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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