"The art and science of asking questions is the source of all knowledge." - Thomas Berger
The diving is wonderful throughout the year, however there are a few times in the year when the visability and conditions are just perfect. One is around October and November just before the season changes to the North monsoon and we have the Somali current running down to Zanzibar which brings very clean water and flat sea conditions. Another good time is late February to mid April just after the North monsoon when the wind has calmed down again leaving beautiful, clear and warm flat sea conditions. For more information click here to read our article, "Diving the Zanzibar Archipelago" on the PADI website.
Yes you can! We are one of the few diving companies who can launch any time of day as we are not limited by the tidal water movement from either of our dive bases. We usually plan a single dive in the afternoon, however this can also be a double dive if requested.
As many as you like provided you stay within your no-deco limits! We schedule 3 dives, two in the mornign and a single in the afternoon. For the keen diver we can make the afternoon into a double dive and even add on a night dive!
Yes, you can! Please ask our crew or best to book an advance as boats are reserved on a first come, first served basis.
Absolutely not! When you start from our dive bases in Sunset Kendwa or Diamonds La Gemma Dell'est, the boat will pick you and return you directly to the beach in front of the dive base regardless of teh tidal water movement.
Our speed boats reach the snorkelling and diving locations in anywhere from 5-30 minutes depending on the destination. On Yacht Papagena, we sail at a more relaxed pace which can take from 20 mins up to two hours.
Scuba Do is probably the most flexible in terms of being able to accommodate walk-in guests. Of course, it is best to book in advance to guarantee our place, however we can normally accommodate all requests even last minute as we have many boats and tides that allow us to launch at any time of day. Our directors are also dive instructors so they can fill in to guide or teach when needed.
Yes, you can choose your dive site. We try and schedule the dive sites based on the weather and tidal water movement each day along with our divers' interests and experience levels. Our regular schedules include a variety of dive sites so we can share all of our favourite places with you. You can always talk with us about a private boat charter where you can have more flexibility to choose sites and launch times.
The only hyperbaric chamber in our region is located in Matemwe, Zanzibar - approximately 30 minute drive from either of our dive bases. We have our own dive medic and our instructors are all trained as hyperbaric chamber operators and attendants. We plan all of our dives within RDP no-deco limits and prioritise safety first. We also know that divers can experience symptoms even when following safe dive profiles - often due to underlying, unknown medical conditions.
Our teaching philosophy is this, "Provided you are medically fit and you have the time and the desire to learn to dive, we can teach you." Some people need more time to master the skills than others and we are willing to give as much time as you need to get you there - without additional fees. The timeframe also depends on whether you have completed the academic sections through PADI e-Learning in advance, or if you will be watching the videos in our classroom and reading the manual while you are here. On average, most people complete the course between 3-5 days.
We are very flexible with your holiday plans and you can even take a day off in the middle for other tours if you prefer. Zanzibar is a magical place and we know there are many things to see and do! Just let us know your schedule and we will work with you to give you the best experience ever!
Yes, provided you are medically fit for recreational scuba diving! We offer a Discover Scuba Dive Experience which can last a half or a full day. We recommend you try the Discover Scuba experience early in your holiday, as if you like it you can carry on to be a certified scuba diver or open water diver! You may also choose to repeat the discover scuba dive experience for subsequent dives with your instructor without having to repeat the skills in the shallow water.
Yes! We often combine diving and snorkel trips to destinations that cater for both such as Tumbatu Island or Mnemba Island excursions. On the double dive trips, while the divers enjoy two different dive sites, the snorkellers can also enjoy snorkelling in two separate locations spending up to two hours or longer in the water! Single dive trips are also available for those not wanting to be out so long.
Yes, everybody is welcome! Book in advance and we can also arrange a tame taxi driver to bring you to our dive base. Easiest way to do this is to book ahead through our online shop, in the shop you have the option to choose if you would like us to arrange a transfer from your hotel. Please email us if you are staying in one fo the hotles which are not listed in the shop and we will help you arrange the transfer.
Yes, you can! We have some nice interesting dives off the shore in Kendwa as well as in front of our dive base in La Gemma Dell'est! This is a great option for those who experience sea sickness and want to avoid a boat journey. For those trying scuba for the first time and are a bit apprehensive, shore diving may be preferable also! Lastly, our shore dives offer excellent night dive experiences with loads of shrimps, crabs, octopus, squid and moray eels active at night and plenty of phosphorescence (largely due to the dinoflagellates) to amaze you under the sea!
Yes, we usually schedule single dives in the afternoon or you can join onto a doube dive trip and either sit out or snorkel during the second dive.
For most diver training organisations, we will be able to find your certification records on their database by searching your full name (including middle initial) and date of birth. Best is to contact us in advance via email and we will check for you. If we cannot find your certification, we can still take you diving by treating you as a student and having you dive with an instructor. You would be limited to 12m - but we have loads to see at this depth and to the advantage of even longer dive times!
It is always good to do a refresher course if you haven't dived for awhile. We follow the PADI guidelines and if you haven't dived for several months or longer, it is recommended. We will look at each case on an individual basis depending on your highest certification achieved, experience level and amount of time passed since your last dive. Often a quick refresher gives you a chance to get your weight right and being more relaxed means your air in your tank will last longer allowing you to enjoy more time underwater.
