Zanzibar City is the economic and government capital of the Zanzibar Archipelago. The city is divided into two sections, Stone Town and Ng’ambo. Ng’ambo is the newer area focused on economics and growth. Stone Town is the center of all tourism in the city and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Unless you are visiting on business, you will likely not find a reason to visit Ng’ambo.
|Airports||Abeid Amani Karume International Airport (ZNZ)|
There is an unlimited selection of food in all price ranges. Being right on the Indian Ocean, the seafood is delicious, but can be pricey even at some of the local restaurants so shop around before deciding where to dine. Every evening there is a food market set up at the waterfront which can be the best place to try some of the local seafood and delicacies.
Due to the Muslim culture of the Zanzibar Archipelago, some restaurants and hotels won’t serve or allow alcohol. If you want drinks with dinner, you won’t have a problem finding places that do serve or shops that sell it.
|Budget breakfast||Almost all hotels will include breakfast in the price of the room. If not, local stalls and small cafes have cheap and simple breakfast options||$1.58 - $2.35|
|Budget lunch||Street vendors and small local cafes cater to both local residents and tourists. Ordering seafood increases the price drastically||$2.14 - $4.70|
|Budget dinner||Smaller, local restaurants offer daily “specials” depending on what they were able to purchase. Always delicious and normally the cheapest option||$2.78 - $6.41|
|Beer .5L||Most East African beer is sold in .5L bottles. Because of the Muslim culture on the island, many local restaurants and hotels will not sell alcohol||$1.54 - $2.35|
|Beer .5L (retail)||If your hotel doesn’t sell alcohol, you can purchase beer from many smaller shops in town. You may have to put a deposit down on the bottle||$0.94|
|Soda and water||Tap water isn’t safe to drink, but you can easily buy water and sodas at any small shop||$0.86 - $2.14|
|Konyagi .5L bottle||By far the cheapest alcohol in town, this local spirit tastes most like cheap gin and can be purchased at every shop and restaurant that sells alcohol||$1.03 - $2.57|
|Month||High F||Low F||Precipitations(INCH)|
Zanzibar Town is a located just south of the Equator and offers a hot and often humid climate. The nicest time of year to visit is from June to mid October when there is very little rainfall and humidity is bearable.
From March to May, the area endures the “long rains” which comprise of long afternoon downpours that flood the streets and bring high humidity. The “short rains” normally happen in November and December. Although humidity can be quite high, daily rain doesn’t normally last long enough to ruin your day.
Due to the huge numbers of tourists visiting the area, prices have increased drastically in the past ten years. However, it is still possible to find reasonably priced accommodation. Though there are no hostels in the city, many smaller hotels offer single rooms with a shared bathroom for a discounted price. Be ready to climb winding staircases at almost all of the hotels in the city; the buildings are all tall and thin!
Hotel seasons follow the weather and the travel habits of the Western world. The two high seasons run from Christmas to mid March and July to the end of August. It will save you time and stress to book ahead during high season.
During low season, prices drop by as much as 30% and you may be able to bargain even lower if you are staying for more than one night or traveling in a group.
|23.91 - 28.69|
|76.52 - 77.47|
|65.04 - 87.99|
|83.21 - 131.99|
|218.07 - 423.71|
|Hostel Bed||15.30 - 23.91|
Because Stone Town is a labyrinth of small alleys and multi-story structures, you won’t need to pay for taxis; vehicles can’t get down most of the “roads” in this area. Almost everything is within walking distance and when you realize that you’re lost in the maze, there are plenty of young Tanzanians ready to offer their guide services for a reasonable fee.
|Taxi from airport to city center||18.39 - 21.38|
|Public bus from airport to city center||0.17 - 0.21|
|3-km taxi ride in Zanzibar Town||1.37 - 2.74|