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Relaxed Zanzibar itinerary: How to Spend 12 Days in Zanzibar

Are you planning how to spend 12 days in Zanzibar?
Trying to find the best things to include in your Zanzibar itinerary?

I’ve got you covered!

I visited Zanzibar in August, as a solo female traveler. In almost two weeks in Zanzibar, I visited historic Stone Town, its idyllic beaches and spice plantations. This itinerary highlights all the must-do things, for a first-time visitor to the Spice Island, 6° south of the Equator.

Find out how in my Zanzibar itinerary below.

New Teddys on the Beach (I stayed here in Jambiani)
The Loop Beach Resort (top location on Jambiani Beach)
White Sands (top stay on Paje Beach)
Makofi (I stayed here in Nungwi)
Z Hotel (direct access to Nungwi Beach)
Lost & Found (I stayed here in Stone Town)
Shoki Shoki House (I stayed here in Stone Town)

Stone Town walking tour (my favorite and A MUST DO!)
Spice farm tour (I did this fun top-selling tour)
Prison Island tour (I did this and met tortoises)
Jozani Forest (I saw endangered monkeys on this tour)
One-day safari from Zanzibar (top-rated tour!)

In a bit more than a 1 week in Zanzibar, you will visit the best Zanzibar beaches, learn about spices, and admire the doors of the UNESCO World Heritage site Stone Town.

This guide will help you plan your entire Zanzibar trip. You will have a perfect blend of beaches and Swahili culture, nature and animals, history, and sports activities. Try tons of delicious Zanzibari cuisine, get lost in centuries-old streets, and bargain for souvenirs.

I include a detailed travel plan, with places to sleep, recommendations on where to eat, and things to do in Zanzibar, to make your trip memorable. I also suggest itinerary modification and a map

Now, let’s start planning your honeymoon or after safari Zanzibar holiday.

Zanzibar travel itinerary

Anja in Front of the rock restaurant
In front of the Rock Restaurant in Zanzibar | Anja On Adventure


● Plan to spend at least a week in Zanzibar, but if time permits, reserve 10 days in Zanzibar to have enough time to include different beaches in your Zanzibar itinerary.

● Consider dividing your time between different areas of the island: Stone Town for its historical significance, the northern beaches for relaxation and snorkeling, and the beaches on the East for kitesurfing and secluded holidays.

● Include must-see sights like Nungwi Beach, Paje Beach, Jozani Forest, Spice Farm, and Prison Island in your itinerary.

● Don’t skip Stone Town, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Spend at least a day here and book a Stone Town guided tour for the best experience of the previous Spice Island capital.

● Indulge in delicious Zanzibari cuisine, a fusion of Swahili, Arabic, Indian, and Portuguese influences, and experience a lively atmosphere at Forodhani food markets.

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Zanzibar itinerary overview

For your first time Zanzibar itinerary, I suggest spending some time on South East Beaches, staying on the beaches in the North and spending some time in UNESCO World heritage site Stone Town.

I would recommend going to the South East first, to Paje or Jambiani for 4 nights. Then go to the more touristic and more developed beaches on the North, Nungwi or Kendwa for 5 nights. Before leaving Zanzibar, spend 2 nights in Stone Town. It can also be done in reversed order.

The itinerary will highlight the best and most fascinating attractions of each part of the Spice island.

Cloves, symbol of Zanzibar or Spice Island | Anja On Adventure

There is a lot to see alongside with countless interesting facts about Zanzibar worth knowing before your trip. For instance, that Stone Town had electric street lights already in 1906, even before London?

Speaking of facts, this is a semi-relaxed itinerary for Zanzibar. It has busy days, sightseeing days and days to relax. You will have enough time to learn about Zanzibar’s history, experience its culture, explore different beaches, and still have time to swim and sip a cocktail.

So let’s waste no more time and let’s get you ready for the dream trip to Zanzibar!

