Caution October 19, 2023

Worldwide caution, update december 21, 2023, information for u.s. citizens in the middle east.

  • Travel Advisories |
  • Contact Us |
  • MyTravelGov |

Find U.S. Embassies & Consulates

Travel.state.gov, congressional liaison, special issuance agency, u.s. passports, international travel, intercountry adoption, international parental child abduction, records and authentications, popular links, travel advisories, mytravelgov, stay connected, legal resources, legal information, info for u.s. law enforcement, replace or certify documents.

Share this page:

Tanzania Travel Advisory

Travel advisory july 31, 2023, tanzania - level 2: exercise increased caution.

Reissued with obsolete COVID-19 page links removed.

Exercise increased caution in Tanzania due to crime, terrorism, and targeting of LGBTI persons .  Some areas have increased risk.  Read the entire Travel Advisory.

Reconsider Travel To:

  • Mtwara Region in southern Tanzania due to the threat of terrorism.

Country Summary : Violent crime, such as assault, sexual assault, robberies, mugging, and carjacking, is common.  Local police may lack the resources to respond effectively to serious crime.

Terrorist groups could attack in Tanzania with little or no warning, targeting embassies, police stations, mosques, and other places frequented by Westerners. Please see the additional information below regarding the increased threat of terrorism in Mtwara Region.

Members of the LGBTI community have been arrested, targeted, harassed, and/or charged with unrelated offenses.  Individuals detained under suspicion of same-sex sexual conduct could be subject to forced anal examinations.

Read the country information page for additional information on travel to Tanzania.

If you decide to travel to Tanzania:

  • Always carry a copy of your U.S. passport and visa and keep original documents in a secure location.
  • Be aware of your surroundings.
  • Do not leave your food or drink unattended.
  • Stay alert in all locations, especially those frequented by Westerners.
  • Avoid public displays of affection particularly between same-sex couples.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Follow the Department of State on Facebook and Twitter.
  • Review the Country Security Report for Tanzania.
  • Prepare a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the Traveler’s Checklist .
  • Visit the CDC page for the latest Travel Health Information related to your travel.

Mtwara Region in southern Tanzania – Level 3: Reconsider Travel There have been reports of violence in Mtwara Region in southern Tanzania. Increased activity by extremists along the southern border has led to attacks against both government and civilian targets.

Travel Advisory Levels

Assistance for u.s. citizens, tanzania map, search for travel advisories, external link.

You are about to leave travel.state.gov for an external website that is not maintained by the U.S. Department of State.

Links to external websites are provided as a convenience and should not be construed as an endorsement by the U.S. Department of State of the views or products contained therein. If you wish to remain on travel.state.gov, click the "cancel" message.

You are about to visit:

You are using an outdated browser. Upgrade your browser today or install Google Chrome Frame to better experience this site.

Tanzania, including Zanzibar Traveler View

Travel health notices, vaccines and medicines, non-vaccine-preventable diseases, stay healthy and safe.

  • Packing List

After Your Trip

Map - Tanzania

Be aware of current health issues in Tanzania. Learn how to protect yourself.

Level 2 Practice Enhanced Precautions

  • Global Polio September 11, 2023 Some international destinations have circulating poliovirus. Before any international travel, make sure you are up to date on your polio vaccines.

⇧ Top

Check the vaccines and medicines list and visit your doctor at least a month before your trip to get vaccines or medicines you may need. If you or your doctor need help finding a location that provides certain vaccines or medicines, visit the Find a Clinic page.

Routine vaccines

Recommendations.

Make sure you are up-to-date on all routine vaccines before every trip. Some of these vaccines include

  • Chickenpox (Varicella)
  • Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis
  • Flu (influenza)
  • Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR)

Immunization schedules

All eligible travelers should be up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines. Please see  Your COVID-19 Vaccination  for more information. 

COVID-19 vaccine

Active cholera transmission is  widespread  in Tanzania. Cholera is rare in travelers.  Certain factors  may increase the risk of getting cholera or having severe disease ( more information ). Avoiding unsafe food and water and washing your hands can also help prevent cholera.

Vaccination may be considered for children and adults who are traveling to areas of active cholera transmission.

Cholera - CDC Yellow Book

Hepatitis A

Recommended for unvaccinated travelers one year old or older going to Tanzania.

Infants 6 to 11 months old should also be vaccinated against Hepatitis A. The dose does not count toward the routine 2-dose series.

Travelers allergic to a vaccine component or who are younger than 6 months should receive a single dose of immune globulin, which provides effective protection for up to 2 months depending on dosage given.

Unvaccinated travelers who are over 40 years old, immunocompromised, or have chronic medical conditions planning to depart to a risk area in less than 2 weeks should get the initial dose of vaccine and at the same appointment receive immune globulin.

Hepatitis A - CDC Yellow Book

Dosing info - Hep A

Hepatitis B

Recommended for unvaccinated travelers younger than 60 years old traveling to Tanzania. Unvaccinated travelers 60 years and older may get vaccinated before traveling to Tanzania.

Hepatitis B - CDC Yellow Book

Dosing info - Hep B

CDC recommends that travelers going to certain areas of Tanzania take prescription medicine to prevent malaria. Depending on the medicine you take, you will need to start taking this medicine multiple days before your trip, as well as during and after your trip. Talk to your doctor about which malaria medication you should take.

Find  country-specific information  about malaria.

Malaria - CDC Yellow Book

Considerations when choosing a drug for malaria prophylaxis (CDC Yellow Book)

Malaria information for Tanzania.

Infants 6 to 11 months old traveling internationally should get 1 dose of measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine before travel. This dose does not count as part of the routine childhood vaccination series.

Measles (Rubeola) - CDC Yellow Book

In Tanzania poliovirus has been identified in the past year.

Travelers to Tanzania are at increased risk of exposure to poliovirus.

Vaccine recommendations : Adults traveling to Tanzania who received a complete polio vaccination series as children may receive a single lifetime booster dose of inactivated polio vaccine; travelers who are unvaccinated or not fully vaccinated should receive a complete polio vaccination series before travel. Children who are not fully vaccinated will be considered for an  accelerated vaccination schedule .

Polio - CDC Yellow Book

Polio: For Travelers

Rabid dogs are commonly found in Tanzania. If you are bitten or scratched by a dog or other mammal while in Tanzania, there may be limited or no rabies treatment available. 

Consider rabies vaccination before your trip if your activities mean you will be around dogs or wildlife.

Travelers more likely to encounter rabid animals include

  • Campers, adventure travelers, or cave explorers (spelunkers)
  • Veterinarians, animal handlers, field biologists, or laboratory workers handling animal specimens
  • Visitors to rural areas

Since children are more likely to be bitten or scratched by a dog or other animals, consider rabies vaccination for children traveling to Tanzania. 

Rabies - CDC Yellow Book

Recommended for most travelers, especially those staying with friends or relatives or visiting smaller cities or rural areas.

Typhoid - CDC Yellow Book

Dosing info - Typhoid

Yellow Fever

Required for travelers ≥1 year old arriving from countries with risk for YF virus transmission; this includes >12-hour airport transits or layovers in countries with risk for YF virus transmission. 1

Generally not recommended for travel to Tanzania.

Yellow Fever - CDC Yellow Book

  • Avoid contaminated water

Leptospirosis

How most people get sick (most common modes of transmission)

  • Touching urine or other body fluids from an animal infected with leptospirosis
  • Swimming or wading in urine-contaminated fresh water, or contact with urine-contaminated mud
  • Drinking water or eating food contaminated with animal urine
  • Avoid contaminated water and soil

Clinical Guidance

Schistosomiasis

  • Wading, swimming, bathing, or washing in contaminated freshwater streams, rivers, ponds, lakes, or untreated pools.

Avoid bug bites

African sleeping sickness (african trypanosomiasis).

  • Tsetse fly bite 
  • Avoid Bug Bites

African Trypanosomiasis

African Tick-Bite Fever

African Tick-bite fever

Chikungunya

  • Mosquito bite

Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic fever

  • Tick bite 
  • Touching the body fluids of a person or animal infected with CCHF
  • Mosquito bite
  • Avoid animals

Rift Valley Fever

  • Touching blood, body fluids, or tissue of infected livestock

Rift Valley fever

Airborne & droplet

  • Breathing in air or accidentally eating food contaminated with the urine, droppings, or saliva of infected rodents
  • Bite from an infected rodent
  • Less commonly, being around someone sick with hantavirus (only occurs with Andes virus)
  • Avoid rodents and areas where they live
  • Avoid sick people

Tuberculosis (TB)

  • Breathe in TB bacteria that is in the air from an infected and contagious person coughing, speaking, or singing.

Learn actions you can take to stay healthy and safe on your trip. Vaccines cannot protect you from many diseases in Tanzania, so your behaviors are important.

Eat and drink safely

Food and water standards around the world vary based on the destination. Standards may also differ within a country and risk may change depending on activity type (e.g., hiking versus business trip). You can learn more about safe food and drink choices when traveling by accessing the resources below.

  • Choose Safe Food and Drinks When Traveling
  • Water Treatment Options When Hiking, Camping or Traveling
  • Global Water, Sanitation and Hygiene | Healthy Water
  • Avoid Contaminated Water During Travel

You can also visit the Department of State Country Information Pages for additional information about food and water safety.

Prevent bug bites

Bugs (like mosquitoes, ticks, and fleas) can spread a number of diseases in Tanzania. Many of these diseases cannot be prevented with a vaccine or medicine. You can reduce your risk by taking steps to prevent bug bites.

What can I do to prevent bug bites?

  • Cover exposed skin by wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and hats.
  • Use an appropriate insect repellent (see below).
  • Use permethrin-treated clothing and gear (such as boots, pants, socks, and tents). Do not use permethrin directly on skin.
  • Stay and sleep in air-conditioned or screened rooms.
  • Use a bed net if the area where you are sleeping is exposed to the outdoors.

