How to Choose Your Accommodation in Zanzibar
My first post about Zanzibar, which you can find here, was all about things you need to know and useful tips related to transportation, how to get there, safety, food and such. I’ll go on today with some more useful information related to where to stay and how to find the perfect accommodation for you.
In terms of accommodation, Zanzibar has a little bit of everything for everyone. Depending on how you want your vacation to be, you can choose to stay on the South-Eastern part of the island, where the white sand beach stretches for about 20 km between Jambiani, Paje and Bwejuu. There are a lot of restaurants, bars, coffee shops and tavernas along the beach, but because of the size of the beach, it doesn’t feel crowded. Paje is a very popular spot for windsurfers. On this side, at low-tide, the water goes down a lot, maybe more than 1 km, so it’s impossible to swim during some parts of the day.
Which side of the island to stay on?
Another important beach of the island is on the North-Eastern coast, spreading for another 20 km between Kiwengwa and Matemwe. This is a more laid-back area, with mostly 4-5 stars resorts. It’s also popular for diving.
Nungwi and Kendwa are the most popular and crowded beaches, located on the northern tip of the island. It’s a great spot for watching the sunset and the tide is not so strong here, making swimming possible all throughout the day.
The prices for accommodation in Zanzibar vary depending on location and type of establishment, but they are generally quite affordable. There are plenty of options on booking.com, just make sure to read the reviews carefully.
My personal recommendation is the place we stayed at, Ananda Beach House. The owner is Ciprian, a Romanian guy who fell in love with the place and decided to settle there. He has another accommodation option in Bwejuu, a villa with a pool and restaurant, so if you want something more luxurious and don’t mind it not being right on the beach, Ananda Villa is a great option.
Ananda Beach House
For me, Paje beach was love at first sight and I knew that that’s where I want to spend my whole trip. The water, the sand, everything about it just screams ‘paradise’! I was already following Ciprian for a while and I knew that his beach-front property, Ananda Beach House is where I want to stay. I mean, dipping your toes in the perfectly white sand the minute you step out of your bungalow and having this view every morning… What more can you ask for?
The property is literally on the beach and it has a main house with a kitchen and two hostel rooms, two beach-front bungalows and two double garden bungalows. The garden is ‘paved’ with the whitest and finest of sands and it has plenty of sunbeds, swings, benches and a hammock where you can just chill and take in all the surrounding beauty. And that’s exactly what I did most of the time, I just laid on a sunbed, staring in awe at the million shades of blue of the Indian Ocean. I had to remind myself to breathe every now and then…
We spent the first two nights in one of the beach bungalows and the rest of the trip in a garden bungalow. While the beach bungalow is very traditional and picturesque, we actually preferred the garden one as it was more spacious and bright.
There you go, you’re all set now to find the perfect accommodation in Zanzibar!