Day 1: Arrival to Zanzibar and transfer to Jambiani
Day 2: Jambiani beach and village
Day 3: Half-day trip to Kizimkazi
Day 4: Kuza cave and Paje
Day 5: Jambiani – The Rock – Jozani Forest – Nungwi
Day 6: Nungwi & Dhow boat sunset cruise
Day 7: Mnemba atoll
Day 8: Nungwi village & Mnarani Marine Turtle Conservation Pond
Day 9: Nungwi & Kendwa
Day 10: Spice tour – Prison Island – Stone Town
Day 11: Stone Town walking tour & Forodhani market in the evening
Day 12: Stone Town and Departure

anglican church in a former slave market
Christ Church Cathedral is an Anglican cathedral built in Stone Town in the place of the slave market | Anja On Adventure

Detailed 12 days in Zanzibar itinerary

Day 1: Arrival to Zanzibar and transfer to Jambiani

Dhow boat in Jambiani resting on the sandy beach under a clear blue sky.
Dhow boat in Jambiani beach | Anja On Adventure

Arrive in Zanzibar/Stone Town. Whether you will be flying into Zanzibar from overseas or Tanzania mainland, you will arrive at Stone Town airport. If you are coming with a ferry from Daar Es Saalam, then you will also be arriving to Stone Town.

If you are coming to Zanzibar from the United States or Canada or Japan or Australia, this is likely going to be a hectic day, spent in the company of jet lag. If you are coming from Europe, the journey to Zanzibar should not be that bad, since Zanzibar is in GMT+3 time zone. Which means from 1 to 3 hours ahead of European time. 

After the formalities, exchange some money for Tanzanian shillings or get some cash from an ATM at the airport. Outside of Stone Town ATMs are limited and get out of cash fast.

If you plan to travel around Zanzibar, always carry some local currency on hand. The local shops or restaurants might not accept foreign currency (€ or $) or Credit Cards.

new teddy's on the beach
Pool at New Teddy’s on the beach | Anja On Adventure

After you have some cash on you, grab a taxi and go to Jambiani. The price for a taxi should be around $40 (37€). If you arrive in the morning and are feeling adventurous, you can also use dala dala.

My flight with Qatar landed in the morning. I exchanged € for TNZ and got into a taxi organized by accommodation. It was waiting for me outside Abeid Amani Karume International Airport to drive me to Jambiani.

For the rest of the day, I was chilling by the pool on one of the most beautiful tropical beaches.

Where to stay in Jambiani, Zanzibar:
There are many beautiful beach hotels in Jambiani. I’ve visited a few and stayed at an affordable, beachfront accommodation with a private beach, pool, and the view of the turquoise Indian Ocean.
New Teddy’s On The Beach is a travel-sustainable property, with a ‘living room’ full of daybeds to relax. You can read about my stay at New Teddy’s here.
The Loop Beach Resort is another stunning resort with an amazing pool and a top location on Jambiani Beach.
White Sands is a top-rated stay only 100m away from Paje Beach.

Visit this page to see all available Jambiani accommodations to book online.

Zanzibar itinerary Zanzibar

Day 2: Jambiani beach and village

dring algae in jambiani village
Drying algae in the Jambiani village | Anja On Adventure

Jambiani is a really relaxed and laid-back village. What I love about Jambiani is that tourists and locals are as one. It is less touristy and here you get the feel of the real Zanzibar.

It is located on the East side of Zanzibar, where the difference between high and low tide is significant. During low tide, the ocean is far away, which pushes you to do other activities.

During high tide go for a swim in the ocean. If you want, you can even go diving, rent a stand-up paddle board, or sign up for kitesurfing lessons. Conditions for kitesurfing here are perfect, even for beginners. Or you might want to go on a dhow sailing boat tour.

At high tide, I was swimming in the ocean and relaxing on one of the swings while admiring kitesurfers.

kitesurfing in Jambiani zanzibar
Kitesurfing in Jambani, Zanzibar | Anja On Adventure

At the time of low tide, you would want to walk to the reef, or only go and observe local women manning their algae plantations. It could also happen you will see ladies digging shells for dinner from the sand. you can also visit Kuza Cave or watch monkeys in the forest behind the village.

