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Zanzibar

The Islands of Zanzibar, Pemba and surrounding islets that together form Zanzibar are certainly one of the most attractive and restful locations in the world. With its Indian, Arab, Persian and Portuguese influences, Zanzibar is a cocktail of culture, people, tradition and color.

Zanzibar. True Tropical Heaven ideal for Honeymoons.

The Islands of Zanzibar (locally called Unguja) and Pemba and surrounding islets that together form Zanzibar are certainly some of the most attractive and restful locations in the world. With its Indian, Arab, Persian and Portuguese influences, Zanzibar is a cocktail of culture, people, tradition and colour. Combine this with its natural beauty, tropical climate and laid back atmosphere and Zanzibar is, in our opinion, one of the best ways to begin or end your Tanzanian safari experience.

It is located in the Indian Ocean, about 40km from the Tanzanian coast, and 6 degrees south of the equator. The capital of the islands, located on the island of Unguja, is also known as Zanzibar. It is 90km long and under 30km wide, occupying a total area of approximately 1683 sq km.

The coastal areas with white beaches, mangroves, lagoons and coral reefs compliment the richly fertile areas inland where the spice farms are situated. Zanzibar is also home to the historic Stone Town, said to be the only functioning ancient town in East Africa. Time spent experiencing the different aspects of Zanzibar is highly recommended.

Sun Safaris Says

Combining Zanzibar with a safari in Tanzania or Kenya makes a perfect itinerary for anyone planning to visit the region - a combination of excellent safaris, relaxing white-sand beaches and interesting culture and history.

Stone Town, Zanzibar's capital, is one of the most historically significant towns in East Africa. The architecture dates back to the 1800s and showcases the many influences that contribute to the dominant Swahili culture. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Take a short trip to Kendwa, which is small fishing village and one of the best spots for snorkelling. Take a snorkelling trip to Coral Gardens, or to Mnemba Island on a traditional dhow.

Zanzibar produces clovesnutmegcinnamon, and black pepper, which, paired with Tanzania's Mafia Island, gives them the nickname, the 'Spice Islands'.

 

Safari Lodges within Zanzibar

Matemwe Retreat

Located in a private and remote position on Zanzibar, Matemwe Retreat offers an intimate and personal service. Each of these three beautiful villas are equipped with personal plunge pools on the roof terrace.

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Mnemba Private Island

Mnemba Island Lodge is the only structure on this beautiful island. Surrounded by breathtaking coral reefs, it boasts some of Africa's most wonderful dive sites.

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Matemwe Beach House

Located in a private and remote position on Zanzibar, Matemwe Beach House offers an intimate and personal service.Guests can enjoy professional massage and beauty treatments along with snorkelling,sailing and more.

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Kilindi Resort

Under blue skies accented by pristine white sands, aqua pools and luscious gardens, Kilindi is a truly unique vision of peace and tranquility in Zanzibar.

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Essque Zalu

Beautifully located on Zanzibar's far north eastern coast, Essque Zalu is one of Zanzibar's latest luxury resorts. It offers luxury accommodation in the form of prestigious suites adorned with rich ethnic touches.

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Kasha Boutique Hotel

Located in the North East of Zanzibar with the amazing view of the Mnemba Atoll in the backdrop of the Indian Ocean, Kasha Boutique Hotel has 11 Swahil-Arabic styled villas.

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Matemwe Lodge

Set in an idyllic location on a coral rock, surrounded by beautiful beaches opposite the small island of Mnemba Atoll, guests at Matemwe Lodge can enjoy superb diving and snorkelling opportunities.

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Chapwani Private Island

This is an exclusive location. Set on a private island 15 minute by boat from the northern coast of Zanzibar, this lodge caters for a maximum of 20 guests at a time, ensuring personal attention and superb service.

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Zanzibar Serena Inn

A member of the prestigious Small Luxury Hotels of the World, the Serena Inn has been styled to represent the epitome of Swahili style; ethnic elegance and Arabic opulence.

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Baraza Beach Resort

Located on the east coast of Zanzibar, Baraza is a luxurious, family-friendly beach resort with a variety of one and two bedroom villas lined along a famous length of beachfront.

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Essque Residences Zalu

Essque Residences Zalu, the stylish and luxurious retreat entails nine villas offering guests the ideal romantic honeymoon, family vacation or romantic getaway on the island of Zanzibar.

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Kisiwa House

The luxurious Kisiwa House is renowned for its mix of boutique sophistication and Swahili hospitality. Stone Tower is legendary and filled elements of history.

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Mashariki Palace Hotel

Mashariki Palace Hotel is located in Stone Town and was created by the first sultan of Zanzibar 200 years ago. The religious Sultan’s has treated Mashariki Palace Hotel as their permanent home.

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Milele Villas

Milele Villas consists of two individual villas which are eco-friendly. The villas are spacious and offers views of the Indian Ocean, ideal for families and groups.

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Breezes Beach Club and Spa

This family owned and run business was nominated among the top five resorts in Africa and won the “Best Resort in Tanzania” at the World Travel Awards.

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Beyt Al Chai

Set in Zanzibar's historic Stone Town, this traditional house was once a tea house. Built on three floors and only a few paces from the sea, the house is cool and breezy.