What type of insect repellent should I use?

  • FOR PROTECTION AGAINST TICKS AND MOSQUITOES: Use a repellent that contains 20% or more DEET for protection that lasts up to several hours.
  • Picaridin (also known as KBR 3023, Bayrepel, and icaridin)
  • Oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE) or para-menthane-diol (PMD)
  • 2-undecanone
  • Always use insect repellent as directed.

What should I do if I am bitten by bugs?

  • Avoid scratching bug bites, and apply hydrocortisone cream or calamine lotion to reduce the itching.
  • Check your entire body for ticks after outdoor activity. Be sure to remove ticks properly.

What can I do to avoid bed bugs?

Although bed bugs do not carry disease, they are an annoyance. See our information page about avoiding bug bites for some easy tips to avoid them. For more information on bed bugs, see Bed Bugs .

For more detailed information on avoiding bug bites, see Avoid Bug Bites .

Some diseases in Tanzania—such as dengue, leishmaniasis, and African sleeping sickness—are spread by bugs and cannot be prevented with a vaccine. Follow the insect avoidance measures described above to prevent these and other illnesses.

Stay safe outdoors

If your travel plans in Tanzania include outdoor activities, take these steps to stay safe and healthy during your trip.

  • Stay alert to changing weather conditions and adjust your plans if conditions become unsafe.
  • Prepare for activities by wearing the right clothes and packing protective items, such as bug spray, sunscreen, and a basic first aid kit.
  • Consider learning basic first aid and CPR before travel. Bring a travel health kit with items appropriate for your activities.
  • If you are outside for many hours in heat, eat salty snacks and drink water to stay hydrated and replace salt lost through sweating.
  • Protect yourself from UV radiation : use sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15, wear protective clothing, and seek shade during the hottest time of day (10 a.m.–4 p.m.).
  • Be especially careful during summer months and at high elevation. Because sunlight reflects off snow, sand, and water, sun exposure may be increased during activities like skiing, swimming, and sailing.
  • Very cold temperatures can be dangerous. Dress in layers and cover heads, hands, and feet properly if you are visiting a cold location.

Stay safe around water

  • Swim only in designated swimming areas. Obey lifeguards and warning flags on beaches.
  • Practice safe boating—follow all boating safety laws, do not drink alcohol if driving a boat, and always wear a life jacket.
  • Do not dive into shallow water.
  • Do not swim in freshwater in developing areas or where sanitation is poor.
  • Avoid swallowing water when swimming. Untreated water can carry germs that make you sick.
  • To prevent infections, wear shoes on beaches where there may be animal waste.

Climbing Kilimanjaro is one of the most popular outdoor activities for travelers visiting Tanzania. The high altitude may lead to altitude sickness. Talk to your doctor about ways to prevent and treat altitude sickness.

See Travel to High Altitudes .

Schistosomiasis, a parasitic infection that can be spread in fresh water, is found in Tanzania. Avoid swimming in fresh, unchlorinated water, such as lakes, ponds, or rivers.

Keep away from animals

Most animals avoid people, but they may attack if they feel threatened, are protecting their young or territory, or if they are injured or ill. Animal bites and scratches can lead to serious diseases such as rabies.

Follow these tips to protect yourself:

  • Do not touch or feed any animals you do not know.
  • Do not allow animals to lick open wounds, and do not get animal saliva in your eyes or mouth.
  • Avoid rodents and their urine and feces.
  • Traveling pets should be supervised closely and not allowed to come in contact with local animals.
  • If you wake in a room with a bat, seek medical care immediately. Bat bites may be hard to see.

All animals can pose a threat, but be extra careful around dogs, bats, monkeys, sea animals such as jellyfish, and snakes. If you are bitten or scratched by an animal, immediately:

  • Wash the wound with soap and clean water.
  • Go to a doctor right away.
  • Tell your doctor about your injury when you get back to the United States.

Consider buying medical evacuation insurance. Rabies is a deadly disease that must be treated quickly, and treatment may not be available in some countries.

Reduce your exposure to germs

Follow these tips to avoid getting sick or spreading illness to others while traveling:

  • Wash your hands often, especially before eating.
  • If soap and water aren’t available, clean hands with hand sanitizer (containing at least 60% alcohol).
  • Don’t touch your eyes, nose, or mouth. If you need to touch your face, make sure your hands are clean.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing.
  • Try to avoid contact with people who are sick.
  • If you are sick, stay home or in your hotel room, unless you need medical care.

Avoid sharing body fluids

Diseases can be spread through body fluids, such as saliva, blood, vomit, and semen.

Protect yourself:

  • Use latex condoms correctly.
  • Do not inject drugs.
  • Limit alcohol consumption. People take more risks when intoxicated.
  • Do not share needles or any devices that can break the skin. That includes needles for tattoos, piercings, and acupuncture.
  • If you receive medical or dental care, make sure the equipment is disinfected or sanitized.

Know how to get medical care while traveling

Plan for how you will get health care during your trip, should the need arise:

  • Carry a list of local doctors and hospitals at your destination.
  • Review your health insurance plan to determine what medical services it would cover during your trip. Consider purchasing travel health and medical evacuation insurance.
  • Carry a card that identifies, in the local language, your blood type, chronic conditions or serious allergies, and the generic names of any medications you take.
  • Some prescription drugs may be illegal in other countries. Call Tanzania’s embassy to verify that all of your prescription(s) are legal to bring with you.
  • Bring all the medicines (including over-the-counter medicines) you think you might need during your trip, including extra in case of travel delays. Ask your doctor to help you get prescriptions filled early if you need to.

Many foreign hospitals and clinics are accredited by the Joint Commission International. A list of accredited facilities is available at their website ( www.jointcommissioninternational.org ).

In some countries, medicine (prescription and over-the-counter) may be substandard or counterfeit. Bring the medicines you will need from the United States to avoid having to buy them at your destination.

Malaria is a risk in Tanzania. Fill your malaria prescription before you leave and take enough with you for the entire length of your trip. Follow your doctor’s instructions for taking the pills; some need to be started before you leave.

Select safe transportation

Motor vehicle crashes are the #1 killer of healthy US citizens in foreign countries.

In many places cars, buses, large trucks, rickshaws, bikes, people on foot, and even animals share the same lanes of traffic, increasing the risk for crashes.

Be smart when you are traveling on foot.

  • Use sidewalks and marked crosswalks.
  • Pay attention to the traffic around you, especially in crowded areas.
  • Remember, people on foot do not always have the right of way in other countries.

Riding/Driving

Choose a safe vehicle.

  • Choose official taxis or public transportation, such as trains and buses.
  • Ride only in cars that have seatbelts.
  • Avoid overcrowded, overloaded, top-heavy buses and minivans.
  • Avoid riding on motorcycles or motorbikes, especially motorbike taxis. (Many crashes are caused by inexperienced motorbike drivers.)
  • Choose newer vehicles—they may have more safety features, such as airbags, and be more reliable.
  • Choose larger vehicles, which may provide more protection in crashes.

Think about the driver.

  • Do not drive after drinking alcohol or ride with someone who has been drinking.
  • Consider hiring a licensed, trained driver familiar with the area.
  • Arrange payment before departing.

Follow basic safety tips.

  • Wear a seatbelt at all times.
  • Sit in the back seat of cars and taxis.
  • When on motorbikes or bicycles, always wear a helmet. (Bring a helmet from home, if needed.)
  • Avoid driving at night; street lighting in certain parts of Tanzania may be poor.
  • Do not use a cell phone or text while driving (illegal in many countries).
  • Travel during daylight hours only, especially in rural areas.
  • If you choose to drive a vehicle in Tanzania, learn the local traffic laws and have the proper paperwork.
  • Get any driving permits and insurance you may need. Get an International Driving Permit (IDP). Carry the IDP and a US-issued driver's license at all times.
  • Check with your auto insurance policy's international coverage, and get more coverage if needed. Make sure you have liability insurance.
  • Avoid using local, unscheduled aircraft.
  • If possible, fly on larger planes (more than 30 seats); larger airplanes are more likely to have regular safety inspections.
  • Try to schedule flights during daylight hours and in good weather.

Medical Evacuation Insurance

If you are seriously injured, emergency care may not be available or may not meet US standards. Trauma care centers are uncommon outside urban areas. Having medical evacuation insurance can be helpful for these reasons.

Helpful Resources

Road Safety Overseas (Information from the US Department of State): Includes tips on driving in other countries, International Driving Permits, auto insurance, and other resources.

The Association for International Road Travel has country-specific Road Travel Reports available for most countries for a minimal fee.

Traffic flows on the left side of the road in Tanzania.

  • Always pay close attention to the flow of traffic, especially when crossing the street.
  • LOOK RIGHT for approaching traffic.

For information traffic safety and road conditions in Tanzania, see Travel and Transportation on US Department of State's country-specific information for Tanzania .

Maintain personal security

Use the same common sense traveling overseas that you would at home, and always stay alert and aware of your surroundings.

Before you leave

  • Research your destination(s), including local laws, customs, and culture.
  • Monitor travel advisories and alerts and read travel tips from the US Department of State.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) .
  • Leave a copy of your itinerary, contact information, credit cards, and passport with someone at home.
  • Pack as light as possible, and leave at home any item you could not replace.

While at your destination(s)

  • Carry contact information for the nearest US embassy or consulate .
  • Carry a photocopy of your passport and entry stamp; leave the actual passport securely in your hotel.
  • Follow all local laws and social customs.
  • Do not wear expensive clothing or jewelry.
  • Always keep hotel doors locked, and store valuables in secure areas.
  • If possible, choose hotel rooms between the 2nd and 6th floors.

To call for emergency services while in Tanzania, dial either 112 or 999. Write these numbers down to carry with you on your trip.