I was swimming it the pool at that time. I also explored the village, visited school, and was a regular at a local fruit stand. I felt safe walking alone in Zanzibar. I also walked to Paje Beach once (make sure you return before the tide comes back in).

Don’t forget that you have to cover your knees, midsection, and shoulders when outside of the hotel in Zanzibar. The majority of the population is Muslim, so dressing according to their law is crucial. Wearing a bikini inside a resort or hotel is fine.

You have many options for dinner. I was mixing things between traditional and cheap bites in Lost Soles Bar – Garden Beach Bungalows or Panyopa Restaurant. For huge portions of local cuisine try Mama HUU Restaurant. If you crave Italian food, try GEO Italian restaurant & pizzeria.

lady selling crafts in Jambiani
Lady selling handmade soaps and jewelry in Jambiani Beach | Anja On Adventure

Zanzibar itinerary Zanzibar

Day 3: Half-day trip to Kizimkazi

dolphins in Kizimkazi Zanzibar

Today you can go on a half-day tour to Kizimkazi. The beaches there are not the best for swimming but the place is known for dolphin spotting and mosque. Dimbani mosque is the oldest mosque in East Africa, dating back to 1107 AD.

I went to Kizimkazi to go on a dolphin tour.

If you decide to join a tour, please, do your part and research a tour provider. Always choose an Ethical Dolphin encounter. You might want to check out Kizimkazi Ethical Dolphin Tours offered by African Impact.

I was happy with their approach, which was similar to the one I experienced in Kaikoura, New Zealand. There were only 4 of us on a boat. We followed their swimming from afar, and watched them swim by, without disturbing or interacting with them.

You can swap the dolphin encounter and instead go on a Blue safari tour.

Back at Jambiani just relax, have a few cocktails or mocktails, try Zanzibar Dawa, and enjoy the turquoise Indian Ocean.

tall glass of pina colada cocktail with pineapple embelishment and coconut in the back
They have delicious coconuts and make amazing Piña coladas | Anja On Adventure

Zanzibar itinerary Zanzibar

Day 4: Kuza cave and Paje

kuza cave zanzibar
Kuza cave in Jambiani, Zanzibar | Anja On Adventure

Explore Jambiani and Paje surroundings.

Today is the day for an adventure and a bit of exploring. Visit Kuza Cave, which is a 10-minute drive or 30-minute walk from Jambiani. The entrance fee is $10 (9.2€).

Kuza Cave is a limestone cave with cold and clear water where you can swim in. You can also enjoy Swahili music, learn Swahili cooking, or search for monkeys and birds in a wildlife sanctuary.

Before or after go to Paje. At low tide, you can walk from Jambiani to Paje on the beach. The walk will take around 1,5 hours. In Paje, explore their food stalls and restaurants, have a dip in the ocean (at high tide), or go kitesurfing. Don’t leave before stopping at Mr Kahawa for an award-winning coffee, and a delicious meal with a view.

If you decide to walk, don’t forget to stay hydrated and wear sunscreen!

Choose one of the dinner options mentioned yesterday or find one in Paje. I was staying in Paje and having a nice little ‘picnic’ on a beach with a local Zanzibari band @afrobukuu.

Zanzibar itinerary Zanzibar

DAY 5: Jambiani – The Rock – Jozani Forest – Nungwi

the rock restaurant
The Rock restaurant, Zanzibar | Anja On Adventure

After a few days on a more relaxed East Coast, head over to the North West Coast. To Nungwi or Kendwa, where you will find the best beaches on the island.

To maximize your time and transportation costs, instead of going directly, do a little sightseeing. Taxi drive from Jambiani to Nungwi lasts from 2 to 2,5 h, and costs from $50. I paid $70 because of the detours.

From Jambiani, firstly go to The Rock Restaurant. This is a tiny restaurant built on a rock in the Indian Ocean. During low tide you can walk to it and at high tide, you will be transferred there by boat. If you wish to dine there, make sure to book in advance! This is a popular spot!

