20 Best Things to Do in Zanzibar

20 Top Things to Do in Zanzibar

Tanzania is a famous place for visitors looking to go on safari. The East African country has several world-class wildlife parks where you can go view the Big Five (Leopard, Lion, elephant, rhino and buffalo). Anyway, the amazing wildlife Tanzania boasts is not just the only thing that attracts many visitors to the country each year. Zanzibar definitely one of the biggest selling points to people who take flights to Zanzibar. This little charming island on the Indian Ocean is located off the coast of mainland Tanzania, and it is also very famous with visitors. So, here are some of the best things to do in Zanzibar:

Things to Do in Zanzibar

1) Stone Town

Stone Town is Zanzibar historic center. It is the old part what is now the new Zanzibar city, and it is known as a vital UNESCO World Heritage place. Stone Town can trace its origins back 100s of years, but most of the present buildings date to the nineteen century when the British used the city as their base in the area.

Stone Town - Things to Do in Zanzibar

The best thing to do in Stone town is just to walk the veritable maze of buildings and streets, exploring the hidden shops and mosques, wandering the fort and visiting the House of Wonders, the national museum of islands.

Stone Town

2) Prison Island

Prison island, also called as Changuu, is a little, idyllic white sand island that is found just off the coast of Stone Town. It looks like a paradise, but for many escape slaves in the nineteen century, it became their prison if they were recaptured.

Today though, the island is excellent known as the home of a big population of big tortoises that were given as a gift to Zanzibar and have since flourished.

Prison Island - Things to Do in Zanzibar

3) Jozani Forest

Another of the things to do in Zanzibar is travel around Jozani Forest. This wonderful rainforest placed in the eastern part of the island covers near to two-thousand hectares and it is Zanzibar only remaining indigenous forest with over hundred species of trees. It is the only location in the planet you can still use the endangered red colobus monkey.

Other animals you can view at Jozani Forest contain sykes monkeys, bush babies, Aders duiker, over forty bird species and fifty butterfly species. There are many natural trails in the forest you can explore to get to view these animals up close.

Jozani Forest  - Things to Do in Zanzibar

4) Seaweed Center

This is one of the best things to do in Zanzibar, where you can sample a seawed smoothie and view if you love it at the Seaweed Center placed in Paje. The center is a domestic enterprise where women in Zanzibar use the rich seaweed found on the island to make items such as scrubs, soaps, essentials oils, juices and smoothies.
You can support these ladies by purchasing their seaweed items which are known to have health advantages such as decreasing heart disease risk and helping in weight loss.

Seaweed Center
Photo: Courtesy Of Seaweed Center / https://bit.ly/39NMt6A

5) Nungwi Beach

It is one of the top things to do in Zanzibar to spend your time on the beach. One of the top beaches in Zanzibar to relax while swimming and sunbathing in the Indian Ocean is Nungwi Beach. The beach is placed in Nungwi Village which is found in North Zanzibar West area. The beach is famous among visitors but you will rarely find it overcrowded like other island beaches. As the waters are shallow, nice and transparent, this is a remarkable location to go snorkeling.

Nungwi Beach - Things to Do in Zanzibar

6) Spice Plantation Tour

Zanzibar is sometimes called as spice island and with best reason. For much of the area’s history, its initial industry has been export of flavorful spices such as cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, and pepper. Even today, with tourism being such huge business, spice farming remains a big part of the Zanzibar economy.

Spice Plantation Tour - Things to Do in Zanzibar

Taking a spice trip might not sound like everybody’s cup of tea, but trust us when we say it is a really fragrant, amazing and flavoursome experience.

You will be doing far more than just visiting a spice plantation and learning about the spices, you will also be smelling, tasting, and touching the spices that support to flavour cuisine from around the planet.

7) Darajani Bazaar

Shopping at Darajani Bazaar is one of the best things to do in Zanzibar. This is the largest trading center in Stone Town. Here you can purchase anything from jewelry, food, art, clothes, wood, perfumes, carvings, etc. It is the best market to purchase something to take back home that will remind you of Stone Town once your what to do in Zanzibar is over.

Vegetable Sellers

Photo: Courtesy Of David Stanley / Flickr

8) The Old Slave Market

If you are interested in the darker side of the history of island, then visit Stone Town old slave market. This was one of the last slave market left in the planet before the British forced its closure when they got control of the island in the nineteen century.
Today, it is an intriguing and moving museum, that will support you learn about the sometimes war history of Zanzibar.

Memorial showing the old slave market Stonetown Zanzibar

Photo: Courtesy Of amanderson2 / Flickr

9) Old Fort

The old Fort is the oldest building. Built in the seventeen century, in order to save Stone Town from Portuguese invaders, the fort still stands tall, guarding the charming city and its people. The fort is placed right next to the Forodhani Gardens, and it has a number of attractions for guests. You can soak in the history of the fort, before going to the courtyard, where you can enjoy domestic items being sold by the citizens of Stone Town. The amphitheater inside the fort has Zanzibar is historically popular for its spices. It was amazing center for spice trade, which soon become its most earning industry. This is a matter of domestic significance and will actually help you learn a lot about Tanzania history as well.

Old Fort

10) House of Wonders

Zanzibar has a dynamic culture that is combination of Swahili and domestic Zanzibari culture. The top place for you to learn about is the House of Wonders, an amazing and historic building placed in Stone Town. It is pretty near to the Forodhani Gardens, and the Old Fort as well. The shows in the House of Wonders will provide you a lot of insight in both cultures.

