Zanzibar Retreat

Zanzibar Retreat is a small cozy hotel located along the long powder white beach in the village of Matemwe with only a 15 minute walk to the diving center. Matemwe, with its proximity to Mnemba atoll offers the absolute best diving around Zanzibar.

At Zanzibar Retreat, time truly stands still, this is the perfect place for a relaxing holiday. The hotel is small, personal and absolutely wonderful! 12 rooms right by the sea, plenty of cozy seating in both sun and shade. They have a lovely pool that cools down nicely when the water is low and difficult to swim, very nice staff and amazingly good food. If you like to enjoy large dinners after a long day at sea, then it is clearly worth opting for half board. You then get to enjoy a 4-course dinner every evening. The massage huts down by the beach are also well worth a visit.

The rooms are decorated in classic "Zanzibar style" with beautiful wooden furniture. All rooms have private bathroom with shower as well as both air conditioning and fan, so you can choose your preference. Wifi is available. There are three room categories at the hotel; Executive sea view rooms, regular rooms and a few smaller garden rooms.


  • 12 rooms with private bathroom
  • Private beach
  • Own restaurants
  • Own bar
  • 3 outdoor pools
  • Nearby diving center
  • Outdoor pool
  • massage
  • Free WIFI
  • Air conditioning
  • Reception open around the clock
  • Rental of bicycles, volleyball, badminton and boules

Garden rooms

There are two garden rooms. These were built in 2012 and overlook the garden from the second floor. They are the smallest and thus cheapest rooms in the hotel. The rooms do not have their own space outside, but this is compensated by remoteness and silence around the room. Each room has air conditioning, fan, wifi, a double or 2 single beds with mosquito nets and a private bathroom with shower.

Regular rooms

The hotel has 8 regular rooms, they are all on the ground floor and surrounded by a shaded terrace furnished with tables and safari chairs for comfortable relaxation. Each room has air conditioning, fan, wifi, a double or 2 single beds with mosquito nets and a private bathroom with shower.

Executive sea view rooms

The hotel has 2 executive sea view rooms with sea views. These were renovated in 2012 and are the best choice for those who want a lovely view of the sea as well as privacy and tranquility. Both rooms have balconies facing the sea that are equipped with sun loungers. Each room has a fridge, coffee machine, air conditioning, fan, wifi, a double or 2 single beds with mosquito nets and a private bathroom with shower.

Dive with One Ocean Matemwe

  • Daily boat trips to well-known Mnemba Atoll
  • Aquarium-like diving
  • Full range of PADI courses

Matemwe is a perfect starting point for you as a diver and the main reason is its proximity to Mnemba Atoll.

Mnemba Atoll is located just off the northeast coast of Zanzibar. Here, aquarium-like diving is offered on the west side of the atoll and fine wall diving on the east side. Most of the time it is current diving that applies here and diving is possible in most conditions. Even experienced divers are amazed by the rich and varied marine life here. Turtles are often seen and also schools of dolphins as well as large schools of fish. If you're lucky, you may even see a whale shark or a humpback whale swimming by. The One Ocean dive center takes you out to the sites with either a speed boat or with more traditional "dhows" depending on the dive site and weather. There are many fine diving sites with varying diving and visibility of approx. 15-35 meters.

A good thing to know when diving out of Matemwe is that the tide sets the conditions. With a difference of 4-5 meters and shallow beaches, it is not possible to get out with either diving boats or fishing boats during a large part of the day. This is something that is of course constantly changing from day to day. Only 3 out of 30 days can the dive center depart by boat from Matemwe (where One Ocean Matemwe is located) and return by boat. On the remaining days, they take divers and equipment by bus a bit to the north where it is deeper and therefore possible to get out to the boats. Sometimes you need to take a bus both on the way there and on the way home and sometimes you can take the dive boat directly from Matemwe one of the routes. This is of course a big challenge for the diving center and requires a lot of planning and flexibility. Something that One Ocean does very well. Every evening they call the resort and tell them what time it is to gather at the diving center the following morning and whether the transfer will be by boat or bus.