Blogs from Zanzibar, Tanzania, Africa - page 11

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Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar » Zanzibar City March 9th 2011

So after the bright lights of Dubai, we landed back in reality in Nairobi in the evening and met up with Aleem, Carrie’s friend from Uni who lives in Nairobi. He kindly took us out for a bite to eat (best Indian food we have had, including when we went to India!) and a few Tusker beers. Unfortunatley, we left at 7am the next morning so that was the extent of Nairobi that we saw, but it was great to see a friendly face! So, the next morning we were up early and met our group, guide and bus that is taking us all the way to Cape Town in the next 40 days. There are 21 of us in all, with ages ranging from 19 to pensioners. Lots of different nationalities but I am one ... read more
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Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar » Nungwi March 5th 2011

The island of Zanzibar hosts many exhausted climbers fresh from the slopes of Kilimanjaro. Well known for its spices, in particular: cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon and pepper. Zanzibar lies 16 miles from the coast of Tanzania, the group of islands were claimed as a colony or protectorate of the Brits for almost a 100 years until 1964, where it became a republic of Tanzania. The capital of Zanzibar is Stonetown which is a World Heritage site. We grabbed a quick flight from the mainland on a twin engine plane that took us briefly over the Indian Ocean. Our midnight arrival into Stonetown gave us few options and we ended up in a humble hostel down an alley. Availability among some of the better hotels on the island was tight but we did find the Dhow Palace which ... read more
waiting for sardines
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Dhow Palace

Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar » Nungwi March 2nd 2011

Nungwe, Nungwe, Nungwe. What a place? Due to our unfortunate rat situation, we had decided to move on to the next place. I understand that things like this happen and it is okay; it doesn’t make Pajé a bad place, in fact it is a crazy awesome place and I highly suggested it to those interested in kite boarding or kite surfing. It is chill, relaxing, and charming. However, I have to say I highly, highly recommend Nungwe up on the North end of the island. I will not lie for a second when I say it was one of the most beautiful and relaxing places I have ever been, even with a few hasslers here and there. They are much nicer hasslers (ever heard of it is all in the eye of the beholder); now ... read more
Nungwe at Sunset
Nungwe
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Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar March 2nd 2011

After relaxing and re-gaining of our energy, we made our way back to Stone Town for some serious shopping. We were on the hunt of all hunts for scarves and fabrics. We also, as usual, chilled in a lot of cafes, enjoying some nice coffees. As I said before Stone Town is one large maze. It is one of those places where you twist and turn and come around the corner and find some really cute teashop, coffee shop, or clothing store. Stone Town has a strong Muslim influence, so be sure to be reasonably covered when you are walking around shopping. Of course locals are used to the tourists, so your do not need to cover every ounce of skin, but just be respectful and don’t walk around in your bathing suit, even though the ... read more
Stone Town
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Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar March 1st 2011

If you have ever met me, you will know in about 5 minutes all about my love of the ocean and my constant need for salty, ocean breezes and walks in the sand. So my second day in Tanzania started on a different foot than the first. We were armed and ready with our ferry tickets for Zanzibar Island. All I knew at this point in time was that it was an island, so that was more than enough for me. As soon as we were safely aboard the ferry and I was plopped happily in my beanbag chair, it was as though all was right in the world again. Believe it or not there were two beanbag chairs on the outdoor decks of the boat and I snagged one of them. The ferry ride passed ... read more
Ferry Ride
Boat from the Ferry
Signs in Tanzania

Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar February 28th 2011

Zanzibar consists of three islands off the coast of Tanzania. We stayed at the Serena Hotel in Stonetown, on the main island. Across the street from our hotel was the old slave market, and we also toured a former Portuguese fort and cultural museum in building constructed by slaves. Two nights in a row, we ate a seafood smorgasbord on the hotel rooftop overlooking the Indian Ocean. We spent the rest of our trip at a resort on the northeastern coast. The hotel had two big swimming pools and an excellent white sand beach. The hotel is on a bay, so when the tide went out, we walked out to sandbars and laid around in the tide pools. Swimming in this ocean was a strange sensation because the water was warmer than the air temperature (around ... read more
Indian Ocean
Resort
Portuguese Fort

Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar February 28th 2011

Yes, I am fully aware that Zanzibar is still in Tanzania. However, as Tanzania’s blog entry was becoming a bit of a novel I have decided to give Zanzibar its own entry. Incidentally, you still have to go through passport control when getting onto the island and fill out an entirely new visa form, despite it being only an hour or so off the mainland. Strange. Still, we left Dar Es Salaam early in the morning and had an arduous walk with all our luggage to the ferry terminal. The crossing took a few hours, and we arrived in Stone Town around lunchtime. The town is very picturesque, with its narrow streets, bustling markets and distinctly Arab architecture. We decided on Mercury’s Bar for lunch (Freddie Mercury was from Zanzibar) and I had a fantastic seafood ... read more
Sunset at Africa House
The view from our hotel in Zanzibar
Snorkelling at Mnemba Atoll

Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar » Jambiani January 23rd 2011

Jambiani made my day. The locals were friendly - a refreshing change from Stone town and Kendwa - we could walk through the village without being harassed and just enjoyed talking and meeting the locals. I was ready to leave after Kendwa but I'm very grateful we stayed to see Jambiani - it was far more what I expected Zanzibar to be. Although the downside was that the beach literally disappeared during the day, though late afternoon and early in the morning it was perfect. The second day I didn't get out of bed - I think it was a bad reaction to the Malaria tablets but I was dizzy, spaced out, my body and head hurt and I had zero appetite. I thought I might have Malaria, but the test proved otherwise. I slept most ... read more
In the Village and Up a tree
Don and me with a local fishing boat
Me by a local fishing boat

Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar » Kendwa January 19th 2011

Kendwa The plan was to try out the Northern beaches first - the most popular being Nungwi. On the ride, I was reading the Lonely planet about another beach just before Nungwi called Kendwa which sounded really good. Change of plan - we asked the driver to drop us off at Kendwa instead. There was a local who then started speaking to us - he works in Kendwa - and offered advice and assistance. We spent the rest of the trip speaking to him and he helped us get our things off the Dalla dalla when we arrived. Turns out this is the point we lost Don's sleeping bag and towel as they had somehow been unclipped from his backpack. Rahim (sp) walked with us and suggested places to eat and stay. He showed us the ... read more
Me at sunset
Don at sunset
Snorkelling

Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar January 18th 2011

Welcome to Zanzibar. Blue and turquoise shore line, with local fishing boats sprawled along the coast. We walked along the beach for awhile until we saw Old Fort (a Stone Town landmark) and then headed into the narrow, mesh of streets. The buildings were old, grey and falling apart but the history and stories that those building have experienced is evident. It is so easy to get lost though - on more than one occasion I was unable to determine in which direction I needed to head towards. So much for my sense of direction. My lack of sleep probably had a lot to do with how quickly I got annoyed with the people of Zanzibar, but I was surprised and saddened to see how tourism has corrupted and distorted the local culture of the Zanzibar ... read more
Welcome to Zanzibar
Stone Town
Beaches of Stone Town




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