Mafia Island Marine Park
The Mafia Island Marine Park (821km²) is located in the south-eastern part of the island. It boasts some of the most healthy and well-protected marine ecosystems in the world including estuaries, mangroves, coral reefs and sandy beaches.
The coral reefs provide a spectacular habitat for over 400 species of fish and 48 genera of hard coral – a scuba divers paradise! What’s more, large predatory fish and turtles are extremely common and surprisingly unaffected by approaching divers.
In addition, sharks, guitarfish, turtles and basket sponges exist in the waters and there are many large pelagics, including sailfish, giant tuna and dolphins. Last but not least,
Mafia Island Marine Park also acts as a critical habitat for the highly threatened dugong (Dugong dugon), a species of manatee. Endangered sea turtles of which two species (green turtle and hawksbill turtle) nest in the marine park as well as.
The Marine Park is also home to giant but gentle whale sharks. Visitors are most likely to see these stunning creatures in the period between October and March. Because of their peaceful nature, it is possible to swim with whale sharks, one of the most exciting encounters one can experience at the Mafia Island Marine Park.