Learn as much as you can about Tanzania before you travel there. A good place to start is the country-specific information on Tanzania from the US Department of State.

Healthy Travel Packing List

Use the Healthy Travel Packing List for Tanzania for a list of health-related items to consider packing for your trip. Talk to your doctor about which items are most important for you.

Why does CDC recommend packing these health-related items?

It’s best to be prepared to prevent and treat common illnesses and injuries. Some supplies and medicines may be difficult to find at your destination, may have different names, or may have different ingredients than what you normally use.

If you are not feeling well after your trip, you may need to see a doctor. If you need help finding a travel medicine specialist, see Find a Clinic . Be sure to tell your doctor about your travel, including where you went and what you did on your trip. Also tell your doctor if you were bitten or scratched by an animal while traveling.

If your doctor prescribed antimalarial medicine for your trip, keep taking the rest of your pills after you return home. If you stop taking your medicine too soon, you could still get sick.

Malaria is always a serious disease and may be a deadly illness. If you become ill with a fever either while traveling in a malaria-risk area or after you return home (for up to 1 year), you should seek immediate medical attention and should tell the doctor about your travel history.

For more information on what to do if you are sick after your trip, see Getting Sick after Travel .

Map Disclaimer - The boundaries and names shown and the designations used on maps do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries. Approximate border lines for which there may not yet be full agreement are generally marked.

Other Destinations

If you need help finding travel information:

Message & data rates may apply. CDC Privacy Policy

File Formats Help:

  • Adobe PDF file
  • Microsoft PowerPoint file
  • Microsoft Word file
  • Microsoft Excel file
  • Audio/Video file
  • Apple Quicktime file
  • RealPlayer file
  • Zip Archive file

Exit Notification / Disclaimer Policy

  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) cannot attest to the accuracy of a non-federal website.
  • Linking to a non-federal website does not constitute an endorsement by CDC or any of its employees of the sponsors or the information and products presented on the website.
  • You will be subject to the destination website's privacy policy when you follow the link.
  • CDC is not responsible for Section 508 compliance (accessibility) on other federal or private website.
  • Skip to main content
  • Skip to "About this site"

Language selection

Search travel.gc.ca.

Help us to improve our website. Take our survey !

COVID-19: travel health notice for all travellers

Tanzania travel advice

Emergency consular assistance during the holiday period.

Throughout the holiday period, Canadian citizens can still get emergency consular assistance 24/7. Find out how to request emergency assistance .

Latest updates: Editorial change

Last updated: December 20, 2023 13:11 ET

On this page

Safety and security, entry and exit requirements, laws and culture, natural disasters and climate, tanzania - exercise a high degree of caution.

Exercise a high degree of caution in Tanzania due to crime levels and the threat of terrorism.

Border with Mozambique in Mtwara Region - Avoid all travel

Avoid all travel to within 10 km of the border with Mozambique, in the Mtwara Region, due to the presence of armed groups, the threat of terrorism and the risk of kidnapping.

Portion of Mtwara Region south of the A19 highway - Avoid non-essential travel

Avoid non-essential travel to the area between the A19 highway and the border with Mozambique in the Mtwara Region, due to the presence of armed groups, the threat of terrorism and the risk of kidnapping. This advisory excludes the areas within 10 km from the border with Mozambique, where you should avoid all travel. This advisory also excludes Mtwara City where you should exercise a high degree of caution.

Border with Burundi and Democratic Republic of Congo (Kinshasa) - Avoid non-essential travel

Avoid non-essential travel to the area within 20 km of the border with Burundi and 20 km from the shoreline of Lake Tanganyika along the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo (Kinshasa), due to the presence of armed groups and traffickers, and the threat of kidnappings. This excludes the city of Kigoma and Gombe, Katavi and Mahale national parks.

Back to top

Border with Mozambique in the Mtwara region

Extremist groups are active in the northern districts of Cabo Delgado, Mozambique. Security incidents have occurred along the border, in the Mtwara Region. Tanzanian military and security forces conduct counterinsurgency operations in the area. Access to the area is controlled in several locations and movements in and out are monitored.

Southern Mtwara region

Armed groups have been active in the southern Mtwara region between highway 19 and 10 km from the border with Mozambique. There is a threat of terrorism and kidnappings in this region.

Border with Burundi and Democratic Republic of Congo (Kinshasa)

Travel near refugee camps in northwestern Tanzania, particularly in the region of Kigoma and to the west of Kagera bordering Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda, is dangerous due to banditry.

Demonstrations

Demonstrations can occur anywhere across the country and sometimes on short notice. Even peaceful demonstrations can turn violent at any time. They can also lead to disruptions to traffic and public transportation.

  • Avoid areas where demonstrations and large gatherings are taking place
  • Follow the instructions of local authorities
  • Monitor local media for information on ongoing demonstrations

Mass gatherings (large-scale events)

Petty crime

Petty crime, such as pickpocketing and purse snatching, occurs, particularly in public places and popular tourist areas in Dar es Salaam, Zanzibar and Arusha.

Exercise caution in and around:

  • restaurants
  • nightclubs and cinemas
  • shopping centres

In Dar es Salaam, exercise increased caution in and around:

  • transportation hubs
  • markets, particularly Kariakoo Market
  • Masaki/Oyster Bay Peninsula, particularly along Toure Drive

In Zanzibar, exercise increased caution in and around Stone Town.

To mitigate the threat from theft:

  • ensure that your belongings, including your passport and other travel documents, are secure at all times
  • seek local advice on the security situation prior to visiting beaches
  • avoid deserted beaches

Bag snatching from passing vehicles is very common.

  • When walking along the street, do not carry your bag with the strap across your body. You could be badly injured if a thief drives by and attempts to steal your bag

Violent crime

Tourists have been victims of assaults, including sexual assaults, in Dar es Salaam, Zanzibar and Arusha.

If you are the victim of an armed robbery, do not resist. Attackers could assault you for failing to comply or not complying quickly enough.

  • Exercise a high degree of caution
  • Avoid walking around at night

Crimes against children and people with albinism, including murder, have occurred. Be particularly cautious. 

Organized crime

Organized crime associated with international drug trafficking occurs in Tanzania, as it is situated along a transit route used to transport drugs from Asia to Africa. Though tourists are rarely affected, exercise caution in large cities.

Kidnappings

Kidnapping-for-ransom does not pose significant risk in Tanzania, though armed groups from bordering countries are known to employ this tactic.

Exercise caution along border areas, namely:

  • areas bordering Lake Tanganyika, which marks the border between the Democratic Republic of Congo
  • the southeastern border with Mozambique

Express kidnappings

Tourists have been taken to ATMs and forced to withdraw funds from their account after accepting a ride from a stranger, a local taxi, ride share companies or a recent acquaintance. These incidents have most often occurred near hotels and transportation hubs such as ferry, bus and train terminals in Dar es Salaam. To minimize the risk, do not accept unsolicited offers of assistance or rides from new acquaintances or strangers. Always book transportation from a reputable company or through your hotel.

Home invasions

Armed home robberies occur and foreigners’ homes have been targeted by criminals. Always lock your doors and windows and use reinforced barriers wherever possible. Do not rent temporary accommodations from new acquaintances. Be sure to go through a reputable agency if looking for long-term accommodations in Tanzania.

Road travel

While better in larger centres, road conditions and road safety are poor throughout the country.

Road conditions

Road signs are often missing, and visibility is poor due to insufficient lighting. Poorly maintained cars, roaming wildlife, livestock, cyclists and pedestrians also increase the risk associated with driving. Outside major cities, four-wheel drive vehicles are highly recommended.

  • Avoid driving unless you are familiar with local conditions
  • Avoid travelling by road at night. Due to the potential for assault or robbery when stopped at a light at night, some drivers ignore traffic lights. This practice makes intersections dangerous at night
  • In the event of an accident, drive to the nearest police station

Tourist facilities are adequate in major cities but limited in remote areas, with the exception of principal game lodges and beach resorts.

Monitor fuel levels to ensure that your fuel tank is never lower than half full.

Road safety

Drivers often drive at excessive speeds, and they can be aggressive or reckless. Accident causing fatalities are common.

Armed robberies, carjackings and attacks on moving vehicles have occurred in Arusha and Dar es Salaam, particularly on Toure Drive (Msasani Peninsula).

  • Avoid travelling alone
  • Keep windows rolled up and doors locked
  • Avoid travelling after dark
  • Remain on tourist routes and avoid remote areas
  • If you find yourself on less-travelled roads and trails, avoid stopping because armed robberies and carjackings may occur
  • When travelling between cities, you should do so in a convoy, whenever possible

Crowds tend to form around accidents and foreigners are extorted for money or assaulted (even when they are not at fault).

There is a threat of terrorism, particularly in Dar es Salaam, Zanzibar, Arusha and border areas. Terrorist attacks could occur at any time. Targets could include:

  • government buildings, including schools
  • places of worship
  • airports and other transportation hubs and networks
  • public areas such as tourist attractions, restaurants, bars, coffee shops, shopping centres, markets, hotels and other sites frequented by foreigners

Stay at hotels that have robust security measures.

Always be aware of your surroundings when in public places.

Credit card and ATM fraud occurs. Be cautious when using your credit or debit card at ATMs, and:

  • pay careful attention when your cards are being handled by others
  • use ATMs located in well-lit public areas or inside a bank or business
  • avoid using card readers that have an irregular or unusual feature
  • cover the keypad with one hand when entering your PIN
  • check for any unauthorized transactions on your account statements

Foreigners have been victims of scams relating to volunteer work visas and safaris.

If you plan to engage in these activities, only deal with reputable companies and check their references

Overseas fraud

Spiked food and drinks

Never leave food or drinks unattended or in the care of strangers. Be wary of accepting snacks, beverages, gum or cigarettes from new acquaintances. These items may contain drugs that could put you at risk of sexual assault and robbery.

