Zanzibar – “The Spice Island Is Calling!”
Zanzibar Island is a province of Tanzania and part of the wider Zanzibar archipelago. A real life paradise island, it boasts an array of stunning sandy beaches with vivid coral reefs, alongside the quaint charm of the historic Stone Town.
Thanks to its accessible location, Zanzibar has historically been a focal point for traders and settlers travelling up and down the east coast of Africa. Walking through Stone Town, you are instantly immersed in this rich heritage of predominantly Arabian and Indian influences by the stunning traditional architecture. You can even book a one-day cruise on a dhow fishing vessel, to visit reefs and nearby islands. Seaweed thrives around the coast of Zanzibar and you will see it blooming like flowers in the clear waters. Exports of cleaned and dried seaweed have generated a new source of wealth for the fishermen and women of this region.
Your most prized sighting in Zanzibar is likely to be one of Africa’s rarest primates, the Zanzibar red colobus monkey. This colony has been isolated on the island for at least 1,000 years and has evolved into its own distinct species, with unique coat patterns, calls and food habits. With as few as 1,500 remaining, the Zanzibar red colobus has become a symbol of conservation.
Getting Around the Capital of Zanzibar – Stone Town
The capital of Zanzibar, Stone Town is both fascinating and disorientating. A labyrinth of alleys amid whitewashed houses reveals a treasure around every corner! Whether it’s the colors, sounds and pungent smells of a market, lively street vendors, or one of the town’s magnificent palaces, you’ll feel as if you’ve stepped into a living legend. A Stone Town tour incorporates the Palace of Wonders, the Arab Fort, and the Anglican Church, and you can even get a snapshot of the house where Freddie Mercury was born! Take your time to get lost among the alleyways and drop into some of the town’s quaint shops, before indulging in a sunset drink at Africa House.
Zanzibar Island Gallery
ZANZIBAR ISLAND MAP
Wito's Top Picks - Luxury Beach Resorts in Zanzibar
Elewana Kilindi Zanzibar
This is one of our top recommendations for honeymooning couples as it offers exclusive luxury in abundance, and seems to have been designed with romantic indulgence at its heart. The Eastern-inspired domed pavilions are double suites, each with two private plunge pools that are connected by fairytale water features and a magical waterfall. You can also enjoy a private verandah and sunbeds overlooking the Indian Ocean, and a dramatic rainfall shower. The infinity swimming pool and palatial bar, with its own waterfall feature, are the finishing touches to your personal paradise.
Xanadu Villas and Retreat
One of our newest accommodation partners, we would rate Xanadu among the top luxury villa resorts on the island of Zanzibar. There are six stylish, highly finished villas, with one or two bedrooms, which are ideal for couples and small groups who are looking for a stunning and contemporary beach getaway. One of the things we love about Xanadu is that it’s great for foodies. If gourmet dishes are high on your menu, the Michelin starred chefs won’t disappoint. Even better, you can choose where you’d like your meal to be served, giving you complete flexibility and privacy. As well as cultural trips to nearby Stone Town, Xanadu is ideally situated for diving and snorkeling. It’s certainly a high-end option, with a price tag to match, but for families, couples and groups who want an indulgent beach retreat, it’s hard to beat.
Matemwe Retreat Villa
Personal service reaches a whole new level at Matemwe! As well as a private butler, you have your own personal chef who will discuss a new menu with you every day. This gives you the freedom and flexibility to enjoy an exclusive moonlit dinner, or to join other guests for a delicious seafood buffet in the al fresco restaurant. Each of the four private villas has a roof terrace, with plunge pool and sun deck, and a verandah for watching the fishing dhows bobbing on the Indian Ocean. We love that so many local materials have been used in the construction of the villas and furniture, including local stone, Makuti thatch and coconut wood. Even the soft furnishings have been handcrafted by local Zanzibari women. The villas reflect the bold and vibrant colors of the Spice Island and make you feel right at home.
White Sand Luxury Villas & Spa
Located on Paje Beach, White Sand Luxury Villas & Spa offers everything from fine dining and a rooftop lounge to a spa and water sports center, specializing in kite surfing. All the villas have private pools, and there is also a large swimming pool and smaller children’s pool for general use, making this a great spot for families. There’s something for everyone, combining ultimate relaxation with high-energy activity.
The prime location, though, is the beachfront villa, which is perfect for a romantic holiday for two. You have private access to the beach, as well as a private pool, a panoramic rooftop terrace, and an outdoor bathtub and rain shower. For an unforgettable honeymoon or couple’s getaway, we highly recommend this unique villa.
This is one of our favorites for laid-back luxury, with a relaxed atmosphere that encompasses everything from the décor to the service. The nine en suite villas are private and intimate, and you can soak up the view from your own, oceanfront terrace. The prime cliff-top location offers an unbroken panorama of the glistening Indian Ocean, and you also have exclusive access to a cove and lagoon, for swimming and snorkeling. The service is friendly and personal, and your stay is all-inclusive, so you can indulge as much as you like with no nasty surprises. It’s the perfect place to relax and unwind with someone special, as if you’re the only two people on the planet.
Tulia Zanzibar Beach Resort
The crescent bay of Pongwe beach is a vivid wonderland of almost unbroken coral reef, making this five-star resort perfect for those who love snorkeling and swimming. Your suite comes with a private terrace, and is filled with luxurious furniture and fabrics. Staff are happy to be flexible in order to meet your needs and preferences, which is great for our clients who want the true bespoke experience.
Park Hyatt Zanzibar
For those who are entranced by the beauty, history and culture of Zanzibar, we recommend Park Hyatt as the ultimate base. From here, you can set out to explore the maze of alleyways, markets, mosques and palaces that make Stone Town so unique, as well as sites such as Forodhani Gardens, the Old Fort, the Old Dispensary, the Peace Memorial Museum, the Palace Museum and the House of Wonders.
With the hotel split across two buildings, we love the seamless blend of heritage charm and contemporary elegance that gives Park Hyatt its unique character. As well as stylish guest rooms and delicious, authentic cuisine, you can enjoy the infinity pool, Anantara Spa and fitness center. Park Hyatt is a great choice for those who want a combination of luxury and culture, and we also highly recommend it for business travelers as it offers meeting rooms and event facilities like no other.