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Things to do in

Zanzibar Archipelago

Our most recommended things to do in Zanzibar Archipelago

Dar es Salaam: City Tour

1. Dar es Salaam: City Tour

This tour of Dar es Salaam will take you to the National Museum, Village Museum, Mwenge Carvings Market, Tingatinga art Gallery, Slipway Shopping Centre, The Fish Market, City Centre, Historical Building, and many other sites. The name Dar es Salaam means "the house of peace" and is an exciting mix of sightseeing, shopping, and entertainment. The largest city in Tanzania reflects a fascinating blend of its rich historical past and its sophisticated contemporary present.  Learn about interesting facts of the city as well as some incredible historical sights that are all part of the adventure of the full-day tour.

From Dar Es Salaam: Mikumi National Park 2 Nights and 3 Days

2. From Dar Es Salaam: Mikumi National Park 2 Nights and 3 Days

Day 1: Dar es Salaam – Mikumi National Park Meet your driver-guide for an introduction and get a short briefing. Collect your packed lunch and drive to the Mikumi National Park for an afternoon game drive.  Mikumi National Park itself is nestled between Uluguru Mountain to the northeast, Udzungwa Mountains, and the Rift Valley escarpment to the southwest as part of the Selous ecosystem. This area offers the highest game density of the entire conservation area that lies west of Dar es Salaam City and 107 km from the nearest town named Morogoro located on the highway from Dar es Salaam to Zambia, covering an area of 3230 km².  Enjoy lunch that will be served en route to the Park. From the afternoon to sunset game drives in Mikumi National Park. Dinner and overnight will be at Camp Bastian.  Day 2: Full Day – Mikumi National Park Wake up and enjoy breakfast that is served at the Camp. Go on a full-day game drive in Mikumi National Park. Mikumi houses a huge concentration of animals, including Lions, Elephants, Buffaloes, Hippopotamus, Crocodiles, and many more.   The park contains a subspecies of giraffe that biologists consider to be the link between the Masai giraffe and the reticulated or Somali giraffe.  Take in the landscape of Mikumi that is often compared to that of the Serengeti. Enjoy the views of the park and the wildlife. Malundwe Mountain consists of three peaks along a ridge running north and south, and the south peak is the highest point in the park, reaching 1290 meters above sea level. Marvel at the vegetation of this area that consists of savannah dotted with acacia, baobab, tamarinds, and some rare palm trees.  Savor your lunch that is served at the picnic site selected by your driver-guide in the middle of nowhere inside the park. Dinner and overnight sleep will be at Camp Bastian.  Day 3: Mikumi – Dar es Salaam After breakfast served at the camp, you can check out and drive back to Dar es Salaam with game drives en route. Upon arrival to Dar es Salaam and drop off at the hotel of your choice or airport for your onward flight.

Prison Island: Private Half-Day Tour

3. Prison Island: Private Half-Day Tour

This private guided half day tour can begin any time from 9:00 AM to 3:30 PM. Meet your well-trained guide and boatman as your board your steam-engine wooden boat. Head to the prestigious island and enjoy the 30-minute journey.  Listen to the history of the island and discover the past centuries through the historical buildings, which have served many purposes over the years including a prison, chapel, and hiding place for slaves after the abolition.  Enjoy a swim or snorkel around the colorful coral rocks and turquoise waters. Play with giant tortoises and you may take photographs with these old precious creatures. If you do not have much experience or confidence in the water, you will be provided with a life jacket. 

Zanzibar: Stone Town 3-Hour Walking Tour

4. Zanzibar: Stone Town 3-Hour Walking Tour

After a greeting and short briefing, you will be heading to the old fort which is also known as the Arab fort, the house of wonders, and then to Forodhani Gardens, a darajani fruits and spice market, and the Zanzibar ferry terminal. The tour also includes visits to the Freddie Mercury house, Zanzibar Curio Shop, Jaws Corner coffee shop, and more. Visit the Anglican cathedral, also known as the former slave market which was used for centuries as a hub for the East African slave market, whereby slaves were hunted and abducted from Malawi, Congo, Zambia and other parts of east Africa. With your guide you will have enough time for some leisure time to explore the narrow streets alongside the curio shops. The tour will end after 3 hours.

