You don’t know the true meaning of exotic until you have seen Zanzibar. The old stone town of Tanzania along its eastern coast is a terrific mixture of colors, the turquoise of its calm waters, white of its sandy beaches, green of its palms and grey of its old stone buildings. Like the colors of the place its culture and architecture is also a blend of impressions made by different colonial powers and its trading partners. The grand fort and Cathedral is a symbol of European architecture while the most of the other buildings are influenced by the Omani and Persian traders.
Zanzibar is easily accessible from Dar es Salam the capital of the country through both air and by sea. The Zanzibar airport does not get that much international traffic so if you are traveling from outside the country then you’ll have to take direct flights to Dar es Salam and then a 1 hour 45 minutes ferry ride or a 20 minutes flight to the Zanzibar.
If you choose to arrive by air then you’ll be arriving in the Zanzibar town, the center of the island. Accommodation is still cheap in the area, try to find your self a hotel in old stone town with labyrinthine alleys and buildings that date back to two or some times even three centuries. If you arrive in the island through the ferry then you will be arriving at the islands harbor which is an attraction in itself if you consider its beautiful setting in the middle of a palm fringed beach and the vibrant spice trade that thrive in the harbor area.
There are a number of attractions in the island, you can visit the historical cathedral and the old fort in the city of Zanzibar or you can relax along its bone white sandy beach. The resorts along the coast are a little costly as compared to the ones inland, so if you are not willing to pay a little extra then stay at one of the cheaper hotels inland and take a cab to the beach on which you can find plenty of deserted areas for relaxing and enjoying the tropical beauty of the island.
If you choose the resorts that are along the beach then you get an added advantage of hiring a boat and renting the scuba diving and snorkeling kit through them. Snorkeling and diving in the clear waters near Zanzibar is a wonderful experience as the area is rich with exotic marine life. Just remember to dive in the presence of a seasoned guide who is always a trained diver and lifeguard if you hire the services of a registered tour operator.