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Dive Review of Lodge in
Africa/Mafia Island Lodge, Mar, 2008,

by Peter Van Kampen, Wisconsin, USA (Reviewer Reviewer 5 reports with 1 Helpful vote). Report 4093.

No photos available at this time

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 5 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 2 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments There are two distict areas to dive at Mafia Island. Inside the reef which is always available,(like a huge lake) and outside which can be good or rough. Current between the two areas can be extreem so we only ventured out for one dive. It was a spectacular dive, one of my all time top ten. It had it all, great corals, and big fish, sharks and turtles, did I mention all the big fish. Mafia Island is protected with a marine park and it seems to be workng. Very little fishing outside the reef and therefore lots of big fish. Inside the reef was nice diving with the visibility different on each dive. Night dive was good with lots of night critters and a few good size spanish dancers. The highlight of the night dive for me was coming up after the dive,the dive boat 100 yds away with a very dim light, on a flat sea, clear moonless night and billions and billions of stars so close you felt like you were swimming amoung them. No other dive boats were encountered during out stay.
We had heard about currents being bad but with good planning they were not an issue. The Kinasi Resort is a exotic place managed by an Italian couple who were always gacious and helpful. Each unit is a b separte cabin surrounded by thick tropical vegitation. It is a beautiful seculded spot for divers and those who wish a wonderful getaway. Mafia island is definately off the beaten path, yet an easy flight from Dar es Salaam. The staff was great fun, except the South African Dive master who needs to be replaced. We went to the other side of the island to snorkel with immature whale sharks,(20 footers)in shallow water,(<20 ft) There were several sharks less than a mile off shore feeding. We spent several hours in and out of the boat with the sharks. Everyone got their fill being in with them. It was a real treat, the SA divemaster did not go on this trip, his pretty and capable Argentinian assistant was in charge. I would go there again in a minute but not as long as that divemaster is there! He ruined the diving for everyone. At the end some of our group simply skipped the diving. I have never disliked a divemaster in all the years I have been diving. This guy needs to retire.
We organized our trip with who did an outstanding job with every detail personally managed. Our trip to Tanzania included a visit to Zanzibar for a few days, a trip to Pemba island and a safari to the Serengetti with Dorobo safari who we can Highly recommend also. Overall we were three weeks in Tanzania and it went very smoothly. You will truly enjoy the happy and gentle people of Tanzania. i would go again in a minute.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving Galapagos, Red Sea, Maldives, Caribbean, Australia
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 80-83°F / 27-28°C Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 40-100 Ft/ 12-30 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions The South African Dive Master was: Unfriendly, Demeaning to divers and his Tanzanian crew,Self important,negligent,verbally abusive,never helpful, always wanting to lead but way to fast for enjoyment.
One of our female divers had trouble with the resort regulator when she first hit the water, he ignored her request for help.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks 1 or 2 Mantas None
Dolphins 1 or 2 Whale Sharks > 2
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 4 stars Large Fish 5 stars
Large Pelagics 4 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 1 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 2 stars Shore Facilities 2 stars
UW Photo Comments Only one photographer in our group. No special set up on boats for photographers.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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