Five of the best new coastal safaris, from Madagascar to Mozambique

Best for: diving and snorkeling
Rebuilt and relaunched in 2022, Marlin Beach on Benguerra Island in the Bazaruto Archipelago is the fresh and funky little sister to Azura Benguerra, the original eco-lodge on the Indian Ocean island of Mozambique. Situated on the site of a former sport fishing lodge on the southwest shore of Benguerra, it has its own five-star PADI dive centre. Between snorkeling sessions and lazy dhow boat trips, guests can relax in immaculate beach-decor villas right on the sand.

2. Sundy Praia, São Tomé and Príncipe

Best for: Jungle treks and waterfall swims
This unique retreat on the island of Príncipe is wedged between rainforest and ocean in a little-visited UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, one degree north of the equator. Relaunched in 2021, it invites you to get out of your canvas-roofed beach villa and explore. Expect boat trips, visits to artisanal cocoa plantations and expert-led jungle treks in search of endemic bird species such as giant sunbirds and Príncipe Speirops, then refresh yourself. you in crystal clear waterfalls.

Ideal for: Marine conservation projects
Kisawa’s budget beach bungalows, sprawling but cozy in their minimalist comforts, opened on Benguerra Island in spring 2021 in a WWF National Marine Park. Carefully designed to blend into the coastal forest and built by island artisans, skilled in using natural materials, each bungalow comes complete with a dedicated butler, infinity pool and kitchen. By staying here, you support Kisawa’s non-profit affiliate, the Bazaruto Center for Scientific Studies, Africa’s first permanent ocean observatory.

About Lucille Thompson

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