We came to Zanzibar for diving. We had some really amazing diving in Zanzibar. With that being said, the coral and the fish were amazing if you get the chance to diversify the dive trips, would recommend it. Plan to go slowly through the dives because they are shallow enough to spend an hour on each dive planning it right. The dive operations are good, but not great even though they say they are 5 star merely because the dive operation does not meet the same standards as the lodging. I suppose when you re used to the service from the lodges, yoou expect the same from the dive operators. they seemed preoccupied with their own conversations and interests rather than assisting the divers, spending a lot of time speaking to each other in local dialect. It would have been nice to learn more about their underwater experiences and sea life in the event that perhaps we would be better prepared for what we should look for and hope to see. The lodge management and staff were very nice and the rooms were great. I feel this is a place you come to dive. It's not really for relaxing at the beach as they really don't have a great beach and the only nice one is next to the village fish operation, and it is a conservative village which might make someone uncomfortable, although we did not feel that way. Prepare to dive, snorkel, kayak or sunbathe, because there's not much more to do than that. Sometimes, that's a good thing. While the resort is beautiful, the fishing village which is right next to it, is not. There is trash everywhere and the village does not care about cleaning it up and is content living in the tossed trash as well as the goats picking through it. The resort and others are trying to do clean ups but apparently it's a lost cause and even incentives by the resorts are short lived in keeping the area clean. I am saying this, because if you are coming for diving, come to this resort, If you are coming to hang out on the beach check out the village, you will be very disappointed. Also, the tides change here, so when you go diving you may leave from the resort, and then have a drive back at a different drop off, or vice versa. Bus rides to the dive pick up are typical often 45 minutes long on tough roads so if you get motion sickness, take something. We had a great time diving, visibility was great, and we even saw a whale shark during our dive, which is very rare. Loved the room, the bathroom was very large and it was great way to wind down and relax. The restaurant staff was great and friendly and everyone very accommodating. I would recommend this place to every diver who wants to experience Zanzibar diving.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Vibrant yet relaxed Matemwe, one of the first lodges in Zanzibar, has perfected the tropical island experience. Perched on an outcrop overlooking a shallow coral fringed lagoon on the quieter northeast coast of Zanzibar, Matemwe’s peaceful location and famed relaxed atmosphere, makes it the ideal place to unwind. Guests quickly ease into the laid-back rhythm of island life, planning their day around the tides and their mood. The relaxed daily routines of Matemwe’s guests include enjoying fresh seafood, poolside cocktails, massages or simply hanging out in a hammock. The lodge has plenty on offer for the more active with superb diving and snorkeling off the renowned Mnembe Atoll; a highlight for many. Built from local materials and surrounded by beautiful lush gardens, each of the 12 spacious suites has a private veranda with a hammock and sofa and expansive views of the Indian Ocean with its constantly changing hues of blue. Here you can watch the fishermen head out every morning at dawn or listen to the songs of the village women as they harvest seaweed. The large bathrooms have both a deep bathtub and walk-in shower and all beds are enclosed by mosquito nets. The open-air restaurant sits just above the sea and has a tranquil lounge area with beautiful views of the palm fringed beach and gently rocking dhows. Seafood is the specialty of the house, with all produce bought daily from the local markets. Lunch is a buffet offering a delicious mix of African and European flavours. Dinner offers a choice of main courses with fish, meat and vegetarian options. Matemwe has a multi-level swimming pool surrounded with lounge chairs overlooking the ocean. Freshly mixed cocktails are served at the poolside bar. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Matemwe Main Lodge, Asilia Africa Hotel Matemwe
- Matemwe Bungalows
- Matemwe Lodge, Asilia Africa Zanzibar Island