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“Fabulous snorkelling in a beautiful location!”

Pilli Pipa Dhow Safari
Ranked #2 of 38 things to do in Diani Beach
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Pilli Pipa is an accredited PADI Dive Resort under the name of Firefly Ocean Camp, registration number s22994. We have up to date diving equipment which is replaced regularly. We have excellent dive gear imported and replaced regularly. Contrary to what one reviewer, Roadsmoretravelled, November/December 2013, has falsely put on a review. He did not come on our dhow but was probably told by the Shimoni hotel he stayed at that he was going with Pilli Pipa. We do not dive in 1 or 2 metres of water and we do not have shocking equipment. If you want a wonderful diving experience with professionals, book with Harm Lutjeboer, Pilli Pipa Dhow Safari, PADI and Naui registered, dive base, Firefly Ocean Camp in Shimoni. Not based at Shimoni Reef Lodge. We also take snorkellers to the Kisite Mpunguti Marine Park for an exciting adventure followed by lunch at Pilli Pipa on Wasini Island.
Kent, UK
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Fabulous snorkelling in a beautiful location!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 4, 2010

We did a day trip with Pilli Pipa from our hotel on Diani Beach to Wasini Island and the Marine Park. We were picked up on time (0715) and driven down to Shimoni jetty where we boarded our motorised dhow. There was plenty of shade on board but do take lots of sun cream and tee-shirts to wear in the water as you will definitely burn whilst snorkelling. We were immediately offered drinks (sodas, tea, coffee) and biscuits on board and given all necessary safety information. The crew are extremely careful to ensure everyone is comfortable with their equipment which was all in excellent condition. There is a loo on board where you can change if you need to but we suggest you have your swimsuit already on underneath, especially if you are claustrophobic and seasick like me! Dolphins swam alongside on our way to the marine park.

Our two teenage sons did diving whilst we snorkelled. The fish are amazing and the water was crystal-clear. My husband had problems with his mask at first which were quickly sorted out by one of the guides, who accompanied us with lifebuoys for the less-able swimmers to hold onto. You could also use a lifejacket if you wanted to. Our dive-qualified son went with a guide in a group of 3 and did 2 dives, each about 50 mins long. Our other son had never dived before and did a ‘fun-dive’ down to 12m accompanied by our guide Yatin. He was totally safe and enjoyed it immensely. We snorkelled twice:- about an hour initially, then about 45 mins. Then snacks and drinks on board and a rather rough ride back to Wasini – make sure you take seasick pills with you! The villa on Wasini is gorgeous and the food spectacular – advise them when you book if you need something other than seafood and they will be most accommodating. Most of the food was cooked with local spices and flavourings and all elegantly introduced and described by the serving ladies. Beautiful gardens to sit in, comfortable sofas with books on the marine life you have just seen and a small selection of souvenirs and tee-shirts are all available.

On the way back through Shimoni you can visit the slave caves – quite interesting and the entrance fee goes back to the local community. We were back at our hotel by about 5pm. This was a fantastic day with a really professional group using good equipment and knowledgeable, courteous staff. Their office is in the Collier Centre near the Ukunda junction in Diani. Thank you Valerie for all your help!

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3 Thank marchissy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Lawrenceville, New Jersey
Level Contributor
40 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“A Wonderful Day in Wasini”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 19, 2010

What a wonderful day we had. Pilli Pipa picked us up (and dropped us off) at our accommodation in Ukunda. When we got to the dhow boat in Shimoni there provided snacks on board. We went dolphin spotting (saw humpbacked dolphins, and later were raced to the dive site by a whole pod of bottlenosed dolphins- they completely surrounded the boat! They told us before the trip that you can see dolphins 6 days out of 7, and we definitely got our money's worth. My friend and I paid a little extra for the diving option (all the others went snorkeling)- it was my friend's first time SCUBA diving EVER, and the scuba master on board instructed her very well before the dive so that she felt very comfortable with what she was doing. The dive was about 10 m and 54 minutes long- a very long dive, so we feel like we got our money's worth for that too. The bio diversity was decent. The lunch on Wasini island was fantastic! Fresh caught seafood, Swahili style. Then back to Shimoni, where the (comfortable) van met us to take us back to Ukunda.

TIP: Pilli Pipa does not provide extra dramamine/sea sick pills on board for those of us with weak sea stomachs- my friend forgot her pills and was too sick to really enjoy the dolphins as a result. So, travelers, bring your own dramamine!!!

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1 Thank elizacantlay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lincoln, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
123 reviews
31 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 110 helpful votes
“An Amazing day”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 12, 2010

This was a brilliant day. The freinds I was on holiday with with had been with them before. What a day. The crew were amazing, very helpful and kept an eye on everyone. They ensured everyone was OK, we had drinks when we got on board ( no alcohol!) We set sail and were given a safety brief. Those who wished to go snorkling were kitted out. We got to the area where we were to go snorkling. The weather was not so good in that it was rather windy, but we were taken to another part of the marine park. We went out with one of the crew, about 4 to one crew, who was a guide for us. We spent a great hour out. Great care was taken by the crew to ensure that everyone was OK. When we got back on the boat we had a snack, and then we were taken Wasini Island where were were treated to a swahili meal, it was fantastic, all very peaceful and relaxing. The weather was not as calm as it could be, but the crew looked after us very well, a good personal service. We sailed back to main land after a great day. It was a brilliant day, and I would recomend this to anyone. They take care and there is a personal service. The food was wonderful, excellent day.

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1 Thank HollyJane
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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