Don't Miss Places In Mayotte
In order to observe wild sea turtles of Africa in their natural environment, there is probably no better place than Mayotte! Here you will often see the green sea turtle (100-250 kg.) encounter on extensive sea grass meadows in search of food and sometimes you can even watch the smaller and rare hawksbill turtle. Occasionally one meets in the clear water of the lagoon, representatives of three other species of: the Olive Ridley turtle, the loggerhead sea turtle and leatherback turtle.
With over 300 proverbial species, the corals contribute to the restructuring of the reefs in Mayotte. Diverse and spectacular shapes host an excellent style of vibrant colors because of the minute algae. The observation of those fascinating animals which is accessible from the island's beaches may also develop further in the lake, on the islands and also along the coral reef.
These are the not to be missed places and adventures to try in the postcard island of Mayotte…
Sea Blue Safari (Mamoudzou)
If you wish to exit the lagoon, you can trust in Sea Blue Safari. They have a big comfortable boat, good lunch at noon, and friendly skippers. You can hire Nils and his crew for this boat tour (with the possibility of privatizing the boat for a group tour) and he assures, either to find and show you where the manta rays or whales usually gather. The staff also teaches and explains the lifestyle of different marine species. Despite its rough seas, you can admire the dolphins, whales, lunch on the island of M'Tsamboro that is simply magical, and a spectacular snorkeling session in the morning in the north.
Beware of sunburn though, and bring sun block for your protection from the harmful UV rays of the sun. The tour costs 70 Euros a day per person starting from 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM. The cost covers an unforgettable ride, the breakfast on board, lunch, drinks, and snack. It is a fishing trip with a provider who knows the lagoon and marine wildlife as well of Mayotte Island. The provider knows the lagoon even with his eyes closed and adapts its delivery to the tide, climate, and points of interest of the participants.
Touring the island of Mayotte on board the Cap’tain Nemo is a superb experience. You can spend a great afternoon in the company of Cecilia and Philip. The boat is really well maintained and the equipment is complete (snorkeling gear, fins, shower, complete equipment for swimming, etc.) Children are also welcome and love the underwater viewing through the bubble. The boat is secured; the crew and the captain are all skilled and certified divers. It is a very nice ride aboard a beautiful boat that is comfortable and brand new, in the company of people who know what they are talking. The bubble is a great way to discover the lagoon for children and those who fear the water.
First impression at the dock: the boat is perfectly clean. Then up to the place that is determined for swimming, the seabed is rich in wildlife and you will be able to enjoy all the knowledge of Philip and Cecilia. They are very respectful and fully aware of the lagoon. The time of swimming is a treat for the vision of the various corals, fish and thousands of shellfish. Cecilia is very attentive, helpful, and confident in the waters (and reassuring as well), takes the time to answer all questions and draw your attention to the oyster mushroom coral. When swimming, you can swim alone or with them, which is the most interesting part because they are familiar with the marine life and are very respectful of the protection of the ocean floor. With their company and expertise you will feel really safe as you explore the magnificent island of Mayotte.
With the help of the Mayotte Decouverte you can see the magnificent lagoon of Mayotte. The company provides and accompanies tours in Mayotte’s two beautiful lagoons. You can create beautiful memories and photographs once you see hundreds of dolphins circling around the boat; watch a beautiful humpback whale with her calf, beautiful fish in the pools, and the idyllic views. The serving of the coconut punch on the island of white sand is a delightful treat. The tuna tartare dish is also excellent. The big credit goes to owners Yannick and Armini for sharing their love for the island and their passion for adventure with as much enthusiasm.
You can spend an unforgettable family day, beyond the incredible spectacle of the whales. More than the tour, they also prepare an excellent meal and feast on it along the white sand beach. You will also be impressed by the friendliness of the captain who knows how to create a relaxing atmosphere for their guests. If you want to spend a fantastic day in Mayotte, call ahead for special outings as they are quite busy, especially on weekends. The food is very good and Yannick knows better than anyone the lagoon of Mayotte (fauna / flora). You can have a great day on board his boat and see dolphins, turtles and rays without counting the scale aquariums.
