14 Things to do in Stone Town  : Zanzibar’s Stone Town, also known as Mji Mkongwe (Swahili meaning “old town”), is the old part of Zanzibar City, the island’s capital. Stone Town lies on the western shore of Unguja, the Zanzibar Archipelago’s main island. Formerly stone town was the capital of the Zanzibar Sultanate and a thriving heart of the spice and slave trades in the nineteenth century, and it kept its status as Zanzibar’s largest city during the British protectorate.

Exploring Stone Town

Stone Town was regarded as one of the most important capital cities in the region in the 19th century, when Zanzibar was the heart of the spice trade. Despite being captured by several outside powers, including the Portuguese, the Omani Arabs, and, of course, the British Empire, Stone Town has maintained its relevance throughout its history. With its well-preserved 19th-century colonial architecture and a unique culture founded on Swahili traditions but with a touch of Arab, Persian, Indian, and European influences, Stone Town is still considered one of the most important places in the region in terms of antiquity and artistry.

You’ve come to the right place if you’re planning a trip to the paradise island and want to spend a few days there. Stone Town is famed for its old architecture and street food culture, and it is a popular tourist destination for many visitors, who may relax knowing that English is frequently spoken in addition to Swahili. Tourists and single travelers will find the town safe, and the residents will gladly assist them. As one of the most popular tourist destinations for all visitor categories, Stone Town has many unique attractions and activities to do that will make your vacation more rewarding, fun, and meet your expectations. Some of the best things to do in Stone Town are listed below

  1. Marvel at Stone Town Beaches

Stone Town is surrounded by water from the Indian Ocean, making it a great place for a beach safari. Walking in any direction will almost certainly lead you to the beach, as three sides of the Old Town area are bordered by sandy coasts. While the beach in Stone Town isn’t as beautiful as the ones up north, it’s nevertheless a visual treat for anyone flying in from Europe or North America. Locals might be seen dancing and doing acrobatics on the beach, or fishing boats and traditional dhows can be seen sailing past into the sunset, 14 Things to do in Stone Town .

Stone Town is the ideal blend of city and beach. Though Stone Town isn’t known for having Zanzibar‘s most gorgeous beaches but still you can take your time and get the nice view of the ocean or wonder to the local people as they are in their own daily schedules and activities along the beaches. The stone town beach, the water is frequently rougher than in other locations, less clean, and clogged with boats (it is a port city, after all).

  1. Wonder at the Old Fort

This is another amazing thing to do in Stone Town, and your tour or Zanzibar Island safari will undoubtedly be incomplete without a visit to this old structure. The old fort, built by Arabs from Oman in the 18th century to defend Stone Town from the Portuguese, is located right next to the shore and is one of the most historic and important buildings in Stone Town. It’s Stone Town’s oldest structure, and it’s currently a popular tourist destination with restaurants and souvenir shops.

14 Things to do in Stone Town
Old Fort
  1. Go to Forodhani Gardens Food Market.

Forodhani Gardens are located along the main promenade near the seaside in Zanzibar’s old Stone Town. You may easily find it by going towards the seaside, asking local, or looking it up on Google Maps. If you’ve already done a guided or self-guided tour of Stone Town, you’ll be familiar with the area since it is more famous place in stone town. You can visit this location both during the day and at night. During the day, it’s a tranquil spot to roam about and a nice respite from Stone Town’s bustling streets. There’s a lovely old bandstand there, as well as a view of the coastline, the old fort, and the House of Wonders, 14 Things to do in Stone Town .

Every night, Stone Town’s Forodhani Gardens transform into a bustling street food market. At that time, fresh seafood and local specialties like Zanzibarian pizza are available for purchase. Visitors stroll down the seafront, taking in the sunset over the Indian Ocean and tasting street food with locals. During your vacation to Zanzibar’s Stone Town, it is a good place to enjoy some of the local cuisine.

  1. Take a tour of Prison Island.

One of the nicest islands in Zanzibar with a rich history, you may visit it on a day trip from Stone Town, Zanzibar. Prison Island got its name from the first idea of building a prison on the island. It was utilized as a prison for rebellious slaves and as a coral mine for a short period of time in the 1860s. The island was turned into a quarantine station for yellow fever cases rather than a prison.

Prison Island is a great half-day excursion from Stone Town, with boats departing from the seafront. They transport you to the beautiful prison island, which is now a turtle sanctuary. The beach is equally beautiful, and you’ll have time to go snorkeling in the crystal clear seas before the boat returns you to Stone Town a few hours later.

