Visiting Zanzibar

Here’s everything you need to know for planning your visit:

  • Accommodation

    We recommend that visitors to the festival stay in or near Stone Town. Please make arrangements as soon as possible, as most hotels are booked well in advance.

  • Flights

    festival final party

    Zanzibar has international scheduled flights served by Ethiopian Airlines (via Addis), Oman Air (via Muscat), Qatar Airways (via Doha), Turkish Airlines (via Istanbul) and Kenya Airways (via Nairobi). Also regional flights served by Precision Air, Fly540, Uganda Airlines , RwandAir, and Mango airlines.

    Alternatively, Dar es Salaam is served by Egypt Air, KLM, Swiss Air, South African Airways, and Emirates.

    Local flight connections to and from Dar are available with Coastal Aviation.

  • Visas

    The requirements and rules regarding visas vary according to your nationality and country of residence. Please check well in advance.

  • Ferries

    Zanzibar is served by a number of ferry companies to/from Dar es Salaam. There are several fast hydrofoil crossings daily (2hr) plus several slower vessels(4hr). Non Residents should expect to pay up to US$50 incl port tax one-way.

  • Local transport

    Taxis from the airport can cost up to US$15.

    Taxis anywhere within town up to US$5. There are also “boda boda” motorcycle taxis for less than US$2.

    For airport, and elsewhere on the island, people use “dala dalas” shared minibuses. They tend to leave once they are full and stop often to drop and pick passengers – so not the quickest, but affordable and fun.

  • Vaccination information

    Please note if travelling from certain countries, certificate of vaccination against yellow fever is required.

  • What else to see and do

    Dolphin tours

    While visiting Zanzibar you may also be interested in some of the following:

    • Spice Tours
    • Dolphin Tours
    • Dhow and Sunset Cruises
    • Safari Blue Day Out
    • Prison Island Tour
    • Jozani Forest Tour
    • Diving and Snorkeling
    • Last Minute Flying Safari with Coastal Aviation
  • Festival location

    (See Google view.) The main festival venue is at the Old Fort, on the waterfront of historic Stone Town.

    This World Heritage Site is part of Zanzibar Town. Most places are within easy walking distance, although it can be hot in the middle of the day and it’s easy to lose yourself in the endless narrow alleyways – so you might consider taxis at times.

    See also The Perfect Day in Stone Town by Amanda Leigh Lichtenstein and Nicky Woo

  • Safety & security

    Zanzibar is a peaceful location inhabited by peaceful people. However, it is in the best interest of all visitors to “wise-up” on a few simple “dos and don’ts”.

    Please avoid walking around with more valuables than you need, especially late at night, or on the beaches.

    Please be mindful that what maybe quite “normal” behaviour or dress-code in some cultures may invite attention or cause offence in others.

  • What to bring

    Zanzibar in February can be hot and sunny. Think about sun protection (sunglasses, sun cream and loose baggy clothes). Also, in the streets of Stone Town, please respect that showing too much flesh may offend local (Muslim) standards.

    Bring your camera – and any special batteries. Town power is 240v and mostly square pin sockets (like UK). Internet is widely available.

    Some restaurants and hotels have WiFi – so you might consider bringing that laptop or tablet.

    Obviously, there will be opportunities for beaches and swimming. Plastic shoes or sandals are recommended for shoreline walks at low tide.

NOTICE – NO PLASTIC BAGS

Since June 2019 Tanzania has banned the importation and use of all plastic bags including Duty Free Bags. Ziplock bags are permitted, as these are not expected to be disposed of in the country.