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FROM US$1,700-US$2,220

Lemon Grass Beach Holiday

Enjoy undisturbed leisure at the Mafia Archipalego’s lesser visited Chole and Mafia Islands. Two charming, elegant lodges provide opportunity for total relaxation as well as a range of activities.

Lemon Grass Beach Holiday: Day-by-day

More detailed information of what each day entails, and the various places you’ll stay on the Lemon Grass Beach Holiday. Everything we do is completely tailor-made so while this is an idea which works well, we’ll always design an itinerary just for you.


Day 1

Starts: Dar es Salaam International Airport

This trip starts at the Domestic Terminal of Dar es Salaam's Julius Nyerere International Airport, which is a walk of about 500m from the International Terminal.

Day 1

Dar es Salaam to Chole by air, 4WD & boat

From Dar es Salaam International Airport, your half-hour light-aircraft flight lands at Mafia Island's tiny airstrip. From here it's a further half-hour drive to Utende, then a 15-minute boat crossing to Chole Island – wading the last few metres to shore. Getting to Chole is an adventure in itself!

Chole Mjini Lodge
Days 1-4

Chole Mjini

3 nights
Full BoardMafia Island, Tanzania

Chole Mjini is one of the most original small lodges that we know in East Africa. It stands on Chole Island, just off the coast of Mafia Island, which is a peaceful and charming hideaway in an area that sees little tourism. The lodge was built to be environmentally sound, and to give real benefits to the local community. Built among 19th-century ruins, it's all quite Indiana Jones: the ultimate eco-lodge, built before the term became so commonplace.

Chole Mjini Lodge

Chole Mjini is one of the most original small lodges that we know in East Africa. It stands on Chole Island, just off the coast of Mafia Island, which is a peaceful and charming hideaway in an area that sees little tourism. The lodge was built to be environmentally sound, and to give real benefits to the local community. Built among 19th-century ruins, it's all quite Indiana Jones: the ultimate eco-lodge, built before the term became so commonplace.

"It was a quite brilliant part of my trip - even better than I had hoped"

Mr & Mrs FfromMaidstone

Arrived 18 Oct 2018, 3 nights

Chole Mjini is the perfect environmentally sound getaway and it has a wonderful community atmosphere that comes from genuine engagement with its neighbours on the island. This is a high-quality lodge, that pragmatically eschews many of the bells and whistles of modern hotels that we so often take for granted. That means it won't be for everyone, but it makes it very distinctive, and we think it's all the better for it. See our full report on Chole Mjini Lodge

94%
28 reviews of Chole Mjini by travellers since August 2007

Activities

Boat trip

Cultural excursion

Scuba-diving

Snorkelling

Watersports

Day 4

Crossing from Chole to Mafia Island by boat

There's plenty of time for a relaxed morning before boarding the boat from Chole Mjini back to the main island. The 15-minute trip takes you across a narrow inlet of Mafia Island Marine Park direct to Pole Pole, idyllically nestled among the mangroves on a small, sandy beach .

Pole Pole
Days 4-7

Pole Pole

3 nights
Full BoardMafia Island, Tanzania

Pole Pole is a lovely relaxed beach lodge, built in 1998, and set among coconut palms, on a hillside sloping up from the beach, overlooking the sheltered Chole Bay in the Mafia Island Marine Park. The phrase 'pole pole' means 'slowly' in Swahili, and certainly says a lot about the atmosphere here. With only seven thatched bungalows, Pole Pole is intimate, quiet and very welcoming, and offers a wonderful beach retreat.

Pole Pole

Pole Pole is a lovely relaxed beach lodge, built in 1998, and set among coconut palms, on a hillside sloping up from the beach, overlooking the sheltered Chole Bay in the Mafia Island Marine Park. The phrase 'pole pole' means 'slowly' in Swahili, and certainly says a lot about the atmosphere here. With only seven thatched bungalows, Pole Pole is intimate, quiet and very welcoming, and offers a wonderful beach retreat.

"Loved Pole Pole - well run, good links with the dive centre"

M & C fromLondon

Arrived 20 Dec 2019, 4 nights

Pole Pole is a small, quiet and personal beach lodge that manages an excellent balance between staying in keeping with its surroundings, while creating a feeling of comfort and a relaxed, barefoot style. Expert Africa first came across Pole Pole many years ago, and we've visited many times. It has always been a firm favourite with us and our guests, and on our most recent visits it continued to live up to expectations. See our full report on Pole Pole

94%
97 reviews of Pole Pole by travellers since August 2007

Activities

Boat trip

Scuba-diving

Snorkelling

Watersports

Day 7

Mafia to Dar es Salaam by 4WD & light aircraft

Typically you'll leave Pole Pole mid-morning for the half-hour drive to the airstrip, close to the island's sleepy capital, Kilindoni. Here you'll board a small light aircraft, flying over the Mafia Channel to Dar es Salaam, and landing after around 30 minutes in time to make your onward connections.

Day 7

Ends: Dar es Salaam International Airport

Your trip ends at the airport's Domestic Terminal. If you're due to fly out of the country, you'll then have a walk of about 500m to the International Terminal.

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