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How to Spend 3 Days in Zanzibar City

How to Spend 3 Days in Zanzibar City

With some planning, three days give you ample time to experience the best of Zanzibar City, from historical tours to street food stalls, rural spice farms to nature reserves. Here are our top tips for optimizing your time in and around the Zanzibari capital.

Day 1: Hit the Historical Highlights

On your first day, a tour of Stone Town is a must. The UNESCO-listed port town boasts a range of landmarks that spans centuries, including the Old Fort, Malindi Mosque, and St. Joseph’s Cathedral. For deeper insight into the town’s rich and diverse heritage, opt to explore with a guide: zip among attractions by bike, stroll the scenic streets on a walking tour, or take advantage of full-day packages with round-trip transport to save time. Day tours typically combine a wander through Stone Town with visits to rural or offshore attractions such as Changuu Island.

Day 2: Get Curious About Culture

Spend your second day widening your perspective of modern Zanzibar on a cultural tour. Learn about the island’s famous spice trade at a rural farm, get a taste of Zanzibari cuisine at a cooking class, or visit local villages for a glimpse of daily life outside the capital. Most half- and full-day tours offer round-trip transport, and some also include lunch. Later, take refuge from the daytime heat in a city museum, or admire city vistas from the Karume Monument tower while learning about the revolution. When evening falls, head to the waterfront night market at Forodhani Gardens to sample local specialties, such as samosas, sugarcane juice, and Zanzibar pizza.

Day 3: Unwind in Nature

After a busy couple of days, it’s time to immerse yourself in Zanzibar’s natural surroundings. Snorkel and swim off tropical beaches, cruise to secluded islets, or observe native flora and fauna in nature reserves, taking advantage of hassle-free tours with round-trip transport included. Once you’re back in town, head to a hotel terrace for a sunset aperitif overlooking the ocean, or enjoy dinner and drinks in a beachfront restaurant. If you’re flying out the same evening, private transfer services offer customizable departure times to suit your schedule, allowing you to make the most of your last hours in the capital.

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5 Tours and Activities

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Stone Town Private Walking Tour

Stone Town Private Walking Tour

star-5
177
It’s fascinating to explore historic Stone Town—a UNESCO World Heritage Site—but it’s easy to lose your way in the area’s maze-like, narrow streets. To stay oriented and ensure you don’t miss key highlights, join a private guide with deep knowledge of local culture. It’s fully personalized to your preferences, whether you’re shopping for local textiles, interested in history, or learning about Stone Town’s unique architecture.
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  • 2 to 3 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$34.62
Price varies by group size
From
$34.62
Price varies by group size

Full-Day Stone Town and Prison Island Tour in Zanzibar

Full-Day Stone Town and Prison Island Tour in Zanzibar

star-4
9
Immerse yourself in Zanzibar’s dramatic history on a full-day, guided tour of Stone Town and Prison Island. Explore on foot and by boat for a comprehensive overview of the area, learn about local culture, architecture, and wildlife, and enjoy the convenience of round-trip hotel transfers.
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  • 3 to 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$234.88
From
$234.88

Stone Town Guided Tour from Zanzibar

Stone Town Guided Tour from Zanzibar

star-3.5
6
Visit the historic Stone Town of Zanzibar, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, on a guided, half-day tour from Zanzibar. With an experienced guide to lead the way, you’ll explore a blend of African, Arab, Indian, Persian, and European cultures, following narrow streets shaded by elegant balconies and verandahs. See the former slave market, the Sultan Palace, and a series of beautifully-carved wooden doors, with a 30-minute shopping break to browse for some of Zanzibar’s most distinctive souvenirs.
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  • 3 hours
From
$42.00
From
$42.00

Zanzibar Spice Farm Half-Day Walking Tour

Zanzibar Spice Farm Half-Day Walking Tour

star-3.5
2
Discover the spices that thrive in Zanzibar’s villages and plantations on a walking tour that’s an aromatic immersion in the island’s rural life. Join a guide for a walk through local farms, see workers climb into the spice trees, sample spices and fruits fresh from the field, and learn the history of Zanzibar’s spice trade. This Zanzibar spice farm tour includes pickup and drop-off in Zanzibar, with both morning and afternoon departures available.
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  • 3 hours
From
$45.00
From
$45.00

Private Departure Transfer in Zanzibar

Private Departure Transfer in Zanzibar

star-5
2
Enjoy a private departure transfer in an air-conditioned luxury vehicle from your hotel in Zanzibar city to the Airport. Upon departure, you will be met by the driver who will escort you to the waiting vehicle and then transferred to the airport. Departure transfer from your hotel to the airport will include assistance on departure and the transfer service is available 24-hours a day, 7 days a week and will meet your travel requirements.
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  • 1 hour
From
$32.00
per group
From
$32.00
per group