Zanzibar information

Zanzibar is still the best-kept secret in the Indian Ocean. The name Zanzibar means "Land of the Blacks" and originates from the Arabic words "Zinj" meaning black and "barr" meaning land. It is located about 25 miles from the Tanzanian coast. Zanzibar Island (known locally as Unguja, but as Zanzibar internationally) is 60 miles long and 20 miles wide, occupying a total area of approximately 650 square miles. It is characterised by beautiful sandy beaches with fringing coral reefs, and the magic of historic Stone Town - said to be the only functioning ancient town in East Africa. The Island of Zanzibar consists of two main islands, Pemba and Unguja with some 50 smaller islands surrounding the archipelago.

The coasts of Zanzibar offer something for everyone. White sands, crystal-clear waters, palm trees and seemingly eternal sunshine make the Zanzibari coastline a Paradise that continues to lure visitors from around the world.

Stone Town

The capital of the islands is Stone Town, a fine example of the Swahili coastal trading towns of East Africa and a World Heritage Site. The historic charms of Stone Town with its it's narrow alleyways, large carved wooden doors and covered balconies is fascinating for visitors who come here to explore the ancient remains of the cultures of Africa, the Arab region, India, and Europe.


Official Currency: Tanzania Shilling=100 cents

Mastercard, Access and Diners Club have a limited acceptance. Travellers cheques can be exchanged with authorised deals and bureaux de change and are best taken in US Dollars or Pounds Sterling. Many hotels may require you make payment in foreign currency either in cash or by Travellers Cheque.

1 USD = 1 350 TSH

Entry formalities

Entry visa which is issued upon arrival in Zanzibar for the fee of 50 USD.
Exit visa which is issued before departure directly at the airport for the fee of 30 USD.
For entry to Zanzibar, it is necessary to have a passport which does not expire earlier than 6 months after the date of your return from Zanzibar.


For entering Tanzania (not Zaznzibar) is necessary to have a valid vaccination for yellow fever which must be noted in the international vaccination certificate.

Local time

Tanzania/Zanzibar is three hours ahead of GMT.


Top temperature 32 32 32 30 30 29 29 29 30 31 31 31
Lowest temperature 22 22 22 23 22 21 20 19 18 19 20 22
Water temperature 28 28 28 28 27 26 25 25 25 26 27 28
Average hours of sunshine 8 8 7 6 6 7 8 8 8 9 8 8
Relative humidity 74 74 79 84 84 79 78 77 76 76 78 78
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