| Pemba can be reached by air either from
Unguja (Zanzibar Island) or from the mainland cities of
Dar es Salaam or Tanga. Local air charter companies run
daily flights most days of the week. The airport is named
after Abedi Amani Karume, the first African President
of the Peoples’ Republic of Zanzibar, who went on
to become the Vice President of Tanzania after Tanganyika
and Zanzibar were united in 1964. The airlines that fly
to Pemba include Zanair, Tropical Air and Coastal Aviation,
apart from some chartered flights.
The journey, by ship between Zanzibar and Pemba can
take between 3 and 6 hours depending on the company
used. The only mainland city to travel to Pemba by sea
is Dar es Salaam with a service running 3 times a week
via Zanzibar. Nearly all passenger ships coming into
Pemba arrive at the town of Mkoani, on the southwestern
end of Pemba Island. Very few ships or dhows actually
make use Chake Chake as point of destination or departure
as the old harbour is silted up and only canoes can
actually gain entrance!
The island offers an incredible mix of thrilling drift
dives, marine walls and large reserves of pelagic life.
Pristine reefs and dramatic vertical coral cliffs of
more than 800 metres are the defining feature of many
dive sites along the west coast. Coral gardens, sponges
and sea fans cover these marine cliffs, which often
stretch as far as the eye can see and host a fascinating
array of colourful reef fish.