Things to do in
Zanzibar Archipelago

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Our most recommended things to do in Zanzibar Archipelago

Zanzibar: Spice Farm Tour with Traditional Cooking Lesson

1. Zanzibar: Spice Farm Tour with Traditional Cooking Lesson

Visit an organic spice farm on this 3-hour guided tour to learn about one of Zanzibar’s most popular industries: spices. Discover how the islands produce cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, black pepper, and more. See why the Zanzibar Archipelago, together with Tanzania's Mafia Island, is sometimes called the "Spice Islands".   When you arrive, the spice farm guide will describe how the spices are grown and used as medication and flavor in dishes. See spices like vanilla, cardamom, nutmeg, and many more. You’ll be able to touch, smell, and taste the spices and herbs directly from plants—you’ve never smelled spices as fresh as these before. Along with these fragrant plants, there will also be some fresh tropical fruits to see and taste.     Later, take the opportunity to join a cassava leaf harvest, make coconut milk, and practice some cooking. Then, a coconut tree climber will pick some fresh young coconut fruits for you to try. End the trip with lunch at the spice farm and the opportunity to purchase spices from the shop.

Zanzibar: Jozani Forest, Local Zoo and Swimming with Turtles

2. Zanzibar: Jozani Forest, Local Zoo and Swimming with Turtles

Visit the famous Jozani Forest National Park, Zanzibar's only National Park, to see local wildlife and natural habitats, including African rock pythons, red colobus monkeys, and crocodiles on a guided day tour. Explore Zanzibar's luscious groundwater forest at the national park and see rare animal species only found on the island, such as the cheeky red colobus monkey. Walk through the park's mangroves as you make your way to your lunch spot, a restaurant nestled in the middle of the jungle. Listen to the sounds of the jungle surrounding you as you tuck into a delicious local meal. Enjoy a cooling dip in the pool after lunch before heading to the north of the island for a visit to the local zoo to see a number of other local animals, including chameleons, bushbabies, tortoises, ostriches, elephant shrews, and more. End your day out with a relaxing swim with turtles, which you have the chance to feed.

From Stone Town: Private Tour to Prison Island

3. From Stone Town: Private Tour to Prison Island

Visit Prison Island on a private 3-hour tour, and discover the rich history and beautiful natural surroundings of this location. Meet your guide in Zanzibar, or select the option including hotel pickup, then enjoy the ride to the island on a traditional dhow. Learn how this small island gained its name and explore the place that is now home to more than 50 tortoises, some over 100 years old.   Feed the tortoises and take up-close pictures with them, as you keep a look out for the peacocks and antelope that also live there. After discovering the island and its history, take the opportunity to snorkel in the clear waters off the coast amongst tropical fish and colorful coral. At the end of your tour, return to Zanzibar, where you’ll be dropped off in the city center, or at your hotel.

Zanzibar: Prison Island Tour with Lunch on the Sandbank

4. Zanzibar: Prison Island Tour with Lunch on the Sandbank

Your Zanzibar adventure begins with a visit to Prison Island, purchased in 1893 by Lloyd Mathews, the British First Minister of Zanzibar at the time. Mathews constructed a prison complex on the island which is still visible today, however no prisoners were ever housed on the island and instead it became a quarantine station for yellow fever sufferers. On the island, spend some time exploring the area and discover the collection of over 50 tortoises that live here, some of which are more than 100 years old. Learn about why the tortoises call the island their home, as well as taking photos and feeding them too. The island is also home to peacocks and small antelope too. Once you’ve explored the island, enjoy the opportunity to cool off from the hot weather with a refreshing dip in the surrounding crystal clear waters. Spend some time snorkeling in the water just off the island and search for colorful tropical fish and vibrant coral reef. After you’ve worked up an appetite from swimming, relax on the sandbank with a delicious lunch including a seafood BBQ, Swahili cuisine, cheese, tropical fruit, and more.

