No, this is not Photoshop, this is reality without filters. Africa, lush white sand, the blue ocean, and life under the patronage of “Akuna Matata”. Too beautiful to be true. In this article, I share some ideas here about the vacation on the island of Zanzibar in Tanzania and what you need to know before visiting.
Zanzibar is a former British colony where the slave trade flourished in the 19th century. Nowadays, this island is a semi-autonomous part of Tanzania, one of the largest countries in Africa. The administrative center is located in the city of Zanzibar. Yes, Zanzibar in Zanzibar.
By the way, the legendary Freddie Mercury from the Queen group was born in September 5, 1945, on the island of Zanzibar.
The destination is still not very massive for our travelers. And, attention, there are practically no tourists from China. The local guide said that everything will change after the advent of new flights from China.
How to get to Zanzibar Island
On such long journeys, airfare is a large part of the budget. There are no direct flights to Zanzibar from Ukraine and other CIS countries. You can get flights with transfers from $ 500-600.
The most convenient flight options are from Turkish Airlines (with a change in Istanbul) or Qatar Airways (with a change in Doha).
From the airport, it is better to find a transfer in advance, which costs about $ 40. At the exit from the airport, you are surrounded by a crowd of locals who grab your things and begin to carry them away.
Just refuse this service, right away, this is done not out of spiritual goodness, but in search of earnings. In principle, you should not expect much from Zanzibar airport, this is Africa
Where to live on the island of Zanzibar
Many dreams to go to the Maldives, but Zanzibar is much more interesting in every sense. And unlike the Maldives, in Zanzibar, there is the opportunity to make the so-called “paradise” vacation more budget.
Here everyone will find something for themselves – from an exclusive five-star hotel to a budget bungalow worth $20 per day. The beaches are equally beautiful for everyone.
Currency in Tanzania
The official currency is the Tanzanian shilling. You can pay in dollars, but there is one thing but. Locals refuse to accept dollars issued before 2009. This is explained by the fact that older bills are accepted at a low rate. If local guides can make concessions, then in some hotels they will not accept under any pretext.
It is better to take small bills with you. Well, do not go with a lot of cash on the island, where a person can earn $ 50 per month.
In Tanzania, tips are welcome, everywhere. Bargaining is possible and necessary. For tourists, all prices are overpriced and often taken from the ceiling.
Do I need a visa to Tanzania?
Visas to Tanzania can be arranged at the airport upon arrival. It is a pleasure of $ 50. You can pay by card or cash. First, you need to take a separate queue to pay the visa fee, and then get a visa in the next window.
The process is sluggish, but nothing, it’s Africa, Akuna Matata! Lifehack from the Zanzibar border guards. To take a photo on a visa, you can simply take a photo of the first page of your passport on a web camera. And voila, you’re done.
When is it best to go to Zanzibar?
Any time except the rainy season. The rainy season in Zanzibar lasts from March to May (heavy rains) and from October to November (light rains). The temperature is comfortable all year round, around +27, and up to +30.
The best time to visit is considered to be from July to October. In winter, the island is also comfortable and without rain.
Do I need vaccinations to enter Tanzania?
No. If you come to Zanzibar from Europe. A yellow fever vaccination certificate may be required if you fly from other African countries. From what I understood, they selectively check.
Before the trip, uniquely arrange insurance, it will be calmer. Medicine and Africa are a kind of combination, but there are still hospitals at the European level. We were lucky because when the need arose, North Valley Hospital was close by.
Holidays on the island of Zanzibar: Ocean, ocean, ocean
It seems to me that the main reason to cross the floor of the world for the sake of Zanzibar is the ocean. So far this is the best ocean that my eyes have seen. Water is just a cosmic color that does not change throughout the day. Despite the possible waves, ebbs, and flows.
By the way, about the ebbs. Zanzibar has strong ebbs, like many other islands in the Indian Ocean. The main thing is to choose the right coast on the island of Zanzibar.
There are 6 main beaches
• Nungwi (North Coast) – Least Low Tides
• Kendwa (northwest coast)
• Matemwe (northeast coast)
• Kiwengwa Pongwe (northeast coast)
• Kizimkazi (south coast)
• Dongwe (southeast coast)
The northern coast is least affected by low tides. Not comme il faut, when the ocean just goes a kilometer away. Plus, with strong tides, there is a chance to step on a sea urchin.
On any beach, a tourist who appears on the horizon automatically turns into a target for trying to sell something. Security is on duty at the beaches of the hotels.
They sell it intrusively, but everything is not as neglected as, for example, in Sri Lanka or Cambodia. Because the Africans themselves are smiling and relaxed.
On the beach, you can meet Masai men, representatives of one of the most famous tribes of East Africa.