Zanzibar is a tiny island just a few miles off the coast of East Africa in the Indian Ocean. Despite its proximity to the main land, Zanzibar has a culture and feel all of its own. This is attributable to its colourful and chequered past, a past that has seen spice and slave trades, pirates, sultans and princesses all take to its legendary stage and play a part.
Although its capital is Zanzibar City, the historic hub of this ancient and richly varied community is Stone Town. Stone Town is where the merchants from across the Indian Ocean brought their families to settle in the 14th century but the real fortunes were made when Omani sultans landed there in the 18th century. What did they trade to make such fortunes? The now seemingly humble clove bud.
During these times empires were built and empires fell as battles raged to control the trade routes. Zanzibar and Stone Town today are far more sedate places.
For holiday makers seeking a wealth of history and adventure, Stone Town has plenty to offer. The Portuguese Fort, the House of Wonders and St Joseph’s Cathedral. There are also some fabulous markets to explore at Dharahani and Forodhani, great food to be enjoyed either at any of the luxury hotels or if you prefer, in a more rustic café where you must have a cup of the famous cinnamon spiced coffee.
But Zanzibar is much more than just Stone Town. The Islands of Pemba and Mafia offer some of the world’s finest snorkelling, the best beaches and crystal clear water all set against a back drop of local fishermen plying their trade.
Zanzibar is a truly unique African experience. A tiny Island, steeped in history that combines the charming, fading splendour of Stone Town with some of the finest bare foot luxury beach experiences this part of Africa has to offer which makes it a perfect honeymoon destination.
If that isn’t enough – Spoilt for Choice Travel can combine a visit to Zanzibar with a safari on the mainland in a private game reserve, giving you added opportunity to get up close but not too personal to some of most fantastic wildlife in Southern Africa.