Whale Shark Conservation in Tanzania

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Program Description

Work on this highly popular program and help to preserve whale sharks. This one of a kind project provides the chance to help in integral marine conservation of these gentle giants, contribute to their overall study and also help out with local community initiatives.

Mafia is an adventurous traveler’s dream and is often called the Zanzibar of ‘thirty years ago’. There are no tourists, beautiful clear water and spectacular white sandy beaches. This is a treasure trove of a destination with whale sharks, marine turtles, and humpback whales. Get off the grid in this fantastic place.

Known for a rich culture, great diving, and beautiful coral reefs, Mafia is the perfect destination for a marine conservation project.


Use this opportunity to learn and interact with amazing whale sharks while developing experience and skills in eco and responsible tourism as well as marine conservation. You will have the opportunity to:

Help plan and execute daily whale shark tourism excursions: This will be one of the principal activities which you will be involved with whilst here, and whilst at sea, volunteers will be deployed on tourist boats on a rotational basis or conduct marine research.

Assist with the global spot ID Project: Collect information on whale sharks, teach tourists, help crew boats. Improve awareness about whale shark conservation and improve your organization skills as you plan sea excursions.

Learning to ID and recognize individual whale sharks: Input information to identify individual whale sharks as you collect and collate the data.

Community participation: During your stay you will participate in one or more local development projects such as: teaching English, swimming lessons and whale shark conservation awareness.

Mandatory skills and theory classes: Volunteers will be able to take part in the following (at no extra cost): introduction to Swahili language and culture, theory and practice of skin diving, introduction to photography and videography, tropical Indo-Pacific fish identification, whale shark biology as well as other marine conservation issues in Mafia.

Additional skills: You do not need to have any diving qualifications to join the project, but you can include a PADI Scuba Course for around U$600 including manuals and certification


No special skills or qualifications are required - just a minimum age of 18 and a willingness to get involved with all activities.

Volunteer Types

What`s Included

•Orientation and ongoing training in marine conservation
•Food and drinks as specified
•Laundry service
•Skills and theory classes
•Community participation
•Full support from the project team

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Program Locations

Mafia, Tanzania

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Program Details

The Great Projects
  • Tanzania: Mafia
Throughout the year
Program Duration:
1-2 weeks, 1-3 months
American, Asian, Australian, Canadian, European, Kiwi, South African, Worldwide
From £1355.00

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