Jozani Forest is part of the only formally protected terrestrial habitat on Ujunga Island. The natural and indigenous forests are habitat for Suni and duiker (two small species of antelope), civet, bush babies, mongoose, chameleons, tree hyrax and blue monkeys. There are also some good birding opportunities, but the superstars are the troops of habituated beautiful red coloubus monkeys.

Be sure you are with a guide and obey the rules of primate viewing (among others: no eye contact, keep a safe distance and don’t encourage interaction). Be sure to take the walk through the mangrove forests of the opposite side of the road to the entrance and headquarter.

The north coast is the “party” side of the island so if you’re looking for some nightlife combined with sun, sea and beach during the day head to the Kendwa and Nungwi. It’s also possible to find some nice quieter places to stay in the area.
Originally a detention centre built by a wealthy Arab prince for badly behaved slaves, the island then served as a quarantine area for arrivals from India and now houses several hotels and a colony of giant tortoises, whose origins on the island are unclear but are believed to have been brought from the Seychelles. The reef surrounding the island offers some of the best snorkelling and diving in the area.

While on the island, this is one activity not to be missed! Learn how the various spices grow on one of the many plantations in the Kidichi area open to visitors. Tours often offer a sample of local herbal teas and sometimes include lunch. You’ll learn about ginger, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon, annatto, turmeric, vanilla and much more. At the end you can stock up on ingredients fresh from the farm to refresh you spice cupboard at home.

A visit to Stone Town is like a step back in time. Visions of a thousand and one Arabian nights spring to mind. The place is full of history and some of the more interesting buildings are: Old Fort, House of Wonders, Palace Museum, Anglican Cathedral, Dhow Countries Music Academy and The Old Dispensary. A wander around will yield sights of hundreds of old beautiful, intricately carved doors along with surprise views of fountains and gardens. The shopping is great with many local crafts available such as hand woven kikois, soap made from coconut oil and local spices as well as the spices themselves and much, much more.

There are many popular places to eat around Stone Town but one of the quintessential experiences not to be missed is the evening spread in Forodhani Gardens. Recently renovated by the Agha Khan, this open air, seafront food market offers everything from barbequed squid to freshly squeezed sugar cane juice to a local specialty, Zanzibar pizza.

When visiting Stone Town please remember that you’re visiting a conservative Muslim society and scantily clad Westerners do cause offence. Appropriate respectful dress includes long (or at least knee length) skirts and trousers for women and slacks or knee length shorts for men. Sleeveless T-shirts or skimpy tank tops are not appropriate.

The archipelago of Zanzibar consists of the large island of Unguja as well as smaller islands surrounding it and neighbouring island Pemba, famous for huge stands of clove plantations. Zanzibar is steeped in history back as far as the 7th century and there were many European Consulates on the island in the 1800’s. Here is where Livingstone’s body rested before being shipped back to Europe. There is also the shadow of the slave and ivory trade, thankfully both abolished now. Annual art and music festival liven up the scene and the north and east coast beaches are among the finest in the world. Visitors looking for a more active adventure can snorkel, dive, swim with dolphins or sail on a dhow. The climate is what you’d expect on a tropical island situated just south of the equator: hot and humid; but sea breezes manage to cool things off.

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