Overlooking the coast, away from the heat and hustle of Zanzibar Town, Mtoni Palace was built for Sultan Seyyid Said in 1828. It was home to the sultan’s only legitimate wife, many secondary wives and hundreds of children. According to contemporary descriptions, it was a beautiful building with a balconied exterior and a large garden courtyard complete with peacocks and gazelles. Now only a ruin remains with roofless halls and arabesque arches framing glimpses of tropical foliage and an azure sea.
To get here, head north from Zanzibar Town on the main road towards Bububu for 6km, from where a dirt road leads west to the ruins.