Zanzibar Island: Zanzibar is an archipelago made up of Zanzibar and Pemba Islands, and several islets. It is located in the Indian Ocean, about 25 miles off the Tanzanian coast, and 6° south of the equator.
Zanzibar Island, known locally as Unguja, but as “Zanzibar” internationally, is 60 miles long and 20 miles wide, occupying a total area of approximately 650 square miles. It is characterized by beautiful sandy beaches surrounded by hidden coral reefs and the magic of historic Stone Town – said to be the only functioning ancient town in East Africa.
Recently and deservedly declared a world heritage site by UNESCO, Stone Town is the ancient cultural heart of Zanzibar. It is a town of bustling bazaars, two cathedrals, numerous mosques and grand extravagant Swahili-style houses, most of which were built in the 19th century.
The island’s history is most known for its spice plantations which attracted the sultans of Oman, thereafter beginning the infamous slave trade. Once the world’s largest producer of cloves, Zanzibar still produces nutmeg, cinnamon, pepper and other spices which are among the finest quality in the world.
Zanzibar is also reputed to have some of the best diving in the world. Coral reefs which surround the island provide havens for abundant marine life. There are several dive centers, most which offer courses adhering to the international PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) certification.
No visit to Zanzibar would be complete without visits to the Jozani Forest where you will see the rare red colobus monkeys that are endemic to the island, the former slave detention area of Prison Island which now boasts a nature reserve home to giant land tortoises, the Kizimkazi Mosque, and tours to visit the spice plantations and the dolphins.
Kizimkazi Dolphin Spotting Tour (Half Day)
Nestled snuggly on the Southern tip of the Island, Kizimkazi offers idyllic coastal views and an ideal starting point to spot bottlenose and spinner dolphins. These magnificent animals school in the rich hunting grounds of the cove, employing their cunning to feed their growing appetites. Dolphins are frequently seen in this cove but like all wild animals there is never a guarantee that they will appear. Please note that we are working alongside local guides to limit the amount of exposure to local dolphin pods. While we do not condone constant disruption to their habitat, by working closely with local guides, together we may help limit their exposure while maintaining the integrity of the socio-economic balance of local villages dependent upon this revenue. In keeping with this ethos, this tour is less intrusive.
Stone Town Historical Tour (Half Day)
Join our experienced guides as they show you the historic charms of historic Stone Town. Your guide is able to tailor your tour so you see what is most important to you, so please do not hesitate to consult your guide prior to departure to make the most out of this experience. Our flexible tours may include visits to the Town Market, Slave Market, National Museum, High Court, Slave Chambers, Old German Consulate, Former English Gentleman’s Club, Tip-Tip House, House of Wonders, Old Fort, Sultan’s Palace, and Livingstone House.
Spice and Fruit Tasting Tour (Half Day)
Indeed no trip to Zanzibar could be considered complete without a visit to one of our carefully selected spice farms. From the spiciness of a chili to the refreshing succulence of green coconut flesh, we promise that this tour will awaken your senses. It also provides you with the unique opportunity to purchase these exclusive spices straight from the source. You will visit the Kidichi Persian Baths that were built by the first Sultan of Zanzibar in 1850 and the Maruhubi Palace Ruins built by the third Sultan of Zanzibar in 1880 which were built especially for housing 99 of his harem. Sensible shoes and hats are advisable.