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“Feeling like Robinson Crusoe in a little paradise” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Chumbe Island Coral Park

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Chumbe Island Coral Park
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3.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Chumbe Island, Tanzania   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #2 of 142 Hotels in Zanzibar
Basel
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Feeling like Robinson Crusoe in a little paradise”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 16, 2013

What an amazing place! A little paradise where you could feel a little bit like Robinson Crusoe. A worth place to visit with nice, helpful staff, excellent food, great accomodations in ecological style. Here you could relax and chill down and enjoy a peaceful environment while you could snorkel in an amazing coral reef which I have never seen before in such good and well maintained conditions! Have a try......you won't regret it!

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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408 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Tauranga, New Zealand
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 9, 2013

I only had 4 days in Zanzibar so I took a day trip out to Chumbe Island for snorkeling. It was a wet and miserable day but even still, Chumbe Island was this tropical paradise. Even in the pouring rain, it was magical. Very Robinson Crusoe.

The snorkeling was second to none and the staff were passionate and helpful and ensured we all had a really enjoyable experience. There was a member of our group who wanted to go out snorkeling a second time (rather than do the Island tour) and they obligingly took him out on his own.

Even though it was a day trip, we were given our own hut for the day - to have a hot shower and even a rest if needed.

The entire island is eco-friendly. The huts are open air - made from the trees on the island. The doors are thick coconut ropes dangling from the roof. The toilets are composting and the shower... was kinda cold. :( That was my only complaint. But maybe I didn't know how to use it properly. The rooms had lock boxes to hold your valuables - and inside the box was a charger with every adapter imaginable! I thought that was brilliant and very high tech for Gilligan's Island. :)

Our lunch was the BEST food I had in all of Africa. It was very traditional Zanzibar food, even the way it was cooked. That alone would be worth the trip.

Afterwards we were escorted on a forest walk around the island. Our guide was very knowledgeable and passionate about ecology and the environment. We saw hermit crabs of all sizes, learned about the island and how it's left untouched apart from the obvious habitation of visitors. But everything that was built on the island, has come from the island. The tour was great - even in the rain.

This is definitely a place that you must get to when you are in Zanzibar. It beat Nungwi hands down. You don't have to fight off people trying to sell you anything. This is just pure peace and tranquility. And the staff are so lovely.

If you're on the mainland and you want to go - I would recommend going straight to their office rather than booking through the hotel. I got a great price for the day (it was off season) and the office staff are wonderful and helpful. Kevin is the manager - and he's Canadian. Really down to earth guy.

This was a highlight of my entire trip. I cannot wait to go back. I think I want to run a wellness retreat there! Kevin, if you see this review please get in touch so we can make that happen. :)

Room Tip: They're all the same.
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 5, 2013

Chumbe was the first stop on our Tanzania/Zanzibar honeymoon, and it could not have set the bar any higher. We were fortunate to travel by boat to the island with the manager, Kevin, and he gave us an excellent introduction to the conservation work and ethos of the place. On arrival, we had a beautiful lodge, open to the sea, and given the small number of guests it felt like we were part of an exclusive club. The staff were wonderful, the food just as good, and the whole enterprise felt 'honest', especially with the knowledge that we tourists were supporting the excellent conservation efforts and science developments going on. Local musicians played during dinner one evening which was a treat, and my wife and I were given a private dinner on the beach, the efforts of one particular staff member. Excellent snorkelling, nature walks - the whole thing was just perfect.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Munich, Germany
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2013

My husband and I spent two days (1night) on Chumbe Island at the end of our Tanzania trip (safari+zanzibar) and I wish we had stayed longer, we loved this place from the first moment.