House of Wonders - Things to Do in Zanzibar

11) Mnemba Atoll

There are no 2 ways about snorkeling at the Mnemba Atoll. If you find the best boat captain to match your needs and spend approximately USD 25, but this tour is a best value for money. You will travel into the turquoise waters in a old Dhow boat, with your domestic crew. The Mnemba Atoll is a private island, but the boat will prevent near to the shore, so you can walk on the edge, and explore the colorful and rich coral surrounding the island. You will get the chance to view eels, barracuda, dolphins, and many colorful schools of fish.

Reef Fishes @ Mnemba Atoll

Photo: Courtesy Of Kamal Karim / Flickr

12) Nungwi

These northern beach resorts are actually amazing, and the extremely definition of an idyllic beach holiday. Nungwi is the most famous beach resort in Zanzibar. This charming golden beach has continually been voted one of the top beaches in the planet. Nungwi resorts also provide a number of water sports choices for those who are adventurous enough including paragliding, jet skiing, scuba diving, and much more.

Nungwi - Things to Do in Zanzibar

13) Forodhani Market

Forodhani market and gardens is probably one of the dynamic areas in stone town and once you visit the city, you not be sad. This is the part of the town where you will find the freshet domestic produce, all cooked and sold in real Zanzibari style. If you are a seafood lover, you will get a chance to flavor freshly grilled meat and fish, served with tasty potato balls and more.

Delicious Night Food Photo: Courtesy Of imke.sta / Flickr

14) Nungwi Village

Meet the community and learn about the traditions and culture, observing the styles of clothes and talking life on the spice islands. Set on the northern tip of the island, Nungwi is a remarkable village of local zainzibaris complete with traditional schools, homes, bazaars, and playgrounds. Meet the community to learn about the traditions and culture, observing their styles of clothes. As you walk down the lanes, sample tasty tidbits and fresh juice straight from a coconut.

Jambo Brothers, Nungwi

Photo: Courtesy Of snowflakegirl / Flickr

15) Jambiani Beach

If you want to stay away from busy beaches, Jambiani beach is one choice for you. Placed in the south-eastern coast of Zanzibar and best things to do in Zanzibar, this village is devoid of underwater activities and visitors. You will find the domestic dhows that will take you to view the coral reefs adjoining the land. You can spot sea urchins, startfish, colorful fish or even octopuses if you are lucky. Stroll along the beach in the morning to catch the charming sunrise. The little waters here go extremely far and you can enjoy field games on the beach.

Jambiani Beach

Photo: Courtesy Of Ksnowflakegirl / Flickr

16) Tazari caves

Tazari caves are the biggest limestone caves in Zanzibar. They are placed right off the coast in Nugwi and provides amazing views of the sea from some caves. Although they were discovered pretty recently, archaeologists say that the caves have existed for billions of years. Proof points out that they were used as hiding locations for slaves. Some proofs also advise that people lived in the caves long before they were used by the merchants. These artefacts make up a natural museum of ancient civilisation in Zanzibar.

Photo: Courtesy Of Tazari Caves / Facebook

17) Zanzibar Butterfly Centre

Zanzibar tropical climate invokes the attendance of 100s of butterflies on the island. The top location to view is the Zanzibar Butterfly centre. The butterfly trip here will educate you about the different life-cycles of a caterpillar and its transformation. There are lots of flowers here to make a charming sight, not just for the butterflies but also the visitors. A general trip lasts around forty minutes, but you can spend as much time as you want. The farmers trip will take you to visit butterfly farmers and watch the intricacies of their craft. Profits earned from fees are used for the work of the community.

Zanzibar Butterfly Centre

18) Marahubi Palace

Maharubi palace is another formation of the royal family when they were in residence in Zanzibar. It was build for Sultan Barghash to accommodate his big harem. At its peak, around hundred women from the royal harem and has been stationed in this palace. It was reportedly built with wood and coral stone and was one of the most charming buildings in Zanzibar. In a stroke of bad luck in 1899, big portions of the palace were damaged in a fire. Today you would view the big pillars which supported the castle and the wonderful gardens surrounding the former structure. The Persian bath home has also survived the test of time. If you go to the north from the pillar, you will view a set of steps and arches.

Marahubi Palace
Photo: Courtesy Of ErrolDeubel / https://bit.ly/39UKAFj

19) Palace Museum

Zanzibar was the house of the royal family of Oman for several years and king have done their bit to leave behind the inheritance on the island. The Sultan Palace is the erstwhile house of the royal family but has now been changed into a museum. Visitors visiting the place will catch glimpses of the royal life in the three storey building placed right next to the sea. The ground floor deals with the early years of the sultanate, and as you climb up the building, you will view the subsequent years unfold. This palace was also the house of Princess Salme before she fled the island.

Palace Museum

Photo: Courtesy Of David Stanley / Flickr

20) Paje Beach

Paje is a beach of the east coast of Zanzibar. Called for its Swahili style of construction, Paje is a fishing village where time stops still. Walk along the lanes of village and note the little details of fishermen community. Most visitors opt for kitesurfing on the beach and there are instructors accessible if you do not know the place. Every evening, the men in the village combine for a game of football on the beach. Young boys participate in these matches too. Post the game, joins head out for drink together.

Paje has a long stripe of white sand bordered by a small village on one side and can be summed up as Indian Ocean amazingness. Paje has a collection of beachfront accommodation services, eateries, and as well as turquoise water on the other. Besides the beautiful beach and a pleasant sea breeze, Paje beach is a delightfully peaceful and quiet place, so this is the right place if you want a relaxing holiday. Paje is also well known for its water sports activities. You can take the opportunities for scuba diving. The water is clear and warm, and the divers can see turtles, starfish, trumpet fish, moray eels among a heap of other beautiful sea creatures. Paje beach surely is heaven for scuba divers.

Zanzibar Beaches Paje Beach - Things to Do in Zanzibar
Photo: Courtesy Of Konstantin Zamkov / Flickr

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