Blogs from Zanzibar, Tanzania, Africa - page 11

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Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar June 13th 2011

We had a long journey from Perth to Johannesburg in South Africa. This took 11 hours, then we flew to Nairobi in Kenya and then finally to Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. The first night was at the School of St Jude's and the next day we went to Zanzibar and we have 4 nights in Stone Town and then 4 nights at Kwenda Beach. It is a very interesting place full of history and we are enjoying it very much... read more

Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar June 12th 2011

I. "No Shoes, No News"! I have never really been a beach vacation-type of traveler. I’ve generally focused on historical and cultural explorations and/or outdoorsy endeavors of a physical nature (trekking, particularly). Just hanging out at the beach, especially with tons of other people around, has never appealed to me. But Zanzibar might have made me a convert – at least Matemwe Beach has. For some, Zanzibar is all about the beach; tourists coming from safari in the Serengeti beeline it directly to one of the seaside hotels, sometimes bypassing fascinating, beguiling Stone Town altogether. Several acquaintances back in Sudan actually thought it was odd that I was planning to spend most of my time in town, rather than relaxing under a palm tree. (Of course, these are the individuals who might find it odd that ... read more
Beach Me
A Swahili Welcome
Rapid Transit

Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar » Zanzibar City June 8th 2011

Before starting graduate school, I worked for a short stint as a host at an Ann Arbor restaurant called Zanzibar Pan-Tropical Bistro. The place’s shtick was that the food was a global fusion representing the tropics from around the world, using spices from that rather broad swath of the world. There was little that was specific to the real Zanzibar, but the name was meant to evoke a sense of the exotic - a faraway land redolent of spices, bathed in salty air. It was an easy choice of name for a “pan-tropical” bistro. Almost everyone has heard the name “Zanzibar”; almost everyone carries an image of what exotic Zanzibar is – or should be. It is an almost a mythic place. Sort of like “Timbuktu”. Except that Zanzibar is a real island, just like Timbuktu ... read more
At the Zanzibar Coffee House
Stone Town from Above
Another View

Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar » Nungwi June 4th 2011

Day 76, “Domingo”, May 15th, thankfully our LAM flight was on schedule to fly to Tanzania. We arrived in Dar es Salam just in time to catch a small plane and arrive in Zanzibar at sunset. We got settled at the Africa House Hotel on the beachfront in historic Stone town. We loved the charm of the hotel that was restored from ruins in an eclectic African and Arabic style that reflects the diversity of Zanzibar. We enjoyed an intimate dinner in the hotel bar before turning in. Day 77, Monday, May 16th, we came to understand why May is low season in Zanzibar. It poured rain most of the day. We dodged the downpour as we explored the narrow streets and museums giving into being soaked but kept warm by the tropical humidity. Zanzibar has ... read more
Sailing Dhow off Mnemba
Stone Town Africa House - View from our window
Exploring the narrow Stone Town streets

Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar » Zanzibar City May 25th 2011

There can be few places in the world that are better for people watch than Jaws Corner in the centre of Zanibar's old Stone Town. An elderly gentleman has set up an impromptu coffee stall, and the junction, where four of Zanzibar's winding alleys converge, has become a meeting place for everyone on the island. The coffee is brewed is two stainless steel kettles, balanced precariously over a small charcoal stove. It's drank in the small handle-less porcelain cups so common in the Muslim world, from Cairo to the Indian Ocean. And when you're finished, the cups are washed clean in rainwater collected from an overflowing gutter that runs from the roofs of one of the surrounding dilapidated buildings,complete with rusty roofs, and rotting shutters hanging ajar on the last hinge. And as you sip the ... read more

Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar » Zanzibar City April 28th 2011

After quitting our jobs, moving out of our apartment and sending our belongings off to storage for a year, we finally began a new chapter of our lives here in Africa. Our first flight from Hong Kong was to Tanzania and our journey commenced on the tropical island of Zanzibar. Zanzibar is a small island of 800,000 people, approx 90 % of which are Muslim. Our first few nights were spent at a beach town called Bwejuu located on the east coast of Zanzibar. The east coast is quiet and most of the beaches are untouched, maintaining their natural beauty. Our timing wasn’t perfect as it was the beginning of the low/rainy season and it rained most days. We made the most of our days staying at the Twisted Palm Lodge, had beach walks, hired a ... read more
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Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar April 9th 2011

East Africa is one of the great travel destinations, drawing upon a centuries old tradition of trading with the outside world, and still having a culture that is so unique, and so African. Here in Tanzania there are the beaming smiles, the Swahili zest, the passion for life ... all thrown in the mix to form the true essence of Africa. From malaria bearing mosquitoes, to oh so persistent flies, ubiquitous geckos climbing the walls, and a vast array of strange looking insects, this indeed is tropical Africa in all her glory. The island of Zanzibar, dear reader, is sure to add some exotic spice to your life as the journal continues. We left off in Casablanca with no movie roles on offer unfortunately, but nevertheless here’s looking at you kid! I boarded an Air Egypt ... read more
Nungwi Beach
Kiwengwa beach
Resort on White Sand beach

Africa » Tanzania » Zanzibar » Zanzibar City March 12th 2011

Hello again…. Finally (after a 2 hour boat ride) arrived in Zanzibar. It was incredibly hot, but in yet another muslim country I had to cover up…not impressed - but as they say here...Hakuna Matata! We immediately met out new group members and much to Danny’s disappointment they were all girls and one 50 year old guy from Canada….oh well! I know travelling is meant to broaden the mind, but when danny refers to wanting better conversation – he really means he wants a guy to chat about sport to! And who says find out about brad and angelina isn’t interesting…………. Anyway, straight off the boat we headed straight to our hotel - it was lovely – a big 4 poster bed with flowing white mosquito nets –and not inside a tent! Loved it! We then ... read more
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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




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