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Stone Town

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Stone Town is the main city on Zanzibar. It is a city of prominent historical and artistic importance in East Africa. Its architecture, mostly dating back to the 19th century, reflects the diverse influences underlying the Swahili culture, with a unique mixture of Moorish, Arab, Persian, Indian and European elements. For this reason, the town has been included in UNESCO's World Heritage Sites in 2000


Get in[edit]

By plane[edit]

Zanzibar International Airport [21] (ZNZ) is the only airport on the island. It is accessible via Dar es Salaam, Nairobi, Kilimanjaro, and a growing number of other African and European airports.

By boat[edit]

Boats to Stone Town can be boarded from Dar es Salaam or Pemba.

Close to the entrance of the Zanzibar Ferry Port is KCB Bank (on Malawi Road) - the ATM is free for foreign cards (other banks 8000+) and maximum withdrawal is 900,000 (other banks 400,000).

Get around[edit]

Get a shuttle bus to collect you from your current accommodation and drop you directly at your next accommodation- this costs around $10, which is far less than a taxi and much less hassle than a bus. The shuttles can be booked online (which is a major advantage) and are run by The Zanzibus

See[edit][add listing]

  • Old Fort. adjacent to the House of Wonders, is a heavy stone fortress that was built in the 17th century by the Omani. It has a roughly square shape; the internal courtyard is now a cultural centre with shops, workshops, and a small arena where live dance and music shows are held daily.  edit
  • Palace Museum (Former Sultan's Palace). (also known as the "Sultan's Palace", "Beit el-Sahel" in Arab) is another former sultan's palace, also located on the seafront, to the north of the House of Wonders.[5] It was built in late 19th century, and now hosts a museum about the daily life of the Zanzibari royal family, including items that belonged to Sayyida Salme, a former Zanzibar princess that fled to relocate in Europe with her husband  edit
  • House of Wonders. (or "Palace of Wonders", also known as "Beit-al-Ajaib"), in Mizingani Road on the seafront, is probably the most well-known landmarks of Stone Town. It was built in 1883 and restored after the Anglo-Zanzibar War of 1896. Former Sultan's residence, it became the seat of the Afro-Shirazi Party after the revolution. It was the first building in Zanzibar to have electricity as well as the first building in East Africa to have a lift. Since 2000, its interior has been dedicated to a museum on Swahili and Zanzibar culture.  edit
  • Livingstone's House. is a small palace that was originally built for Sultan Majid bin Said but later used by European missionaries. David Livingstone lived in the house while preparing his last expedition to the interior of Tanganyika.  edit
  • Old Dispensary. was built from 1887 to 1894 to serve as a charity hospital for the poor, but was later used as a dispensary. It is one of the most finely decorated buildings of Stone Town, with large carved wooden balconies, stained-glass windows, and neo-classical stucco adornments. After falling into decay in the 1970s and 1980s, the building was later accurately restored by the AKTC  edit
  • Anglican Cathedral. Purchased by missionaries, the church sits atop the world's last slave market. The altar is said to be built over the market's whipping post. $3.  edit
  • Hamamni Persian Baths. are a complex of public baths built at the end of the 19th century by Shirazi architects for Sultan Barghash bin Said. These baths are not open anymore but are open to visitors.Visits are limited to some areas of the original complex because part of it (e.g., the restaurant) has since been adapted for private residences  edit
  • Forodhani Gardens. are a small park located in the main seawalk of Stone Town, right in front of the Old Fort and the House of Wonders. They have been recently restored by the AKTC. Every evening after sunset the gardens host a popular, tourist-oriented market selling grilled seafood and other Zanzibari recipes.  edit

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Roam around Stone town appreciating the Historical buildings
  • Football Match, +255 652 339 780. A great Zanzibar experience is attending a local football (soccer) match. Zanzibaris are passionate football fans and the stadium is only 10 minutes from the center of Stone Town. For a real local experience, contact Ahmed, a local guide, at +255 652 339 780. He can arrange the tickets (very affordable), transportation, and will introduce you to his friends at the stadium. Highly recommended.  edit

Buy[edit][add listing]