Red Colobus monkey at Jozani forest
Red Colobus monkey at Jozani forest | Anja On Adventure

After The Rock, stop at Jozani Forest. It is on the way to Nungwi and your driver will wait for you there. This is a national park where you will walk through the mangroves, learn about plants in the forest, and (hopefully) see the Zanzibar red colobus monkeyFun fact about them is that they are unable to digest the sugars found in ripe fruit.

Continue to Nungwi, where you will arrive just in time for sunset and dinner.

Nungwi is touristy and more things are going on.

Where to stay in Nungwi, Zanzibar:
There are many luxury resorts in Nungwi and Kendwa.
Z Hotel is one of the best places to stay, with an infinity pool on the beach! Amazing!
Makofi Guesthouse, is where I stayed. They have an amazing BBQ, the best burgers in Zanzibar, and a lovely common area with a dedicated spot for digital nomads.

Visit this page to see all available Nungwi accommodations to book online.

DAY 6: Nungwi & Dhow boat sunset cruise

Masaai on a beach in Nungwi
Masaai on a beach in Nungwi (all trying to see you bracelets and coconuts) | Anja On Adventure

Spend the day on one of the best beaches in Zanzibar. In Nungwi you can swim in the ocean the whole day. During low tide walk around the beach and count how many different starfish you will find.

For lunch, go to one of the local restaurants like Mama Africa and Kings Restaurant on the main street, or MJ cafe. At sunset go on a sunset cruise or a Z hotel rooftop and enjoy the view.

Watching a sunset in Nungwi is one of the must-do things in your Zanzibar itinerary.

sunset in nungwi
Sunset in Nungwi, Zanzibar | Anja On Adventure

Zanzibar itinerary Zanzibar

DAY 7: Mnemba atoll

Nungwi beach
Turquoise colors of the ocean in Nungwi | Anja On Adventure

Mnemba Atol is around 1h boat ride from Nungwi. Mnemba is considered the best diving and snorkeling spot in Zanzibar. At least that is what they say.

I visited Mnemba on a snorkeling tour and was not impressed.

Firstly, I was put off by the boat drivers chasing dolphins like it was a sort of competition. On Mnemba Island there were at least 50 other boats. Corals were mostly dead, and there were not many fish. If you haven’t had a chance to see ‘corals’ or fish, go and see for yourself. But if you are coming here just because of that, I would skip it.

yellow star fish
Make a wish upon a starfish ˇAnja On Adventure

Mnemba Island is privately owned by andBeyond.

The island is only accessible for exclusive guests staying in one of the 12 luxury bungalows. The maximum capacity of the island is 24 guests. Plus 2 staff members per guest. Celebrity guests who stayed here in the past, like Mick Jagger, Naomi Campbell, Paul McCartney, Tom Cruise, and Bill Gates … can give you an idea of how exclusive it is.

If you decide to go diving, make sure to give yourself at least 24 hours between your last dive and the time of flight!

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DAY 8: Nungwi village & Mnarani Marine Turtle Conservation Pond

Mnarani Marine Turtle Conservation Pond in Nungwi | Anja On Adventure

Spend a day exploring Nungwi village and visit Mnarani Marine Turtles Conservation Pond.

In this turtle sanctuary, you can learn about sea turtles, feed them, and swim with them. During low tide, you can get to the sanctuary on the beach, but at high tide, you will have to take the village roads. the entrance fee is $10.

Before entering the pool with turtles, you will have to shower to wash all the products you might have on your skin (sunscreen, perfumes etc.). Turtles don’t bite, but if you have a green swimsuit they might think it is sea grass.

Spend the rest of the day walking to Kendwa Beach (45-60 minutes) or relax on Nungwi.

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DAY 9: Nungwi & Kendwa

kendwa beach
Kendwa Beach | Anja On Adventure

Spend a day at Nungwi beach or walk to Kendwa, around 45 min – 1h walk. There is more of a resort feel in Kendwa. Spend a nice and relaxed day swimming. A lot is going on in Kendwa and Nungwi, so you can do as much as you want.

You can also book a day safari to Tanzania from Zanzibar (if you haven’t just came from one).

For some amazing tropical photos, book a transparent kayak photoshoot.

