Zanzibar is a great place for families, couples, honeymooners and just about everyone looking to relax in exotic beaches under the African sun and experience a place that is so rich in culture, history, and beautiful scenery. Zanzibar is a place that evokes so many romantic images and visitors never regret when they land and experience the island.
In Zanzibar you will enjoy the following activities and places:
Stone Town offers a chance to experience the events that shaped the history of Zanzibar through time. Stone Town is made up of a myriad of streets that wind through craft shops, historical buildings, and coffee shops; you will experience the house of wonders, slave Chambers, the old fort and Forodhani Gardens.
This historical building was once the palace of Zanzibar’s Sultan; today it is home to Zanzibar’s national museum of culture. While the building itself is a fascinating exhibit, you should also take some time to see the other items displayed in the museum.
The slave chambers will take you back to the 16th century when Zanzibar was at the center of the Indian Ocean slave trade. The chambers are haunting place but they serve as a necessary reminder of one of humanity’s darkest chapters – the slave trade. The chambers also serve as a reminder of Stone Town’s tragic history. Near the slave chambers stand the Old Fort which was built in the 17th century by the Omani Arabs to repel attacks from the Portuguese; it was later used as a prison and then as barracks.
The Forodhani Gardens are located between the house of wonders and the sea; the gardens are host to a radiant night market where a large selection of perfectly cooked seafood is served. The gardens and the seafood are a good excuse to take an evening away from your hotel and experience Zanzibar’s nightlife.
Nungwi and Kendwa are famous for their white sand beaches and stunning sunsets. The beaches are located to the north of the island, where there isn’t much tidal fluctuation; thus making them a perfect place for swimming around the clock without having to walk far out chasing the ocean.
At Nungwi there are a number of bars and clubs along the beach but the general atmosphere is still very relaxed. Nungwi provides a number of water sports and things to do such as diving, paragliding, jet skiing and beach volleyball.
Kendwa is slightly more laid back than Nungwi but there is still so much variety; you will find laid-back bars and restaurants along this beach. You can also enjoy beach volleyball and diving. Generally, Kendwa has the benefit of being a huge beach that feels secluded.
It is possible to travel between Nungwi and Kendwa using a water taxi.
Prison Island also known as Chunguu is located 6 km to the north-west of Stone Town. In this island you will experience giant turtles and a slave museum; some of the turtles are as old as 180 years. If you stay until feeding time(late in the afternoon), you will have a chance to assist with feeding the turtles.
The waters around Prison Island are very clear, so there is a chance you may see pods dolphins call the waters around the island home.
A visit to a local spice plantation will get a unique opportunity to experience the famous spices that made Zanzibar an important trading center in the 18 century. You will get the chance to see, smell and taste various spices that are grown on the island; the spices include cloves, cinnamon, vanilla and nutmeg, coriander, cardamom, ginger, and lemongrass.
In Zanzibar, you can swim with dolphins in the ocean.
The fishing village of Kizimkazi is a popular place where you can see and swim with bottlenose and humpback dolphins. The shallow waters around this village are a popular feeding spot for dolphins because they are rich in food that is needed by dolphins.
Dolphin tours are best done in the morning because as the sun rises dolphins tend to swim deeper to escape heat. The tour can also be done in the evening but chances of sighting dolphins are not as good as in the morning; the area may also be crowded at those hours.
The tour lasts between two and three hours.
Zanzibar is surrounded by beautiful coral reefs hidden under the blue waters of the Indian ocean; the reefs offer great opportunities for snorkeling and diving. Snorkeling in Zanzibar is considered one of the best in the world because of the variety of sea life and rich coral reefs that you will experience.
The best snorkeling locations in Zanzibar are Mnemba Island – clear waters and huge stunning coral reefs, Tumbatu Island – an untouched place in north Nungwi, Menai Bay Conservation Area – very beautiful and relatively untouched coral reefs and Chumbe Island – some of the best coral reefs in the world.
Zanzibar offers a chance to dive in some of the best corals in the world. Some of the best-known dive sites in Zanzibar include Mnemba Island, Wattabomi, Big Wall, Manta Point, Fundu, Mesali Island, Leven Bank, Nankivell, Kungui, and Boribu.