2SLGBTQI+ travellers

2SLGBTQI+ persons have been subject to physical and verbal harassment by locals and authorities.

2SLGBTQI+ travellers should carefully consider the risks of travelling to Tanzania.

Travel and your sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression and sex characteristics

Some officials solicit bribes as you go through customs at airports. In a common scheme, an official will ask the visitor to produce a certificate of proof of inoculation against yellow fever, even in cases where you don't need one.

If this happens to you, ask to speak to a senior official.

Police officers may approach you requesting money for alleged offences.

Before proceeding to a police station, insist they produce proper identification.

If you think you are dealing with a corrupt official, you may inform them you will contact the High Commission for advice. This tends to dissuade them from soliciting bribes. Report all such incidents to the High Commission of Canada in Dar es Salaam.

National parks and nature reserves

Organized tours and independent travellers have been victims of armed robbery in parks and nature reserves.

Exercise caution in:

  • the northern circuit in the vicinity of Serengeti National Park
  • Arusha National Park and Ngorongoro Conservation Area
  • regions surrounding Mount Kilimanjaro

Avoid camping or travelling alone and hire a reputable tour guide. Hotels can make recommendations for reputable tour companies.

While camps and lodges are generally guarded, potentially dangerous wild animals often venture within the boundaries of the camp.

  • Follow the advice and warnings of local tour guides and camp employees
  • Do not walk around at night
  • Never leave children unattended

Mountaineering

If you are considering climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, carefully consider the inherent risks involved. People are seriously injured or killed on the mountain every year, and emergency assistance is severely limited. If you intend to climb:

  • never do so alone and always hire an experienced guide from a reputable company
  • buy travel insurance that includes helicopter rescue and medical evacuation
  • ensure that your physical condition is good enough to meet the challenges of your activity
  • ensure that you are properly equipped and well informed about weather and other conditions that may pose a hazard
  • inform a family member or friend of your itinerary, including when you expect to be back to camp
  • know the symptoms of acute altitude sickness, which can be fatal
  • obtain detailed information on trekking routes or ski slopes before setting out and do not venture off marked trails

Power outages

Power outages occur regularly across the country.  Local authorities may impose rationing measures for electricity.   

Power outages could affect your ability to purchase basic necessities and impact essential services, such as: 

  • public transportation
  • medical services  
  • water supply 
  • telecommunications 

Not all buildings are equipped with generators.   

  • Plan accordingly  
  • Keep a supply of water, food and fuel on hand  
  • Make sure you always have an emergency kit on hand

Public transportation

You should avoid travelling by bus (dala dala), as public buses are often overcrowded, poorly maintained and driven in a reckless manner. Public buses are frequently involved in accidents which have resulted in fatalities. There have been reports of sexual assault on buses.

Intercity buses are typically more safe and meet higher maintenance standards.

Do not travel on overnight buses.

Rail service is limited and maintenance standards are low. There have been reports of theft on crowded trains, particularly overnight trains.

A licensed taxi is a white car with a white (never yellow) licence plate, a coloured stripe running laterally on the side panels of the vehicle, a number located inside a circle on the passenger doors and visible insurance and registration numbers located on the windshield.

  • Don't use motorcycle taxis (pika-pika or boda-boda) or three wheel taxis (bajaj), as drivers are often reckless and do not provide adequate safety equipment for passengers (such as helmets)
  • Use only licensed taxis selected by a reputable hotel or restaurant, or one located at an official taxi stand
  • Avoid taking a taxi that has been hailed for you by a recent acquaintance
  • Always ask for identification before accepting transportation and check that the driver’s ID matches the name of the car registration and taxi licence

There are regular ferries travelling between Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar. Tanzanian ports are often frequented by persuasive ticket scalpers.

Vessels travelling between the following ports are less reliable and often overcrowded:

  • Zanzibar and Pemba
  • Tanga and Pemba
  • Mafia and mainland Tanzania

Ferry accidents occur due to the overloading and poor maintenance of some vessels.

  • Only use reputable ferry companies
  • Do not board vessels that appear overloaded or unseaworthy

Pirate attacks and armed robbery against ships occur in coastal waters, particularly in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean. Mariners should take appropriate precautions.

Live piracy report - International Maritime Bureau

We do not make assessments on the compliance of foreign domestic airlines with international safety standards.

Information about foreign domestic airlines

Every country or territory decides who can enter or exit through its borders. The Government of Canada cannot intervene on your behalf if you do not meet your destination’s entry or exit requirements.

We have obtained the information on this page from the Tanzanian authorities. It can, however, change at any time.

Verify this information with the  Foreign Representatives in Canada .

Entry requirements vary depending on the type of passport you use for travel.

Before you travel, check with your transportation company about passport requirements. Its rules on passport validity may be more stringent than the country’s entry rules.

Regular Canadian passport

Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months beyond the date you expect to leave Tanzania.

Passport for official travel

Different entry rules may apply.

Official travel

Passport with “X” gender identifier

While the Government of Canada issues passports with an “X” gender identifier, it cannot guarantee your entry or transit through other countries. You might face entry restrictions in countries that do not recognize the “X” gender identifier. Before you leave, check with the closest foreign representative for your destination.

Other travel documents

Different entry rules may apply when travelling with a temporary passport or an emergency travel document. Before you leave, check with the closest foreign representative for your destination.

Useful links

  • Foreign Representatives in Canada
  • Canadian passports

Tourist visa: required Business visa: required Student visa: required Work/volunteer visa: required

At main ports of entry, you can get a visa on arrival for a maximum of 3 months. When you arrive, ensure that immigration officials validate your visa by stamping your passport or writing any required information in it. Some visas are valid for a period shorter than three months. If you are a frequent visitor or business traveller, apply for a multiple-entry visa before the start of your trip.

Verify that you abide by the terms and expiry date indicated on your visa. You could receive a substantial fine if you overstay the period allowed by your visitor visa or residence permit.

Entry visas  - Ministry of Home Affairs, Tanzania

Other entry requirements

You must be able to show proof of return or onward ticket. You could be refused entry if you fail to show it upon request.

Working and volunteering in Tanzania

You cannot perform any type of work, including volunteer work, on a tourist visa. When planning to travel to Tanzania to do volunteer work, contact the High Commission for the United Republic of Tanzania for information on specific requirements.

Work permits must be verified by Tanzanian immigration officials within 30 days of issuance. You can get this done at any Tanzanian Immigration office or online the Immigration Department’s online verification system. 

  • Ministry of Home Affairs  - Tanzania
  • Foreign diplomatic missions and consulates in Canada

Children and travel

Learn more about travelling with children .

Yellow fever

Learn about potential entry requirements related to yellow fever (vaccines section).

Relevant Travel Health Notices

  • Global Measles Notice - 31 August, 2023
  • COVID-19 and International Travel - 31 August, 2023

This section contains information on possible health risks and restrictions regularly found or ongoing in the destination. Follow this advice to lower your risk of becoming ill while travelling. Not all risks are listed below.

Consult a health care professional or visit a travel health clinic preferably 6 weeks before you travel to get personalized health advice and recommendations.

Routine vaccines

Be sure that your  routine vaccinations , as per your province or territory , are up-to-date before travelling, regardless of your destination.

Some of these vaccinations include measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio, varicella (chickenpox), influenza and others.

Pre-travel vaccines and medications

You may be at risk for preventable diseases while travelling in this destination. Talk to a travel health professional about which medications or vaccines may be right for you, based on your destination and itinerary. 

There is a risk of hepatitis A in this destination. It is a disease of the liver. People can get hepatitis A if they ingest contaminated food or water, eat foods prepared by an infectious person, or if they have close physical contact (such as oral-anal sex) with an infectious person, although casual contact among people does not spread the virus.

Practise  safe food and water precautions and wash your hands often. Vaccination is recommended for all travellers to areas where hepatitis A is present.

Yellow fever   is a disease caused by a flavivirus from the bite of an infected mosquito.

Travellers get vaccinated either because it is required to enter a country or because it is recommended for their protection.

  • There is low potential for yellow fever exposure in this country.

Country Entry Requirement*

  • Proof of vaccination is required if you are coming from or have transited through an airport of a   country where yellow fever occurs.

Recommendation

  • Vaccination may be recommended depending on your itinerary.
  • Contact a designated   Yellow Fever Vaccination Centre   well in advance of your trip to arrange for vaccination.
  • Discuss travel plans, activities, and destinations with a health care professional.
  • Protect yourself from mosquito bites .

About Yellow Fever

Yellow Fever Vaccination Centres in Canada * It is important to note that  country entry requirements  may not reflect your risk of yellow fever at your destination. It is recommended that you contact the nearest  diplomatic or consular office  of the destination(s) you will be visiting to verify any additional entry requirements.

Measles is a highly contagious viral disease. It can spread quickly from person to person by direct contact and through droplets in the air.

Anyone who is not protected against measles is at risk of being infected with it when travelling internationally.

Regardless of where you are going, talk to a health care professional before travelling to make sure you are fully protected against measles.

This destination is in the African Meningitis Belt, an area which has the highest rates of meningococcal disease in the world. Meningococcal disease is a serious and sometimes fatal infection. 

Travellers who are at higher risk should discuss vaccination with a health care provider. High-risk travellers include those living or working with the local population (e.g., health care workers) or those travelling to crowded areas or taking part in large gatherings.

  Hepatitis B is a risk in every destination. It is a viral liver disease that is easily transmitted from one person to another through exposure to blood and body fluids containing the hepatitis B virus.  Travellers who may be exposed to blood or other bodily fluids (e.g., through sexual contact, medical treatment, sharing needles, tattooing, acupuncture or occupational exposure) are at higher risk of getting hepatitis B.

