The name conjures up an image of exotic spices, white-washed houses and narrow streets and all this is true! Travellers, traders and colonisers have all passed through the town’s port, trading in gold, ivory, spices and slaves. Historically, the biggest influence here was the arrival of the Arabs from the 8th century onwards bringing Islam with them. They intermarried with the indigenous population and the exotic culture that is reflected in Zanzibaris today was born.
Arab dhows can still be seen sailing the shores and graceful mosques with towering minarets are suddenly revealed round a hidden corner. An enormous demand for slaves brought unprecedented wealth and by the middle of the 19th century as many as 50,000 slaves were sold a year in the slave market. Today the alleys are filled with colourful bazaars with hawkers selling a myriad of goods.
All of our Safari tours in Tanzania and treks on Mt. Kilimanjaro either include, or give you the option of extending your tour, to include Zanzibar. We spend our time exploring old Stonetown and of course relaxing on the island’s famous beaches or enjoying watersports including snorkelling and diving. There’s also the opportunity to take a tour of the island and learn more of Zanzibar’s history, visit the Sultan’s palace and see clove plantations established by the Sultan in the 19th century.