Yes, but please inform us in advance. It is easy for us to arrange underwater cleanup dives which are generally from the shore as that is where the rubbish washes in and we are regularly cleaning our shoreline. You may also want to join us to assist with coral reef monitoring or perhaps even a ghostnet cleanup dive. The current ghostnet area is quite far offshore, hence more expensive of an exercise and we are currently looking for funding options to make it possible to undertake this as a project.
We try to keep our groups very small for personalised service and a much more enjoyable dive experience. While our boats can take anywhere from 10-16 divers, we try to dive with no more than 4-6 divers per guide. We like to separate those diving with cameras looking for that perfect shot so they can go super slow. Just let us know what you are looking for and we will do our best to exceed your expectations!
While many dive centres only have the choice of a couple places and many do the same sites every day, at Scuba Do we have more than 25 dive sites to choose from and we try to schedule our dives so we can avoid sharing the reefs with other divers. However, Mnemba Island (not really an atoll as advertised) is a very busy destination with many boats, divers and snorkellers. While it is difficult to avoid other divers altogether, we do our best to drop at times where we avoid other groups to minimise total numbers on the reef.
Because if you fall forward you will land in the boat! :-)
Most of our dives are from our boats, but we are fortunate in Kendwa that we can also offer shore dives exploring coral bommies with lots of life- especially at night! A majority of our dives are drift dives on fringing reefs with a few on patch reefs in the open sea. There is no need to "go deep" in Zanzibar as the best corals and fishlife are less than 20m depth. We do have sites where we can make deep dives and usually do so for training purposes. The few shipwrecks in the North are too deep for recreational diving, however there are a couple wrecks off Stone Town if this is on your bucket list - but you might be disappointed if you have already done wreck dives in the Red Sea.
After having dived many places around the world (on all continents - except Antarctica), the most special thing Zanzibar has to offer is diversity of marine life! While we cannot guarantee sharks and mantas, we have some super cool creatures such as an abundance of peacock mantis shrimps, weedy scorpionfish, seahorses, ghost pipefish, etc.
Depending on the time of year, it ranges from 24/25C in August up to 29/30C in February. We offer various exposure suits from 5mm shorties to 3mm farmer johns to 5mm full suits for those who get cold in the water.
During the spring tides where we have the most water movement we have up to four meters tidal difference, this can create strong currents. Most of our dives are planned as drift dives along with the current, while the others we plan to dive on the slack tide, so we are not having to swim hard against the current. We prefer keeping things nice and relaxed. One of our favourite dives is on Hunga Reef during the afternoon high slack tide on the full moon spring which is always a good fun dive with lots to see.
We have healthy dolphin populations in the North of Zanzibar and while we regularly see them, we cannot guarantee you will see them as they do tend to move around. On numerous occasions, pods of dolphins have swam past us even while we are scuba diving! We adhere to eco-friendly dolphin viewing guidelines and try not to disrupt their normal behaviours. We observe the dolphins and if they are being quite playful and social, we may allow our guests to enter the water as long as they promise not to chase or attempt to touch the dolphins. When entering the water with a calm, curious energy one can have an amazing dolphin viewing experience. The famous Zanzibar swim with dolphin tours in Kizimkazi (southern tip of Zanzibar) have a reputation for being dolphin harrassment tours. If you plan to go, please let us know and we will guide you toward the more responsible operators in that area.
While we occassionally encounter a shark or large ray, these sightings are rare in our area. Sadly, sharks and rays are still heavily fished as a food source in our area. We have hopes with Wildlife Conservation Society's shark project as well as Sea Shepherd's Operation Jodari catching poachers in our deep seas that we will have an increasing number of sightings in the future.
Unfortunately this is not something we have observed in all the years we have been diving in Zanzibar. When it comes to whale shark migration, scientists have more questions than answers. Due to a few successful tagging efforts, researchers agree that the sharks are highly nomadic, but they’re yet to understand the motivation behind the nomadic behaviors. The usually solitary creatures, come together for months in large aggregations to feed in plankton-dense waters. But after feeding, they drift off in random directions. In Zanzibar sightings are rare, however Mafia Island have more regular sightings.
The majestic manta rays are unfortunately rarely seen while diving in Zanzibar. In the North of Pemba, there was a cleaning station where they were regularly seen, but they have stopped visiting there for some time now. Scientists had long thought that oceanic manta rays migrate thousands of miles around the world to follow shifts in the distribution of their food, similar to the movements of other pelagic, or open-ocean, filter feeders such as baleen whales and whale sharks. Previous studies had even documented individual manta rays traveling hundreds of miles at a time, while more recent studies show that they are more territorial.
We have seen the humpback whales migrating through Zanzibar anytime between July and early November. They are really amazing to see and 2017 we had many sightings! They are often mothers together with their calves so we keep our distance and adhere to eco-friendly whale watching guidelines. They have swam very near to us on several dives which is simply incredible.
There are many airlines flying directly into Zanzibar (airport code ZNZ) such as Ethiopian Airlines, Kenya Airways, Qatar Airlines, Mango (from South Africa), etc. Alternatively, many airlines fly directly to Dar es Salaam (airport code DAR) which is only a 20 min flight to Zanzibar or 90 minutes by Ferry.
To get to Kendwa from either the airport or ferry terminal takes approximately 75 minutes. There are many options from organised tour operators, private taxis, sharing taxis, local dala dalas or hire/rental cars. To drive oneself, keep in mind there are numerous police blocks to negotiate and you must have a Zanzibar driving permit. For more information to book a transfer or hire a car, please check out Zanzibar Express Car Hire.
About Scuba Do Zanzibar

Please let us know if you have any special requests or need further assistance.

Phone/Whatsapp: +255 (0)777 417 157

Email: do-scuba@scuba-do-zanzibar.com

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