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La Gemma dell'Est

This enchanting, luxurious and environmentally friendly resort was designed and constructed to blend in with its magnificent surroundings and the marvellous contours of the Zanzibar landscape.

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Bluebay Beach Resort

Bluebay Beach Resort is situated on the most beautiful 25 acre site with its bedroom cottages located on rising ground overlooking verdant gardens.

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Hideaway of Nungwi

Embedded in a luxurious and magic atmosphere, Hideaway of Nungwi Resort & Spa offers spectacular oceanfront settings along the north west coast of Zanzibar.

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Dongwe Ocean View Hotel

Situated on one of the most beautiful beaches in Zanzibar, Dongwe Ocean View is a new Boutique Resort vacation hotel on the island of Zanzibar.

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Swahili House

The Swahili House has 5 floors that are all built around a beautiful traditional Zanzibar courtyard. The floors are all reachable via traditional Zanzibari staircases and an elevator.

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Unguja Lodge

Unguja Lodge consists of spacious villas, which is the perfect place for honeymooners and adventurous guests. The lodge contains a garden with old mango and baobab trees.

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Fumba Beach Lodge

Fumba Beach Lodge has only 26 rooms, scattered throughout the extensive grounds, shaded by a forest of baobab trees with gentle sea breezes.

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Pongwe Beach Hotel

Pongwe Beach Hotel is located in a quiet bay on the north-east coast of Zanzibar. It offers the perfect island paradise experience with clear blue waters ideal for underwater adventure and deep sea fishing.

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236 Hurumzi

236 Hurumzi is located in Stone Town of Zanzibar along with mosques, temple towers and the Temple Top Restaurant. 236 Hurumzi is the second largest building in Stone Town.

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Chumbe Island

Chumbe Island Coral Park is an award winning nature reserve that was developed for the conservation and sustainable management of uninhabited Chumbe Island off Zanzibar.

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Mchanga Beach Lodge

Mchanga Beach Lodge is a stylish lodge location in Zanzibar. The lodge offers views of the well known Indian Ocean, creating a relaxing ambience.

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Zanzibar on display

Zanzibar Beaches and Activities

Zanzibar's brilliant white beaches bathed in the warm turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean are what visions of paradise are made of. Here, one is provided with the perfect place to relax and soak up the sun. The warm clear waters fringed with coral reefs provide some excellent sites for snorkelling, scuba diving and other water sports.

There are more than 25 excellent beaches in Zanzibar many of these are remote and unspoilt but easily accessed. At the northern tip of the island is Nungwi, which is worth the hour or so it takes to get you there. On the west coast of Zanzibar is Mangapwani, and to the east are the beaches of Matemwe, Pwani Mchangani, Kiwengwa, Uroa, Bwejuu and Jambiani.

Zanzibar is also an ideal base from which to explore the many small offshore islands, perfect for day-trips. Prison Island is the most popular with visitors because it is only a short trip from Stone Town. Other islets near to Stone Town are Chapwani, Chumbe and Bawe.

 

Zanzibar Seasons and Climate

The main rainy season, or the 'long rains', lasts during March, April and May. Afternoon downpours are the norm, the humidity is high and daily temperatures reach the low-mid 30s (degrees Celsius).

The long dry season lasts from June to October, during which time the rainfall is unusual. Temperatures vary hugely with altitude and location, but it's usually a fine, clear sky and sunny weather.

During November and December there's another rainy season, which is known as the 'short rains'. These are much lighter than the long rains and less reliable. If it has rained during the short rains, then it normally dries up for a few months in January and February, which is the 'short dry season', before starting to rain again in earnest in March.

Top Destinations

Kilindi Resort is a true blend of the very best of diverse cultures. White wooden-slatted shutters embrace wide-arched glassless windows that afford spectacular views over the Indian Ocean. This 'open-to-nature' approach to Kilindi's design provides the true essence to any stay.

Chapwani Private Island Chapwani is a private island of 5 hectares situated north-west of Zanzibar town, which can be reached in one of our boats in 15 minutes. Ten cosy rooms furnished in local style, each one with a sea view allows guests to share this exclusive resort with only a few others and to take advantage of an exclusive, personalised service in a real oasis of peace and quiet.

Mnemba Island is a tiny coral island 4km off the north-eastern tip of Zanzibar in the azure Indian Ocean. It is uninhabited apart from Mnemba Island Lodge. Surrounded by breath-taking coral reefs, it boasts some of Africa's most wonderful dive sites.

How to Get There

Zanzibar Island, Pemba Island and a number of smaller islets make up the Zanzibar archipelago located between 25 and 50km from Tanzania mainland. It makes the perfect accompaniment to an East Africa safari and some of the best itineraries end with a few days on the Indian Ocean island of Zanzibar.

Guests including the island with a safari in the Serengeti can be flown direct from the national park to the beach island. Alternatively, the coastal city of Dar es Salaam offers both flights and ferries to Zanzibar.

Sun Safaris will book flights for their guests to Dar es Salaam, from where guests can opt to take the 2-3 hour ferry or the short 15 minute flight to Zanzibar. The ferry is a unique experience, although the sea might be choppy and the length of the trip might not be ideal. The short flight from Dar is our preferred option as the cost is only slightly more expensive and the journey is much smoother and takes no time at all. 

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