14 Things to do in Stone Town
prison island
  1. Explore and Admire the Zanzibar doors.

Zanzibar’s doors are historical antiques that illustrate the island nation’s stormy past as a significant actor in the ancient international commerce route despite its small size. Colonists arrived from as far away as Arab countries, established shops, and traded human flesh. One of the most interesting things to do in stone town- Zanzibar, and a completely free pastime is to look at as many of the city’s finely carved wooden doors as possible-some with metal spikes for ornamentation, which were formerly used in India to keep elephants from rubbing against the doors.

  1. Try some Indian food.

Finding one of stone town- Zanzibar’s best Indian restaurants is a must do during your safari/ vocation at this historical town. Discover the top Indian restaurants in Stone Town, Zanzibar City, and the Zanzibar Archipelago. Former palaces and Arab homes dot the twisting alleyways of Stone Town, indicating a more regal era for this port city on Zanzibar’s western coast. Some of the restaurants where you can find/ get the Indian food during your vocation at stone town includes terrace rooftop restaurant, jaws restaurant, bahari restaurant, .Krishna food house, le spices rendez-vous etc

  1. Visit the Darajani fish market.

The Darajani Market, also known as the Bazaar, is one of Stone Town’s most important markets. Some of the best acts often take place on the outside streets before entering the market. It is here that visitors will find vendors offering a variety of items, such as plastic toys and unique objects. The Darajani market is the island’s largest food market, featuring separate sections for meat, seafood, and vegetables. It’s not for the faint of heart, as it has actual animal carcasses as well as some unique odors. Going to the fish section in the morning to watch the fish auction, where they rapidly and skillfully auction off the catch of the day, is one of the most enjoyable things to do here.

  1. Visit the former slave market.

Another thing to do in Stone Town, Zanzibar is to visit the Slave Market, which is now a Christian cathedral and sheds light on Stone Town’s tragic past as a slave trade center. It’s extremely awful to read about where the slaves came from, where they were kept, and how they were sold-and while it’s unsettling. It’s a location that everyone visiting Zanzibar should see and learn about.

  1. Check out the old dispensary.

Stone Town contains numerous beautiful structures from the 18th and 19th centuries, many of which have intriguing and colorful histories. The old dispensary is one of these historically significant structures that must be seen by visitors at their Zanzibar holiday. Built by a wealthy Indian who intended it to be used as a charitable hospital for the destitute, this magnificently ornamented building, replete with carved doors, stained-glass decorations, and a larger covered courtyard, was utilized as a clinic in the early twentieth century.

  1. See Freddy Mercury’s House

Freddy Mercury, the legendary Queen front man, was born in this town and lived in the Freddy Mercury House, which is currently located in the heart of the historic district. On your walking trip, or cycling tour at Zanzibar stone town you have a great time to see and enjoy this past house. The Mercury House is located on a modest street in Stone Town, Zanzibar’s historic center. Mercury grew up in this residence for part of his childhood, 14 Things to do in Stone Town .

14 Things to do in Stone Town
Freddy Mercury’s House
  1. Visit, spend and Stay in a historic Arabic-style hotel.

In Stone Town, there are numerous exquisite hotels with rich interiors and unique histories. During your stone town vocation you can booked into the Dhow Palace, a hotel that was previously the residence of a wealthy merchant whose family had held the property for over three centuries. The building and furnishings have the feel of a living museum, and the layout is reminiscent of a Moroccan riad, with an open courtyard in the center with unusual water features and even a rooftop excellent for watching the sunset.

  1. Take a walk down by the port.

The trek to Zanzibar’s major port, where ships and ferries bound for mainland Tanzania and other islands dock, is enjoyable. There’s a lovely promenade with a long line of palm trees that’s fantastic to stroll down in the golden hour before sunset. Along the route, you’ll pass some of Zanzibar’s most important and visually stunning structures, 14 Things to do in Stone Town .

  1. Get Lost in the Alleyways

Stone Town is an ideal location for strolling and wandering, soaking in the city’s sights, sounds, and smells. You’ll encounter a variety of Zanzibar architecture on your travels, including exquisite Zanzibar doors (one of the most remarkable being slave trader Tippu Tip’s house), buildings, and places of worship, all of which emphasize Zanzibar’s cultural past.

The Shiv Shakti Hindu temple, St. Joseph’s Catholic Cathedral, Christ Church Anglican Cathedral, and numerous mosques are also part of this (although non-Muslims are usually not permitted in the mosques). You might easily lose yourself in the maze of lanes for hours just shopping, dining, and getting lost. And don’t worry if you get utterly lost; Google Maps is a great resource, or you can always ask a helpful shopkeeper for directions, 14 Things to do in Stone Town .

  1. Visit mtoni palace ruins

These ruins provide insight into Zanzibar’s historic governmental and commercial prowess. There is a concert with traditional tunes, dances, and a banquet every Tuesday and Friday. The evening starts with a guided tour of the ruins, followed by a buffet and a closing performance. You can also participate in a traditional Zanzibari coffee roasting ceremony.

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