Hepatitis B vaccination is recommended for all travellers. Prevent hepatitis B infection by practicing safe sex, only using new and sterile drug equipment, and only getting tattoos and piercings in settings that follow public health regulations and standards.

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious viral disease. It can spread from person to person by direct contact and through droplets in the air.

It is recommended that all eligible travellers complete a COVID-19 vaccine series along with any additional recommended doses in Canada before travelling. Evidence shows that vaccines are very effective at preventing severe illness, hospitalization and death from COVID-19. While vaccination provides better protection against serious illness, you may still be at risk of infection from the virus that causes COVID-19. Anyone who has not completed a vaccine series is at increased risk of being infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 and is at greater risk for severe disease when travelling internationally.

Before travelling, verify your destination’s COVID-19 vaccination entry/exit requirements. Regardless of where you are going, talk to a health care professional before travelling to make sure you are adequately protected against COVID-19.

 The best way to protect yourself from seasonal influenza (flu) is to get vaccinated every year. Get the flu shot at least 2 weeks before travelling.  

 The flu occurs worldwide. 

  •  In the Northern Hemisphere, the flu season usually runs from November to   April.
  •  In the Southern Hemisphere, the flu season usually runs between April and   October.
  •  In the tropics, there is flu activity year round. 

The flu vaccine available in one hemisphere may only offer partial protection against the flu in the other hemisphere.

The flu virus spreads from person to person when they cough or sneeze or by touching objects and surfaces that have been contaminated with the virus. Clean your hands often and wear a mask if you have a fever or respiratory symptoms.

Malaria  is a serious and sometimes fatal disease that is caused by parasites spread through the bites of mosquitoes.   There is a risk of malaria in certain areas and/or during a certain time of year in this destination. 

Antimalarial medication may be recommended depending on your itinerary and the time of year you are travelling. Consult a health care professional or visit a travel health clinic before travelling to discuss your options. It is recommended to do this 6 weeks before travel, however, it is still a good idea any time before leaving.    Protect yourself from mosquito bites at all times:  • Cover your skin and use an approved insect repellent on uncovered skin.  • Exclude mosquitoes from your living area with screening and/or closed, well-sealed doors and windows. • Use insecticide-treated bed nets if mosquitoes cannot be excluded from your living area.  • Wear permethrin-treated clothing.    If you develop symptoms similar to malaria when you are travelling or up to a year after you return home, see a health care professional immediately. Tell them where you have been travelling or living. 

In this destination, rabies is commonly carried by dogs and some wildlife, including bats. Rabies is a deadly disease that spreads to humans primarily through bites or scratches from an infected animal. While travelling, take precautions , including keeping your distance from animals (including free-roaming dogs), and closely supervising children.

If you are bitten or scratched by a dog or other animal while travelling, immediately wash the wound with soap and clean water and see a health care professional. In this destination, rabies treatment may be limited or may not be available, therefore you may need to return to Canada for treatment.  

Before travel, discuss rabies vaccination with a health care professional. It may be recommended for travellers who are at high risk of exposure (e.g., occupational risk such as veterinarians and wildlife workers, children, adventure travellers and spelunkers, and others in close contact with animals). 

Safe food and water precautions

Many illnesses can be caused by eating food or drinking beverages contaminated by bacteria, parasites, toxins, or viruses, or by swimming or bathing in contaminated water.

  • Learn more about food and water precautions to take to avoid getting sick by visiting our eat and drink safely abroad page. Remember: Boil it, cook it, peel it, or leave it!
  • Avoid getting water into your eyes, mouth or nose when swimming or participating in activities in freshwater (streams, canals, lakes), particularly after flooding or heavy rain. Water may look clean but could still be polluted or contaminated.
  • Avoid inhaling or swallowing water while bathing, showering, or swimming in pools or hot tubs. 

Cholera is a risk in parts of this country. Most travellers are at very low risk.

To protect against cholera, all travellers should practise safe food and water precautions .

Travellers at higher risk of getting cholera include those:

  • visiting, working or living in areas with limited access to safe food, water and proper sanitation
  • visiting areas where outbreaks are occurring

Vaccination may be recommended for high-risk travellers, and should be discussed with a health care professional.

Travellers' diarrhea is the most common illness affecting travellers. It is spread from eating or drinking contaminated food or water.

Risk of developing travellers' diarrhea increases when travelling in regions with poor standards of hygiene and sanitation. Practise safe food and water precautions.

The most important treatment for travellers' diarrhea is rehydration (drinking lots of fluids). Carry oral rehydration salts when travelling.

Typhoid   is a bacterial infection spread by contaminated food or water. Risk is higher among children, travellers going to rural areas, travellers visiting friends and relatives or those travelling for a long period of time.

Travellers visiting regions with a risk of typhoid, especially those exposed to places with poor sanitation, should speak to a health care professional about vaccination.  

There is a risk of schistosomiasis in this destination. Schistosomiasis is a parasitic disease caused by tiny worms (blood flukes) which can be found in freshwater (lakes, rivers, ponds, and wetlands). The worms can break the skin, and their eggs can cause stomach pain, diarrhea, flu-like symptoms, or urinary problems. Schistosomiasis mostly affects underdeveloped and r ural communities, particularly agricultural and fishing communities.

Most travellers are at low risk. Travellers should avoid contact with untreated freshwater such as lakes, rivers, and ponds (e.g., swimming, bathing, wading, ingesting). There is no vaccine or medication available to prevent infection.

Insect bite prevention

Many diseases are spread by the bites of infected insects such as mosquitoes, ticks, fleas or flies. When travelling to areas where infected insects may be present:

  • Use insect repellent (bug spray) on exposed skin
  • Cover up with light-coloured, loose clothes made of tightly woven materials such as nylon or polyester
  • Minimize exposure to insects
  • Use mosquito netting when sleeping outdoors or in buildings that are not fully enclosed

To learn more about how you can reduce your risk of infection and disease caused by bites, both at home and abroad, visit our insect bite prevention page.

Find out what types of insects are present where you’re travelling, when they’re most active, and the symptoms of the diseases they spread.

There is a risk of chikungunya in this country.  The risk may vary between regions of a country.  Chikungunya is a virus spread through the bite of an infected mosquito. Chikungunya can cause a viral disease that typically causes fever and pain in the joints. In some cases, the joint pain can be severe and last for months or years.

Protect yourself from mosquito bites at all times. There is no vaccine available for chikungunya.

Onchocerciasis (river blindness)   is an eye and skin disease caused by a parasite spread through the bite of an infected female blackfly.  Onchocerciasis often leads to blindness if left untreated. Risk is generally low for most travellers. Protect yourself from blackfly bites, which are most common close to fast-flowing rivers and streams. There is no vaccine available for onchocerciasis although drug treatments exist.

  • In this country,   dengue  is a risk to travellers. It is a viral disease spread to humans by mosquito bites.
  • Dengue can cause flu-like symptoms. In some cases, it can lead to severe dengue, which can be fatal.
  • The level of risk of dengue changes seasonally, and varies from year to year. The level of risk also varies between regions in a country and can depend on the elevation in the region.
  • Mosquitoes carrying dengue typically bite during the daytime, particularly around sunrise and sunset.
  • Protect yourself from mosquito bites . There is no vaccine or medication that protects against dengue.

Rift Valley fever is a viral disease that can cause severe flu-like symptoms. In some cases, it can be fatal. It is spread to humans through contact with infected animal blood or tissues, from the bite of an infected mosquito, or eating or drinking unpasteurized dairy. Risk is generally low for most travellers. Protect yourself from insect bites and avoid animals, particularly livestock, and unpasteurized dairy. There is no vaccine available for Rift Valley fever.

African trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness)  is caused by a parasite spread through the bite of a tsetse fly. Tsetse flies usually bite during the day and the bites are usually painful. If untreated, the disease is eventually fatal. Risk is generally low for most travellers. Protect yourself from bites especially in game parks and rural areas. Avoid wearing bright or dark-coloured clothing as these colours attract tsetse flies. There is no vaccine available for this disease.

Animal precautions

Some infections, such as rabies and influenza, can be shared between humans and animals. Certain types of activities may increase your chance of contact with animals, such as travelling in rural or forested areas, camping, hiking, and visiting wet markets (places where live animals are slaughtered and sold) or caves.

Travellers are cautioned to avoid contact with animals, including dogs, livestock (pigs, cows), monkeys, snakes, rodents, birds, and bats, and to avoid eating undercooked wild game.

Closely supervise children, as they are more likely to come in contact with animals.

Person-to-person infections

Stay home if you’re sick and practise proper cough and sneeze etiquette , which includes coughing or sneezing into a tissue or the bend of your arm, not your hand. Reduce your risk of colds, the flu and other illnesses by:

  •   washing your hands often
  • avoiding or limiting the amount of time spent in closed spaces, crowded places, or at large-scale events (concerts, sporting events, rallies)
  • avoiding close physical contact with people who may be showing symptoms of illness 

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) , HIV , and mpox are spread through blood and bodily fluids; use condoms, practise safe sex, and limit your number of sexual partners. Check with your local public health authority pre-travel to determine your eligibility for mpox vaccine.  

Tuberculosis is an infection caused by bacteria and usually affects the lungs.

For most travellers the risk of tuberculosis is low.

Travellers who may be at high risk while travelling in regions with risk of tuberculosis should discuss pre- and post-travel options with a health care professional.

High-risk travellers include those visiting or working in prisons, refugee camps, homeless shelters, or hospitals, or travellers visiting friends and relatives.

HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus)   is a virus that attacks and impairs the immune system, resulting in a chronic, progressive illness known as AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome). 

High risk activities include anything which puts you in contact with blood or body fluids, such as unprotected sex and exposure to unsterilized needles for medications or other substances (for example, steroids and drugs), tattooing, body-piercing or acupuncture.

Medical services and facilities

Medical facilities are limited and medicines are often unavailable, even in Dar es Salaam.