Dar es Salaam: City Tour

5. Dar es Salaam: City Tour

This tour of Dar es Salaam will take you to the National Museum, Village Museum, Mwenge Carvings Market, Tingatinga art Gallery, Slipway Shopping Centre, The Fish Market, City Centre, Historical Building, and many other sites. The name Dar es Salaam means "the house of peace" and is an exciting mix of sightseeing, shopping, and entertainment. The largest city in Tanzania reflects a fascinating blend of its rich historical past and its sophisticated contemporary present.  Learn about interesting facts of the city as well as some incredible historical sights that are all part of the adventure of the full-day tour.

Zanzibar: Changuu Island and Stone Town Tour with Lunch

6. Zanzibar: Changuu Island and Stone Town Tour with Lunch

The tour begins with a private boat trip to Changuu Island, also known as Prison Island or Turtle Island. The island earned its name after it was purchased in 1893 by the British First Minister of Zanzibar who constructed a prison complex here. Although no prisoners were ever housed on the island, it was eventually used as a quarantine station for yellow fever sufferers, and later became home to more than 50 tortoises who still live there today. On the island, enjoy some free time to explore the beauty of this wild paradise, and get up close to the tortoises that roam freely. Some of the tortoises here are more than 100 years old, and you can even get close enough to feed them and take photos. You can also find peacocks and antelope on the island, then cool off in the crystal clear waters during a snorkel session in search of marine life, colorful fish, and coral reef. After your visit to Changuu Island, head towards one of the most historically prominent and artistic destinations in East Africa, Stone Town. Upon arrival, admire the fascinating architecture of the town, which dates back to the 19th century, and reflects the diverse influences of Swahili, Arab, Persian, Indian and European cultures. Learn about how the town earned its UNESCO World Heritage status, and then visit the Old Slave Market and the City Market. Here you can shop for almost anything whilst soaking up the authentic East African atmosphere and meeting the locals. Once you’ve wandered through the market it’s time to visit the Palace Museum, the local House of Wonder, and of course Freddie Mercury’s former home. There’s also time for a trip to the Peace Memorial and the Natural History Museum before ending the tour with a delicious local lunch at a traditional restaurant.

Zanzibar: Jozani Forest National Park and Dolphin Encounter

7. Zanzibar: Jozani Forest National Park and Dolphin Encounter

Begin your experience early, as the morning is the best time to spot dolphins. Start in the Kizimkazi fishing village, which is one of the oldest capitals on Zanzibar Island. While looking out for dolphins, dive in to snorkel among the wonderful coral reef and the variety of colorful fish and marine creatures. If the dolphins are in a good mood, you can witness them goofing around.  As you will be in their natural habitat, there is no guarantee you'll have the chance to swim with the dolphins; your guide will do their best to ensure they are comfortable so you can enjoy their beautiful energy, whether up close or from a distance.  The trip to Zanzibar Jozani Forest national park involves a visit to the high, dense groundwater forest. Home to the red colobus monkey, a rare species only found in Zanzibar, take the opportunity to get up close to the wild animals. Other animals within the park include blue monkeys, elephant shrews, and bushbabies. Proceed then to the mangrove, through which the conservation authority has built a bridge to allow visitors to observe the wildlife without trampling on it.  Next, stop at a local restaurant for a Swahili table buffet lunch. Before heading back to your hotel, make a short stop at the community project, Zanzibar Butterfly Center. Even though the site is not so big, it is a lovely place to relax and enjoy the moment before ending your experience.

