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About Unguja

Unguja is the largest and most populated island in the Zanzibar Archipelago in Tanzania. The other island is Pemba, and there are several small islets including Changuu, Tumbatu, Mnemba. It is located in the southern half of the Zanzibar Archipelago, in the Indian Ocean. Unguja is the local name for the main island, which is commonly known internationally as Zanzibar. The island is rich in history, with numerous archaeological sites dotting the island, most notably at Unguja Ukuu, just to the north of the causeway, which links Unguja Island and Uzi Island. Zanzibar offers some of the best diving opportunities off Africa’s east coast. There is a diversity of dive sites that range from shallow coral gardens to deep walls with strong currents, which cater to divers of every level of experience. One of the best dive sites is Leven Bank. It is located in the Pemba Channel and can only be reached by boat. Leven Bank is a very large reef and has some of the most abundant marine life in Zanzibar. Divers can encounter eels, tuna, anemonefish, barracudas, reef sharks, kingfish, trevallies, Napoleon wrasses, and much more. The depth is 14-40m/46-131ft. Because of the strong currents, the dive site is more recommended for advanced divers. The beaches of Zanzibar are important nesting zones for green and hawksbill turtles, both of which are endangered and decreasing in number. Also, some of the best diving is at the Mnemba Atoll, with calm, shallow dives on the inside of the lagoon and sheer walls on the outside. There are big schools of grunts, snappers, fusiliers, grouper, trevallies, butterflyfish, angelfish, Moorish idols, bannerfish, squirrelfish, loads of morays, blue spotted stingrays, and green turtles. Dolphins can easily be spotted in the area. During the night dives, Spanish dancers, squid, moray eels, spiny lobsters, and octopi can be found. Manta rays, whale sharks, and humpback whales can be seen from December to April.

When to go to Unguja

Unguja has a tropical climate, so there is warm weather all year round. The air temperature is 24-29C/75-84F June-August and 27-35C/80-90F December-March. The wettest month is April. The water temperature varies from 25-29C/77-84F. There is always some current outside the reef due to the tides. The water visibility ranges from 10-50m/33-164ft.