- Tour Dates
- Tour Plan
- Additional Info
- Similar Tours
- 3 meals daily daily, plus early morning tea
- Accommodation on a sharing basis
- Airport transfers
- All domestic fights
- All park and conservation fees
- Assistance with photographic and post processing on a casual basis
- Overweight on domestic flight for uw camera gear
- Two dives a day (possible third)
- Two game drives a day, or options for game walks
- Any additional meals other than stated
- Dive Insurance
- Extra activities not mentioned
- International Flights (if not part of Tour)
- Items of personal nature
- Staff/Guide gratuities
- Travel insurance
- Travel visas
Diving in Tanzania
The Name “Mafia” is possibly derived from the Arabic “morfiyeh”, meaning “group” or “archipelago”. To date, it has managed to avoid the invasion of mass tourism, unlike Zanzibar. This is what makes Mafia Island even more appealing. Fewer people means quieter dive sites, and this means a more rewarding experience diving in Tanzania.
This experience includes tracking the migrating Whale sharks, who tend to congregate in the warm waters around the Archipelago. The season runs from October to March, and reaches its peak in December. We’ll be swimming with these magnificent gentle giants, creating memories to last a lifetime and capturing breathtaking images offered by very few places around the world.
In between swimming with Whale sharks, we’ll explore the incredible reefs of Chole Bay, a Marine Reserve, that harbours more than 400 species of fish, and offers some amazing wide angle and macro photo opportunities. Not only are there reef dives, but also a bit of muck diving to reveal interesting little critters who make their homes in the silt.
Diving in Tanzania provides you with the opportunity to explore the underwater Island treasures as well as the chance to fully explore all the islands have to offer during our surface times.
During our stay on Mafia Island, accommodation is at one of the island’s most exclusive Eco-Lodges, where you’ll enjoy delicious cuisine, a laid-back atmosphere that instantly induces relaxation, and one which is seamlessly integrated with its natural environment.
Conveniently located on the shores of Chole Bay, it is close to our dive shop, and offers the perfect base for our diving and photo expeditions. Because we will be diving with one of Tanzania’s leading diving companies, they will ensure we are taken to the perfect areas to enjoy the best photography and diving in Tanzania,on offer. This means at least 2 dives are planned daily, although they are all tide dependent, ensuring you get the very best opportunities under water, and enjoy all the Islands have to offer.
Ruaha National Park
The pristine and untouched Ruaha National Park is the largest National Park in Tanzania. And is one of Tanzania’s best kept secrets. The great Ruaha River, winds it’s way through the spectacularly beautiful National Park. As a result, it provides the lifeblood to well over 10 000 elephants, 30 000 buffalo and 20 000 zebra. And this attracts large predator populations, including lion and leopard.
We’ll be based at one of the most elegant and sophisticated lodges in the Ruaha. Because it offers sweeping views of the surrounding landscape, it is the perfect place from which to explore. With two game drives each day, the option to enjoy walking safaris, and the possibility for night drives. As a result, this tour offers a treasure trove of photographic opportunities. And so, the use of a private vehicle means we can work with the best light hours to our advantage to capture some truly evocative images.
Because we’re arriving in the green season, it provides us with the possibility to witness behavioral activities not seen at other times of the year. Water is the lifeblood of the Africa bush, and with the first rains falling after a lengthy dry season, the bush comes alive. Migrant birds re-appear, juveniles are born and the life cycle begins anew. This also means increased predator activity, and the possibility of seeing incredible predator-prey interactions.
- Day 1
- Day 2 - 7
- Day 8
- Day 9 - 13
- Day 14
Dar es Salaam to Mafia Island
Arrival in Dar es Salaam. Depending on time of arrival, we'll meet at domestic departures prior to our flight to Mafia Island at 15h30. Or, if arrival is much earlier in the day, we'll transfer to our hotel, where a day room will be organised for a shower and change before catching our flight to Mafia Island.
It's a short 30 minute flight to Mafia Island. We will then be transferred to our accommodation on the island, and get settled in.
Diving around Mafia Island
Between shore/boat diving in Chole Bay, swimming with Whale sharks, and picking our own excursions, we will have plenty of time to explore the waters around Mafia Island. From wide angle to macro photo opportunities, it is all available within a quick boat ride from the dive center.
Mafia to Dar es Salaam
The morning will be spent on Mafia Island as there's 1 flight out of Mafia Island a day, which departs at 17h30. We'll spend the evening relaxing at our hotel located alongside the warm Indian Ocean on the Swahili coast in Dar es Salaam.
We'll have an early wake-up to fly to the pristine Ruaha National Park the following morning.
Dar es Salaam to Ruaha National Park
It is the magnificent green season in the Ruaha! With new life bursting forth after the first rains have fallen. It's a time for celebration, where the African bush comes alive after a long, dry winter. Rivers start to fill, and juvenile animals make their appearance. This is a wonderful time to be in the bush, with plenty of activity around. There are 2 game drives scheduled each day, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. These provide the best times to capture excellent wildlife photos, with plenty of time to download and discuss what we photographed on the drives.
Ruaha to Dar es Salaam
Our flight back to Dar es Salaam leaves at 09h30. We arrive in Dar at approximately 11h30 and say farewell. After an exhilarating trip filled with incredible experiences and adventure, beautiful images and new friendships you'll be left with happy memories that last a lifetime.
More about this tour
This trip has been designed with photography in mind, no matter your level of experience, your equipment, or your level of computer knowledge. We've catered for all levels on this trip, with dive boats and game drive vehicles.
Although there will be no formal “training or classes”, I'm a professional photographer and I'll be on hand to discuss , go through your images, and assist where required. Whether it's on the boat, or you need help with camera preparation, and after our shoot with an informal chat around your images. We can also assist with your Lightroom or other editing software questions during these discussions
However, we do appreciate that some guests prefer to see with their eyes, and not through the lens of a camera. Whether you travel with or without a camera this trip has something for everyone. Be it the shot of a lifetime or coming eye to eye with a predator at a hide, you'll leave this trip with fantastic images and memories to last a lifetime.
If you have any questions regarding our yours, please get in touch!