Medical evacuation, which can be very expensive, may be necessary in the event of serious illness or injury.

Make sure you get travel insurance that includes coverage for medical evacuation and hospital stays.

Travel health and safety

Keep in Mind...

The decision to travel is the sole responsibility of the traveller. The traveller is also responsible for his or her own personal safety.

Be prepared. Do not expect medical services to be the same as in Canada. Pack a   travel health kit , especially if you will be travelling away from major city centres.

You must abide by local laws.

Learn about what you should do and how we can help if you are arrested or detained abroad .

Penalties for possession, use or trafficking of illegal drugs are severe. Convicted offenders can expect lengthy jail sentences.

Alcohol is not sold in some parts of Zanzibar. Avoid consuming alcohol in those areas.

Useful link

  • Drugs, alcohol and travel

Plastic bags

The use, manufacture or importation of plastic bags is illegal.

Convicted offenders, including tourists, can face very heavy fines, imprisonment for up to 7 days, or both.

Identification

You must carry photo identification, such as a passport, and be ready to present it to authorities upon request. Keep a photocopy of your passport in a safe place in case it’s lost or confiscated.

Photography

Photography of military installations is forbidden. Individuals have been detained and/or had their cameras and film confiscated for taking pictures of public structures and buildings, including:

  • industrial sites

Always ask permission before photographing individuals.

Pornography

Possession of pornographic material is illegal.

Flora and fauna

Collecting and removing any flora or fauna from its natural habitat is illegal. This includes removing seashells from marine parks.

Tanzanian law strictly regulates the sale, possession or removal from the country of animal or animal parts, including jewellery and hunting trophies. Certain items are exempt; however, you need a special permit from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism before attempting to leave the country with these items.

Trophy dealing licences  – Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism, Tanzania

Ramadan 

In 2024, the lunar month of Ramadan is expected to begin on or around March 10.

In public, between sunrise and sunset, be discreet when:

Dress and Behaviour

In Zanzibar, Islamic practices and beliefs are particularly influential.

To avoid offending local sensitivities:

  • dress conservatively
  • behave discreetly
  • respect religious and social traditions

Women should cover their shoulders and refrain from wearing shorts.

Tanzanian law prohibits sexual acts between individuals of the same sex. Those convicted face up to life imprisonment and possibly a fine.

Dual citizenship

Dual citizenship is not legally recognized in Tanzania .

If local authorities consider you a citizen of Tanzania , they may refuse to grant you access to Canadian consular services. This will prevent us from providing you with those services.

Travellers with dual citizenship

International Child Abduction

The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction is an international treaty. It can help parents with the return of children who have been removed to or retained in certain countries in violation of custody rights. It does not apply between Canada and Tanzania.

If your child was wrongfully taken to, or is being held in Tanzania by an abducting parent:

  • act as quickly as you can
  • consult a lawyer in Canada and in Tanzania to explore all the legal options for the return of your child
  • report the situation to the nearest Canadian government office abroad or to the Vulnerable Children’s Consular Unit at Global Affairs Canada by calling the Emergency Watch and Response Centre.

If your child was removed from a country other than Canada, consult a lawyer to determine if The Hague Convention applies.

Be aware that Canadian consular officials cannot interfere in private legal matters or in another country’s judicial affairs.

  • International Child Abduction: A Guidebook for Left-Behind Parents
  • Travelling with children
  • Canadian embassies and consulates by destination
  • Emergency Watch and Response Centre

You must carry an international driving permit alongside your Canadian driver’s licence.

Traffic drives on the left.

Police roadblocks are common.

  • If you are stopped by police, always cooperate and give proof of documentation requested of you
  • If you are asked to pay an on-the-spot fine for a traffic violation, ask to travel to the nearest police station to file a report and to contact the High Commission of Canada in Tanzania
  • Always ask for an official receipt

International Driving Permit

The currency is the Tanzanian shilling (TZS).

Credit cards are generally accepted at larger hotels, European carriers and other businesses that cater to international clientele, but are rarely accepted elsewhere. Outside of Dar es Salaam and at smaller establishments, cash in either Tanzanian shillings or U.S. dollars are the preferred method of payment, particularly for hotel bills, domestic airline tickets and entry to national parks.

ATMs are available in main cities, and some can be used to access Canadian bank accounts; however, they are subject to breakdowns. You should carry a small supply of cash in U.S. dollars for use in airports and at borders. 

Rainy season

On the mainland, the rainy season extends from March to May and then again from November to December. Seasonal flooding can hamper overland travel and reduce the provision of essential services, particularly in the summer months. Roads may become impassable and bridges damaged.

  • Keep informed of regional weather forecasts and plan accordingly
  • Use a four-wheel drive vehicle during the rainy seasons

Tornadoes, cyclones, hurricanes, typhoons and monsoons

Seismic activity

Tanzania is located in an active seismic zone.

Local services

Dial 112 for emergency assistance.

Consular assistance

Comoros, Seychelles, Zambia

For emergency consular assistance, call the High Commission of Canada in Dar Es Salam and follow the instructions. At any time, you may also contact the Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa.

The decision to travel is your choice and you are responsible for your personal safety abroad. We take the safety and security of Canadians abroad very seriously and provide credible and timely information in our Travel Advice to enable you to make well-informed decisions regarding your travel abroad.

The content on this page is provided for information only. While we make every effort to give you correct information, it is provided on an "as is" basis without warranty of any kind, expressed or implied. The Government of Canada does not assume responsibility and will not be liable for any damages in connection to the information provided.

If you need consular assistance while abroad, we will make every effort to help you. However, there may be constraints that will limit the ability of the Government of Canada to provide services.

Learn more about consular services .

Risk Levels

  take normal security precautions.

Take similar precautions to those you would take in Canada.

  Exercise a high degree of caution

There are certain safety and security concerns or the situation could change quickly. Be very cautious at all times, monitor local media and follow the instructions of local authorities.

IMPORTANT: The two levels below are official Government of Canada Travel Advisories and are issued when the safety and security of Canadians travelling or living in the country or region may be at risk.

  Avoid non-essential travel

Your safety and security could be at risk. You should think about your need to travel to this country, territory or region based on family or business requirements, knowledge of or familiarity with the region, and other factors. If you are already there, think about whether you really need to be there. If you do not need to be there, you should think about leaving.

  Avoid all travel

You should not travel to this country, territory or region. Your personal safety and security are at great risk. If you are already there, you should think about leaving if it is safe to do so.

Get Daily Travel Tips & Deals!

By proceeding, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use .

Zanzibar Island Warnings and Dangers

Tips on Zanzibar Island Warnings or Dangers – Stay Safe!

'  data-srcset=

Virtual Tourist

Travel Smarter! Sign up for our free newsletter.

Zanzibar Island Warnings and Dangers

Zanzibar is a beautiful island located off the coast of Tanzania in the Indian Ocean. It’s a popular tourist spot for history lovers and beach lovers alike, and like any other tourist hot spot there are warnings and dangers that travelers need to know about.

[viator_tour destination=”5590″]

Health Concerns on Zanzibar Island

Before visiting Zanzibar , you will need a Yellow Fever vaccination. In fact, you won’t be able to get a tourist visa for Tanzania without it. Also, malaria is quite common in this area of the world so be sure to take the proper precautions. Take anti-malaria medication and avoid mosquito bites by using bug spray, covering skin with clothing at dusk, and sleeping under a mosquito net.

The sun is strong in Zanzibar. Wear plenty of sunscreen and avoid extended exposure out in the sun. You will be tempted to frolic in the water for hours and laze on the beach in your bikini, but keep a shirt or cover up with you and seek out shade whenever possible. But, when seeking out shade try to avoid coconut trees, as the coconuts can fall without notice.

Crime and Aggressive Salespeople, Especially Guides

There is crime in Zanzibar so you will have to keep your wits about you and use common sense. Be sure to lock up valuables like money, jewelry you’re not wearing, and keep your passport in the hotel safe. Pickpockets can be a nuisance so be aware of where you keep your money and whether or not a pickpocket can get to it. There have been isolated instances of violent crime on the island where tourists were robbed at gunpoint. However, this is the rare exception.

The overnight ferry back to Dar es Salaam chugs along at a leisurely pace and while you are asleep in first class, some passengers might be plotting how to steal your valuables. If you take the overnight ferry, be sure you can keep your stuff safe while you get some shut eye.

From historic tours of Stone Town to early morning tours swimming in the ocean with dolphins, many Zanzibar residents offer their tour guide services to visitors. However, take caution that some guides can be pushy. Politely tell them you already have plans.  There are plenty of tour operators to choose from on the island. Consult with your hotel for a good referral.

Police in Zanzibar

Overall, the police are friendly and helpful on the island. However, some have been known to cite tourists for minor infractions and demand payment without writing a ticket. It’s up to you if you want to pay or ask for a formal ticket to be written, which will usually settle the matter.

More from SmarterTravel:

  • Zanzibar Island – What to Pack – Clothing and Supplies Tips
  • Zanzibar Island Nightlife – Clubs, Bars & Nightlife Tips
  • Zanzibar Island Shopping – Shops, Stores, Best Buys & Inside Tips

Editor’s note:  The information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about warnings and dangers on Zanzibar Island.  

We hand-pick everything we recommend and select items through testing and reviews. Some products are sent to us free of charge with no incentive to offer a favorable review. We offer our unbiased opinions and do not accept compensation to review products. All items are in stock and prices are accurate at the time of publication. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.

Top Fares From

zanzibar safe to travel

Don't see a fare you like? View all flight deals from your city.

Today's top travel deals.

Brought to you by ShermansTravel

Santiago to Buenos Aires: Luxe, 19-Night...

Regent Seven Seas Cruises

zanzibar safe to travel

Pennsylvania: Daily Car Rentals from Pittsburgh

zanzibar safe to travel

Shop and Save with Country Inns...

