Game Fishing

The Ultimate Deep Sea Fishing Experience Waters off the coast of Kilwa make for one of Africa’s most… [more]

Game Fishing Game Fishing

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Kilwa Ruins Lodge is situated on the southern coast of Tanzania in Kilwa Masoko, a harbour town steeped… [more]

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Getting Here

By Air Multiple flights arrive daily to Kilwa Masoko from various destinations within Tanzania and Zanzibar. By… [more]

Getting Here Getting Here

Beach Bandas

Kilwa Ruins Lodge offers two (2) beach front bandas. Each banda includes: Accommodation for five… [more]

Beach Bandas Beach Bandas

Activities

Kilwa Masoko is surrounded by water and steeped in centuries of history.  There are many activities… [more]

Activities Activities

Kilwa Heritage

Kilwa Kisiwani

Kilwa Kisiwani is reached by dhow or boat and has an amazingly well preserved collection of ruins. The most striking sight is the old Omani Fort which is built on the foundations of an old Portuguese fort. The other big attraction is the “Big Mosque” that dates to the 12th Century and was once the largest mosque in East Africa. The Sultan’s palace is located directly south of the mosque. Experienced local guides give tours of the ruins, and dhows are arranged from the small jetty on the mainland. The ruins are extensive and one can easily spend a whole day exploring them.

Kilwa Kivinje

Kilwa Kivinje was an ancient Arabian slave and ivory trading town, where caravans departed for expeditions to the interior. When the Germans assumed control of Kilwa Kivinje at the end of the 19th Century, the colonial government built a fort and expanded the town. Today you can still find a Market Hall, the Fort, and two pillars commemorating the dead of the Maji Maji War.

Songa Mnara

There is an impressive collection of ruins on the nearby islands of Songo Mnara, Sanje Majoma and Sanje ya Kate. The earliest of these sites is Sanje ya Kate, to the south of Kilwa Masoko, where there are ruins covering an area of 400 acres- including houses and a mosque.

The mosque is of an early type with a mihrab niche contained in the thickness of the wall rather than projecting out of the north wall as is usual in later East African mosques. Excavations have shown that the settlement was abandoned before 1200AD and most of the ruins date to the 10th century or earlier.

To the east of Sanje ya Kate is the larger island of Songo Mnara which contains extensive ruins on its northern tip. The remains date to the 14th and 15th centuries, and consist of thirty-three houses and a palace complex, as well as five mosques contained within a defensive enclosure wall. The remains at Songo Mnara are informative as they are one of the few places in East Africa where pre-eighteenth-century houses survive in any numbers. The houses have a standardized design with a monumental entrance approached by a flight of steps leading via an anteroom into a sunken courtyard, to the south of which are the main living quarters of the house.