Located about 80km from Zanzibar Island, about the same distance directly east of Tanga on the Tanzanian mainland. With its hilly landscape, its highest point is less than 100 meters above sea level, by size Pemba is smaller than Unguja.
Arab sailors once named Pemba as ‘El Huthera’, meaning the Green, due to her dense and lush vegetation. There are more natural forests and plantations than on Zanzibar Island, and Pemba grows more cloves than her Zanzibar. Today, earnings from the clove crop are supported by other agricultural products, cattle raising, and by fishing, which is an important source of livelihood. Pemba is also popular for its voodoo and traditional healers. People come from throughout East Africa seeking cures or to learn the skills of the art from practitioners on Pemba.
The interesting point about Pemba is its wealth of natural resources ranging from beaches to mangrove ecosystems to natural forests. The coral reefs surrounding the island protect a massive amount of marine species and offer some of the best diving spots in the world. While much of the coast is lined with mangroves, there are a few amazing stretches of shoreline and enough attractive offshore islands with pure, clean beaches and interesting bird-life to keep someone busy for quite a while.