Advanced Diving in Tanzania

Home to the world’s most iconic wildlife encounters – the Big Five and Great Wildebeest Migration – Africa’s highest peak, palm-fringed beaches and cerulean seas, it’s no wonder Tanzania has be-come synonymous with out-of-this-world adventures. More importantly for divers, Tanzania’s Spice Islands – also known as the Zanzibar Archipelago – also offer some of the best diving in Africa. From the three main islands – Mafia Island, Pemba and Zanzibar – divers can experience healthy coral reefs, macro critters and marine megafauna galore. As for the advanced diving in Tanzania, there are plenty of big currents and big fish to keep you entertained...


The largest island in the archipelago, Unguja - more commonly known as Zanzibar Island - is a magnet for big fish with epic advanced diving. In Tanzania, there is a good chance of seeing whale sharks and manta rays, especially between December and April, which is also the perfect time of year to explore one of our favourite offshore sites, Leven Bank. Leven Bank is a sunken pinnacle reaching 12 metres below the surface, with strong currents that attract hungry barracuda, kingfish, tuna, and trevally.

Zanzibar Island also enjoys a prime position along the migration route of sperm and humpback whales, so keep your eyes peeled during surface intervals.


To the north of Zanzibar, Pemba Island has some of the best advanced diving in Tanzania in the Pemba Channel. The channel's nutrient rich water - a product of the north-flowing East African current - attracts all manner of predatory pelagics; from marlins, tiger sharks and hammerheads, to yellowfin tunas, wahoos, giant trevallies and barracudas. Among the more advanced sites, Mtangani and Mapanduzi offer good chances of hammerhead sightings, while North Horn attracts white-tipped reef sharks, silvertips and hammerheads.

Mafia Island

With over 50 species of coral and 460 species of fish, Tanzania's first marine reserve, Mafia Island Marine Park, is one of the most biodiverse marine regions in Tanzania. Muck and macro enthusiasts have plenty of weird and wonderful creatures to find in the shallows of Chloe Bay - part of the marine park - while those looking for more advanced diving in Tanzania can venture outside the bay and into the currents.

Kinasi Pass, the route into and out of Chloe Bay, is also a great advanced drift dive featuring a pinnacle that resembles a chicken. This is also a good place to spot pelagic hunters and giant reef rays.

Once outside the bay, the dives involve fast-paced drifts. Dindini Northern Wall is one of the best dives outside the bay, with chances of seeing reef sharks, green turtles, large tuna and, if lady luck is smiling, pods of friendly dolphins.

Not every dive in Mafia is classified as being among the more advanced diving in Tanzania, but with healthy reefs and fantastic marine diversity, the shallow sites are just as worthy of a few dives as the more challenging ones. Visit between November and April, and you're also virtually guaranteed to see whale sharks

Our team of dive travel specialists are on hand to help you plan your dream African adventure to Tanzania. Island-hopping the Zanzibar Archipelago can be paired with Big Five spotting in the Selous Game Reserve for a truly memorable experience in the company of whale sharks, lions, rhinos and hippos...

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Emily C, Eleanor and Jacqui are our 'Advanced Diving in Tanzania' experts and as seasoned travellers they have the inside track on the most memorable adventures.

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