40 Things To Do in Zanzibar (Part 2)

By Mark Wiens 21 Comments

If you missed Part 1, check it out here.

The Zanzibar archipelago of islands is located in the Indian Ocean, about 25 km off the coast of Tanzania, East Africa. Unguja Island is the largest and most populous island, also referred to just as Zanzibar Island.

This list of things to do in Zanzibar only pertains to the island of Unguja.

21. Bwejuu Beach Village

Bwejuu is a small Zanzibari village located on the East coast of Unguja island. The town is known for fishing and the harvesting of seaweed. The people are friendly and the lanky swaying palms induce an attitude of relaxation.

Bwejuu Beach - Zanzibar
Things To Do in Zanzibar – Bwejuu Beach, Zanzibar

22. Zanzibar Anglican Cathedral Stone Town Anglican Cathedral

Right next to the old slave market in Stone Town is the first Anglican Cathedral in East Africa.

Admission: 1000 TSH
Hours: 8 am – 6 pm Mon – Fri, Still hold Sunday morning services

23. St. Josephs Cathedral

The Cathedral was built in French architectural style by French missionaries. The steeples are a prominent part of the skyline of Stone Town.

St. Josephs Cathedral - Zanzibar
Things to do in Zanzibar – St. Josephs Cathedral

24. Kiwengwa Caves

A trek through the wet forested reserve and a guided visit to the Kiwengwa caves is a fun thing to do in Zanzibar.

25. Drink Ginger Coffee Zanzibar Ginger Coffee

Black coffee with a tinge of ginger is a special drink in Zanzibar. The coffee is served sugarless, but people nibble on sweet peanut brittle to sweeten everything up! Babu serves an excellent cup of ginger coffee in the late afternoon on the wall of the Old Fort in Stone Town.

26. Deep Sea Fishing

Off the coast of Zanzibar are a few amazing spots in the deep sea for fishing. Various companies offer deals for snagging the big bites! Check out fishing Zanzibar and Zanzibar fishing.

27. Eat Zanzibari Pilau and Biryani

Don’t miss out on the Zanzibari food specialties of biryani and pilau – and don’t forget to judge for yourself which is better!

Zanzibari Biryani
Things To Eat in Zanzibar – Biryani, Pilau

28. Make a Durian Pit-stop Zanzibar Durian

If you are passionate about the king of fruits (Durian), you may be ecstatic when you bump into the precious fruit on the island of Zanzibar!

29. Refreshing Sugar Cane Juice Zanzibar Sugar Cane Juice

Squeezed on the streets of Zanzibar with a hint of lime and ginger, sugar cane juice is ultimately refreshing on a hot sweaty day. Drinking ginger sugar cane juice is one of the things to do in Zanzibar to keep you refreshed and feeling great!

30. Nungwi – Northern Coast

Located at the Northern tip of Zanzibar island lies the sleepy town of Nungwi. It’s Northern location avoids tide changes, so swimming in the sparkling waters is possible all day long!

North Coast Zanzibar
Things to do in Zanzibar – Northern Coast

31. Forodhani Gardens

Among my favorite things to do in Zanzibar is visit the Forodhani Gardens for street food on the waters edge of Stone Town. In the evening, locals gather to spend time relaxing and eating a large selection of grilled seafood.

Note: For the freshest food, choose to eat where there is more of a local crowd and line of people.

Forodhani Gardens - Stone Town
Zanzibar Attractions – Forodhani Gardens

32. Paje Water Sports Paje Beach - Zanzibar

A beautiful turquoise beach with opportunities for all sorts of water sports makes Paje a pristine paradise and great place to stay.

33. Old Hamamni Persian Baths

Unfortunately, the baths are no longer in use, but it is still worth a visit to Zanzibar’s first public bath facility.

34. Passing Show Restaurant Passing Show Biryani - Zanzibar

Another popular dining establishment located in the Malindi area of Stone Town is at the Passing Show Hotel eatery. There’s a fine selection of some of Zanzibar’s finest specialties and a cabinet full of interesting baked goods.