The Hippocampe Plongee is a very good diving center with a serious and friendly team. The boat is spacious and comfortable, and the proposed dives are diverse starting from the port of Mamoudzou up to the Petite Terre. The boat is well maintained and has complete diving equipment, the team is very attentive and the dive is very safe.
With these certified divers, you have the opportunity to do your first dive. Everything is done to reassure new or amateur divers that the waters are safe. They are professional instructors/divers who adhere to the strict compliance required for every dive.
Reve Bleu Diving Resort
The Reve Bleu Diving Resort is located in the port city of Loint. To access it you must first go to the book club, pay and leave the club with your own way up to the port to go to the boat, and you will be given your swimming, diving, or snorkeling gears. The skippers here are trained and know well where the best diving spots are in the ocean of Mayotte.
The boat is safe and secure and adrenaline jumps up once you hear the ace engines start. The tour is well organized and the meals are superb. A great boat trip, gorgeous postcard, swimming in crystal water with the dolphins and turtles, excellent value, it is not to be missed, but be careful and bring some protection against the sun.
La Mahoraise se Devoile
If you are looking for organic products from Mayotte; if you want a souvenir of the island to perfumes, if you want tips to explore and discover the island. The La Mahoraise se Devoile is "the place to be" and their team knows the island by heart, they are always ready to assist you, and they help sell local artisan products. They organize trips with local guides to explore the mangroves of Ylang-Ylang, immersion tours to tribal cultures, hiking off the beaten track. The trips are short but all good.
Whether you're looking for plant based products that has the essential oils of ylang -ylang, tropical fruit jams or crafts, local delicacies, plus the assurance that everything you buy is 100 % locally produced and manufactured in Mayotte, a visit to the La Mahoraise se Devoile is always a smart choice because it is a good place to buy souvenirs and gifts before flying back home.
Le Boboka Restaurant
The Le Boboka Restaurant is a famous is a good place to find the traditional dishes of Mayotte Island. It is located in the center of Mamoudzou. However, the Le Boboka is not easy to find. You need to reach the street leading to the hospital, a little further on your left you must go down the stairs. Take the turn right and take the first left. The middle of the narrow street is the entrance of the restaurant. When you get down the stairs, you walk out the door, and you are in a very unique local atmosphere. The setting is nice, a small shaded courtyard with plants. The menu is varied (all home-cooked) but the prices are a bit high compared to what is served on the plate. You can consume a budget of at least 15 Euros for a full course meal.
The service is sometimes very long and not ideal if you are in a hurry. Special mention goes for their fresh fruit juices and fruit bread dumplings, they are delicious! The restaurant is neat and offers very tasty dishes including the massalés with the local cake. If in doubt of what to order, you can opt for a discovery plate with different dishes of fish, meat and vegetables. This place is really advisable if you want to get out of the hotel and enjoy a good meal without spending too much.
Mayot'Expleau Club (Bandrele)
Taz, owner of the Mayot'Expleau Club will introduce you with professionalism and kindness in one of the most beautiful diving spots of the island. He works alone with his own boat, his dog and his cat Eden.
The dives are made over the Bay and Pass Saziley, a natural reserve with beautiful surprises like; dolphins swimming alongside the boat, stripes and Pastenaque Eagle, Moray and sometimes sharks, and also its beautiful coral gardens. The two dives per day are followed by a break between 3/4 hour and hot tea served by Taz on his boat with cupcakes and the breezy atmosphere.
Ecomusee Du Sel De Bandrele
The Ecomusee Du Sel De Bandrele is not really a museum, but if you are in the town of Bandrele it is worth a visit. It is a shop, and right next to it you can see women who extract salt from the sea in their traditional way. It is quite hard to find, but it's near the basketball stadium. You can ask the locals for directions. The Eco salt museum is very interesting to see because the tour is cheap, the staff is very nice, and it is highly recommended especially for families with children.
