About Zanzibar, Tanzania
Zanzibar is an autonomous part of Tanzania, East Africa and is located about 16-31 miles off the coast of mainland in the Indian Ocean. Zanzibar is made up of many islands with the main ones being Pemba and Unguja. The capital of the island is Zanzibar City, which is located in Unguja. The island is famed for Stone Town, a historic center designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The main industries of Zanzibar include tourism, raffia and spices. Due to the many spices produced on the island, Zanzibar together with Mafia Island is known as the Spice Islands. Zanzibar is also home to the Zanzibar Leopard, Zanzibar Servaline Genet and Zanzibar Red Colubus Monkey.
Popular Destinations in Zanzibar
Like Timbuktu or Casablanca, Zanzibar is one of those names that suggest remoteness, adventure and excitement in the minds of most travelers. If you are looking for excitement and picturesque views or to indulge in watersports, Zanzibar has got something for you:
Stone Town: It is the main historical attraction in Zanzibar. Nothing beats taking a stroll along the historical wall and while there’s a chance visitors might get lost, it’s worth the experience. There is always something of interest at every turn which include the Darajani Market, an Arab archway that leads into a white-walled square, ladies dressed in black Islamic headdresses, Other highlights of Stone Town include historical buildings like the Old Fort and Palace Museum both of which house vast collections worth exploring.
Chumbe Island Coral Park: Located 6 kilometers south of Stone Wall, Chumbe Island is surrounded by coral reefs and is one of the most successful ecotourism projects in the world. The coral reef surrounding the island was made Tanzania’s first Marine National Park in 1994. The island is covered with mangrove forest and is a designated forest reserve. In 1999, the park won the British Airways Tourism for Tomorrow Award. Highlights of Chumbe Island include a lighthouse dating back to 1904, the lighthouse keeper’s house and a ruined mosque.
Ngezi Forest Reserve: The reserve is located on Pemba Island and the forest once covered the entire island. The modern-day Ngezi Forest covers an area of 30 square kilometers. It is home to endemic and indigenous plants and animals, many of which are in danger of extinction.
Misali Island: This is the perfect destination for travelers looking to idle on beaches. Visitors to the island can enjoy snorkeling, diving and nature trails that are ideal for spotting flying foxes. The island boasts of more than three hundred species of fish, 42 types of coral, endangered colonies of endangered flying foxes, green and hawksbill turtles, rare coconut crabs and vervet monkeys.
Luxury Lodging in Zanzibar
Finding luxury accommodation in Zanzibar is possible as there are many exclusive hotels and resorts on the islands. Here are some of the top hotels to choose from:
- Bazara Resort & Spa
- Chumbe Island Coral Park
- Essque Zalu Zanzibar
- Fundu Lagoon, Wambaa Gulf
- Hotel Park Hyatt Zanzibar
- Kilindi Zanzibar
- Mashariki Palace
- Matemwe Lodge, Matemwe
- Meliá Hotel Zanzibar
- The Residence Zanzibar
- Unguja Lodge, Kizimkazi
- Zanzibar Palace Hotel
Airports In or Nearby Zanzibar
Interested in chartering a jet to Zanzibar, Tanzania? As tourism is one of Zanzibar’s main industries, there are a number of operational airports serving this area. Here are some of the best picks:
- Abeid Amani Karume International Airport (ZNZ): Located approximately 3 miles south of Zanzibar City, the public airport is government-owned and is operated by the Zanzibar Airports Authority. The airport has two terminals and features a single asphalt runway in the 18/36 direction. After construction projects are completed for the second terminal, Terminal 1 is slated to become a domestic flight terminal.
- Julius Nyerere International Airport (DAR): Located approximately 48 miles from Zanzibar, Julius Nyerere is government-owned and is operated by Tanzania Airports Authority. It sits at an elevation of more than 180 feet above mean sea level and features two asphalt runways in the 05/23 and 14/32 direction. The airport also has three terminals, where the third is expected to be able to handle up to 6 million passengers per year. Once the third terminal is completed, the second will be used for domestic passengers.
- Tanga Airport (TGT): Located less than 75 miles from Zanzibar, Tanga is identified as a small domestic airport that is operated by the Tanzania Airports Authority. It sits at an elevation of more than 120 feet above mean sea level as well as a rolled-earth runway in the 14/32 direction and an asphalt runway in the 06/24 direction.
- Pemba Airport (Tanzania) (PMA): Located approximately 76 miles away from Zanzibar, Pemba Airport is government-owned and operated by the Zanzibar Airports Authority. It sits at an elevation of about 80 feet above mean sea level and a single asphalt runway in the 03/21 direction.
- Mafia Airport (MFA): Located approximately 124 miles away from Zanzibar, the airport is government-owned and operated by the Tanzania Airports Authority. It sits at an elevation of about 60 feet above mean sea level and has a single asphalt runway in the 15/33 direction.
- Ukunda Airport (UKA): Located approximately 131 miles from Zanzibar, Ukunda Airport is a small airstrip that is owned by the Kenya Airports Authority. It sits at an elevation of nearly 100 feet above mean sea level and a tarmac runway in the 01/19 direction. Private charters constitute most of the airport’s services and it provides tourist access between inland game reserves and beach resorts.
- Moi International Airport (MBA): Located less than 150 miles away from Zanzibar, the international airport is owned by the Kenya Airports Authority. It sits at an elevation of about 200 feet above mean sea level and has two asphalt runways in the 03/21 and 15/33 direction. Its first runway (03/21) is also equipped with an Instrument Landing System.
Interested in a Private Jet Charter to Zanzibar?