English, Espanol, Francais
It may not have a particularly romantic name, but Stone Town is the old city and cultural heart of Zanzibar, little changed in the last 200 years. It is a place of winding alleys, bustling bazaars, mosques and grand Arab houses whose original owners vied with each other over the extravagance of their dwellings. This one-upmanship is particularly reflected in the brass-studded, carved, wooden doors – there are more than 500 different examples of this handiwork. You can spend many idle hours and days just wandering through the fascinating labyrinth of narrow streets and alleyways.
Walk by landmarks such as the House of Wonders (Beit-el-Ajaib, a former palace of an early sultan), the Anglican Cathedral built on the site of the Old Slave Market, the Sultan’s Palace (Beit al-Sahel, now a museum), the Old Fort (Ngome Kongwe, built to defend against the Portuguese), the house where rock star Freddy Mercury was born, and a local market that sells fruit, vegetables, and fish. You’ll also pass many shops, where you can purchase a variety of goods, from antiques and pictures to traditional clothing and crafts, if you wish.