Indian Ocean Holidays
Tanzania is blessed with some lovely options to relax or explore the origin of the Swahili culture. The best options are outlined below:
Lovely palm fringed beaches, water sports, rich culture and historical sites are some of the unique tourist attractions in Zanzibar. Our safaris in Zanzibar are conducted by knowledgeable guides with deep knowledge of local culture. The safaris will include visits to the historical old town commonly referred to by the locals as ‘Mji Mkongnwe’. The best way to get around Zanzibar is by foot. Other options include-motor taxi, motor cycle, bicycle, matatu. You can also rent a car. There are numerous other activities that are excellent options: SCUBA/snorkeling, deep sea fishing, swimming with dolphins and sunset dhow cruises are among the most popular. Not to be underestimated is also the option of just pure relaxation on one of the most fabulous beaches in the world.
The Stone Town Tour
The Stone Town refers to that area of Zanzibar in the heart of the old town with winding narrow streets and historical buildings. This part of Zanzibar is referred to by the local people as ‘Mji Mkongwe’. Our guided safaris in this part of Zanzibar includes visits to the house of wonders, palace museum (People’s Palace), Livingstone’s House, Old Fort, former slave market, bazaars, old harbour etc.
Zanzibar is famous for her cloves. Other spices are nutmeg, vanilla, cardamom and cinnamon, the spices which motivated the Sultan of Oman to settle there permanently. Other than species, the island famous for tropical fruits, perfumes plants and food crops. Coconut palms, maize, yams, cassava are grown. Zanzibar is the main exporter of cloves in the world.
Jozani Forest and Ngenzi Nature Reserves
Jozani Forest and Ngezi nature reserves are the centre of biodiversity in Zanzibar. Jozani Forest is the largest area of mature forest left on the island. It is also host to the endangered Zanzibar Red Colobus monkey, several species of butterflies, about 40 species of birds and several other animals.
Prison Island or Changuu
Across the west coast of Zanzibar 30 minutes by boat from Stone Town is Changuu Island with its beautiful beaches ideal for swimming, sun bathing and snorkeling. This was built initially as a prison for disobedient slaves but never actually put in use for that purpose.
Built by Sultan Said Majid who ruled Zanzibar from 1856 to 1870 built this house around 1860. Dr. David Livingstone used it as a base for his last journey into the interior of Africa. Several other missionaries and explorers also used it as a starting point e.g. Burton and Speke.
Zanzibar is not the only option for an Indian Ocean holiday. If you want less populated options (and less expensive also), consider these towns located on the mainland coast of Tanzania:
A small Swahili town located at the mouth of the Pangani River. According to some, Pangani’s origins can be traced back almost two thousand years to the trading centre of Rhapta. The town is also home to a community-based cultural tourism program which offers a variety of guided walks and river cruises, and visits to fossilized dinosaur remains.
Bagamoyo is rich in history. As a trading centre (including being the centre of the East African slave trade), the starting base for Dr. Livingston’s expedition (and where is body was brought back after his death), to the site of the first Christian mission in East Africa, to being the capital of German East Africa. The town’s importance has faded over time since he harbor was too shallow for larger ships. It is now a great destination for beach holidays, to visit historical sites and take in the local culture.