Spice is Nice

The beaches, cultural diversity and slave history of the 'spice islands' of Zanzibar
  • Zanzibar’s an intoxicating mish-mash of cultures, cuisines, histories and sceneries. Hit the Forodhani Night Market for nibbles, get a dose of Stone Town history at the Slave Museum and Sultan’s Palace and log up some sand time on Paje Beach.


    Arab, sultans, trade links with China, Portugal and India and a muslim call to prayer that bellows across Stone Town five times a day - we guess you could say Zanzibar is pretty diverse.


    Day 1 - Stone Town

    Satisfy your seafood cravings at the Forodhani Night Market on the waterfront. Construct the skewer of your dreams from fresh octopus, squid, fish, crab, mussel and lobster then watch it get barbequed to perfection while you wait.

    • Spend the night in Stone Town, at a central location
    • Allow yourself time to wander through the many cobbled laneways, take in the architecture and appreciate the famous Zanzibar doors
    • Set off on an optional Spice Tour, that starts with a brief tour of the historical sights in Stone Town, before visiting the Slave Museum, the ruins of the Sultan’s Palace and then travelling to the famous spice plantations
    • Perhaps set about getting out to Prison Island, where you can swim and snorkel and observe the giant tortoises
    • Shopping and eating opportunities abound, as do colourful food and craft markets to visit

    Day 2-4 - Paje Beach

    Your beach bungalow comes complete with its own bar, and there's always an interesting mix of locals and other visitors to chat to. That is, when you're not swimming diving, kite surfing, relaxing or reading on the beach.

    • Spend the next three days on the idyllic east coast, where soft white sandy beaches stretch as far as the eye can see
    • Swim in the warm and inviting water of the pristine east coast, which is far less frequented than the northern beaches
    • Wander on the white sand, catch the sunset through rows of palm trees and soak up the peace and tranquillity of the area
    • Stay in beach bungalows opposite a sparkling stretch of Indian Ocean
    • Perhaps indulge in massages, bargain with the beach traders, laze in your hammock, relax by the bar and spoil yourself with the abundance of fresh seafood, Italian wood fired pizzas and Swahili dishes

    Day 5 - Stone Town

    By now you should be able to find your way around the maze-like streets without getting too lost. Live out your Willy Wonka fantasy on a spice tour where you'll get to lick a cinnamon tree.

    • Bid farewell to the beaches and return to Stone Town, where the trip ends on arrival.
    • Group transfer departs Paje Beach at 10am. Please ensure flights are not booked to depart 2pm.
  • What's Included

    • Local escorts in Zanzibar

      Road transfers from Zanzibar Airport to Stone Town on Day 1, Stone Town to Paje Beach on Day 3 and from Paje Beach to Stone Town/Airport on Day 5

      4 nights budget hotel

      4 breakfasts

    Not Included

    • International flights, airport transfers, departure taxes, visas, insurance (compulsory on all trips), meals not listed (lunches and dinners), any optional tours or activities during free time, camera fees, excess baggage charges, tips and items of a personal nature.

    Safety Information

    It is recommended that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information prior to your departure.

    Geckos strongly recommends the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe-keeping of your passport, air tickets, cash and other valuable items. Please leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Most of our hotels will have a safety deposit box, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage.

    Your leader will accompany you on all included activities, however during your trip you'll have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your group leader will assist you with the available options in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and Geckos makes no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Please also note that your group leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it's deemed necessary due to safety concerns.

    FIRE PRECAUTIONS: Please be aware that local laws governing tourism facilities in this region differ from those in your home country and not all the accommodation which we use has a fire exit, fire extinguishers or smoke alarms.

    TRAFFIC AND DRIVING CONDITIONS: Depending on where you come from please note that drivers in this part of the world may drive on the opposite side of the road from what you are used to. Look both ways before crossing any road. Be aware that traffic can be a little more chaotic than you might be used to at home.

    PETTY THEFT AND PERSONAL SAFETY:While travelling there is always the risk of pick-pocketing and petty theft, particularly in the more touristy cities. We recommend that you exercise caution when walking alone at night and encourage you to walk together and only on main, well-lit thoroughfares. Be particularly vigilant on public transport. Simple measures like carrying your day pack on your front, not hanging your bag over the back of your chair and wearing a money belt will reduce any chance that your valuables should go missing.

    SWIMMING POOLS: You may stay at hotels with unfenced pools and no life guard on duty.

    UNFENCED CAMP SITES: On some trips where you will be staying within a national park, please note that at times you will stay in unfenced camp sites. While this is a fantastic experience, there are a few safety rules that must be adhered to. While staying in national parks it's important that you listen to any advice given by your leader and the park rangers regarding responsible and safe behaviour.

    Some hotel balconies don't meet UK standards in terms of the width of the balcony fence being narrower than 10cm.

    Please be aware that local laws governing transportation safety may differ from those in the western world or from your home country and not all the transport which we use provides seat belts.


  • Map Itinerary

  • Trip Dates and Prices

    Start Date – End Date Trip Status Price From
    Daily Request US $840 Book Now
  • Past Travellers' Ratings & Comments

    There’s no feedback available on this trip yet. If you’ve been on this trip and would like to contribute a review, rating or simply make a comment then please get in touch.

from US
5 days

Please note this trip or extension departs daily and can be booked for any day of the year.

Book now


- 12
Private vehicle
4 nights Basic hotel
Stone Town, Zanzibar
Stone Town, Zanzibar

Contact us for more info


Simply enter your details and we'll call you back within the next business day.