Hotels near Mbudya Island
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Find yourself surrounded by pristine white-sand beaches and shimmering turquoise waters on an idyllic island paradise. Just a 15-minute boat ride from the busy cityscape of Dar es Salaam will take you to Mbudya Island in Dar-es-slaan where you can unwind in thatched huts and treat yourself to fresh seafood and refreshing beverages, accompanied by the soothing sounds of the ocean. Lounge on the beach and soak up the sun, go for a swim, or enjoy a snorkeling adventure – there are many ways to have a great time at this popular day-trip destination.
Most tourists immediately flock to the well-known island of Zanzibar when they make their plans to travel to Tanzania. But there are plenty of other beach locations along the Tanzanian coastline that deserve just as much recognition (or perhaps not, since more attention would cause them to lose some of their appeal). These tropical destinations are easily reachable from Dar es Salaam, are just as picturesquely beautiful, and are free both of an excess of vacationers and hawkers trying to sell things. The first beach in this series is Mbudya Island.
Hotels near Mbudya Island
Mbudya Island Vs Bongoyo Island
When you’re in Dar es Salaam, your two best island beach choices are Mbudya or Bongoyo. The latter is much closer to Dar; you only need to take a short boat ride from the Slipway. Mbudya can take up to an hour or so from Slipway by boat, so many often decide to drive to White Sands and take a five-minute speed boat ride from there. Mbudya, however, is totally worth the extra time and driving. Compared to Bongoyo, the beach itself is larger, there are more huts and covered areas, the facilities are nicer, and the coral around the island is in much better shape, which means that you will see a lot more should you decide to snorkel around the island.
There are bathroom facilities in Mbudya and there are snacks and fresh-caught fish and lobster available too. When you arrive and pay the park entrance/hut/chair rental fees, someone will ask you what you wish to eat for lunch. You can ask for lobster, and the lobster will be caught, grilled, and immediately served to you with lime and chips. My friends and I often bring a cooler with drinks to Mbudya since the drink selection is not that good. You should go in the morning and leave after lunch, since the island will get crowded with University of Dar es Salaam students by 3 or 4pm. They come with large speakers and often compete with each other to determine who can play R Kelly or Nelly the loudest.
Snorkeling is a must in Mbudya. Dynamite and net fishing have devastated most of the reef surrounding Dar, but the authorities in Mbudya have somehow convinced the fishermen to stay away, so the reef around the island is actually quite beautiful and teeming with life. I have even found a few different types of pipefish on some of the more shallow reefs while snorkeling. If you’re in Dar and you have a free morning, you will not go wrong with choosing Mbudya over Bongoyo.
Mbudya Island Map
Mbudya Island FAQ
The trip to Mbudya starts on the beach, next to a stretch of tourist hotels on a hired boat. Once you get onto the island, you come to the realization that you have to pay for literally everything. You will pay for being on the island (it is a marine reserve) Tshs 2,000 ($0.89) for the locals and Tshs 22,500 ($10.06) for foreigners. The average cost per person to get to and from the island is Tshs 10,000 (we paid Tshs 12,500 pp). ullamcorper mattis, pulvinar dapibus leo.
The ferry to Mbudya Island departs from the Slipway pier in Dar es Salaam. The boat ride costs around 40,000 TZN ($17.40) and the journey takes around 45 minutes each way. The ferries depart twice in the morning (9:30 am and 11:30 am) and the last ferry returns to the Slipway at around 4:30 pm.
White Sands Resort & Conference Centre is one of the top choices for your stay based on our traveler data, and this 4-star resort offers 2 outdoor pools and a full-service spa. It’s located 2.6 mi (4.1 km) from Mbudya Island. Other good choices within a few miles include Ramada Resort by Wyndham Dar es Salaam and Kunduchi Beach Hotel And Resort.
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