture.

Fishing villages dot the coastline, and visitors can interact with friendly locals, learn about traditional fishing techniques, and sample fresh seafood dishes. The island is also a haven for birdwatchers, with numerous bird species inhabiting its mangrove forests and coastal areas.

Mafia Island’s laid-back atmosphere and untouched landscapes provide a tranquil escape from bustling tourist destinations. Visitors can engage in eco-friendly activities like kayaking through mangrove forests, exploring ancient ruins, or simply unwinding on sandy beaches. 


The best time to visit Mafia Island for tourism is during the dry season, which occurs from June to October. This period offers sunny weather, calm seas, and excellent visibility for snorkeling and diving in the crystal-clear waters surrounding the island. July to September is particularly ideal for whale shark encounters, as these gentle giants migrate through the area during this time.

Fun facts about Mafia Island

It is home to the Mafia Island Marine Park, established to protect the island’s rich marine biodiversity, including coral reefs, seagrass beds, and mangrove forests.
Mafia Island is a renowned destination for encountering whale sharks, especially from October to March when these gentle giants visit the area to feed.
The waters around Mafia Island are known for their historical shipwrecks, offering diving opportunities to explore underwater relics from ancient times.
It has a rich tradition of dhow boat building, and visitors can witness skilled craftsmen constructing these traditional sailing vessels using age-old techniques.