Or go on a relaxing massage, have a cooking class, watch people, buy some souvenirs … Enjoy your time by drinking cocktails and eating delicious food.  

When walking by the beach it is easy to forget how strong the sun is. Always wear a hat and sunscreen and drink plenty of water.

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Zanzibar itinerary Zanzibar

DAY 10: Spice tour – Prison Island – Stone Town

cinnamon bark
Cinnamon bark and cinnamon plant in the back | Anja On Adventure

Today you are going to say goodbye to Nungwi and head back to Stone Town.

This is the beginning of the last part of your Zanzibar itinerary. To maximize your time and transportation costs, just like on Day 5, you will do sightseeing along the way.

You can not visit Spice Island, without visiting a Spice farm and a Prison Island.

Taxi drive from Nungwi to Stone Town lasts around 1 hour and costs from $50. I shared a taxi with 2 other travelers and paid $50, which included both of the tours and a transfer to historic Stone Town.  

After breakfast say goodbye to Nungwi and head to Stone Town. On the way down stop at the Spice farm.

On a Spice farm, you will learn about the variety of spices that grow here and see why Zanzibar is called Spice Island. You will see how many they grow, like cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves, and learn about their usage and health benefits. I highly recommend this tour.

Giant Aldabra tortoise on Prison island in Zanzibar
Giant Aldabra tortoises on Prison Island. “Kobe” is a Swahili word for tortoise. | Anja On Adventure

After the Spice tour, you will arrive in historic Stone Town. Here you will have time for a quick lunch before visiting Prison Island.

After lunch go to Prison Island, or Changuu Island. It is a short 30-minute boat ride away from Stone Town and a popular day trip. Here you will learn about the island history (hint: it was NOT used as a prison, but for quarantine purposes).

On Prison Island, you will also be able to see a population of Aldabra Giant Tortoises. They were brought to Zanzibar from Seychelles.

seafood platter at cape town fish market restaurant in stone town

You will be spending two evenings in Stone Town.

On your first night, have dinner at one of the best restaurants in Stone Town. I went to Cape Town Fish Market Zanzibar with an amazing ambiance, stunning sunset, and great seafood and sushi selection.

Portions were the right size, food was fresh and delicious. Their wine selection was great and well worth the price. It is super close to Foroodhani Gardens Market, where you will go tomorrow.

Another great option is to have a meal at 6 degrees South. They offer seafood, amazing steaks, and traditional Swahili dishes. 

Where to stay in Stone Town, Zanzibar:
UNESCO World Heritage Site Stone Town doesn’t lack amazing places to stay. From Freddie Mercury’s house to top-notch resorts, and the historic Zanzibari tea house.
Lost & Found is where I stayed. It is opposite Freddie Mercury Museum, on a well-lit street, and within walking distance of Forodhani market, beach, and Stone Town alleys. Their beds are superb. Big and comfortable!
Shoki Shoki is s perfect midrange accommodation, close to everything. I went to the city tour with them.
Zanzibar Coffee House is a historic hotel with an amazing rooftop and delicious breakfast. Tried and tested!

Visit this page to see all available Stone Town accommodations to book online.

DAY 11: Stone Town Itinerary & Forodhani market in the evening

inside a pormer prison cell in stone town
Inside a former prison cell in Stone Town, Zanzibar | Anja On Adventure

Spend a day winding the streets of Stone Town. Stone Town is a historic center of Zanzibar City, the capital of Zanzibar. This fine example of an East African coastal trading town was added to UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2000. Stone Town is also the birthplace of Queen lead singer, Farrokh Bulsara, known as Freddy Mercury.

If your accommodation is not serving breakfast, I highly recommend visiting Stone Town Cafe. It is right in the center, close to the Freddy Mercury Museum, post, and currency exchange office.

It is also close to Memories shop, where they sell souvenirs at fixed prices. No bargaining there.

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After breakfast go on a guided walking tour of Stone Town. This tour is one of the best things to do in Zanzibar, and I recommend it to everyone.

