pemba island dock tanzania africa

Pemba Island

Pemba is also known as Al Kuh Dra, or the green island; with the island of "Unguja" forms the Zanzibar archipelago.
The island is dominated by crops, from small-scale ones to those destined for exportation; for example, there are almost 3 million of clove plants.
In the island there are ancient ruins dating back to the 14th century, moreover the Portuguese brought to Pemba (in the 16th century) a "Spanish" tradition: the bullfight.
Today it is possible to watch the clash between men and bulls in the various villages of the island, especially between the months of August and February.

It is a center of traditional medicine and black magic, many people come from all over Africa to meet waganga wizards and get prescribed their treatments.
The Pemba Channel, which separates the island from the continent, is especially renowned for its abundance of marlin and swordfish.
The area is ideal for diving and snorkeling, its beautiful beaches are ideal for relaxation and tourism.

Peculiarities of the Island of Pemba:

  • when whales migrate from north to south for the period of mating and births, they pass near Pemba;
  • you can observe the realization of the Dhow (traditional Tanzanian boats), you can see up close the activity of the local fishermen who fish on these boats;
  • it's a great place to go kayaking, kite surfing and surfing;
  • dolphins can be observed.

What to do

Beach holidays, boat and canoe excursions, diving and snorkeling, cultural tourism, fishing, luxury trips.


The island of Pemba is about 67 km long and 22 km wide.
It is an island, located about 50 km north-east of Zanzibar, off the east coast of Africa, in the Indian Ocean. It is about 50 km from the coast, too.

When to Go

The climate is warm and the temperatures range from 22° to 36° C, the best months to visit it are from July to October.
The season of the Great Rains is from April to May, while that of the Little Rains is from October to November.

Getting there

Pemba is located 50 km north of Zanzibar and can be reached by ferry or domestic flight from both Zanzibar and Dar es Salaam.

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