Top 5 Things to Do on Your Zanzibar Vacation

by Emma Hackwood
a woman stands alone on the beach under a leaning palm tree in zanzibar

Zanzibar is a holiday destination on every sun-seeker’s bucket list. Whether you’re picturing yourself lounging on the silky soft beaches for days on end with your partner, or splashing around in the warm, clear waters with the kids, there’s no doubt that this Tanzanian island is what dreams are made of!

Read on to discover its brief history, along with a few recommendations of what to do from the Flight Centre team for those moments when you manage to tear yourself away from the beach.

Uncovering Idyllic Zanzibar – what to do on your holiday

You will probably be wondering what could be better than sipping on cocktails in the shade of a tall and leafy palm tree, but the truth is that island has a lot more to offer its visitors than just its many beaches.

Here are a few other activities that should be given pride of place in your itinerary.

Take a spice tour

This island makes a huge portion of its money through the export of local spices. Why not learn more about the island’s history, culture, and cuisine through a tour of the spice farms, nestled among the peaceful local villages? Along with appreciating the fusion of aromas, you’ll also have the opportunity to taste the spices for yourself. Many sought-after spice tours include a lunch, which allows for the opportunity to tuck into a traditional Swahili dish and wash it down with a steaming cup of spiced tea.

Exploring Stone Town

Stone Town is often lovingly referred to as the ‘historic heart’ of Zanzibar and it’s where you’ll find an interwoven maze of streets packed full of hidden treasures. Stop by the evening food market hosted in Forodhani Gardens to sample local delicacies, visit Darajani Bazaar for endless options when it comes to souvenirs and gifts, or scope out some of the most sought-after historical and cultural sites, such as the Old Dispensary, the Arab Fort, and Malindi Mosque.

Wining and dining at rooftop restaurants

What could be better than eating a fragrant bowl of biryani or a spicy mchuzi wa pweza (octopus curry)? Do so with a mesmerizing view as the backdrop, of course! Rooftop restaurants are extremely popular in this country and provide visitors with the opportunity to tick two things off of their bucket list – developing a taste for the local cuisine and appreciating the expansive beauty of the island.

Going kitesurfing

Once you have achieved a blissful sense of peace as a result of lounging around on the beaches day in and day out, you may be in the mood for a small dose of adrenalin. Kitesurfing is definitely the way to go. Luckily, most of the regions boast enough wind for a memorable kitesurfing adventure, and you shouldn’t struggle to find travel suppliers nearby that can provide you with the lessons and equipment necessary to ensure both your safety and your enjoyment.

Visit Prison Island

Prison Island, also known as Changuu Island, is undoubtedly one of the most stunning Zanzibar islands out there. Not only is it in close proximity to Stone Town (just a 30-minute boat ride away), but it is also home to an enticing local attraction – namely the large groups of giant land tortoises that can be found meandering along the beaches and savouring the sunshine at most times of the day. The island is also rich in marine life, making it a go-to for beginner and experienced snorkellers and divers alike.


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