Tour will take between 2-3 hours and it costs $20. The tour is amazing and will take you to most of the top Stone Town attractions. You will visit the cathedral, Jews Corner, Old Slave Market, Darajani Market, and Old Fort. 

Keep in mind that the majority (more than 99%) of the population is Muslim. So when in Stone Town, dress conservatively. Have your shoulders and midsection covered, don’t have cleavage, and cover your knees.

Stone town doors. are they indian or arabic
Admiring the doors in Stone Town must be included in your Zanzibar itinerary | Anja On Adventure

In the afternoon, have lunch at well-known local Swahil restaurant Lukmaan’s, serving traditional Zanzibari food at affordable prices. Or you can stop at the top of Emerson Spice Tea House. Tea house offers amazing 360°panorama views, where you can see Prison Island, the old and the new Stone Town.

After lunch explore more hidden alleys of Stone Town. Take some more photos of famous Stone Town doors or relax on the beach and watch locals practicing their craft or playing soccer.

To finish your last night in Zanzibar, have dinner at Forodhani Food Stalls.

It is a food market that comes to life each night around 5 pm. They sell a variety of street food, from Zanzibar pancakes to seafood, grilled corn, and chicken. You can also get sugarcane juice or other types of juices. It is a nice and authentic experience.

freddie mercury house in zanzibar at night
Freddie Mercury house in Stone Town at night | Anja On Adventure

itinerary Zanzibar

DAY 12: Stone Town and Departure

how to be dressed on the streets of Stone Town
Walking on the streets of Stone Town | Anja On Adventure

This is last day in your Zanzibar itinerary. As you will see Zanzibar is a rather small island. It only takes a few hours to get from one side to another but for various reasons, I always stay close to the airport before the departure. Because you just never know.

Depending on your flight time, have a nice breakfast in one of the restaurants. If you have some time left after it, use this as time for last-minute souvenir shopping, or another walk in the Stone Town alleys. When it is time, grab a taxi, dala dala or tuk-tuk and make your way to the airport.

My flight out was in the evening hours (and postponed three times). So, after my breakfast at Zanzibar Coffee House, I did some more shopping and walked in the narrow alleys of Stone Town. Then I took a tuk-tuk to Jungle Paradise Beach Resort & Spa where I spent the day as a day guest. After dinner, I grabbed a boda boda to get to the airport. 

Hakuna Matata, until next time!

swahili words
Swahli words | Anja On Adventure

Zanzibar itinerary Zanzibar

MAP of itinerary for Zanzibar

Zanzibar itinerary on a map | Anja On Adventure

Possible Zanzibar travel itinerary alternations

doors of stone town
Doors of Stone Town | Anja On Adventure

Shared 12 days in Zanzibar itinerary is the one that I used on my holiday in this semi-autonomous Tanzanian island in East Africa.

It is a semi-relaxed itinerary for Zanzibar and perfect for a first-time visitor to Zanzibar. It has the right combination of beaches, sightseeing, nature, and history. You will have enough time to relax and explore what Spice Island has to offer. 

Now I understand that not anyone wants the same from their Zanzibar vacation. You might be traveling here outside of the best time to visit Zanzibar and spend more or less time on this African island. Therefore flexibility is key.

Below I offer some more Zanzibar itinerary ideas on how you can adjust and customize itinerary for your needs.

Travel itinerary for less than 12 days in Zanzibar

slave monument stone town
Slave Monument in Stone Town | Anja On Adventure

If you don’t have 12 days to spare in Zanzibar and are wondering “How long to stay in Zanzibar?” I would say, to have at least one week in Zanzibar, and if you are coming to the island after a safari in Tanzania, try to get in an extra two.

For a 7 days in Zanzibar itinerary, I recommend spending 3 days in Paje or Jambiani, 3 days in Nungwi or Kendwa, and 1 day in Stone Town. You can still follow the itinerary above.

You can also shorten your days in Nungwi or Jambiani and add an extra day to Stone Town if you wish to visit Nakupenda Island. Blue Safari and Nakupenda Islands have a very similar concept; sailing, snorkeling, and lunch on a sand bank.