Mont Choungui (Chirongui)
Mount Choungui is called the roof of Mayotte. It offers a great hike that is quite physical, halfway on this walk you can climb up to the top, it's beautiful and the180° view (southern part of the island) of Mayotte is amazing. This must be done in good weather and as soon as the sun rises. The trail will take about a quarter of an hour to accomplish and at your own pace. Do not forget to bring your own water, a towel and good shoes, it’s one of the best mountains to climb in Mayotte and a visit here is mandatory if you’re on the island.
You will pass through a beautiful hike with climbing games with tree roots to get a magnificent view over the island. It is one of the highlights of a visit to the quiet town of Chirongui and it is easily accessible (it is the only high point of the island in Mayotte at 600 m). Beware of mosquitoes, and avoid any trail if there is heavy rain (slippery and muddy tracks make the trail totally inaccessible). The Mount Choungui is a short but intense ride in Mayotte. It is very physical because the peak requires steep climbing. The climb is tough, but you can hold on to the tree roots and branches. Once at the top you will enjoy a splendid view, this is the best reward after all these efforts. There is no need to take a guide at the entrance of the road, it is very easy to find. Don’t go during the rainy months (November – February).
Lagon Aventure (Pamandzi)
The places visited, respect for marine mammals, lovely meals on the beach, reception, and professionalism of the people behind the operation of the Lagon Aventure are superb. The package tour includes a dive into the lagoon and swimming with the dolphins, blue whales, rays and turtles. You can observe at least four types of safari dolphins on this side of Mayotte Island.
There’s also a good trip in the mangroves, lunch at the forefront of Sazilé with turtles, a stop on the white sand island and of course; swim with the dolphins who love to follow the boats and keeps jumping everywhere. The captain, Nicolas knows the island well and how to have a great time on board his boat.
Naut'ile - Day Tours
The Naut’ile Day Tours is one of the best water safari providers in Mayotte. It surpasses other water excursion tour agencies in terms of explanation, great ambience (without excess, always friendly and relaxed) sympathy to the marine animals, and professionalism of the team of AZ. With this team, you can have the chance to see several species of dolphins, birds, turtles, and fish, always accompanied by interesting explanations.
The tour ends with a visit to the mangrove, a moment of relaxation where Nautilus always puts extra time in exploring the area and what the tide permits. Special mention goes to the cook who always picks fresh produce, fish, salad, and an excellent panna cotta.
The Lac Dziani is located on Dziani Petite Terre, and easily accessible by car. This is a crater lake whose sulphurous water is emerald green. It is not safe to swim around here for its contents would scare anyone. During the mini-hike, you will see the "big ears" of the island and especially the lagoon that surrounds the lake. The view is exceptional.
The walk is relatively simple as a whole, but may present some difficulties in some places for young children or those less seasoned. It is a nice ride, easy to reach, and with stunning views of the lake and the Indian Ocean. The trail to the beach of Moya is not very well signposted, but the beach is beautiful and must not be missed while on Mayotte Island.
Jardin Botanique de Coconi (Ouangani)
To reach this garden, you must drive up to the intersection of Coconi, you must follow a sign that indicates Mamoutzou 22 km and it is here where you can cross the island of Ouangani. On the right, you will enter the village of Coconi and find an agricultural development area in the school's spice garden. On the left you can see the Jardin Botanique de Coconi which is rather poorly marked and not signposted. It has free admission and closed on Sundays. It serves as an ideal place for knowledge and experience about growing cocoa, pepper, orchids with vanilla beans, ylang-ylang, lemon grass, and the huge bamboos.
Unfortunately, even if it is maintained impeccably; there are no explanatory panels and it does not describe what plant, flower, or trees are under their care. However, a visit here is still a must and you can still enjoy the long walks along its all green surroundings. There is also a nice farmer's market every first Saturday morning of the month at the entrance to the school premises. Continuing on the same road after the post office, there is a beautiful river where many locals come to wash their clothes.
If you love the waters, diving, snorkeling, and discovering a variety of marine wildlife in the Indian Ocean, a visit to Mayotte Island is a must for you. It has a wealth of package marine safari tours as well as challenging mountain trails to conquer and a chance to meet their locals with rich culture and a welcoming atmosphere that will stir your curiosity anywhere you go on the island of Mayotte.