eco2 diving, when the dream finally became reality
Curious to know more?
Scroll down and learn what makes the Mikindani bay such a special place.
Curious to know more?
Scroll down and learn what makes the Mikindani bay such a special place.
We are Martha and Laurent, from the UK and France. Ocean fanatics, environmental warriors, we are the owners and managers of this magical place called eco2 diving in Mikindani, South Tanzania.
Having had a dream of owning our own dive center for what seemed like forever, we stumbled across Eco2 Diving. Even though we had not even heard of the area before nor finding much information on the Internet about it, we still decided to take the chance (or risk some would call it) and head to see it for ourselves.
… we first stepped off the plane in Mtwara a few years ago, Mikindani very quickly became the place we wanted to call home: not only because of the charm of this typical swahili village, nor only because of the warm and welcoming people. Mikindani is the perfect definition of an “off the beaten track” destination: unspoilt. The area is covered with abundant nature; the streets crowded with cows, goats, and chickens running freely; the hearts of locals filled with smiles and happiness… Some would call it heaven.
… the diving was an important part for us too. Together, we have been diving in many different places all over the world and yet, the diving we discovered here was utterly exceptional.
Exceptional as it is the perfect mix of everything in one spot: from a muck dive where we are still mesmerised by the amount of macro life, to the highly diverse pelagics we encounter, not mentioning the Humpback whales and Sunfish visiting us yearly.
Exceptional as the corals and underwater structures of the Mikindani bay are unique. Our pristine reefs have unique heritage and contain many old lineages of corals found nowhere else on Earth.
By the time we came back to the surface, there was no need to vocalise: the decision had been taken already.
…where the southern equatorial current meets the African coast. Due to these currents and their nutrient rich waters, our dive sites are home to pristine reefs and rare species. With over 258 corals and 400 species of fish so far, this area is now recognised as the center of biological diversity for the whole East African coast.
Therefore, Eco2 Diving provides a unique diving experience like nowhere on this blue planet.
On one hand, Mikindani bay and the Mnazi-bay marine park welcome pelagics such as barracuda schools, trevallies, tunas, rays and sharks. On the other hand, our muck divers are in for a complete treat and easily spot macro treasures such as mantis shrimp, ribbon eels, seahorses, frogfish, pipefish and a large variety of nudibranchs and flatworms.
In order to see more pictures of our underwater treasures, check out our gallery.
Eco2 Diving is a fully equipped SSI Dive center and PADI Dive centre with all our equipment from Scubapro or Aqualung. We operate on a 9m, fibreglass dive boat including a shaded area with twin 75hp Yamaha engines. We always carry emergency equipment such as first-aid, emergency O2, life jackets, etc. Because we are ‘off the beaten track’, we recommend all our divers to register a dive insurance including emergency evacuation. If you are not sure which to choose, we can help with dedicated DAN insurances. Just give us a shout for help.
… it should be the norm. What is going to create unforgettable memories is down to one thing: the service. And we promise that on this point, you will be blown away.
We all take great pride and joy in providing very personalised 5 star service to each and every one of our customers.
Apart from the owners, you will get to know our lovely staff. Our dynamic duo, Juma and Shaibu, are our boat captains and know the local waters like the back of their hands ensuring perfectly safe excursions. Buruhani and Ali, two youngsters born and raised in Mikindani Mtwara, are currently learning all about the ocean: from boat captains to divers, they also assist us in our marine conservation project.
… No big crowds underwater or wonders about what the guide is pointing out. We reduced our ratios to 1 guide for 4 divers on all our fun dives. Consequently, you are able to explore the unknown, spotting more fish than divers and having the greatest diving adventure.
We know you learn better in smaller groups. So, we reduced our course ratios too. Thus, we are entirely dedicated to you and happy to focus on your specific needs.
Our world-class muck dive is really worth the detour and we felt that 60 minutes was not enough to fully appreciate it. So… we pushed it to 90 minutes (air consumption dependant). Therefore, you have plenty of time to perfect that shot of the 6th seahorse you have seen or to discover more amazing critters in this marine paradise.