If you only have 5 days in Zanzibar, I suggest spending 1 day in Stone Town, and the rest on one of the beaches. You can still do a day trip to another side of the island, being relatively small. In that case, I would skip Jozani Forest but would still include Spice Farm, Prison Island, and Stone Town walking tour.

I know that some itineraries for Zanzibar only plan 3 days on Spice Island. In that case, relax on one of the beaches but don’t skip Stone Town.

Travel itinerary for more than 12 days in Zanzibar

kiswahili words
Learn Swahili | Anja On Adventure

It is always nice to have extra days in your travel itinerary. You can include more beach time, more day tours, or book a safari from Zanzibar to Tanzania (if you haven’t been on one).

For 2 weeks in Zanzibar itinerary, I would add 1 more day in Stone Town and another in one of the Beaches.

If you are a fan of kitesurfing extend your stay in Jambian or Paje for more kitesurfing or surfing lessons. If you feel better in more touristy areas with more parties and people, add one more day to Nungwi.

Now that you have a better idea of your Zanzibar itinerary, have a look at other Zanzibar travel guides and find out how to get to Zanzibar, if Zanzibar is safe, things to do in Stone Town, things to do in Zanzibar, Zanzibar Fun Facts, calculate your Zanzibar travel budget, have a look at my cost of travel to Zanzibar or try to get a perfect score at Zanzibar Quiz.

You can also have a look at how Zanzibar compares to Barbados and Seychelles if deciding between the two.

FAQ about travel itinerary for Zanzibar

Most probably yes.

For visiting Zanzibar you need a Tanzanian visa. If you’re flying straight into Zanzibar you’ll get your Tanzania visa there. It covers Zanzibar and the mainland and vice versa. Citizens from most Western countries can get them on arrival. It costs $50 for a single entry. You can pay by cash or card. For US citizens the visa costs $100 but it is a multi-entry visa.

From June to October.

Weather in Zanzibar by month changes. Best time to visit is during the long dry season. There should be almost no rain and more sunny days. Since this coincides with the summer in the northern hemisphere, expect higher prices on flights and accommodation. The second best time is from January to mid-March.

Dress conservatively.

The majority of the population is Muslim. Respect their culture and dress appropriately. When visiting local villages or walking around the streets in Stone Town, have your shoulders covered, don’t have cleavage, and cover your knees. Wearing a bikini on a beach is fine but don’t be topless.

Try to plan for at least 7 days but ideally two weeks in Zanzibar.

You should spend at least a week or 7 days in Zanzibar. That way you will be able to explore East and North-West Beaches, go on day tours, spend a day in Stone Town and have a day to relax. If you are coming to Zanzibar after a safari, plan a day or two more.

Zanzibar is generally a safe country for solo female travelers, with a warm and welcoming local population. I never felt unsafe and locals were extremely friendly and helpful. But take necessary safety precautions.

Read more Zanzibar travel guides

• 15 Best Places to Stay in Stone Town Zanzibar
15 Best Things To Do in Stone Town Zanzibar
• Is Zanzibar safe to visit?
• What are the best beaches to stay in Zanzibar
15 Best hotels in Jambiani Zanzibar for a perfect holiday
Zanzibar Travel budget calculator: Estimate your expenses
73+ Essential Swahili Travel Phrases for Travelers to East Africa + Free Download

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About the author: Anja

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Anja is a travel blogger and the founder of Anja on Adventure travel blog. Originally from Slovenia, she was also living in Australia, New Zealand, Samoa, and Fiji. She loves traveling to tropical destinations, as well as beach destinations with endless summer. But you can also find her eating her way through Italy or Mexico, learning about ancient cultures in Easter Island, visiting bucket list places in Peru, or taking road trips through the USA. She is passionate about world cultures, travel, maps, and puzzles. For the past 15+ years she has been traveling the globe, as a solo traveler, and as a tour guide. Her goal is to visit every tropical destination in the World. Anja On Adventure is here to provide helpful travel guides and personalized itinerary ideas to travelers that she has gathered from first-hand experience.