Islands – Zanzibar, Mafia, Pembe

Zanzibar, known as spice island, is the most well known of the three islands with its magical beaches and World Heritage Site Stone Town.   Stone Town is one of the best examples of a traditional Swahili coastal trading town bringing together Africa, Arab, Indian and European influences which visitors can see represented in much of the original architecture dating back to the beginning of the 19thth century.  Stone Town highlights include the Old Fort, Palace Museum also known as the Sultans Palace, Anglican Cathedral built over the slave market and the recently restored Forodhani Gardens.

35 kilometers south east of Zanzibar town is Jozani Forest, covering 50 square kilometers.  The forest is one of the last remaining habitats of the rare and endangered red colobus monkey.

No trip to Zanzibar would be complete without a spice tour.  Spices including cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg and pepper are an important part of the Zanzibar heritage.  On the outskirts of Zanzibar there are many working farms where there spices are still grown.  On a tour visitors have the opportunity to learn more about the spices themselves, the local people working on the farms and the local Swahili cuisine

After exploring Stone Town, relax on one of Zanzibars incredible beaches all of which have two things in common, crystal clear sea and powdery white sands.  For the more active excellent snorkelling is available focused around Mnemba Atoll and Menai Bay Conservation Area.

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Pemba known as the ‘magic island’ because of its strong tradition of voodoo, has a laidback feel and is the most unspoiled of the 3 islands.  Home to world class diving and snorkeling, underwater visibility is unmatched, offering crystal clear views of expansive coral gardens.

Mafia Island should not be overlooked especially for those looking to explore one of the worlds most interesting marine ecosystems.  Divers and snorkelers are drawn to the Mafia Island Marine Park, which boasts over 400 species of fish and is also a breeding site for the almost extinct green turtle.  Mafia is home to shoals of tuna, marlin and sailfish amongst other big game fish making this a popular location for deep sea fishing

The three islands offer a huge diversity of accommodation from historic buildings in Stone Town to private hideaways, beachside bandas, treehouses and underwater rooms.  Whichever you choose it will certainly be an experience to remember.