Regarding snorkelers, they are too often dropped in the ocean with no one introducing them to the local area. On our snorkeling tour, we always have a trained professional by your side to unveil the local beauties down to every last detail and maximise the fun.
…Also as an SSI & PADI Dive Resort, we arrange your complete dive vacation at once. So, just decide how long you stay and how many dives to do, and we will create the perfect package for you.
Our Ten Degrees South lodge pleases backpackers, couples and families looking for comfortable and clean accommodation fitting all budgets. In addition, Ten Degrees South has a beautiful shaded bar and restaurant supplying great local recipes made out of fresh and delicious products. Finally, the tree platform is the perfect spot to enjoy a fresh beverage admiring the stunning view of Mikindani bay.
In order to have more details, check out the Dive Resort section.
As well as accommodation services, we arrange plenty of other activities for you to explore the ocean and discover the area in many ways.
To start with, enjoy the beautiful Mikindani Bay via kayak during the day or by Dhow at sunset: definitely something not to be missed. Or venture off a bit further with Msimbati beach in the Marine park and its 15 kilometers of pristine white sand and palm trees. After all, we may even take you to see hippos and crocodiles in the Ruvuma river.
In order to have more details on our excursions, check our Excursions page.
The ocean definitely holds a spell over us and protecting it is something we are very passionate about.
We work hard to be the most sustainable and environmentally friendly regarding every aspect of diving.
If you think about bringing diving gloves here, well… save weight and bring us french cheese instead! Or chocolate depending on who you want to please 😉
In Mikindani, we have a strict “no touch” policy: no touching nor chasing of underwater animals, gloves are prohibited, and any recovery of marine life dead or alive is forbidden. We also offer the Peak Performance Buoyancy specialty at reduced price in case you are in need of a little bit more practice.
As the saying goes, we only leave bubbles.
On the boat, small details make big differences. We never use the anchor to avoid damaging the reefs, we snack on fresh fruits, nuts, and freshly made cakes without any plastic wrapping needed and we do not litter and always collect our food waste back to land.
Nothing is worse than seeing a piece of rubbish and leaving it there because of a too small BCD pocket. Therefore, we always take a mesh bag down with us, just in case. In addition, we perform monthly underwater clean ups on our “adopt a dive site”.
…This is why all Eco2 Diving services are designed to be low impact and environmentally friendly.
As a result, we promote underwater awareness and conservation of marine life one dive at a time. For instance, by applying a strict
no touch/no glove policy or by banning all single use plastic, we work hard to protect what we love.
Moreover, we are involved in different programs that fit our beliefs. Eco2 Diving is a PADI 100% Aware dive center, and we support marine conservation projects such as Green fins. As well, we help the local community by sponsoring schools and developing the local economy.
Finally, we started our own conservation program: Corals of Mikindani aims at maintaining and restoring our local reefs;
while Sea Turtles of Mikindani aims at protecting our local sea turtles and developing eco-tourism as an alternative.
Check our program and support us: donate, adopt, or volunteer. Any help is welcome!
In order to learn more about our mindset, check our reviews below
and our about us section.
So as the proverb says, we never make it far by ourselves so… we may have a few things to ask you.
Please help us by only using ‘reef safe’ suncream. Here in Mikindani or actually anywhere else in the world, suncream has a very damaging effect on corals. This little and simple change makes a huge difference to the health of our reefs… and to happiness of divers 🙂
Finding bins in here can be quiet challenging and too many of us just end up dropping waste in the wild. So, please dispose of all your rubbish (and cigarette butts) in appropriate containers or keep it until you can. You have no idea how rewarding it is to find that golden garbage collector after a whole day walking.
Make sure you bring a reusable water bottle or get one on the premises. We have a drinkable water fountain at the dive shop: feel free to fill up any time.
Finally, since June, the 1st of 2019, Tanzania is prohibiting single use plastic. Support this great initiative by considering it when packing (fines can be pretty high) and refusing any single use plastic (straws not welcome…).
Now that you know it all, we hope you are more excited than ever to join us on our next dive trip and discover this unspoilt part of Tanzania.
We look forward to diving with you soon. Happy bubbles!