Chumbe Island, Zanzibar
Today we arrived in Paradise. We took a little boat to a very small island off the coast of Zanzibar called Chumbe Island. It is a conservation park/Eco lodge kind of deal here. They are trying to protect the coral reef around the Island and fund this project by having people stay on the island. There are only 7 bungalows here. They are 2 story wood huts (think Robinson crusoe) just off the beach. Everything is supposed to be Eco friendly so the water for the taps are from filtered rain water, and there is no flushing toilets (you go to the bathroom in a regular toilet but instead of flushing, you throw some dirt over it). The huts are only solar powered. Oh ya I forgot to mention the best part - the sand is as white as can be and the water is turquoise. Almost as soon as we got here we headed out to go snorkling, but not before we had to sign forms discussing that we understand the risks including the fact that there are sting rays and jellyfish...and just when I thought this place was perfect. Anyways we went snorkelling hazard free and saw beautiful coral but also lots of colourful fish - I didn't even know fish could be this colour - like orange and purple, turquoise and pink. I only know some of the names - parrot fish, trumpet fish, unicorn fish and my favourite the bat fish. We also saw a huge sea turtle swimming around which was the highlight. In the afternoon, we went on a forest walk to climb the lighthouse to have a view of the whole island. The rest of the time we spent lounging in the sun reading and soaking in the crystal clear water. Minutes after we got out of the water, we saw this French couple pointing to the water where we literally were just swimming. They saw a shark. So we started looking too and low and behold we found not just one but two sharks circling the area right near the shallow sand. They weren't huge sharks but small sharks maybe a metre long - we don't think they could kill you, right? does anyone know? we'll have to do more research on this issue. Dinner was candlelit on the beach and the stars were the brightest we had ever seen so we tried to pick out constellations but we didn't quite do a good job. We are going to try to research them tomorrow during the day so we can have another crack at them tomorrow night.