ZANZIBAR ISLAND, TANZANIA
Spice islands Zanzibar and Pemba, their colorful history and culture dates back as early to the 1st century AD. The arrival of Islam, Arabian and Persian traders, have helped shape the evolution of Swahili culture.
In the Sultanate Omani’s rule plantations were developed for it’s worldwide famous cloves and spices. The slave trade and was at it’s peak by the 18th century, making “Unjuja” one of the largest slave ports. The German and British abolition in the 19th century, see’s a infusion of culture and characteristics that make up this intriguing destination. Stone Town, the historic capital of Zanzibar, showcases colourful bazaars, spices shops, historic museums and is world heritage listed. The northern beaches are a brilliant white, surrounded by coral reefs. In the south the beaches are very different with mangrove wetlands.
Pemba Island has been left relatively untouched and is the Zanzibar of 20 years ago. It’s tranquil, serene location is a haven for travellers who are wanting to get away from it all. Avid dive enthusiasts of marine life will definitely enjoy exploring the area. Conservation is paramount to help preserve the coral reefs that have already been decimated by over fishing.
ACTIVITIES & EXCURSION IN ZANZIBAR
Zanzibar is also known as the ‘Spice Island’ due to the delicious variety of spices grown on the island’s many plantations. In particular, the Zanzibar and Mafia Islands produce cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, and black pepper. A guided tour offers guests a walk through a spice farm with the chance touch, smell and taste different spices and tropical fruits.
Stone Town City Tour:
Follow the footsteps of the sultans, traders, slaves and explorers who once lived on the winding streets of Stone Town. Learn how this town was shaped by its ancestors, visit historical sites including the Old Arab Fort, the former Slave Market, the Sultan’s Palace Museum and many more.
Sultan Panorama Tour:
If you would like to have a taste of the Zanzibari history and life, then the full day Sultan Panorama tour may be the one for you. Start with a tour in Stone Town, covering the history of the sultans, slave trade and invasions, as well as current affairs. Afterwards, drive to a spice farm where you have the opportunity to familiarize yourself with a variety of spices and fruits. End the tour visiting a local village, mingling with the Zanzibaris and learn about the Zanzibari life and culture.
Freddie Mercury Tour:
Lead singer of the rock band Queen, Freddie Mercury, is probably Zanzibar’s most famous son. Born in 1946 in Shangani, Freddie Mercury spent his formative years living and playing in Stone Town’s winding alleyways. Follow Freddie’s footsteps through the alleyways of Shangani followed by a visit to the Zoroastrian temple, where Freddie and his family worshipped. End the tour at the Mercury restaurant by the seafront.
Kizimkazi Boat Trip – spotting Dolphins:
Drive from Stone Town to Kizimkazi, on the south coast of Zanzibar. Board a traditional dhow and sail out to sea in search of dolphins. You can get as close as 10 to 20 meters away from dolphins – sometimes even closer if you’re lucky. Spend some time snorkelling on the reefs afterwards if you desire, before returning for lunch at the beach.
About an hour’s sailing away from the bay at Stone Town lies a sandbank surrounded by crystal clear blue water. Spend the day at leisure, going out to snorkel around the sandbank where the underwater world is filled with marine life. A seafood lunch is served at the sandbank. After a siesta, sail off to Prison Island and visit the giant tortoises before sailing back to Stone Town.
Green Panorama Tour:
Take a break from the sea & beaches and go inland to explore Zanzibar’s forests in half a day. Start at Jozani Forest, home to the Zanzibar red colobus monkey as well as the Aders’ duiker, Sykes’ monkeys, African civet, and many more, including around 83 different bird species. The second stop is next door, the Zanzibar Butterfly Centre, one of Africa’s largest butterfly exhibits, which offers an interactive and visual environment to learn about butterflies. The tour ends at ZALA Park, a small reserve set up to preserve Zanzibar’s natural environment and teach local children about conservation.
A Zanzibar Dhow Sunset Cruise
Details: After you step on-board the vessel, the skilled crew on board take the dhow about 1km away from the shore by means of an engine. Once the dhow reaches a safe point, the engine is shut off and the guest can sit back, relax and enjoy the peacefulness of sailing in the Indian Ocean. Our sunset cruises leave Stone Town in the late afternoon to cruise along the coast, slicing through the clear turquoise water. While sailing, the AHLA crew provides you with light snacks, soda, water, or other beverages of your liking.
Full-day Prison Island Tour including Wild life Cruise.
Location: East Coast, Zanzibar
Jump aboard your Zanzibar Traditional Dhow and depart over Prison Island for a leisurely trip close to Stone Town Harbor, past majestic homes and picturesque scenery on your way to Prison Island. Your full-day adventure in the Indian Ocean includes a wildlife cruise around the island, where you’ll look for giant tortoise, peacock, natural pool and sea birds. You can also swim in clear turquoise waters, snorkel and dive among spectacular reef formations, or walk around the island and meet the local wildlife. You won’t need to pack your passport to get to this exotic island.
Day trip to Prison Island from Stone Town.
Cruise down Prison Island past Stone Town Harbor.
Wildlife cruise around the island to see giant tortoise, peacocks and birds.
Walk around the island on foot, meeting the local animals.
Complimentary morning tea and a wine tasting in the afternoon.
Enjoy lunch at Prison Island Lodge (if option selected)
Prison Island is only a 20-minute hop from the Stone Town coast and a favorite weekend getaway for locals. Originally discovered by Arab explorers in the 17th century, Prison Island has had an interesting history, as resting place for prisoners, an Aboriginal penal colony and an internment camp during the world wars.
Your full-day island experience starts as you hop aboard the cruiser in Stone Town Harbor and enjoy morning tea while you travel down the Prison Island, passing to Graveyard Island and the Snake Island.
Get to know Prison Island on a 90-minute guided wildlife cruise around the island, discovering secluded bays and inlets inhabited by birds, giant tortoise, natural pool and other marine life. The afternoon is free to explore the island at your leisure before departing for the mainland. Do some snorkeling on a pristine coral reef and discover the marine life of the Indian Ocean.