35. Swim with Dolphins – Kizimkazi

Dolphin tours are available from most tourist offices around Zanzibar. In the ocean, swimming with dolphins is an experience to cherish and one of the most thrilling things to do in Zanzibar!

36. Pet the Giant Tortoises Giant Tortoise in Zanzibar

Originally a gift from the Seychelles, the giant tortoises are located on Prison Island Zanzibar. Though riding the hard shelled animals is no longer permitted, the tortoises took me back to the age of dinosaurs!

37. Former High Court High Court Zanzibar

The old High Court is a beautiful colonial style building built with an Islamic design and Moorish arches. The aging of the structure has added to it’s beauty!

38. Kendwa Beach

A personal favorite destination of mine is the town of Kendwa. The lifestyle and laid-back atmosphere of Kendwa is unparalleled.

Kendwa Rocks
Sunsetting at Kendwa

39. Football / Volleyball on the Beach

There’s no better feeling in the late afternoon than running around on the powdery sand while playing beach football or volleyball.

40. Relax

Put on an attitude of relaxation, this is the island of Zanzibar!

Stone Town Sunset
Relaxing in Zanzibar

Click here to check out Part 1

21 comments. I'd love to hear from you!

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  • yonafika akida

    7 years ago

    Zanzibar is truly awesome.I can testify that.Thanks for sharing this experience.As an east African tourism promoting blog owner,am so happy to hear what people say about our continent.Welcome to Tanzania,Kenya,Uganda,Rwanda ,Burundi.These all countries have good place and things to do.

  • Phillip

    10 years ago

    41. Visit Michamvi Peninsula; have a cocktail on The Rock, eat Zanzibar’s cheapest lobster at Pweza Beach Restaurant and do a sunset cruise on the Free Spirit dhow. Best day out ever!!

  • Ahmed Almarjeby

    11 years ago

    Wow, brings back memory, I am a native of Zanzibar but never grew up there, I visited a few times as a kid but it has been over 30 years since I have been there, I am living in Miami and would love to take my 4 kids to see the culture where my parents were born. I grew up in UAE but called Florida my home for the last 22 years. Thank you for the pictures and sharing tour experiences brought back great memories

    • Mark Wiens

      11 years ago

      Hi Ahmed, thanks a lot for stopping by and sharing! Hope you can go to visit Zanzibar and bring your kids, that would be a lot of fun!

  • Naomi

    13 years ago

    So glad I have found your site – thak you for sharing. A friend and I are planing a trip in Mid october to early November 2011. We are looking at 21 day’s staying at a South African owned B&B between Paje & Beweju (we are from SA) do you recomend we rather move around, take a package and move around or just stay at one place? We are not adventure travelers and just want to relax but experiance the local food, where we stay they have a resturant but the food is borring! What do you recoend? We have a budget of USD4000.00 for both for the island – flights already paid.

    • Mark Wiens

      13 years ago

      Hey Naomi, thanks so much for looking at my site and for the comment. Glad you planned a trip to Zanzibar, you’ll have a fantastic time.
      If you have 21 days, I think that you have enough time to move around to a few different locations around the island. Perhaps you could divide your time between Paje / Bwejuu, North Coast (Nungwi, Kendwa), just a few days in Stone Town, and maybe a few days to explore (only if up for it). You’ll be able to find local food all around the island, though near the beaches it will be harder to locate (as it caters more towards hotel/guest house restaurants). Stone Town is the best place to eat local food, especially biryani and pilau. Hope this helps and let me know if you have anymore questions!