Zanzibar: Jozani Forest National Park and Dolphin Encounter

5. Zanzibar: Jozani Forest National Park and Dolphin Encounter

Begin your experience early, as the morning is the best time to spot dolphins. Start in the Matemwe fishing village, which is one of the oldest capitals on Zanzibar Island. While looking out for dolphins, dive in to snorkel among the wonderful coral reef and the variety of colorful fish and marine creatures. If the dolphins are in a good mood, you can witness them goofing around.  As you will be in their natural habitat, there is no guarantee you'll have the chance to swim with the dolphins; your guide will do their best to ensure they are comfortable so you can enjoy their beautiful energy, whether up close or from a distance.  The trip to Zanzibar Jozani Forest national park involves a visit to the high, dense groundwater forest. Home to the red colobus monkey, a rare species only found in Zanzibar, take the opportunity to get up close to the wild animals. Other animals within the park include blue monkeys, elephant shrews, and bushbabies. Proceed then to the mangrove, through which the conservation authority has built a bridge to allow visitors to observe the wildlife without trampling on it.  Next, stop at a local restaurant for a Swahili table buffet lunch. Before heading back to your hotel, make a short stop at the community project, Zanzibar Butterfly Center. Even though the site is not so big, it is a lovely place to relax and enjoy the moment before ending your experience.

Zanzibar: Spice Farm Tour with Traditional Cooking Lesson

6. Zanzibar: Spice Farm Tour with Traditional Cooking Lesson

Visit an organic spice farm on this 3-hour guided tour to learn about one of Zanzibar’s most popular industries: spices. Discover how the islands produce cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, black pepper, and more. See why the Zanzibar Archipelago, together with Tanzania's Mafia Island, is sometimes called the "Spice Islands".   When you arrive, the spice farm guide will describe how the spices are grown and used as medication and flavor in dishes. See spices like vanilla, cardamom, nutmeg, and many more. You’ll be able to touch, smell, and taste the spices and herbs directly from plants—you’ve never smelled spices as fresh as these before. Along with these fragrant plants, there will also be some fresh tropical fruits to see and taste.     Later, take the opportunity to join a cassava leaf harvest, make coconut milk, and practice some cooking. Then, a coconut tree climber will pick some fresh young coconut fruits for you to try. End the trip with lunch at the spice farm and the opportunity to purchase spices from the shop.

Dar Es Salaam: Overnight Safari at Mikumi National Park

7. Dar Es Salaam: Overnight Safari at Mikumi National Park

Day 1: Dar es Salaam – Mikumi National Park Enjoy breakfast that is served at the hotel of your choice and meet your driver-guide for an introduction and a short briefing. Collect your packed lunch and drive to Mikumi National Park for an afternoon game drive.  Mikumi National Park itself is nestled between Uluguru Mountain to the northeast, Udzungwa Mountains, and the Rift Valley escarpment to the southwest as part of the Selous ecosystem. This area offers the highest game density of the entire conservation area that lies west of Dar es Salaam City and 107 km from the nearest town named Morogoro located on the highway from Dar es Salaam to Zambia, covering an area of 3230 km².  Marvel at the big diversity of animals and observe lions, elephants, buffaloes, hippopotamus, crocodiles, and many more with different bird species. Have some lunch en route to the Park and enjoy afternoon game drives in the park till sunset. Savor dinner and have your overnight sleep at Camp Bastian.  Day 2: Mikumi National Park – Dar es Salaam Wake up and have some breakfast at the Camp, followed by early morning game drive in the Park. Discover animals on their morning moments searching their breakfast After a hot lunch served at the camp, you will drive back to Dar es Salaam and be dropped off at the hotel of your choice or the airport for your onward flight.

