Zanzibar Tour and Excursions
Zanzibar Tour and Excursions
Zanzibar is a land of mysticism and beauty with a diverse landscape. It has bewildered the imagination of travelers throughout the ages of mankind. It is steeped in legend and mystery and known to be the last genuinely and unspoilt tourist destination with hundreds of years old civilization besides having many interesting places to bear witness to, it boasts of traditional hospitality where the old and the new interact.
Our Zanzibar Excursions will take you to the following places of interest in this magnificent island;
Stone Town is the old city and cultural heart of Zanzibar, little has changed in the last 200 years. It is a place of winding alleys, bustling bazaars, mosques and grand Arab houses whose original owners vied with each other over the extravagance of their dwellings. This one-upmanship is particularly reflected in the brass-studded, carved, wooden doors – there are more than 500 different examples of this. You can spend many idle hours and days just wandering through the fascinating labyrinth of narrow streets and alleyways. Stone Town was recently and deservedly declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
The Old Dispensary
(now known as the Stone Town Cultural Centre) is a grand four story building with a set of decorative balconies. It served as a dispensary during colonial times but fell into disrepair in the 1970’s and 1980’s. It is one of the Stone Town buildings that has been successfully restored, in this case with funding from the Aga Khan Trust for Culture. It can be found on Zanzibar’s seafront on Mizingani road
It is a vibrant place where everything under the sun is bought and sold. People bring their produce here from all over the island, and other people come to buy things they can’t get in their own villages. Of special interest is the huge selection of brightly coloured khangas (worn by the local women) and the auctions that are held regularly
The House of Wonders
This a very large square-shaped building, with several stories, surrounded by tiers of pillars and balconies, and topped by a large clock tower.It was built in 1883 as a ceremonial palace for Sultan Barghash and was the first in Zanzibar to have electric light and an electric lift. Not surprisingly, when it was built, the local people called it Beit el Ajaib, meaning the House of Wonders. Today, it is still one of the largest buildings in Zanzibar, and there are plans to open it as the National Museum.
The Palace Museum (The Sultan’s palace)
This a large white building with castellated battlements, and was built in the late 1890’s for members of the Sultan’s family. Originally called the Sultan’s Palace, in 1911 it became the official residence of the Sultan of Zanzibar, but following the revolution in 1964, it was renamed the Peoples’ Palace. In 1994, the palace was turned into a museum dedicated to the history of Zanzibar’s Sultans which necessitated a third change of name to the Palace Museum. For the first time, visitors can see much of the Sultans’ furniture and other possessions that survived the revolution.
Doctor Livingstone’s House
was built around 1860 for Sultan Majid, and was used by many of the missionaries and explorers as a starting point. Most notably, Dr David Livingstone lived here before commencing his last journey to the mainland interior
The history of Zanzibar would be incomplete without the cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, pepper and many other spices which brought the Sultans of Oman and the beginnings of the infamous slave trade. They can be seen in the plantations just outside Zanzibar town. A detailed description is given about a variety of spices, and their uses in cooking and cosmetics. Visitors will be fascinated by the sheer number of spices produced and their incredible value for many ailments. This is also the cheapest place to purchase spices and spice oils.