Best places to stay on Mafia Island

Best Places To Stay On Mafia Island

Mafia Island is a fantastic spot for whale shark diving, but is not necessarily the place for a relaxing beach holiday as the beaches are definitely secondary to those in Zanzibar. With a sparse amount of hotels, Mafia is attractive as a place to explore surrounding islands and have an activity packed few days. There are loads of places to stay in Mafia, below are some of our favourites.

Fanjove Island

As a rule, a 6 bed private island with beautiful beaches in Tanzania costs upwards of $1000 per person per night. Fanjove Private Island has re-written the rules, offering a beautiful slice of remote African wilderness for a third of that price. Popularly referred to as ‘pirate chic’, this is not luxurious like it’s not too distant neighbours Mnemba or Quilalea, but it does not need to be. Simple and brilliant, this beautiful island is many people’s idea of paradise.

Thanda Island

Thanda Island is one of the world’s most exclusive island getaways, a paradise for you to enjoy in complete privacy with family and friends. It has taken ten years to discover and develop this remarkably uncommon destination as a very special, totally private island getaway. Thanda Island is a tropical island with a single luxurious villa in the Indian Ocean, off the east coast of Tanzania.

Kinasi Lodge

Kinasi Lodge is arguably Mafia’s best lodge.  Being a rather remote island which has never really developed into a tourism hub like Zanzibar has, Mafia lacks good quality, affordable accommodation.  There is Pole Pole, which is good value but lacks quality and a beach, and if you are more the adventurous type, then Chole Mjini is an option.  But Kinasi ticks all the boxes whilst at the same time has a good beach and spa.  Mafia isn’t known for great beaches so when you come across a good one, enjoy it!

Pole Pole

Pole Pole- meaning ‘slowly slowly’ is a good little Italian Run beach lodge in the Chole Bay. It has been around for a while and now with its own decent swimming pool its one of the better places to stay on the island. The lodge is very chilled out, peaceful and a good spot to base yourself for diving in the Mafia Marine Park nearby.

Chole Mjini

This lodge is not for everyone.  It’s utterly bizarre in its own little way but if you are the right person it really does work for you.  This is an eco-focused tourism project and not a commercial outfit looking to make money.  

More information about Mafia Island – Best Places To Stay In Mafia Island


  • Scuba diving and snorkelling icon
  • Cultural activities icon

Enlarge Map +

The best way to discover your next adventure is to get in touch with one of our experts. CONTACT

Where to stay on Mafia and Pemba Islands



Map of Tanzania

Map of Tanzania Tanzania - Serengeti Tanzania - Ngorongoro Crater Tanzania - Lake Manyara Tanzania - Tarangire Tanzania - Kilimanjaro Tanzania - Selous Game Reserve Tanzania - Ruaha Tanzania - Mahale Mountains Tanzania - Katavi Tanzania - Zanzibar Tanzania - Pemba Island Tanzania - Mafia Island Tanzania - Dar es Salaam Tanzania - Arusha
Odyssey Travels Africa Odyssey Asia Odyssey South America Odyssey