Experience Discerning Island Travels In Zanzibar With AfricanMecca Safaris
Navigation Tip 1 - Go Directly To Beach & Tour Planning Section For ZanzibarAn exquisite jewel set in the Indian Ocean, about 23 miles off the east coast of Tanzania, Zanzibar or the Spice Island is a laid-back little settlement where history whispers to you as you wander through its narrow winding streets on your dream vacation in Africa. A treat for the senses, this archipelago delights you with its pristine white sand beaches, turquoise blue ocean waters and the brilliant green of the seaside vegetation that houses diverse species of flora and smaller fauna.
Here, the soft ocean breezes caress you as you bathe in the gentle warmth of the tropical sun while the scents of spices and fresh fruits send you back to a bygone era. Beautiful, carved artifacts and delicate jewelry line the petite shops and you can see the exquisite craftsmanship reflected in the lovingly fashioned Swahili doorways in the Stone Town section that is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The sounds of ancient muezzin calls, church bells, amused children, pounding spice mallets, chirping birds mingling with the songs of fishermen create a lively ambience around you. Sample the outlandish tastes of the freshly caught fish seasoned with fresh herbs and spices or view their brilliance in their natural setting when you go angling in the deep, blue waters.
As you will find, when island hopping off the coast of Tanzania with AfricanMecca, it is a collection of large and small islands, the Unguja (a.k.a Zanzibar) and Pemba Islands being the larger ones among them. The smaller islands include Chumbe, Mnemba, Tumbatu, Chapwani, Bawe and Changuu or Prison Island. Murogo while Pange and Nyange are some of the sandbank isles.
You could also visit the northernmost section of Zanzibar Island where you can watch traditional dhows being fashioned in front of you. The beachfronts are located in the northern, eastern, southern and small parts of the western regions close to Stone Town. But Zanzibar has yet another treat in store for you in the Jozani Forest Reserve. A must visit wilderness while touring for primates in Tanzania, you will be able to view kirk’s red colobus and sykes’ monkeys to name its prime creatures. Visit this little corner of Eden and revel in its incredible beauty.
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Overview On The Beaches Of ZanzibarArrive at Zanzibar on your beach holiday and you will be enchanted with its idyllic natural beauty where the sun gently caresses the white powdery sands as the turquoise water of the Indian Ocean create a striking contrast.
The warm waves, tamed by the coral formations, bring the vital nutrients that support the brilliant rainbow colored fish that dart among the reef vegetation. On shore, lofty coconut palms sway in the breeze, tempting you with their succulent fruit drink and white soft flesh. As you relax on your beachfront lounger or on a hammock strung between the trees, you might spot a weaver bird or green wood hoopoe with their brilliant colors and distinctive calls flitting among the branches.
From the eastern to southern seashore expanses, Zanzibar has varied picturesque white beaches, each rivaling the other in tranquility and allure with names that are fascinatingly exotic like Kiwengwa, Pongwe, Uroa Michamvi and Bwejuu On the west in Menai Bay, you will find the Fumba Beach that will surprise you with its golden sands along a backdrop of screw pines and palm trees.
The finest of the beaches in Zanzibar traverse from Kendwa in the northwest to Matemwe in the northeast. The prime midpoint is the Nungwi peninsula on the northernmost tip. You will be enchanted by the sight of banana palms, mangroves and coconut trees. Nungwi village has a reputation for its traditional dhow building industry. Mnemba Island and its marine reserve atoll are only a short boat ride away from Matemwe Beach.
The coral reefs and pristine clear waters of Mnemba Atoll are truly breathtaking. And if you are a dolphin lover, travel to the southwestern Kizimkazi region of the island and be delighted by its sightings including migrating whales too if you are lucky. AfricanMecca can also organize visits to the many outlying smaller islands during your exploratory trip to Zanzibar, each with a trace of history to it.
For instance, at a short distance from Stone Town is Prison Island or Changuu where the Omani housed their slaves. Later, the area was used by the British to build a jail thus its christened name. A silent testament to the events of the isle, you will still find the aging 180 plus year old Aldabra tortoises, a gift from the former colonial occupiers of Seychelles, lumbering among the greeneries on Changuu. Also visit the islands of Bawe, Chumbe and Chapwani.
Overview On Stone TownA UNESCO World Heritage site, the Stone Town is Zanzibar’s capital township with a rich historical and cultural significance. Even after hundreds of years, it has retained all its original ancient charm that time has not been able to erode. Even today, when you visit this buzzing traditional metropolis on your seaside vacation in Tanzania with AfricanMecca, you will be transported back to an era where the Omani monarch eloped through the narrow alleyways, lined with coral stone houses, their peeling plaster and lichens only adding to their ancient appeal.
You will chance upon clusters of elderly wise men, languidly spending time reminiscing about their past days over cups of kahawa (coffee) bought from the wandering vendors. Children play around, their laughter mingling with the giggles of young girls absorbed behind the conservative latticed windows while bui bui women return home from shopping at the local market.