  • Fahari Zanzibar, 62 Kenyatta Road, Stone Town (Near the Post Office and Mercury House), +255(0)714541537, [1]. 09:00 - 18:00. Fahari Zanzibar is a Social Enterprise, registered as an NGO, making boutique quality accessories and jewellery using crafts and materials originating in Zanzibar. Visit the large open workshop & school on Kenyatta Road, where you can watch bags, jewellery and other accessories being skillfully manufactured and buy directly from the women producers. By buying from Fahari you will be receiving an exceptional original product whilst supporting local women build a sustainable future. Luxury goods - some smaller low priced gifts.  edit

Eat[edit][add listing]

  • Mercury's Restaurant. Is a restaurant just opposite the "Big Tree" and near the ferry port. The place's name and theme is dedicated to Freddie Mercury,who used to be the lead singer of the band Queen (was born in Stone Town)  edit
  • House of Spices, +255242231264. $8-$15.  edit
  • Beyt al Chai Restaurant.  edit
  • The Silk Route.  edit
  • Mtoni Marine Restaurant.  edit
  • Street Food, Forodhani Gardens. About thirty vendors set up street food stalls on the waterfront in the evenings. 2000 tsh.  edit
  • Lukmaan Restaurant.  edit
  • Mama Mia - Gelateria Italiana, +255773360584, [3]. Here you can taste an amazing homemade Italian gelato, cappuccino, espresso and homemade desserts $2-$5.  edit

Drink[edit][add listing]

  • Mercury's Restaurant. A really nice Bar which also serves a good variety of cocktails  edit

Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • Africa House Hotel is a historical building dating back to the first generation of old Arabic buildings in Stone Town. Around 1900, it became the English Club for Royal Navy officers. In 1964 the club was taken over by the Tanzanian government. Today the building includes hotel, sunset bar, restaurant, library and a shisha lounge.
  • Tembo House Hotel, [4]. checkout: 10:00 AM.  edit
  • Dhow Palace Hotel, [5]. checkout: 10:00 AM. Slow internet connection (wifi) available. Non-resident prices are given in US dollars, started at $75 for a single.  edit
  • Clove Hotel Zanzibar, +255 (0)777 - 484567, [6]. A Dutch-owned hotel  edit
  • Manch Lodge Zanzibar, [7]. Cheap place to stay with big dorm. Breakfast included. Watch out your stuff when you put it in the luggage room (lock it) - there are trousers disappearing on a regular base.  edit
  • Zanzibar Hotel is a restored hotel in Stone Town. It was the first hotel to exist on Zanzibar island.
  • Zanzibar Lodge, Stone Town Zanzibar (Opposite to CRDB Bank), +255777458584, [8]. checkin: any time; checkout: 10 am. Zanzibar lodge is within stone town center and walking on shopping center of Zanzibar. Zanzibar Lodge can accommodate 12 people and it contains 6 rooms. All rooms with private bathroom and air condition and with hot shower. While your here you can have a possibility of visiting Historical,museum, and much more about Zanzibar.It is very good for budget traveler and is very cheap if you compare with other lodges in stone town of Zanzibar. Email at [email protected] 20$. (30$,25$) edit
  • Furaha Resort 7km from stonetown the way to north of Island,with a nice rooms,sunset view restaurantBasic room single 50us.Double 65us. Standard/twin single 85us. Double 80us. Pool view deluxe single 75us. Double 95us. Triple Deluxe (i king size bed and i single bed) 115us. Check out 10.00am. All taxes are included. Rates quoted above are on per room per night and on bed and breakfast basis.children below 6years old will be allowed free if no extra bed is needed . Extra bed .20us per night. Facilities; swimming pool En suite Bathroom,Ac,hot water,ceiling fan,(only pool garden view rooms offers cable tv and mini bar. E-MAIL; [email protected] TEL;+255/772279353.
  • Zanzibar Stone Town Lodge, Stone Town (Shangani Rd), [9]. checkin: any time; checkout: 10am. Zanzibar Stone Town Lodge ( Karibu Zanzibar Hotel) is located right in the heart of Stone Town. It is independently owned and managed and an ideal home to explore and experience all the beauties of this magical town and Island of Zanzibar. This hotel consists of 9 spacious and comfort rooms with zanzibar furniture,mosquito net,host shower,roof top restaurant,free WiFi and aircondition and en suite bathroom all the rooms.Email: [email protected] 45$. (60$,) edit
  • Amira's Roomz, Kiembe Samaki (9km south towards airport), +255777130320. Nice little family run guesthouse just opened near the airport away from the tourist traps. Nice quiet setting with friendly helpful staff. Fan, mosquito net, wi-fi and breakfast included, very cheap. 25usd.  edit
  • Fontaine Garden Village, Stone Town (south east coast of Zanzibar in the village of Bwejuu), +255 713419451, +255 714 902 618 (), [10]. Offers 11 bungalows, some en-suite, some shared facilities. There is also a house that sleeps 5. 20-seat restaurant. 100m from the beach. 45 minutes from Stonetown.  edit
  • Maru Maru Hotel, +255 774007001 (), [11]. a boutique hotel in town with 360 degree view of stone town from the roof top. it has modern Marakesh theme and a very good value for money. A hotel that holly celebraties love to stay. starting at USD100.  edit
  • Doubletree By Hilton Zanzibar, Stone Town, Zanzibar Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania, +255 24 223 4062, [12]. This refurbished, historical hotel boasts rich and warm décor in a traditional Zanzibari-style and features hand-carved furnishings. The classic rooms offer free WiFi and come complete with air conditioning, a flat-screen satellite TV and a laptop-sized safe.  edit
  • Zanzibar Beach Resort, Mazizini, 2586 Zanzibar City, Tanzania, +255 24 223 6033, [13]. Zanzibar Beach Resort is located in Zanzibar City and features a swimming pool and fitness centre. Guests receive free Wi-Fi access throughout the resort. BBQ facilities are available for outdoor self-catering.  edit
  • Zanzibar Ocean View Hotel, Zanzibar Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania, +255 24 2233882, [14]. Featuring free WiFi and a restaurant, Zanzibar Ocean View Hotel offers accommodation in Zanzibar City, 1.9 miles from Stonetown. Guests can enjoy the on-site restaurant. Free private parking is available on site.  edit
  • Hotel Park Hyatt Zanzibar, Zanzibar Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania, +255 24 550 1234, [15]. Featuring a seafront location in Zanzibar City, Park Hyatt Zanzibar offers an outdoor pool and a restaurant. This air-conditioned hotel comes with free WiFi access and has a spa and wellness centre.  edit
  • Zanzibar Serena Hotel, Shangani Street, Stone Town, Zanzibar City, Tanzania, +255 24 223 3051, [16]. On the sea-front of ancient Stone Town, Zanzibar Serena Inn offers 5-star accommodations with a view of the Indian Ocean. There is an outdoor pool with lounge chairs, a cafe and 2 restaurants.  edit
  • Babar Palace hotel, Vuga Road Shangani street, Stone Town, Tanzania, +255 (0)24 223 1516, [17]. Located in Stone Town, 2.1 km from Zanzibar City, Babar Palace hotel features air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi throughout the property. Guests can enjoy the on-site restaurant.  edit
  • Kisiwa House, Baghani Street, Stone Town, [18]. checkin: 13:00; checkout: 10:00. New hotel in a nicely restored building. Big rooms, though only the more expensive ones has view of the ocean -- the cheaper rooms only have view to the street. High season:165-220$, low:USD110-170.  edit
  • The Seyyida Hotel & Spa (Stone Town Boutique Hotel), Nyumba ya Moto Street Kiponda Stone Town (3 minutes walk from the ferry terminal and 2 minutes from the House of Wonders), +255242238352, [19]. checkin: 14:00; checkout: 10:30. The Seyyida Hotel & Spa Boutique Hotel is located right in the heart of the UNESCO's World Heritage site, just a short walk from the House of Wonders, Forodhani Gardens and Mgome Kongwe the Old Portuguese Fort. The property is an harvest of peace right in the middle of Stone Town in Kiponda area. This small Boutique Hotel has an inside courtyard, a swimming pool and a breathtaking terrace overlooking Zanzibar Harbour, Stone Town seafront, the historical site of the Palace Museum and Sultan's grave, this rooftop terrace is an ideal setup for a Sundowner or a romantic candle light dinner. (-6.1600012,39.1889326) edit
  • Kholle House, Malindi 607/608 (2 Minutes walk to the ferry & Mercury's), +25 5779779898200, [20]. Kholle House is a unique and historical hotel in the heart of Stonetown. All of it's 10 rooms are different and special with Ensuite bathrooms, AC and fan. Build in 1860 by Princess Kholle, daughter of the first Sultan of Zanzibar is now one of the most authentic places in Stonetown. a la carte breakfast, swimming pool by the garden, 360 degree views from the terrace 90-190.  edit

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