Attractions

Gardens in Zanzibar Town

Forodhani Gardens

One of the best ways to ease into life on the island is to stop by these formal gardens, originally laid out in 1936 to commemorate the Silver Jubilee of Sultan Khalifa (r 1911–60). In the centre of the grassy plaza…
Church in Zanzibar Town

Christ Church Anglican Cathedral

Constructed in the 1870s by the Universities’ Mission to Central Africa (UMCA), this was the first Anglican cathedral in East Africa. It was built on the site of the old slave market, the altar reputedly marking the…
Museum in Zanzibar Town

Beit el-Sahel

Occupying several blocks along the waterfront, the imposing Palace Museum is a reconstruction of the Sultan Seyyid Said’s 19th-century palace home, which was destroyed by the British bombardment of 1896. It was rena…
Historic Building in Zanzibar Town

Beit el-Ajaib

Built for ceremonial purposes by Sultan Barghash in 1883, the 'House of Wonders' rises in impressive tiers of slender steel pillars and balconies overlooking the Forodhani Gardens. It is the grandest structure in Za…
Historic Building in Zanzibar Town

Old Fort

Among the defining features of Stone Town's waterfront are the ragstone ramparts of Ngome Kongwe, the Old Fort. It was the first defensive structure built by the Busaidi Omani Arabs when they seized the island from …
Church in Zanzibar Town

St Joseph’s Cathedral

One of the first sights travellers see when arriving by ferry are the spires of the Roman Catholic cathedral, designed by French architect Berange, who built the cathedral in Marseilles. It was built by local French…
Historic Site in Zanzibar Town

Slave Chambers

Although nothing of the old slave market remains, some 15 holding cells are located beneath the Anglican Cathedral and St Monica’s Hostel. Two of them, beneath St Monica’s, are open to the public and offer a soberin…
Market in Zanzibar Town

Darajani Market

Zanzibar's main market is well worth a visit – best undertaken in the morning, when things are still fresh. You'll find everything here – from colourful piles of spices, slabs of meat, fresh fish and huge baskets fu…
Historic Building in Zanzibar Town

Old Dispensary

With its peppermint-green latticework balconies and sculpted clock tower, this late 19th-century charitable dispensary is one of the most attractive landmarks on the waterfront. It was built by Tharia Topan, a promi…
Historic Building in Zanzibar Town

Beit el-Amani

This domed building, formerly the Peace Memorial Museum and now an archive, dates to 1925, when it was inaugurated as a memorial to the accords ending WWI. It was designed by British architect JH Sinclair, who also …