While Zanzibar is known for being flat and sand-strewn, neighboring Pemba Island is the land of cloves and mangoes and hillocks lush with fruit and spice trees. Traditional dhows lie scattered across most of the coastline and fishing is a large part of Pemba’s culture.
Like many of the islands in the archipelago, Pemba’s culture has been influenced by Arab traders from Oman and the original inhabitants who have lived on the island for centuries. Well-preserved ruins can be found on Pemba such as Qanbalu (a Muslim settlement from as early as the eighth century), while remnants of old voodoo rituals are practiced by the traditional witch doctors who call the island home.
Pemba has long been known as the ‘Green Island’ thanks to its fertile soil that produces crops such as coconut, bananas, and cassava. The island is surrounded with warm, sub-tropical waters renowned for some of the best diving and snorkeling in the whole archipelago because of its steep drop-offs, undisturbed marine life, and colorful coral reefs. Pemba Island offers a more authentic island experience with a tourism industry not as developed as Zanzibar’s, perfect for those wanting to capture the untapped nature of the archipelago.
In Ngezi Forest there are monkeys, bush babies, fruit bats, all different kinds of birds, flowers, spices and natural lakes. Remnants of an old timber business can also be found in the forest. The forest is an experience for all the senses.
You can also request for a night walk to see the owls. Another special option is a full day hike in the forest – approx. 8 hours
You can have a cooking lesson for traditional foods, see how handicrafts are made and join the fishermen for fishing. These are just a few examples.
Pemba flying foxes (world’s biggest fruit bats) are conserved here, and you can always see them. The population in Mjini Ole has grown from 300 to 6000.
There are 11th century ruins of an old town near to the village. Mjini Ole used to be the capital city of Pemba. Pieces of Persian and Chinese keramics can still be found on the ground, along with pieces of human and animal bones.
Transfers can be arranged between the airport and between hotels, restaurants and attractions, either on a seat-in-coach basis, or the private hire of an entire vehicle. All pick-up times are arranged to tie in with flight departures and scheduled tours. Our guides work to this timetable, collecting guests from each hotel en route to their intended destination.