Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days

If you are looking for the best 7 day Zanzibar itinerary, look no further!

After our 5 day safari, we spent one week immersing ourselves in this incredible island and it quickly became one of our favorite places in the whole world!

Zanzibar offers a blend of rich culture, stunning beaches, and historical significance. Over 7 days, you can explore the vibrant spirit of Zanzibar, including its scenic tropical landscapes, cultural heritage sites, and indulging in the warmth of its people.

Discover a diverse range of activities, accommodations, and culinary delights that make Zanzibar the ultimate paradise.

Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - Jambiani Beach
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - Bamboo Zanzibar Design Hotel

Zanzibar 7-Day Itinerary Overview

This itinerary takes you through the vibrant streets of Stone Town, the serene beaches of Jambiani, and the lively shores of Nungwi.

2 nights in Stone Town

Immerse yourself in the UNESCO World Heritage sites and historical tours, delving into the island’s rich cultural heritage.

2 nights in Jambiani

Relax and unwind in the laid-back ambiance of Jambiani, stay at the exquisite Bamboo Zanzibar Design Hotel, and indulge in beach strolls and snorkeling.

2 nights in Nungwi

Experience the nightlife of Nungwi and bask in the stunning Zanzibar sunset.

All three of these locations offer a taste of different experiences, and I highly recommend visiting and staying in each location for a couple of nights. Jambiani was our favorite place in all of Zanzibar.

Day 1-2: Exploring Stone Town

After flying into Zanzibar (ZNZ) airport in the morning, the adventure begins with two unforgettable nights in Stone Town. This town is a UNESCO World Heritage site that captures the essence of Zanzibar’s cultural tapestry.

Spend some time wandering through its winding streets and immerse yourself in the rich history and vibrant atmosphere that define this ancient trading hub.

Best things to do & must visit places –

  • Darajani Market
  • The Freddie Mercury House
  • The Old Fort
  • Secret Garden Restaurant (located in Emerson Spice Hotel)
  • The “sunset jump spot” to watch locals dive and flip off the pier
  • Morning trip to Nakupenda Island
  • Day trip to Prison Island
  • Visit a spice farm
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - Stone Town
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - women walking in Stone Town

Where to Stay in Stone Town

We stayed in an Airbnb called “The Train’s House Boutique Apartments” and while it did have decent reviews, we unfortunately cannot recommend it. The location and price are great, but the air conditioning was broken, the power went off for over an hour, and the towels weren’t very clean.

Some other places we’d stay next time are:

  • Emerson Spice Hotel ($$): Nestled amid the enchanting alleys of Stone Town, this elegant hotel is a stone’s throw away from the the vibrant Darajani Market.
  • Zanzibar Palace Hotel ($$): This boutique hotel offers an authentic Zanzibari experience in the heart of Stone Town. Just a short walk from the bustling Forodhani Gardens and the historic Old Fort.
  • Park Hyatt Zanzibar ($$$): Situated on the beachfront, this luxurious hotel provides easy access to the House of Wonders and the iconic Freddie Mercury House.
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - Stone Town shopping
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - Stone Town Zanzibar doors

Best Restaurants in Stone Town

  • Lukmaan Restaurant: Experience authentic Zanzibari flavors at Lukmaan, where you can savor delectable pilau rice, coconut bean soup, and richly spiced curries.
  • Cape Town Fish Market: This waterfront restaurant is the perfect place to watch the locals jump and flip off the pier at sunset. The food is a little bit expensive, but we ate here twice and thought it was delicious both times!
  • Emerson on Hurumzi: Delight in a rooftop dining experience at Emerson on Hurumzi. This restaruant is renowned for its rooftop tea house, set menu Zanzibar cuisine, and Taarab musical performances.
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - Secret Garden Restaurant
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - sunset jump spot

Day 3-4: Relaxing in Jambiani

The next stop on your 7 day Zanzibar itineray is to the pristine beaches of Jambiani. This beach town and its tranquil environment offers the perfect setting for relaxation and unwinding after exploring busy Stone Town. This was our favorite place in all of Zanzibar!

Best things to do & must-visit places –

  • Soak up the sun at Jambiani Beach
  • Clear kayaking (rent from your hotel)
  • Swim at the beautiful Kuza Cave
  • Walk out on the sandbars at low tide
  • Kite surfing in Jambiani/Paje
  • Get a massage at Bamboo Zanzibar Spa
  • Have lunch at The Rock Restaurant (if you want to visit when it’s surrounded by water, make sure to schedule your reservation during high tide)
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - Bamboo Zanzibar Design Hotel
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 days - Jambiani clear kayak

Where to Stay in Jambiani

We stayed at Bamboo Zanzibar Design Hotel and could not recommend it more! It’s one of the most beautiful places we’ve ever stayed during our travels. If you’re looking for a private pool like our photo below, make sure to book the “Ocean View Suite with Private Plunge Pool”. You won’t regret it!

Some other great to places to stay in Jambiani are:

  • Coral Rocks Hotel ($$)
  • Blue Moon Resort ($$$)
  • Jambiani White Sands Beach Bungalows ($)
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - Bamboo Zanzibar private pool room
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - Bamboo Zanzibar room

Best Restaurants in Jambiani

  • Bamboo Bar & Restaurant: We ate at this restaurant located at our hotel (Bamboo Zanzibar) every day. Here, you can enjoy a delightful fusion of local and international cuisine. The panoramic views of the Indian Ocean are the cherry on top!
  • Fadhil Restaurant: Known for great seafood and low prices. They offer vegan and vegetarian options as well.
  • Pompetti Restuarant: If you’re looking for some pizza in Jambiani, this place is one of the best.
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - Bamboo Zanzibar restaurant
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - Bamboo Zanzibar restaurant view

Day 5-6: Adventures in Nungwi

The final stop on your 7 day Zanzibar itinerary is Nungwi. Known for its lively beaches and vibrant nightlife, Nungwi is the perfect place to immerse yourself in a more energetic atmosphere. Induge in the spirit of this coastal paradise, where days are spent basking in the sun on the powdery sands and taking refreshing dips in the crystal-clear waters. The atmosphere here is infectious, and we found ourselves swept up in the lively energy of this thriving beach town.

