Spice islands

Spice islands

Zanzibar is a vacationer's paradise. Situated off the Indian Ocean next to Tanzania, this alluring paradise has attracted visitors the world over for millennium. Each wave of visitors has left its mark and added to the rich culture. Much of this amazing history is evident in the Stone Town where you'll be captivated by its medina, skilled stonework, brightly painted doors and window shutters.

Beyond the Stone Town lays spice plantations from a bygone era of Sultans and seafaring merchants. To the East and north extends Zanzibar's storied white beach: calm azure waters still beckoning the snorkeler and diver to this today.

The island's history goes back many centuries. Its heyday came in the early 19th century when the Sultan of Muscat moved his court to Zanzibar. Spice cultivation was developed (particularly the clove tree), and the slave trade was at its height - Zanzibar became the most important town in East Africa.

We can't think of a better way to cap your African Safari and wash off the dust of the trail than to kick back here for a few days and let the go time roll. Karibu Zanzibar!!

Weather

Zanzibar experiences ideal holiday weather for most of the year. The heat of summer is seasonally often cooled by windy conditions, resulting in pleasant sea breezes, particularly on the North and East coasts. Being near to the equator, the islands are warm all year round, but officially, summer and winter peak in December and June respectively. This is illustrated statistical weather information shown below. Zanzibar is blessed with an average of 7-8 hours of sunshine daily.

Country Info

Time Zone- GMT + 3
Currency- Tanzanian Shilling (Tsh)
Official languages- Kiswahili & English
Electricity- 220 - 240 V AC, 50 Hz
Religion- Predominantly Islam,
International Dialing code- +255 24, followed by 7-digit local number

Government

Zanzibar is an island state within the United Republic of Tanzania, and has its own semi-autonomous government made up of a Revolutionary Council and House of Representatives. The government body responsible for tourism promotion is the Zanzibar Commission for Tourism.

Economy

Fishing and agriculture are the main economic activities of the local people. Zanzibar was once the world's largest producer of cloves, and her economy was based on large incomes thus derived. Although cloves are still a major export along with coconut products and spices, tourism has been ear-marked as the primary foreign exchange earner, with more visitors coming to Zanzibar each year. At this stage, the numbers are still low (less than 100,000 annually) and the potential for tourism is relatively untapped. Zanzibar's tourism private sector is represented by the Zanzibar Association of Tourism Investors (ZATI).

Entry and Exit Requirements

All visitors require a passport, valid for the duration of their stay. Preparations are under way for visitors to obtain visas at any entry point, and this time-saving facility is available to visitors arriving at Zanzibar International Airport. Other points in Tanzania currently offering visa on entry are Dar es Salaam and Kilimanjaro International Airports, and Namanga on the road border between Tanzania and Kenya. Nationals of some countries do not require visas, so it is advisable to check with your nearest Tanzanian Embassy, High Commission or Consulate prior to visiting.