Zanzibar: Stone Town & Spice Farm Tour with Lunch

8. Zanzibar: Stone Town & Spice Farm Tour with Lunch

Begin your private tour in Stone Town, a city of prominent historical and artistic importance in East Africa. Its architecture, mostly dating back to the 19th century, reflects the diverse influences underlying Swahili culture, giving a unique mixture of Arab, Persian, Indian and European elements. For this reason, the town was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2000. Start by exploring the Old Slave Market site and Anglican Church, before strolling through the narrow streets towards the City Market. Marvel at the fresh products and fruits and watch how locals buy and sell anything here. Observe the hustle and bustle of the fish auction. After this, take a sightseeing tour of the main buildings in Stone Town including the Palace Museum and the House of Wonder, which is the largest and tallest building in the town, also known as Bait-al-ajab. Continue on to see the Old Fort, Tippu Tip, and of course, the most famous, Freddie Mercury’s House. Also visit the Peace Memorial and Natural History Museum, amongst other attractions.  Next, learn about one of the main industries in the region: spices. Discover how the islands produce cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, and black pepper. For this reason, the Zanzibar Archipelago, together with Tanzania's Mafia Island, is sometimes called the "Spice Islands". There are many spice farms in Zanzibar and for the next portion of the tour, you will visit a real organic spice farm. When you arrive, the spice farm guide will describe how the spices are grown and used as medication and flavor in dishes. See spices like vanilla, cardamom, nutmeg, and many more. It will be possible to touch, smell and taste the spices and herbs directly from plants. Later, take the opportunity to join a cassava leaf harvest, make coconut milk, and practice some cooking. Even more, a coconut tree climber will pick some fresh young coconut fruits for you to try. End the trip with lunch at the spice farm and the opportunity to purchase spices from the shop (cash only).

Stone Town: Stone Town and Prison Island Private Day Trip

9. Stone Town: Stone Town and Prison Island Private Day Trip

See the National Museum of Zanzibar (rebuilt in 1883) and the Arab fort while passing along bazaar streets towards the famous Freddie Mercury house. See the old slave market, fruit market, and spice market — don’t miss the classic Zanzibar curved doors decorating the stone town.  After you have explored Stone Town, you’ll have an opportunity to take a short break before heading to Prison Island. Prison Island is also known as Changuu Island, the nickname came from the island being used by some sultans of Zanzibar to detain enslaved people. While you are on this island, you can swim and take pictures with giant tortoises. 

Dar Es Salaam: Overnight Safari at Mikumi National Park

10. Dar Es Salaam: Overnight Safari at Mikumi National Park

Day 1: Dar es Salaam – Mikumi National Park Enjoy breakfast that is served at the hotel of your choice and meet your driver-guide for an introduction and a short briefing. Collect your packed lunch and drive to Mikumi National Park for an afternoon game drive.  Mikumi National Park itself is nestled between Uluguru Mountain to the northeast, Udzungwa Mountains, and the Rift Valley escarpment to the southwest as part of the Selous ecosystem. This area offers the highest game density of the entire conservation area that lies west of Dar es Salaam City and 107 km from the nearest town named Morogoro located on the highway from Dar es Salaam to Zambia, covering an area of 3230 km².  Marvel at the big diversity of animals and observe lions, elephants, buffaloes, hippopotamus, crocodiles, and many more with different bird species. Have some lunch en route to the Park and enjoy afternoon game drives in the park till sunset. Savor dinner and have your overnight sleep at Camp Bastian.  Day 2: Mikumi National Park – Dar es Salaam Wake up and have some breakfast at the Camp, followed by early morning game drive in the Park. Discover animals on their morning moments searching their breakfast After a hot lunch served at the camp, you will drive back to Dar es Salaam and be dropped off at the hotel of your choice or the airport for your onward flight.

Other Sightseeing Options in Zanzibar Archipelago

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What people are saying about Zanzibar Archipelago

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 335 reviews

A highly recommendable tour. The bay near Stone Town is incredibly beautiful, the sand bank is amazing, Prison Island also fascinating. We got to see lots of animals (starfish en masse of varying colors!, dikdiks, innumerable giant turtles, peacocks...), the tent thingy they put up at the sandbank was really perfect, the boat transfer top. The guide kind and helpful.

It was really great, the cave, mega. The Rock is a must see. However, I would particularly like to highlight the work of the team on Zanzibar. You gave us a wonderful birthday. With a band in front of the cave, cake in a skirt. Thank you very much. Also, I would like to thank the mega guide who accompanied us for the last two days. Ahmet, thanks for everything

We really enjoyed the trip. The driver was at the hotel at the agreed time and drove us to the respective destinations. At each place we could decide for ourselves how long we wanted to stay and when we wanted to leave again. For lunch we stopped in a small restaurant where the food was very good and very fresh.

Wonderful tour to explore the city! Great for a solo traveler wanting to see the city safely

Super exciting experience which can be highly recommended - our guide Abdulla was fantastic.