Best things to do & must-visit places –

  • Lunch with a view at Mama Mia restaurant! You can often enjoy live acrobatic performances on the beach right from your table.
  • Embark on a sunset dhow boat tour
  • Swim at Nungwi Beach
  • Wander around town and buy some local crafts or souvenirs
  • Take a day trip to Mnemba Island
  • Go scuba diving
  • If you like to party and you’re in Zanzibar during the full moon, head to Kendwa Rocks for an epic full moon party!
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - dhow boat tour
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - Mnemba Island

Where to Stay in Nungwi

As Nungwi is one of the most popular towns on the island, there are tons of options for places to stay. You can find affordable Airbnbs, basic hotels, and luxury resorts.

Some great to places to stay in Nungwi include:

  • Nungwi Dreams by Mantis ($$)
  • Maisha Nungwi ($$)
  • The Z Hotel Zanzibar ($$$)
  • Royal Zanzibar Beach Resort ($$$$)

Best Restaurants in Nungwi

  • Fish Market Local Restaurant: Fresh and delicious seafood with beautiful ocean views
  • Mama Mia: Great pizzas, nice wines, and an incredible view
  • Sexy Fish: Diverse menu (including sushi), cocktails, great views and service
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - Nungwi Beach view
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - Nungwi Beach

Travel Tips for Zanzibar

  • Carry cash for smaller purchases and local markets.
  • Transportation on the island primarily relies on taxis. We found no difficulty in securing a taxi whenever needed. Fares range from $5 to $50, depending on the distance traveled.
  • While renting a car is an option, I advise against it. There’s a notable presence of police conducting random stops, issuing tickets to tourists without valid cause. Given the fairness of taxi tariffs, it’s much less stressful to get around by taxi.
  • Respect the cultural norms by dressing semi modestly, as more than 90% of the Zanzibar population is Muslim.
  • Stay hydrated and protect yourself from the sun, especially during the hotter months.
  • DO NOT drink or brush your teeth with the tap water. Use clean bottled water at all times.
  • Wear mosquito repellent and a high SPF. We were still taking malaria pills during our time in Zanzibar, due to us visiting directly after our safari. Consult with your doctor to see if they recommend Malaria pills for you or not depending on your travel destinations.
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days - Bamboo Zanzibar
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 days - Bamboo Zanzibar

Best Time to Visit Zanzibar

Busy season –

Peak season in Zanzibar runs from June to October, during the island’s dry season. This period boasts pleasant, sunny weather with minimal rainfall, making it ideal for beach vacations and outdoor activities. The favorable weather conditions also coincide with the summer holidays, resulting in increased tourist numbers and higher accommodation prices. We visited during July and had great weather, but found some of the tours to have been busier than we expected.

Off-peak season –

March to May is characterized by the island’s long rains. While this season experiences occasional heavy downpours, it also brings rejuvenation to the lush landscapes. Traveling during the off-peak season offers the advantage of fewer crowds, allowing for a more tranquil and immersive experience. Additionally, accommodation and activity prices tend to be lower during this period, presenting budget-friendly opportunities to explore Zanzibar.

It’s important to note that Zanzibar’s tropical climate means that even during the rainy season, rainfall tends to occur in short, intense bursts, often in the evenings, rather than persistent showers throughout the day.

Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days
Zanzibar Itinerary 7 Days (27)

Packing Essentials for Zanzibar

Here’s a snippet from my ultimate Zanzibar packing list

  • Climate Appropriate Clothing: Pack light, breathable clothing suitable for the tropical climate. Opt for cotton tops, shorts, and sundresses to stay cool and comfortable during the sunny days.
  • Sun Protection: Don’t forget to bring wide-brimmed hats, sunglasses, and high SPF sunscreen to protect yourself from the intense sun.
  • Swimwear: Include swimsuits and cover-ups
  • Comfortable Footwear: Pack sandals or flip-flops for beach outings and walking shoes for exploring the island’s attractions
  • Light Layers: Evening breezes may call for a light cover-up. Bring a shawl or a light jacket to keep warm during cooler evenings and protect against any unexpected bursts of wind.
  • Insect Repellent: With Zanzibar’s lush greenery, it’s wise to bring insect repellent to guard against pesky mosquitoes, especially during the evenings and in more rural areas.
  • Travel Documents: Ensure you have your passport, visa (if required), travel insurance details, and any necessary medical documents securely packed. Make copies of these essential documents and keep them in a separate place as a precaution.
  • Cash and Cards: Have enough local currency and a range of payment options accessible. Carry a mix of cash, credit cards, and a debit card for convenience and security.
  • Reusable Water Bottle: Stay hydrated on your adventures by bringing a durable, reusable water bottle. Fill up at your hotel or at filtered water stations to minimize plastic waste and keep cool during your explorations.
  • Adaptor and Electronics: Don’t forget your camera, phone, and necessary chargers. Also, pack a universal adaptor to ensure your devices stay powered up throughout your trip.

If you’re also planning on taking a safari in Tanzania, check out my Tanzania safari packing guide!

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Hi! I'm Carrie Salter, a travel blogger originally from the USA, but now traveling and living abroad full time. I share travel guides, travel tips, and inspiration from around the world!

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