Patricia Magaña

zanzibar safe to travel

Trending on SmarterTravel

  • Search Please fill out this field.
  • Manage Your Subscription
  • Give a Gift Subscription
  • Sweepstakes

I Traveled to Zanzibar During the COVID-19 Pandemic — Here's What It Was Like

It's open, and it's gorgeous.

zanzibar safe to travel

"So, who's going to lead?" our driver, Abdul asked, as he lifted my suitcase from the back of his van.

"Hopefully you," I chuckled, assuming he was making a joke after our convivial airport transfer. We'd just parked at the edge of Stone Town and at nearly 10 p.m., night had descended on the narrow, maze-like streets. There was no way we'd find our hotel without guidance.

"It's better for safety if I walk behind," Abdul explained. "I'll let you know where to turn."

My husband, Johan, took the lead and I fell in line between the two men, trying to take in my surroundings as we walked through thick heat that proved a persistent force during our 10-day stay on the island. Despite my aversion to heat, I was excited to be in Zanzibar. It was a new destination for us, and we were deeply grateful the trip had come to fruition.

Though Tanzanian borders have remained open for tourism throughout most of the COVID-19 pandemic, the weeks leading up to our Dec. 23 departure felt increasingly tenuous as the European Union imposed flight restrictions on several countries in southern Africa. The omicron variant dominated headlines as our cancellation window began to close, but Johan and I — both triple-vaccinated and diligent FFP2 mask-wearers — agreed: Unless our KLM flights were canceled or one of us tested positive for the virus, we would keep our plans to go to Zanzibar over Christmas.

Navigating the logistics to make this happen, meanwhile, was pretty straightforward. We needed tourist visas prior to arrival, which we applied for online through the Tanzania eVisa portal. For U.S. passport holders like myself, the cost is $100 and grants travelers a multiple-entry visa that is valid for one year. My Swedish husband's application cost $50, and he received a single-entry, 90-day visa. Both visas were approved within 48 hours of applying.

While proof of vaccination is not required for travel to Tanzania, a negative PCR test is — and that goes for all travelers, including returning Tanzanian residents. For our trip, PCR tests had to be carried out within 96 hours of arrival. (And, though subject to change, 96 hours was still the latest guideline at pub time.) Filling out a health declaration form within 24 hours of arrival was our final step.

Thankfulness washed over me again as Abdul's directions led us to the palm tree-flanked, open-air lobby of Emerson Spice , an atmospheric boutique hotel in a former merchant's palace. Seduced by the property's acclaimed rooftop restaurants and lush courtyard garden, I'd booked us into the Desdemona room for four nights. We were greeted warmly despite our nighttime arrival and soon settled into our top-floor accommodations.

The next morning, after a rooftop breakfast — which included mango and avocado so luscious I told my husband I refused to leave the island until I'd consumed my bodyweight in fresh fruit — we took a walking tour of Stone Town. Solomon, our guide, knew the labyrinth of alleyways like the back of his hand, and we were given a crash course on the history and culture of the city.

A UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2000, Stone Town is an architectural feast of Swahili, Arab, Indian, and European design. This fusion of cultures, along with early prominence in spice trading and, horrifically, slave trading that endured until 1873, makes Stone Town an essential point of reference for understanding Zanzibar beyond its beaches.

Islam is the predominate religion across the archipelago, which is reflected in the early morning calls-to-prayer, as well as the local dress. Visitors are well-served to dress conservatively in Stone Town — one poster we encountered even encouraged tourists to swap their shorts for clothing that covered shoulders and knees.

When we reached Darajani Market, we were surrounded by wooden carts piled with jackfruit, mango, pineapple, chiles, cassava, and sweet potato leaves. Zanzibar is perhaps most famous for its fragrant cloves, but at every turn, I could smell the scent of cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, and vibrant masalas. I bought the first of several spices I took home before Solomon leds us through the fish and meat stalls.

Navigating the bustling market, Johan and I exchanged a few glances. Social distancing was clearly not a concern here — should we be nervous? Everyone else was going about their business of selling or shopping, seemingly unbothered by the shoulder-to-shoulder flow of humanity. Almost no one was wearing a mask.

Ultimately, we chose to relax into the locals' flow. It's a stark contrast to the cautionary public behavior at home in Germany, but nearly everything is open air in Zanzibar. Hotels, restaurants, and shops are all as open as possible; life simply takes place outside in this tropical climate. Unless we were in our hotel room or a transfer van, our experiences were swathed in salty sea air (and sticky-sweet humidity).

The three-and-a-half days we spent in Stone Town — whether sipping tea on a rooftop, tucking into tender goat curry, or finally learning how to swim in the Indian Ocean at the age of 37 during an amazing afternoon aboard a Safari Blue dhow — were remarkable. For better or worse, COVID-19 was just not top of mind, and it felt great.

We departed Stone Town with Abdul to spend the next five nights in Nungwi, at the northern tip of the island. We stayed at Essque Zalu Zanzibar , regarded as one of the island's luxury properties, in a Seafront Suite. Surrounded by verdant landscaping, this suite is actually a 900-square-foot private villa with a terrace overlooking the water and Essque Zalu's picturesque jetty.

Our time in Nungwi was happily spent rotating between the saltwater infinity pool, the bar at the end of the jetty, and our comfortable terrace with convenient pool bar proximity. More than once we made the 20-minute walk to Nungwi Beach to eat at Fish Market Local Restaurant, a family-owned eatery directly on the beach that served a delicious seafood curry and Zanzibarian five-spice calamari. We dipped in the ocean and walked past cows lying on the beach under the shade of a palm tree. We continuously noticed how friendly, welcoming, and unhurried people were — and, perhaps unsurprisingly, heard the phrase "hakuna matata" repeatedly.

We even regained the ability to social distance; a relief as our return date loomed. Despite visiting during the island's peak season for tourism, we still had plenty of space to ourselves both on and off the property in Nungwi. We sank into true vacation mode, welcomed 2022 more blissed out than we'd been in two years, and flew back to Germany still brimming with gratitude.

I can't say with certainty whether it's right or wrong to travel to an island (or anywhere, for that matter) during a pandemic. There's no question that it's a privilege to even have the option to do so. But travel — learning, making connections, experiencing different cultures — is important. If you have the ability to travel and you're willing to do so safely, responsibly, and with respect to the communities your trip will impact, now is a meaningful time to get back out there and see the world.

By clicking “Accept All Cookies”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts.

Cookies on GOV.UK

We use some essential cookies to make this website work.

We’d like to set additional cookies to understand how you use GOV.UK, remember your settings and improve government services.

We also use cookies set by other sites to help us deliver content from their services.

You have accepted additional cookies. You can change your cookie settings at any time.

You have rejected additional cookies. You can change your cookie settings at any time.

zanzibar safe to travel

  • Passports, travel and living abroad
  • Travel abroad
  • Foreign travel advice

Safety and security

Mozambique border.

You should take particular care near the border between Tanzania and the Cabo Delgado province of Mozambique. This is due to the risk of attacks by groups linked to Islamic extremism creating cross-border tensions and instability, including a risk of violence. An attack on Kitaya village in October 2020 was claimed by groups linked to Islamic extremism operating from northern Mozambique.

Although most visits to Tanzania are trouble-free, violent and armed crime exists. The British High Commission continues to receive regular reports of British nationals who are the victims of mugging and bag snatching (especially by passing cars or motorbikes) and armed robbery and burglary have increased throughout the country. In December 2016, a European family was robbed at gun point and their campsite guard killed at South Beach, 20km southeast of Dar es Salaam. In Dar es Salaam, tourists have been kidnapped, assaulted, robbed and forced with the threat of violence to withdraw cash from ATMs and arrange cash transfers of up to £5,000 through Western Union after being befriended by strangers or using unlicensed taxis.

Do not accept lifts from strangers or individuals offering to procure a licensed taxi on your behalf. Do not use unlicensed taxis. Where possible, you should arrange a taxi through a reputable establishment, for example a hotel, and you should always ask to see the driver’s ID. App-based taxi services are not reliable.

Walk as far away from the road as possible and avoid walking and cycling at night. If you need to walk alongside the road, walk towards the traffic. Avoid walking and exercising alone, particularly in isolated areas and on beaches.

Avoid carrying large amounts of cash or other valuables including expensive jewellery or watches. Leave your passport in the hotel safe and carry a photocopy for ID at all times.

If you’re attacked, do not resist. If you carry a bag, it is safer to hold it loosely by the handle or hanging off your shoulder rather than by securing the strap across your chest. Bag thieves have targeted both pedestrians and cyclists.

Take particular care in places frequented by tourists and expatriate residents. In Dar es Salaam, tourists and residents have been targeted in the city centre, at Ubungo bus station, the Masaki/Oysterbay peninsula area, particularly at Coco Beach and along Toure Drive. On Zanzibar incidents have taken place in Stone Town and at hotels and on popular tourist beaches throughout the island.

Make sure residential property is secure and lock all doors and windows, especially at night. Your security guard should insist on official identification before allowing anyone to enter your property or compound. If in doubt, do not let them in and raise the alarm.

You should remain vigilant at all times.

If you need to contact the emergency services, dial 112 and ask for the emergency service you require.

Road Travel

Road safety.

Road conditions are poor and driving standards are extremely poor. Road accidents resulting in death and serious injury are common. Drivers and road users frequently drive dangerously and ignore the rules of the road.

Self-driving in Tanzania can be challenging. Check the speed limits before you drive.

Be vigilant of other road users at all times and drive with caution. Vehicles and motorcycles may try to undertake and overtake in any lane on the roads, including on the hard shoulder of highways. Be wary that drivers of all vehicles often make manoeuvres without signalling beforehand.

