Destinations & Resorts

Holidays to Zanzibar

Zanzibar Introduction

 

 

Zanzibar is an archipelago made up of Zanzibar, Pemba Islands, several islets and is located in the Indian Ocean, about 40 kilometres from the Tanzanian coast, and 6° south of the equator.

 
 
Zanzibar Island, known locally as Unguja, but as Zanzibar internationally, is approximately 90 kilometres long and 30 kilometres wide, occupying a total area of approximately 1046 square kilometres. This beautiful island is characterised by white sandy beaches with fringing coral reefs. The capital and largest town is Stone Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, located in the middle of the west coast of Unguja. The town was named for the coral stone buildings that were built there largely during the 19th century and it is said to be the only functioning ancient town in East Africa.
 
 
Zanzibar's local people are an incredible mixture of ethnic backgrounds, indicative of her colourful history. Islam is the dominant religion, and practiced by most Zanzibaris, although there are also followers of Christianity and Hinduism. 
 
Zanzibar's brilliant white beaches lapped by the warm turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean provide the perfect place to relax, soak up the sun and take a break from some busy sightseeing. The beaches in Zanzibar are a paradise, interspersed with picturesque fishing villages, where the people live a simple way of life, unchanged over the years. There are more than 25 fantastic beaches in Zanzibar, and some are so peaceful and remote that the only noise breaking the silence is likely to be the ocean. The coral reefs that surround the East Coast are rich in marine diversity, and make Zanzibar an ideal location for snorkelling and scuba diving.
 
Visits to the spice plantations will dazzle your senses with fresh spices. On the way visitors can stop at the old Sultan Rest House to view the Persian Baths built in 1850 by Seyyid Said bin Sultan (first Sultan of Zanzibar) for his wife Princess Shehzard. 
 
 
At the northern tip of the island is Nungwi, approached by a road lined by banana palms, mangroves and coconut trees. This is the dhow building capital of Zanzibar island, so it is a good place to see traditional craftsmen at work. 
 
On the west coast of Zanzibar, Mangapwani beach is worth a visit, and to the east are the beaches of Matemwe, Pwani Mchangani, Kiwengwa, Uroa, Bwejuu and Jambiani, all with stretches of beautiful and uncrowded sands.