      If you are interested, here is a video I made about Zanzibar (with a lot of food): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mf2up8PFLJQ

    • Naomi

      13 years ago

      Delighted with your prompt response. Living in South Africa we are quite security conscious, especially being 2 women travelling together. We only thought of staying at KILIMA KIDOGO because we had other SA friends whom had a pleasant experience at the SA owned B&B. We had a look at the diner menu and it was very boring and European – why on earth do I want to have pizza – I can have that at home! We want to be there from the 15th of October to return 5 November. Is there anywhere specific accommodation / village that you would suggest we stay, we want to hire 2 Vespa’s to use at day to explore and go and look for the lovely fruit we did see on your site. We have both ravel abroad but not on our own and nothing as adventures lik this (well not compared to what you do J. In Stone Town – any overnight suggestions? We thought of staying for 2/3 nights and experience that first and look for the more quite areas. We do not like big hotels and would just want to be safe and in a area where we can experience the Island local live without to much tourist influence but again safe. We live ona farm ad have dial-up internet …. That is ancient I know so I would have to visit a friend that lives 1 hour up the road to look at your video’s. Have a fantastic day.

    • Mark Wiens

      13 years ago

      Hey Naomi,
      Depending exactly where Kilima Kidogo is located, there will probably be a few local Zanzibari neighborhood restaurants near. You’ll probably just have to check out the area once you arrive. By way of food, you will for sure get the most choice and local selection in Stone Town.
      When I was in Stone Town last, I stayed at a place called Karibi Inn. It’s very nice, quite cheap, and in a good location. The staff are very nice as well and willing to chat and offer information.
      Zanzibar get’s a lot of tourism, and even as 2 solo traveling women, it should be pretty safe. Just be careful with sales touts (that try to deal drugs) that sometimes follow tourists around, but they are more of just an annoyance, not trouble. On a whole, people are extremely kind and willing to help.
      As for the Vespa’s, just be careful of traffic. There’s not a lot, but sometimes the buses can get going pretty fast – like in all of Africa.

    • Kristina

      12 years ago

      Hi, Mark,
      Thanks for the all this information, pictures, video and emotions 🙂
      I’ll go at Zanzibar after two weeks and today our guide to be ask us to choose the activities we want to see there…Here they are:

      Prison Island & Spice Farm (whole day) – $ 100
      Jozani Forest & Dolphin Search (whole day) – $ 100
      Jozani Forest (half day) – $ 50.
      Dolphin Search – $ 80

      Could you tell me if it’s possible to hire someone – local, who could take me and a friend of mine to these places for more reasonable prices?
      Thank you !

    • Mark Wiens

      12 years ago

      Hey Kristina, thanks for stopping by and glad this article could help out with your Zanzibar planning!
      Those prices are definitely a little on the high side. You know, I’m not sure of any specific tour companies or Zanzibar guides, but I know there are plenty of travel companies within Stone Town and many of them offer decent prices – and remember you can really bargain with them to get a better deal on a tour. Sorry I can’t help you too much… Hope you have an amazing trip to Zanzibar!

  • Bama

    13 years ago

    The foods at Forodhani Gardens seem delicious!!! Nungwi and Prison Island also look interesting..

    • Mark Wiens

      13 years ago

      Yah, there are some great foods at Forodhani as long as you choose the fresh stalls!

  • Naz

    13 years ago

    Mark, how long do u stay in Zanzibar to do all these things in the list? i need to get my durian dose but unfortunately Southeast Asia is way too far. Do they have durians all year round? Thanks Mark for this beautiful post.

    • Mark Wiens

      13 years ago

      You are welcome Naz! Thanks for taking a look. Do you plan of taking a trip to Zanzibar soon?

      I have been to Zanzibar a number of times, about a week each time. I’d say to do all of the things on these lists, you would need over 1 week. If you want to do these things + relax on the beaches and take it easy, upwards of 2 weeks would be great! Of course, if you only have a few days, you can still highly enjoy the Island.

      I like to hear that you need a durian dose! I’m not sure exactly when durian is available on the islands, but I was there last in December and they were available.

  • Seiltanz

    13 years ago

    Greats tipps. Thanks Mark!

  • Jeremy B

    13 years ago

    Interesting list of things to see and do. I admit Zanzibar has never been on my radar but it’s great to get to know a little more about it.

    • Mark Wiens

      13 years ago

      Great Jeremy, and if you ever make it to that side of the world, I’m sure you will enjoy Zanzibar!