Zanzibar: Prison Island Tour with Lunch on the Sandbank

8. Zanzibar: Prison Island Tour with Lunch on the Sandbank

Your Zanzibar adventure begins with a visit to Prison Island, purchased in 1893 by Lloyd Mathews, the British First Minister of Zanzibar at the time. Mathews constructed a prison complex on the island which is still visible today, however no prisoners were ever housed on the island and instead it became a quarantine station for yellow fever sufferers. On the island, spend some time exploring the area and discover the collection of over 50 tortoises that live here, some of which are more than 100 years old. Learn about why the tortoises call the island their home, as well as taking photos and feeding them too. The island is also home to peacocks and small antelope too. Once you’ve explored the island, enjoy the opportunity to cool off from the hot weather with a refreshing dip in the surrounding crystal clear waters. Spend some time snorkeling in the water just off the island and search for colorful tropical fish and vibrant coral reef. After you’ve worked up an appetite from swimming, relax on the sandbank with a delicious lunch including a seafood BBQ, Swahili cuisine, cheese, tropical fruit, and more.

Stone Town: Stone Town and Prison Island Private Day Trip

9. Stone Town: Stone Town and Prison Island Private Day Trip

See the National Museum of Zanzibar (rebuilt in 1883) and the Arab fort while passing along bazaar streets towards the famous Freddie Mercury house. See the old slave market, fruit market, and spice market — don’t miss the classic Zanzibar curved doors decorating the stone town.  After you have explored Stone Town, you’ll have an opportunity to take a short break before heading to Prison Island. Prison Island is also known as Changuu Island, the nickname came from the island being used by some sultans of Zanzibar to detain enslaved people. While you are on this island, you can swim and take pictures with giant tortoises. 

Stonetown: Food Markets and Street Food Walking Tour

10. Stonetown: Food Markets and Street Food Walking Tour

Take part in a unique 3-hour evening food tour in Stone Town. After hotel pickup, your tour will start at 6:00 PM at Darajani Market, where locals go to buy their fruits and vegetables. Experience the fun hustle and bustle of this busy market and admire the multitude of foods on offer.   Your next stop will be at Swahili House restaurant, the best place to watch the sun go down. As you watch the sky change colors, enjoy some soft drinks or local beers made in Tanzania. Afterwards, explore the streets of the city, which has itself been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Hear stories about the city and see where the locals gather to celebrate events, watch football, or just have tea and play some games. Continue walking to Forodhani Garden, which hosts a popular street food market in the evenings. Try out local foods and drinks like Zanzibar Pizza, urojo soup, shawarma, sugarcane juice, spice tea, coffee, and more.   Your tour will end at 8:00 PM, at which point you’ll be taken back to your hotel.

Frequently asked questions about Zanzibar Archipelago

What top attractions are a must-see in Zanzibar Archipelago?

The must-see attractions in Zanzibar Archipelago are:

Other Sightseeing Options in Zanzibar Archipelago

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What people are saying about Zanzibar Archipelago

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 369 reviews

Haij was the best tour guide! He was knowledgeable and explained everything so perfectly to us. He tailor made this private tour to suit our needs and was prompt, honest and was excellent value for money. We would recommend Upendo tours and Haij when visiting Zanzibar!

Very nice visit, the guide was perfect. We learned a lot of things. Prison Islands is a must do. His story marks us. The stown town tour was amazing. We are inhabited by the history of slavery that impregnates us forever! We recommend.

Hamdu was the perfect guide. He is very polite social and has a lot of knowledge of Zanzibar history to share, and made my day very enjoyable. Very much recommended.

Hamdu was really helpful. He took his time when taking us round town and was very patient when we wanted to stop for pictures or for more information.

Very pleasant experience Breathtaking landscape Heavenly snorkeling Thanks to Juma and his teams!