In our constant efforts to take our travelers to “new” and off-the-beaten-track destinations, we’re happy to highlight Pemba Island and Fundu Lagoon Resort. Pemba is part of the Zanzibar Archipelago off the coast of Tanzania. Unguja Island (more commonly known as Zanzibar, which is a misnomer as the entire island chain is actually Zanzibar) is the most popular destination in the change and is filled with quite the selection of accommodations and activities. However, it’s also quite busy, especially compared to the remote and raw feeling of Pemba. Luckily, Pemba receives a fraction of the visitors that Unguja does and still offers a pristine and truly authentic experience – Swahili style!
We recommend staying at the remote Fundu Lagoon, a small resort on the southwest side of the island only accessible by boat. Wooden boardwalks connect the 18 thatched tented rooms and suites. Fundu Lagoon offers activities including snorkeling and diving, windsurfing, tours of the ancient ruins of Jambangome, and sunset dhow cruises. Kent visited Fundu not long ago…read on for his insight on this remote island and lodge.
“For those wishing to get off the beaten path to enjoy pristine beaches, romantic sunsets, and wonderful diving and snorkeling, Pemba Island is the way to go. Located just 20 miles north of its better known and much more developed sister Island, Unguja, Pemba is the quieter of the Zanzibar islands. Here, the people are a mix of Omani Arabs and Africans, and they tend to be less gregarious and tourist-oriented than their cousins further south. But don’t let that sway you from a visit. With steep ocean drop-offs and abundant marine life for diving, lush terrain, and huge clove plantations, one could get hooked very easily. Our favorite hotel (there are only about 3 choices) is Fundu Lagoon, which offers a variety of room choices just steps off the sand. The tented accommodations all face the water and the public areas are open-sided allowing for the cooling breezes to flow and the sounds of the sea to drift in. The best part? Nobody is around!”