HOLIDAY TO ZANZIBAR
Jambo! This is the Swahili greeting that you will hear on arrival in Zanzibar from the warm and inviting locals. Zanzibar is the name of an archipelago in the Indian Ocean just off the coast of East Africa. There are many small islands and two large ones: Unguja (the main island, sometimes informally referred to as 'Zanzibar'), and Pemba Island. As the number one beach location in East Africa, Zanzibar is a wonderful beach holiday destination, with classic tropical beaches, lush plantations, an incredible history and a fascinating culture. Apart from historic Stone Town, with its labyrinth of narrow streets, Zanzibar is known for its beautiful palm-fringed beaches and pristine coral reefs.
HISTORY OF ZANZIBAR
Zanzibar was inhabited by Portuguese navigators at the end of the 15th century. They were ousted 200 years later by the Omani Arabs and Zanzibar became a major centre for slave trading. Zanzibar became an Arab state and was an important centre of trade and politics in the region. European explorers, including Stanley and Livingstone, began their expeditions into the interior of Africa from Zanzibar in the late 1800s. In 1964, the sultan and the government were overthrown in a revolution and in the same year, Zanzibar and Tanganyika combined to form the United Republic of Tanzania.
LANGUAGE OF ZANZIBAR
The indigenous language spoken throughout Zanzibar is Swahili (called Kiswahili locally). English is widely spoken and understood. Jambo Rafiki – Hello my friend!
Most of the people in Zanzibar are Muslim and all towns and villages on Zanzibar Island have mosques. Visitors to Zanzibar Town (Stone Town) will hear the evocative sound of the muezzins calling people to prayer from the minarets, especially for the evening session at sunset. There are also small populations of Christians and Hindus.
CLIMATE IN ZANZIBAR
Zanzibar is a few degrees south of the equator and enjoys a very tropical climate. The average daytime high is between 28°C and 32°C and the night-time lows are between 20°C and 25°C. Temperature wise – Zanzibar is an all-year-round island holiday destination. February is very hot and very humid (just leave your hair straightener at home!) and March to May are the wettest months.
The local currency in Zanzibar is Tanzania Shillings (TSH) but the currency cannot be bought outside of the country. Cash (US Dollars) and credit cards are accepted at hotels and at any Bureau de Change. We strongly recommend that you take USD cash in small denominations for incidental purchases, tips etc.
220/230 V. square pin adapter (same plugs as UK). It is advisable to take along an international adaptor.
MALARIA IN ZANZIBAR
As Zanzibar is situated in a malaria zone, it is recommended that you consult your physician on the correct preventative medication required before you travel.
WHAT TO DO IN ZANZIBAR
Whether you spend your days lazing by the pool, sipping cocktails on the beach at sunset, diving in warm waters or enjoying a Dhow cruise around small islands, your Zanzibar holiday will be a memorable experience.
WHAT TO PACK FOR YOUR ZANZIBAR HOLIDAY
ZANZIBAR TRAVEL TIPS
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