Top things to do

Top Choice Cafe in Zanzibar Town

Zanzibar Coffee House

The top spot in Zanzibar for a serious cup of genuine East African Rift Valley coffee is undoubtedly this charming cafe. Alongside espressos and cappuccinos are milkshakes, crêpes, salads, sandwiches and toasted bru…
Top Choice Art in Zanzibar Town

Cultural Arts Centre Zanzibar

Organised by the dedicated Hamad and other local artists, with an emphasis on quality and distinctiveness, this arts centre and shop provide a refreshing change from the wooden animals and tinga-tinga art found else…
Top Choice Fusion in Zanzibar Town

Emerson Spice Rooftop Teahouse

Perched on top of the Emerson Spice hotel, the 'teahouse' (open-sided room) offers 360-degree views and some of the finest food in Stone Town. Many guests come for pre-dinner sundowner cocktails before enjoying five…
Top Choice Music in Zanzibar Town

Sauti za Busara

A cultural landmark in Zanzibar since 2003, Sauti za Busara is one of the biggest festivals of its sort in East Africa, showcasing music and musicians of all genres – taarab, jazz, Afro-pop or bongo flava – from acr…
Top Choice Zanzibari in Zanzibar Town

Lukmaan Restaurant

Probably the best local restaurant for quality Zanzibari food. There's no menu: just make your way inside to the 1950s counter and see what's on offer. Servings are enormous and include various biryanis, fried fish,…
Top Choice Live Music in Zanzibar Town

Dhow Countries Music Academy

Many music genres are studied at this academy and regular evening concerts showcase students' work, from Afro-jazz and fusion to taarab – Zanzibar's celebrated sung poetry. For a more hands-on experience, workshops …
Historic Building in Zanzibar Town

House of Wonders

An icon of Stone Town, the House of Wonders rises in impressive tiers of slender steel pillars and balconies overlooking the waterfront. Its enormous carved doors are said to be the largest in East Africa, fronted b…
Gardens in Zanzibar Town

Forodhani Gardens

One of the best ways to ease into Zanzibar life is to stop by this waterfront public space. It's a social hub for tourists and locals alike; there's a large restaurant jutting into the sea, two small cafes with outs…
Historic Building in Zanzibar Town

Old Dispensary

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

Emerson on Hurumzi Rooftop Teahouse

Part of the well-known Emerson on Hurumzi hotel, the rooftop teahouse restaurant is open to nonguests. The food is excellent, and the view simply stunning. Lunch is served from noon to 4pm, or come early for sunset …