Thursday, October 28, 2010

Snorkling off Zanzibar

Got up around 7:00 a.m., had breakfast and headed to the local dive shop to get fitted for snorkeling gear before our 9:00 a.m. departure.
The Island
We headed north, up the west coast of Zanzibar and rounded the most northerly tip of the island and headed down the east coast to an island that lays about three or four km. off the northeast coast of Zanzibar.  The trip took, maybe two hours.

As we rounded the most northerly tip of Zanzibar, one could see the Indian Ocean breaking over the coral reefs in the distance.  The reefs seem to be everywhere and I wondered to myself how we were ever going to get through them.  However, our crew has done this trip many times before and are well familiar with the way through the reefs.  We arrived at the island at about 11:30 a.m.

The island is private property so we were told not to go ashore, but could snorkel anywhere we wanted as long as we didn’t walk up on the shore.  The snorkeling was absolutely awesome with clear, clear water and beautiful white coral sand and a huge variety of sea life and coral to view.  I wasn’t sure if they had moray eels here or not, but being familiar with what they looked like and where they hung out (from my Caribbean days – 1966), it didn’t take me long to locate a couple.  I pointed them out to a few others on the trip and told them not to get too close as they can be rather aggressive and dangerous.  We snorkeled for about two hours and then headed to the main island (Zanzibar) for lunch and a cool beer before heading back to the resort.  All in all, the trip was just great and I was most impressed with the very clear water, much like the Caribbean.
Ready for Lunch

Despite my efforts to protect myself, I got badly burned on my legs and the tops of my feet.

We got back to the resort around 4:00 p.m.  I relaxed for a couple of hours and then headed off to our pre-arranged beach supper (birthday party for Janet and Niraj, one of our travelling members) at the adjoining resort beachfront.  It was an all you could eat smorg-style supper with flame dancing and snake show entertainment.  We had a fun evening.
Birthday Boy Niraj
 Tomorrow we head back to Stone Town where we will spend our final night on Zanzibar.

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