Rift Safari
Travelling along the Rift Valley: Butiama Beach

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  • Ras Mbisi 1/33 Arrival
  • Ras Mbisi 2/33 Souvenir Shop
  • Ras Mbisi 3/33 Toward the beach ...
  • Ras Mbisi 4/33
  • Ras Mbisi 5/33
  • Ras Mbisi 6/33 Beach
  • Ras Mbisi 7/33 Beach
  • Ras Mbisi 8/33 Beach
  • Ras Mbisi 9/33 Beach
  • Ras Mbisi 10/33 Towards bungalows
  • Ras Mbisi 11/33 Bungalow
  • Ras Mbisi 12/33 Bedroom
  • Ras Mbisi 13/33 Bedroom
  • Ras Mbisi 14/33 Bathroom
  • Ras Mbisi 15/33 Bungalow
  • Ras Mbisi 16/33 Bungalow
  • Ras Mbisi 17/33 Bedroom
  • Ras Mbisi 18/33 Verandah
  • Ras Mbisi 19/33 Verandah
  • Ras Mbisi 20/33 Walkways
  • Ras Mbisi 21/33 Bungalow
  • Ras Mbisi 22/33 Bungalow
  • Ras Mbisi 23/33 Family Bungalow
  • Ras Mbisi 24/33 Sunset
  • Ras Mbisi 25/33 Lounge
  • Ras Mbisi 26/33 Lounge
  • Ras Mbisi 27/33 Swimming-pool
  • Ras Mbisi 28/33 Little SPA
  • Ras Mbisi 29/33 Diving center
  • Ras Mbisi 30/33 Turtles hatching on the beach of the lodge
  • Ras Mbisi 31/33 Boat excursion to a sandbank
  • Ras Mbisi 32/33 Breakfast
  • Ras Mbisi 33/33 In the kitchen ...

Butiama Beach is a little lodge set on the south-west coast of Mafia Island.

It is a very pleasant facility suitable for all travellers looking for a relaxing beach holiday and a good level of comfort.

The lodge has 13 bungalows including two triples and two family [family bungalows consist of two interconnecting rooms both with en-suite bathroom]. All rooms feature ceiling fans and no air conditioning. During daytime electricity is supplied by thegenerator, at night by batteries.

It is complemented by the restaurant, the lounge and bar, the swimming-pool and the little SPA.

Activities include kayaking, snorkeling with whale-sharks, snorkeling in Bwejuu island located just in front of the lodge, snorkeling to Mange atoll reachable by boat in about 1 hour and a half.

Although Mafia is more stingy than Zanzibar as far as beautiful beaches are concerned, that one of Butiama is one of the most beautiful of the island and certainly attractive even by zanzibar's standards. Given the presence of coral outcrops we would say it is safer to swim with sea-shoes however the beach is broad, it stretches for kilometers on both directions, the sand is white and powdery and it is only relatively tidal [at low tide one can swim approx. 150 m. off the shore while at spring tides the distance increase to about 250 m.]. The location on the western side of the island, shielded by the southern monsoon wind, makes a beach stay at Butiama Beach particularly interesting also in June, July and August [refer to geography Mafia for further info on weather and winds] while the proximity to the port of Kilindoni port[approx. 10 km] puts it in prime location for whalesharks snorkeling in the Mafia channel where these huge creatures live year-round feeding on plankton carried by the delta of the Rufiji River.

Butiama Beach has its own diving centre, the Big Blu located in Chole Bay within the Marine reserve about 40 minutes far from the lodge, which makes it suitable for travellers wishing to enjoy some diving during their beach stay however if diving is the main reason for visiting Mafia then we would recommend to stay within the Marine park [see for instance Shamba Kilole].
Remember that from June to August the southern monsoon wind will not allow you to sail outside the bay. Should you wish to dive during these month we would rather suggest to do it in Pemba island along its shielded western coast or alternatively in Zanzibar [for further info refer to diving Pemba and diving Zanzibar].

Butiama does not accept travelers cheque or credit cards. There is no public internet service.

INDICATIVE RATES 2015 per night per person
Year round $ 150
Peak season supplement [August and from 20/12 to 10/01] $ 20
Children 0 - 3 sharing with 1 or 2 adults free
Children 4 - 12 sharing with 1 or 2 adults 50% of the adult rate
Diving packages available on request

Rates include: half-board exclusive of drinks except bottled water, tea and coffee. Use of kayaks. Ground transfers between the airport and the lodge.

Location: 8
Beach: 8
Staff: 9
Activities: 9
Architecture: 8
Food: 9
Cleanliness: 9
Value: 8