Stone Town is also the commercial hub of the island but still set in a yesteryear era. Here, you will find many small dukas (shops) that sell you wonderful entities like colorful textiles, spices, fresh fruit and delectable seafood, carved curios, artwork and pretty trinkets. Subtle modernization is slowly making its presence felt and should you need to contact home while traveling in this part of Eastern Africa, you can find little internet cafes or tiny stalls that sell you postcards and mobile phone top-up cards.
You could also sample some of the local Swahili cuisine available at Forodhani Gardens in the evening or at local eateries to the sound of cheering from an excited group of international football fans following a European soccer league on a tiny TV perched on a pile of old cartons.
Here and there, when touring around Stone Town, you will find colonial style buildings standing shoulder to shoulder with Swahili houses proudly advertising their origins with their intricate carved and varnished doors.
Medieval mosques, churches and hindu temple meld perfectly together in harmony as do the Portuguese Fort and their cannons with the Sultan's Palace Museum (Beit-el-Sahel) and House of Wonders (Beit-el-Ajaib). Brightly-colored window panes sparkle in the sunshine while the soothing sounds of Kiswahili chants follow you as you explore this ancient town that overlooks stylish, sleek liners cruising the vast Indian Ocean. This is Zanzibar Stone Town for you, alluring, enchanting, an authentic coastal settlement that you will want to return to, time and again.
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ZANZIBAR BEACH & STONE TOWN PRICES
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BEACH VACATIONING IN ZANZIBAR
Zanzibar is a tranquil, beach paradise for an idyllic Indian Ocean vacation in Africa, amidst soft, white sands and the shimmering turquoise waters dotted with picturesque traditional fishing dhows.
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WHERE TO STAY IN ZANZIBAR
Zanzibar has varied beachfront and Stone Town hotels located in distinct areas of the island. Option include staying in the north, east, south and west seasides to distinct, private islands like Mnemba and Chumbe.
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ZANZIBAR TOURS & ATTRACTIONS
Zanzibar Island has something to offer every kind of traveler, from the history enthusiast to the underwater realm explorer, coastal wanderer, the spice cuisine aficionado or active-water buff and many more.
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BEST TIME TO VISIT ZANZIBAR
Thanks to its southern equator location, Zanzibar has a tropical climate allowing you to plan your seaside vacation in Eastern Africa at any time of the year without any extreme variability in temperatures.
What are our Customers saying about us? READ MORE REVIEWS
The Zanzibar Stone Town tour guide was superlative. He was outstanding and gave us undivided attention. We felt that was great value and to be escorted round the market place and slave stations was like walking in a living museum.
Viv & Kirsty Turner - KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
I booked my safari holiday through AfricanMecca. They were the most helpful company I have ever dealt with and I work within the travel industry. I had the most amazing time. The holiday went as clockwork with no hitches anywhere.
Shelley Roberts - Hemel Hempstead, United Kingdom
AfricanMecca Safaris created a remarkable honeymoon tailored to our interests and desires. The quality of service and delivery of experience was unsurpassed. I highly recommend AfricanMecca Safaris to honeymooners, families, or any traveler.
Noorin & Jason Nelson - Maryland, United States
Greetings to you and our most fervent thanks for a wonderful trip of Kenya, Zanzibar, South Africa & Victoria Falls. Everything went very well. This was truly a perfect vacation. Thank you so much for all your arrangements.
Adrienne & Barrie Carter - Canada
We have returned from our African adventure and would like to thank you very much for your part in making this such a wonderful experience. We were lucky enough to time the Great Migration from the Serengeti, which was amazing.
Denise Paterson - Belmont, Australia
Ras Nungwi was a beautiful property, the pristine white beach not more than forty feet from our lovely room, the Indian Ocean sublime. Raza, it was the vacation of a lifetime, again, thanks so much.
Jamie Davis & Liudmila Kondakova - California, United States
Dear Raza, I want to thank you for being the very best travel partner to design and arrange our spectacular trip to Kenya, Tanzania and Zanzibar. I have already recommended you to several of my friends and colleagues.
Pat Bernard, Vice President, Global Channel Sales, Novell Corp - New Hampshire United States
EAST AFRICA SAFARI & BEACH BOOKING TRIP IDEA FOR ZANZIBAR IN EASTERN TANZANIA
When beach vacationing in Zanzibar, we recommend experiencing some of the surrounding Zanzibar Island attractions and tour activities after your Northern Tanzania safari to Tarangire, Lake Manyara, Ngorongoro Crater and Serengeti.
You may optionally extend out to offbeat parks in Southern and Western Tanzania such as Nyerere (Selous), Ruaha or Katavi ending with a chimpanzee trekking safari at Gombe or Mahale by the relaxing Lake Tanganyika.
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