There has been so much hype about Zanzibar, but at the same time, a few people weren't particularly thrilled.
Being in the country, I knew I had to visit so I planned a trip with my sisters and three friends.
I seem to have written more on Tanzania than I have on any other country, here are some of the links. This was my first post then I did a bit in Kigoma. The next one will give you my general impressions and of course I went on a safari. Do check all the posts out when you have a chance.
We spent two days in Dar es Salaam catching up and me showing them the few places I know. Some of the places we went to were Cape town fish market, we all loved the food.
|Cape town fish market overlooks the ocean|
|We watched the sun set, look at that sky line|
|The sushi here is good|
There was food for everyone including those who didn't want sea food.
|When sisters are together|
We ate at Food Lover's Market café
|Off to Zanzibar|
We went by ferry...it cost $35 per person for economy and $50 per person for VIP. We stayed in the VIP section
|Isn't she just extra?! 😃 A t-shirt for Zanzibar|
On arrival, this was what greeted us.
We were picked up by our taxi and taken to the hotel which was an hour away from stone town. We stayed in Nungwi which is North of Zanzibar.
Our cottage was nicely prepared.
|The restaurant area at the hotel where we stayed was everything beach vibe|
Flame Tree Cottages was such a relaxing place to stay, our cottage had two bedrooms and each room had 3 beds then there was a living room. We turned that to our morning work out spot. Well, on the days we were motivated enough to work out.
There is a pool and the place is very well maintained, neat lawns, we saw the staff scrubbing the stones on the walkways. They do pay attention to how every part looks. The house close to the restaurant in the photo belongs to the owners and the stairs right in the corner leads up to the roof. Yoga takes place up there each day for $20 per person.
We were all exhausted so the evening was a quiet one.
We made inquiries and were told that the marine turtle conservation project was a ten minute walk from the hotel. We headed there the next day. On our way, there were guys marketing their tourist packages or trying to sell goods to us. The hotel prices of the things we wanted to do was slightly high so we were on the look out for someone to provide us with what we needed.
We walked into a shack which was a make shift office and got ourselves a good deal for the next day. We gave the needed information and collected the info we needed, made a deposit and we continued to see the turtles.
|Ogba was the first one who went to feed the turtles...the rest of us gathered courage after she led the way|
|Fish in the water to balance the ecosystem|
This corner only brings to light how much damage we do to the environment. It was unconscious before, but not anymore...we all have a part to play in ensuring that we do not do more damage.
|Ene, Odachi, Ogba, Hilary and Tosin|
|They look so lovely|
The last person, Emily, arrived just before we went out but was exhausted and needed to sleep. She was awake by the time we got back to the hotel. I like to call her my adopted Nigerian friend 😊 she lives in Nigeria and is Nigerian in so many ways now...
Day 3 was a packed day, we set out at 9am...we started at a spice farm, there was so much to learn and see, especially for me who is rubbish in this area. Ogba and Emily were the stars here.
|Had to capture this level of attention|
|One of the spices that was used as lipstick back in the day...both of our guides demonstrating|
|It wasn't only about spices, there were fruits also|
|Coffee beans and cinnamon|
|The entertainer...he put on a show while climbing the coconut tree|
|Preparing our crowns and bracelets|
|Getting the coconut ready for us|
|Some of the cars that brought tourists to the farm|
From here, we went to Stone town where we met our guide. He led us to the boat that took us to Prison Island.
|Our boat was face to face, can you see it? 😆|
First, we went to see tortoises, we all had the chance to feed and touch them. The guide showed us how to stroke them on their legs in a way they like. It was interesting to see how they would stand for that. Ogba led with that.
|Look at how huge they are|
|Their age is written on their shells. This one has a cracked shell as a branch fell on it when it was younger so it grew up with the crack|
We were told that they could live for over 200 years. The guide mentioned that they noticed that many of them start to fall ill after 200 and eventually die. We saw the oldest one in there that was sickly, he was 198 if my memory serves me well.
From there we went to the prison area. We were told some really depressing stories. The Sultan of Oman was the controller of slaves here...stories of slave trade are never easy to listen to.
The chain I was holding onto in the photo above was one that held slaves captive. They were chained from there to the other end of the room. We were told the number of people who were cramped into this place and shown other rooms where slaves were kept, so many more than the capacity of the rooms. Leading to many of them dying.
I sat in this chair grateful to be in that room not as a slave but as a free black woman. And this is selfish but I am grateful not to have been born in the era of slave trade. I have so much respect for all the people who went through this horrible time.
|We walked out to the point of no return|
Me looking across the ocean wondering how the slaves would have felt getting into boats to be transported to an unknown destination.
|As we walked back to leave, I took a moment to just be happy|
From here, we went back to Stone town. We didn't have very much time left. We were hungry so the first thing to do was to find food.
|The guide brought us here...there were many other tourists|
|Zanzibari feast - chapati, beef sauce, pilau rice, fish in coconut milk, chips and plantain|
|Narrow streets of Stone town|
|Tanzanite, a gemstone that is found only in Tanzania. I got me this :-)|
|Memories store in Stone town, quite pricey though|
|There was a variety of doors|
|Freddie Mercury museum|
|Narrow walkways of Stone town|
We walked around stone town but had missed the museums as they were all closed. We only saw the Freddie Mercury museum.
On the drive back to our hotel, most of us fell asleep in the car.
This post is quite long, thank you for reading to this point. More on Zanzibar in the next post, it will be a lot of fun I promise.
I'll also give a few tips to bear in mind when visiting...