Family beach holidays in Zanzibar
Every list of must dos in Zanzibar (Unguja) always involves the beach. There is no way you can visit this island and not be mesmerised by the wide and beautiful expanses of sand and sea. A beach is the best holiday for every member of the family. Imagine spending days on the beach, lazing, sunbathing and reading, jumping into the water and playing with the kids. Evenings are all about great food and barbeques and parties. Family beach holidays in Zanzibar are truly special.
Zanzibar is renowned for its coral. But the colourful coral is not its only draw. There are beautiful flowers, coconut palms on the beach, mangroves that mesmerise and we are only getting started. Look at the water because you may be in for a treat. The children will delight when they spot red starfish at Pongwe. Starfish is not the only creature in the water- there’s octopus and dolphin too.
Each beach of Zanzibar has something to offer. Scuba diving, snorkelling at Fumba, swimming at Nungwi and drift diving and reef exploring at Mnemba. The beaches of Michamvi and Paje are best known for their palm fringes, waters for kite surfing, diving, snorkelling and evening cruises.
When you want a change of scene, head to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Stone Town. From the House of Wonders and the Baths, there’s plenty of room and time for the kids and the grownups to run around and explore. A place you must visit is The Rock Restaurant on Michamwi Pingwe Beach. You and the family will love to dine in a place that’s right on the water, surrounded by the Indian Ocean.
Zanzibar has many history lessons to offer and children need to know history. The House of Wonders is from 1883, the Peace Memorial has its own story and the Dispensary is from the 19th century. Especially when travelling with kids, make sure you have proper vaccines and documents. Among the recommended vaccinations are for cholera, typhoid and hep A and B. Do take in a marine tourism experience – it is worth the time and effort.
So many resorts offer the complete package – day care and baby care, activities for children and for adults and a complete holiday that is relaxing and wonderful. Kichanga Lodge comes to mind when you think of the complete package. Relaxation beds, paddling, kite surfing, reef walking and volleyball are some of the many things you can do.
Plan your holiday well and get there for the Beach and Watersports Festival. This is an ubercool festival that puts the beach in the middle of everything. While there are the fast-paced pastimes of rugby and football, there’s also the slow peaceful life of yoga. The beach comes alive with music, drinks are free-flowing and there’s delicious food to add to the mix. If you’re in the mood for learning, there are workshops to choose from as well.
Weaved into every experience is the warmth of the Zanzibari people and that alluring mix of history and spirituality.
The ideal time to get to Zanzibar is between December and March. Blue skies, warm days, the waters just right – the perfect recipe for a beach holiday!