Pemba Island, Zanzibar, Tanzania
Fundu LagoonAccessible only by boat, and with a daily rhythm determined by the tides, this beach resort co-founded by Scottish fashion and costume designer Ellis Flyte sits on the southwest part of Pemba Island, a 30-minute flight from Unguja, the main, more touristy island of the Zanzibar archipelago. The 18 thatched-roofed, canvas-walled rooms and suites are set directly on the white-sand beach, shaded by the surrounding mangrove forest, or perched on the hillside above, providing panoramic Indian Ocean views. A wooden jetty extends over a long, shallow drop-off, enabling guests to swim in front of the hotel at low tide. But the best beaches and snorkeling are 15 minutes away by speedboat off Misali Island, a conservation zone with more than 300 fish species, giant sponges, sea fans, and fields of old-growth cabbage corals. More sites reachable by boat offer a variety of reefs and drop-offs for experienced divers. Other activities include sunset dhow cruises, kayak trips through the mangroves to the ruins of an Omani fort, windsurfing, water skiing, wake- and knee-boarding, dolphin watching, and deep sea fishing. The resort’s informal vibe encourages guests to go barefoot even at the dinner table, but bring wading shoes to protect your feet against sharp coral and sea urchins.