Zanzibar

Once called the “finest place” in all of Africa by Sir David Livingstone, the ‘Spice Islands’ of Zanzibar – or Unguja to the locals – are a haven of endless, unspoilt beaches with azure waters and incredible snorkeling. Although just 25 miles off the mainland of Tanzania, the islands have a look and feel that is completely unique to their continental motherland.

First gaining prominence as a hub in the slave trade between Arabia and Africa, the islands of Zanzibar have thankfully shrugged off their past and are now known as welcoming islands full of smiles. The aptly named Stone Town is a charming island capital with intriguing cobbled alleyways filled with the aromatic scent of spices, and a remarkably endearing old harbor from where the spices came and went.

Life there is slow and easy, and it’s hard not to get lost in the carefree attitudes of its friendly inhabitants while enjoying a bike ride or an afternoon stroll through the Spice and Curio Markets. For those who love the beach and the water, Zanzibar is the perfect destination. Whether your idea of the perfect beach moment involves sipping cocktails from the beach or being surrounded by tropical fish in the warm Indian Ocean, this island paradise has it all. Acclaimed as one of the best snorkeling spots in Africa, the warm tropical weather and crystal clear water present the perfect conditions to observe the brilliantly colored fish and coral reefs.

From the Jozini Forest to Pemba Island, Zanzibar has a fantastic selection of resorts to choose from. With a warm climate all year round, perfectly blue water, proximity to incredible safaris and a relaxed atmosphere, there really is no reason not to include Zanzibar in your visit to East Africa. You’ll be glad you did!

 

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Mnemba Island Lodge

andBeyond Mnemba Island Lodge

Barefoot luxury on an idyllic private island just off Zanzibar’s coast, andBeyond’s beautiful Mnemba Island is the perfect place to relax and unwind after the thrills of an African safari. Pristine white sandy beaches encircle a shady tropical forest and coral reefs provide some of Africa’s best dive sites. Guests can snorkel to their heart’s content, sometimes among dolphins, and there is kayaking, windsurfing and deep sea fishing for the active, while the appeal of simply doing nothing but relax in this tropical paradise is enough for some. Wonderful personal service and delicious fresh meals in romantic locations add to the simple pleasures of island living.

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Breezes Beach Club and Spa

Breezes Beach Club and Spa

A quiet and relaxing beach retreat on the south east coast of Zanzibar, Breezes Beach Club enjoys a beautiful setting on stunning Bwejuu beach, rated among the Top 30 island beaches in the world by Conde Nast Traveller, with turquoise waters stretching out to a pristine coral reef. Family-owned and run, the resort has plenty of personality with warm and friendly staff, elegant decor and hand-crafted furniture. An on-site PADI dive school offers scuba diving courses, there are snorkelling and other watersports, and relaxing by the pool, walking for miles along the deserted beach or exploring the reef fills days of tropical island living.

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Kilindi Zanzibar

Kilindi Zanzibar

A unique and enchanting coupling of Arabic opulence and Scandinavian minimalism, Kilindi is one of Zanzibar’s most luxurious boutique hotels. Set in 35 acres of abundant tropical gardens, Kilindi comprises a number of glistening white-domed pavilion guest rooms, originally designed for Benny Andersson of ABBA fame. The resort is a celebration of Eden-esque nature, and provides the perfect retreat for anyone looking for a truly five-star experience in a tasteful and intimate environment.

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Azanzi Beach Hotel

Azanzi Beach Hotel

The intimate Azanzi Beach Hotel in Zanzibar stands, quite literally, on the beach in Matemwe. Surrounded by tall palms, its thatched roof and wooden decks discreetly blend in with the magnificent natural surroundings. Lush gardens and walkways spill onto the beach – the pristine, aquamarine ocean only a stone’s throw away from the hotel. A large swimming pool winds its way through the hotel – partially under cover and partially exposed to the sun. Known as “The Spice Island”, Zanzibar boasts some of the best spice crops in the world. Cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon and pepper are the must-takeaways for visitors.

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