The place is amazing, the snorkelling is great, the staff is really kind and the food is among the best we had in Tanzania. Moreover you contribute to the conservation of the coral park! They do a great job protecting the island and educating and teaching marine ecology to the local people.
Next time we'll stay longer.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 28, 2013

My boyfriend and I stayed at Chumbe for some relaxation after climbing Kilimanjaro and doing a safari. We were unfortunately only able to stay 2 nights, but this became one of our favorite places we've ever stayed. The staff, the food and the bungalows were all fantastic. Please note this does not mean luxury, but it is still a small piece of heaven nonetheless. The staff are not only knowledgable, but enthusiastic and genuine. The food was delicious, and we bought a cookbook from them. We stayed in bungalow 7 and had zero complaints. We went snorkeling and sailing and had a great time with both. Some things to know: You will have to walk out in low tide to the boat that transfers you to the island. They provide sandals so you will not get yours wet, and the waves went to maybe our knees at most. There is a general tipping box, so you don't have to carry around cash or worry about tipping (so nice!). I recommend bungalow 7 as it is the furthest one away, so it has a little more privacy due to not having people walk by. They limit the number of people on the island so we felt quite secluded the whole time. There is a compost toilet, but you do have hot water to shower. Breakfast and lunch are in the main lodge building overlooking the water. For dinner, the tables are on the sand and the grill brought out in front of you. If you have a headlamp, bring it for the walk short walk home from dinner. If not, they will provide a flashlight. It is pricey, but definitely worth going to if only for a night or two. Also, knowing a good percentage of the money goes to preservation and education makes it easier to swallow. We had a wonderful time and were sad to leave!

Room Tip: Bungalows 6 and 7 are further away from the others.
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cape Town
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 22, 2013

We stayed at Chumbe Island for 3 nights, and we wished we had stayed longer. This place is truly fantastic in every aspect...

The staff are kind, courteous and helpful. They truly made our Chumbe experience so special. Every member of the staff is so friendly and helpful.

The food is fantastic. John King really is a skilled chef and makes wonderful dishes. I also mention that I am unable to eat seafood, and the chef went out of his way to accommodate my dietary needs. Thank you! At every meal there is a huge selection of delicious dishes. It was also wonderful that for dinner the chairs and tables are placed outdoors in the sand... dinner under the palm trees and moon... amazing!

The bungalows were fantastic, I especially liked the large A framed bedroom window. I slept with it open every night and awoke each morning to a beautiful view and sunrise. The bed was also large and comfortable.

The snorkelling was wonderful, the reef was beautiful and we saw lots of colourful fish. The forrest walk was very interesting and the view from the lighthouse is spectacular! The walks to see the coconut crabs was also fantastic - the crabs are huge!

There are double beds on the beach with thatch coverings for shade, and I can't tell you how wonderful it is to lie on a bed reading your book and sipping a cooldrink on the beach!

The whole island is truly beautiful and scenic, and there are so many lovely look out points to watch the beautiful sunsets from. This place is a romantics dream!

The island also has a wonderful relaxed feel. Your truly feel like you are getting away from everything and having a break.

Its also fantastic that there are only 7 bungalows on the island, and while we were there only 4 or 5 of them were actually occupied. So there are so few of you on the island that you really feel like you have the place to yourselves.

And just when we thought things couldn't get any better on our last night musicians from stone town came and played and sung for us while we had our dinner and then after dinner we jumped up and danced to the music. It was such a lovely evening.

Last but not least I mention the wonderful things they are doing to conserve the coral reef. 40% of the acommodation cost goes towards funding educational visits to ensure that future generations learn the importance of protecting the coral reef. The island and the accommodation is 100% eco friendly, and I applaud them for this.

I will treasure my time at Chumbe always.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
london
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 21, 2013

amazing night on chumbe island; the staff were wonderful, and made sure our stay was really special, the accommodation and food were brilliant, and the island itself is beautiful.
was above our usual accommodation budget, but entirely worth it, particularly given how much is put back into local education, and island conservation- not to be missed

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Chumbe Island Coral Park

Address: Chumbe Island, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Zanzibar
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Zanzibar
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Chumbe Island Coral Park 3*
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Award-winning exclusive private island, fully managed nature reserve and marine park. Guided tours included through spectacular coral reef, forest and mangrove nature trails, historic lighthouse and visitors' centre. State-of-the-art zero-footprint eco-architecture (photovoltaic energy, rainwater harvesting, solar water heating, composting toilets). Free environmental education programs for local schools. Winner of British Airways Tourism for Tomorrow award 1999, UNEP Global500 award 2000, National Geographic Geotourism Challenge award 2008, finalist Aga Khan award for architecture. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Chumbe Island Coral Park Hotel Zanzibar
Chumbe Island Coral Park Zanzibar

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