Zanzibar has some of the richest coral reefs in the world well over 500 different types of marine animals. Due to the warm waters of the Indian ocean, the visibility is remarkable and can sometimes go as far as 100 meters.
Whether you are deep-sea diving in Zanzibar, a macro diver, or a snorkeler, you will find everything that you are looking for in Zanzibar. Wreck diving, coral reef diving, or wall diving can easily be done here with over 30 different scuba dive in Zanzibar sites to choose from.
And what’s more, Zanzibar just so happens to be among the best places anywhere in the world where you can see and swim with the whale shark. So get your scuba gear package and let’s explore!
The 10 best diving spots in Zanzibar
1. Leven bank
Zanzibar is actually part of a string of islands and is the biggest island in the Zanzibar archipelago. It is known locally as Unguja. Its capital, Stone town is a World Heritage site with the surrounding islands also offering some of the best diving sites in the world.
Leven Bank is among Zanzibar’s best dive spots. It features a mountainous topography and a diverse variety of marine life. Here visibility can be between 20 to 60 meters. However, keep in mind that the currents can be strong making Leven bank for the advanced divers.
The best dive computer will help you stay well informed with your dive metrics for a successful dive.
Whitetip reef sharks, rainbow runners, rays, tuna, barracuda, triggerfish, groupers, napoleon wrasse, nudibranchs, trevallies, and honeycomb moray eels are just a few of the marine life that you are going to encounter.
2. Nankivel and Hunga Reef
If you are a novice or beginner diver, these two reefs, which lie side by side each other are the perfect place to dive. The depth is only between 12 meters and 16 meters. Here you will find flamboyant corals over huge bommies resulting in a beautiful setting that could appear straight from a painting.
You will also find lobsters, napoleon wrasse, groupers, reef sharks, dolphins, snappers, barracudas, parrotfish as well as silver sweet lips. You will find that a dive watch is a great piece of equipment to have if you always want to know the time and duration you spend in these waters.
3. Boribu reef
Gorgonian sea fans, column corals, kaleidoscope corals, and barrel sponges are the main features of the Boribu reef. With depths of up to 30 meters, this is a great place to scuba dive Zanzibar for the experienced diver.
Ensure that you are wearing the best scuba mask that will not fog up easily and lets you take in all the sights around you.
Bluefin tunas, moray eels, lobsters, and barracudas can be seen here in large numbers making it among the best places for diving in Zanzibar.
Wattabomi is a dive site that is located on Mnemba island, one of the other larger islands in the Zanzibar archipelago. Diving here is absolutely sensational with the diving spot sloping gently from 6 meters to 30 meters.
If you want to reef dive or even drift dive, this is definitely the place to be and is a great dive spot for the beginner as well as the advanced diver. Among the marine life here includes the bottlenose dolphins, octopi, trevallies, scorpionfish, red-toothed tripper fish, black snappers, frogfish, flounders, stonefish, and groupers.
Another of Mnemba island’s great dive spots is Kichwani. This is a near-vertical wall that starts at 2 meters and drops down to 30 meters. If you are a drift diver, you will definitely want to check out kichwani during your scuba dive in Zanzibar.
And what’s even great about Kichwani is that it is ideal for both beginner and advanced divers. Here, you can either plunge deep or drift gently with the current as you take in all the sights.
Among the most common marine animals to be found here include the napoleon wrasse, white tip reef sharks, nudibranchs, crocodile fish, moray eels, leaf fish, scorpionfish, mackerel, snappers, frogfish, and goatfish. Take your diving camera and come back with some awesome sights.
6. Big wall
The big wall dive site, also to be found in Mnemba island is between 14 meters and 70 meters deep. Coupled with the strong currents here, this dive site is for the experienced diver. You will see some spectacular overhands as you descend the nearly vertical big wall.
There are also some mysterious caves here that are covered with both soft coral and hard corals. You are also going to find pelagic fish as you go down the wall.
This is a rich ecosystem with moray eels, hammerhead sharks, rainbow runners, dolphin fish, lobsters, giant green turtles, batfish, unicornfish, groupers, rays, and tunas. If you are an experienced underwater photographer, you can capture some excellent images here at the Big wall.
The Aquarium dive site is considered by many divers as being one of the most beautiful and scenic dive spots in Mnemba Atoll. The coral wall here slopes down from between 10 meters 24 meters. This is among the best places for a beginner diver to enjoy the spectacular marine life found here and is also an excellent place to grab your snorkel gear packages and go snorkeling.
Among the beautiful marine life that you are going to come across include the green turtle, bluefin trevallies, tuna, goatfish, Moorish idols, lionfish, moray eels, butterflyfish, parrotfish, rays, surgeonfish, big mouth mackerels, crescent big tails, lobsters, fusiliers, and silver sweetlips.
8. Mwana wa Mwana
Found to the west of Zanzibar island is Tumbatu island which is characterized by having many shallow reefs making it a great dive spot for beginner divers. Among the best places for diving in Zanzibar, archipelagos are mwana wa mwana.
Even while it’s important to wear a wetsuit, the waters here are quite warm and comfortable to swim in.
It slopes from 5 meters to 12 meters with stunning coral gardens. In fact, many divers who have experienced diving in other locations will openly admit that mwana wa mwana dive spot has some of the nicest variety of corals anywhere in the world.
The turquoise waters are crystal clear and the beautiful marine life here will include nudibranchs, blue-spotted stingrays, green turtles, octopi, sea horses, moray eels, and cattle fish. The waters are calmer than in other areas of Zanzibar and are a definite must-see for dive enthusiasts and whenever you plan to make a scuba dive Zanzibar trip.
9. Manta point
This dive spot is located on another island in the Zanzibar archipelago known as Pemba Island. It is reserved for the experienced divers only as depths can go as far as 40 meters. To help you get down to this depth, you need high-quality scuba tanks. Here you can find three seamounts that are brilliantly adorned with coral gardens and brightly colored tropical fish.
The best time of year to dive at Manta point is between January and March. This is when you are most likely to swim with eagle rays and devil rays. Sometimes they will come to use the pinnacle as a cleaning station.
However, there are plenty of other marine creatures here such as turtles, surgeonfish, reef sharks, trevallies, jackfish, clownfish, pufferfish, titan triggerfish, and plenty of sea stars.
10. Fundu reef
Fundu reef will start at around 3 meters and then descent to whooping 60 meters, this is a great place for divers of all levels of experience as well as snorkelers. A full-face snorkel mask will provide you with the best viewing. Here you can in fact find up to 5 dive sites which include the south wall, coral garden, crack, Mandela wall, and pinnacle, which have some of the most incredible coral gardens and walls.
When diving in Zanzibar, Fundu reef is a dive spot that you never want to miss. Napoleon wrasse, eagle rays, kingfish, barracuda, sweet lips, as well as parrotfish can be found here.
Globo Surf Overview
If you are looking for a tropical destination to go scuba diving then Zanzibar should be on your list of priorities. The islands with sandy white beaches are only part of the beauty. What lies underneath its turquoise waters is to be seen to be believed. There are stunning dive sites here for every experience level and what’s more, is that you can even snorkel around the shallow reefs to enjoy the beautiful marine life looking down.
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- Scuba diving in Mnemba island, drinkteatravel.com