Holiday Information for Zanzibar, Tanzania
Types of Holidays
Located in East Africa and a nine and a half hour flight from London, Zanzibar is not suited as a travel destination for a weekend break or short-stay holiday.
It is, however, a perfect destination for a longer, relaxing holiday, either as a family break or romantic getaway.
Best Time to Go
As Zanzibar is located near the equator, it has ideal holiday weather almost all year round.
Although temperatures can get above 30°C, sea breezes help to keep it cool.
The average temperature is about 25°C all year long, with January through March typically being the hottest months.
Rainfall varies throughout the year, although April is the wettest, with an average of 32cm of rain over 11 days, followed by May with 28cm over 10 days. Most months average about 5cm rainfall.
As far as temperature goes the lowest recorded temperature in Zanzibar was 19°C in August, and the average low temperature for the year is around 22°C, so few people will complain that itâs too cold. Rather, it tends to remain at a comfortable level, with the average yearly high sitting around 29°C.
Sights to See
Africa is widely regarded as naturally beautiful with plenty of exceptional sights to see. There are a number of superb tours on offer, and some popular ones are mentioned below.
A tour of Stone Town takes tourists on visits to the Palace Museum, Dr Livingstoneâs House, the Arab Fort, the House of Wonders and many other places.
Showcasing Zanzibarâs history, the tour includes a busy market, numerous mosques, two cathedrals and quaint winding alleyways.
The Jozani Natural Forest Reserve is situated in the central east region of Zanzibar, and visitors can spot the rare Red Colobus Monkey, which roam freely. There are also small buck and bushpigs, as well as Sykeâs monkeys.
Jozani Natural Forest Reserve also has a nature trail with informative guides.
Prison Island is another popular tour. Located off the old Stone Town, it used to be the place for punishing slaves, but now visitors can enjoy the pristine white beach and outstanding coral reef, ideally suited for sunbathers and snorkelers alike.
Zanzibar is an adrenaline-junkieâs paradise, and it truly has something for everyone.
If you want to get your feet wet you could start off with some snorkelling, or if youâre more experienced you can go diving off the Mnemba Atoll, where you can see everything from turtles and dolphins to whale sharks and humpbacks.
If that doesnât excite you, you can try kite surfing or a number of other water sports.
Zanzibar has miles of gorgeous coastline, combining white-sand beaches with turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean, and the beaches are interspersed with fishing villages.
There are 25 beaches in total.
Nungwi is located on the northern tip of Zanzibar and the road leading up to it is lined with coconut trees, banana palms and mangroves.
The west coast has Mangapwani, and the eastern beaches of Pwani Mchangani, Kiwengwa, Uroa, Maternwe, Bewjuu and Jambiani all have stunning white sand for visitors to get a great tan.
If youâre in Zanzibar and looking for something to do when evening comes, youâre in luck. Forodhani Gardens in Stone Town come alive at night, with handicraft sellers and food stalls serving everything from salad to goat, all cooked before your eyes.
Also in Stone Town is Africa House, one of the most popular places for ending a day. Guests can sit on the first-floor roof terrace, drink in hand, and watch the sun set on the Indian Ocean.
If youâre looking for dancing, Starehe is a good choice. Also in Stone Town, it plays reggae music on the weekend evenings and itâs a good way to meet and mingle with other people.
Zanzibar has accommodation to suit all tastes and budgets.
The Warere Town House is a cheaper option, with rooms from just $31 per night, and features airport transfers, air conditioning, inclusive breakfast, laundry facilities and Internet access. The deluxe rooms have a balcony, while the standard rooms are more basic with an en-suite. The Warere Town House has a rooftop terrace that offers views of Stone Town.
Dudes Guesthouse is another budget option in Zanzibar, situated in the small fishing village of Jambiani right on the Indian Ocean. Itâs a small property, offering just three bedrooms, two of which have en-suites.
There is also a large kitchen, living area, large terrace, and a garden featuring banana trees and various plants. If guests donât want to cook in the kitchen, there are restaurants and bars nearby.
If youâre going to Zanzibar to enjoy a relaxing break, you can opt for one of the many luxury accommodation options instead.
One such place is The Palms, on the southeast coast of the island on an untouched beach. There are six villas that have a large furnished terrace with a plunge pool.
There is a tiered swimming pool complete with driftwood bar, and nearby are such facilities as a floodlit tennis court, windsurfing at the marine activities centre, and a fitness centre.
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