Maintain a safe distance between you and the car in front of you and do not approach junctions or roundabouts at speed. You should give way to the right at roundabouts, but be careful as drivers often ignore the rules.

If you’re travelling by car, always wear a seatbelt. If you have concerns about the roadworthiness or safety of any car, then you should not travel in it.

The quality of car hire companies is variable. Consider using reputable taxis as an alternative. There are no roadside rescue or breakdown services. Road maps are hard to come by and not always up to date. Service stations are infrequent and may not have supplies of fuel.

Road surfaces are variable and many roads are in need of repair, including in major towns and cities. During the rainy seasons, roads may become flooded and road surfaces can deteriorate. Take extra care if you’re driving during the rainy season and seek local advice before making a long car journey. You can find more information on the rainy season in the ‘Natural disasters’ section .

Driving conditions in Tanzania’s national parks can be unpredictable as the roads around the parks, mainly dirt tracks, are generally poor and can become hazardous or impassable after heavy rain. A 4x4 vehicle is often required. Avoid driving out of major towns and cities at night.

Keep doors locked, windows up and valuables out of sight, as vehicles are sometimes targeted by thieves. Be particularly careful at night when there is a higher incidence of crime and drunk driving. Avoid driving out of town at night. If you become aware of an unusual incident, or if somebody in plain clothes tries to flag you down, it is often safer not to stop.

There are frequent police road blocks. If you’re stopped by the police, ask to see identification before making any payments for traffic violations. If you’re involved in a road accident, co-operate with the local police.

Local transport

When making short journeys around towns and cities, you should avoid using local public transport. If you can use an officially licensed taxi as an alternative, you should do so.

Local buses (known as ‘dala dalas’), motorbike taxis (‘boda bodas’), and tuk-tuks (known locally as ‘bijajis’) do not meet western safety standards. Vehicles are often in poor condition, badly driven, and rarely have proper insurance cover.

There are frequent accidents involving dala dalas, boda bodas and tuk tuks, some of which result in fatalities.

Pick pockets may operate on overcrowded dala dala buses.

Licences and documents

You will need to have an  International Driving Permit (IDP)  to drive in Tanzania. From 1 February 2019, you can only get IDPs over the counter from 2,500 UK Post Offices. You will not be able to buy an IDP outside the UK, so get one before you travel.

If you plan to drive yourself during a visit to Tanzania, you’ll need your UK licence and an International Driving Permit. To drive in Zanzibar you’ll need your UK licence and a local Zanzibar driving permit (which you can get through your hire car company). Carry several copies of your driving licence, permits and insurance documents.

Domestic air travel and safari journeys are often undertaken in light, mostly propeller driven, aircraft.

The FCDO cannot offer advice on the safety of individual airlines. However, the International Air Transport Association publishes a list of registered airlines that have been audited and found to meet a number of operational safety standards and recommended practices. This list is not exhaustive and the absence of an airline from this list does not necessarily mean that it is unsafe.

The International Civil Aviation Organisation has carried out an audit of the level of implementation of the critical elements of safety oversight in Tanzania.

On 6 November 2022, a Precision Air flight from Dar es Salaam to Bukoba crashed into Lake Victoria close to Bukoba airport.

A list of incidents and accidents in Tanzania is available on the website of the Aviation Safety network

Local travel

If you’re planning to travel to a neighbouring country or across the region, make sure you check our travel advice for each country you intend to visit.

Information about travel in remote areas can be patchy. Invest in an up-to-date travel guide and only use reliable tour companies.

Burundi border/Kigoma region

Take particular care in the area bordering Burundi/Kigoma region. There have been armed robberies in this area, including vehicle hijackings. Drive only in hours of daylight. There are few facilities for visitors.

National Parks

Careful planning is important to get the best out of your safari. If you choose to camp, only use official sites. Make sure you are properly equipped and seek local advice when travelling to isolated areas. Some parks are extremely remote, and emergency access and evacuation can be difficult.

There are risks associated with viewing wildlife, particularly on foot or at close range. Always follow park regulations and wardens’ advice, and make sure you have the correct documentation or permit before entering a national park.

If you are trekking or climbing, only use a reputable travel company, stick to established routes and always walk in groups. Make sure you are well prepared and equipped to cope with the terrain and low temperatures.

Altitude sickness is a risk in Tanzania’s northeast, which is home to Mounts Meru and Kilimanjaro. More information and advice about altitude sickness is available from TravelHealthPro .

River and sea travel

In the last few years there have been several ferry disasters in which hundreds of people have died. These were ferries travelling between Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar, between the islands of Zanzibar and in the Lake Zone area.

Use a reputable ferry company and if you believe a ferry to be overloaded or unseaworthy, do not get on. Familiarise yourself with emergency procedures on board and make a note of where the life jackets and emergency exits are located.

You should also beware of aggressive ticket touts at Tanzanian ports.

The threat of piracy related activity and armed robbery off the coast of Somalia, in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean remains significant. Reports of attacks on local fishing dhows in the area around the Gulf of Aden and Horn of Africa continue. The combined threat assessment of the international Naval Counter Piracy Forces remains that all sailing yachts under their own passage should remain out of the designated High Risk Area or face the risk of being hijacked and held hostage for ransom. For more information and advice, see our Piracy and armed robbery at sea page

Train travel

There have been several accidents on Tanzanian railways. Seek local advice for any long-distance train travel.

Political Situation

General elections took place on 28 October 2020. The elections took place largely peacefully. You should avoid all demonstrations and rallies. On occasion, demonstrations and political rallies across Tanzania have turned violent and resulted in fatalities. Police may use tear gas and/or live ammunition for crowd control. Keep up to date with local and international events and avoid all demonstrations and large gatherings. If you become aware of any nearby protests, leave the area immediately and monitor our travel advice, Twitter and local media for up-to-date information.

Related content

Is this page useful.

  • Yes this page is useful
  • No this page is not useful

Help us improve GOV.UK

Don’t include personal or financial information like your National Insurance number or credit card details.

To help us improve GOV.UK, we’d like to know more about your visit today. We’ll send you a link to a feedback form. It will take only 2 minutes to fill in. Don’t worry we won’t send you spam or share your email address with anyone.

  • Deutschland

Is Zanzibar Safe To Visit?

Is Zanzibar safe to visit?

If you are wondering is Zanzibar safe, rest assured: the island is extremely safe for tourists. As tourism is the primary source of income in Zanzibar, the local authorities take the safety of tourists very seriously. While the island itself is very safe, it is nevertheless prudent to exercise caution while sailing around Zanzibar as there can be pirates lurking in the waters. However, on your sailing excursion with Enchanting Travels, worry not! Our local guides are well-verse in the local terrain and keep in constant contact with both the authorities and local people to ensure that you are always safe.

Zanzibar's Stone Town

Is Zanzibar Safe: Tips for your safety

Leave your valuables at home.

The people of Zanzibar are very poor and foreigners who can afford a trip to the islands are generally considered to be far richer by the locals. As with any other destinations, leave your valuables such as jewelry or watches, in the safety box of your hotel. Walking on the  Zanzibar beach  or deserted streets is not recommended at night.

Show respect for local traditions

Being a predominantly Islamic region, Zanzibaris are conservative in their clothing. While vacationing in the islands, we recommend that you dress modestly, especially while traveling in remote areas. Ensure that your knees and shoulders are covered, and avoid wearing short skirts and pants. Public displays of affection are generally frowned upon.

At religious institutions

Exercise caution especially when you visit religious institutions. Avoid crowded areas and religious demonstrations especially in and around Stone Town on Fridays.

Consult a doctor

Compared to the rest of Tanzania, risk of contracting Malaria is much lower in  Zanzibar Island . However, it is still prudent to consult a doctor before your visit and receive proper advice on vaccinations and preventive medication.

Eat and drink, but safely!

Avoid drinking tap water at all costs! Most of the drinking water in Zanzibar is imported from the mainland and tap water is not safe to drink. Be careful with fruits and food that are sold on the street – if you have a sensitive stomach, avoid these altogether!

Stone Town -beach in Zanzibar

Is Zanzibar Safe: Stress-free travel

Your comfort and safety are our topmost priorities. Our Travel Consultants are happy to answer all your questions about safety in Zanzibar. During your trip, your local guide is happy to help you and your Trip Coordinator is available around the clock to assist you.

By following these tips, and researching ahead of time, you will find it is safe and easy to travel in Zanzibar.

Snorkeling in the Indian Ocean at Zanzibar

Safety in Tanzania

Best time to visit.

The best travel time for your tour of Tanzania depends on the regions you visit, and what you wish to experience. Discover the climate and month by month highlights.

Things To Do

Great Migration, fascinating cultures and the spice islands of Zanzibar – follow this link to discover the top ten things to do in Tanzania.

The Enchanting Difference

Safe & secure.

Your safety and well-being are our top priorities. We only offer hotels and vehicles with the highest health and safety standards.

Financial Protection & Flexibility

We believe in complete transparency. We are bonded members and license holders of all leading travel organizations. Your booking is flexible and completely secure with us.

Fully Supported Travel

Your dedicated and personal trip coordinator is available around the clock during your trip to accommodate requests, take care of the details, and handle any unforeseen situations.

Authentic & Unique

Go off the beaten track. Our award-winning, licensed local guides provide incredible insights and insider tips, passionately bringing alive unique and exclusive experiences for you.

Personalized & Private

Discover our enchanting world your way. Our experts completely customize your private tour to match your interests and preferences through their comprehensive knowledge of each destination.

High-Quality Experiences

All our accommodations and services are personally tested by our team. Tell us your travel dream and we will create an itinerary packed with the best experiences your destination has to offer.

Do you have a vacation in mind? Personalize your itinerary with our Trip Builder.

is zanzibar safe

Is Zanzibar Safe? A Comprehensive Guide to Staying Safe While Traveling in Zanzibar

Zanzibar, a semi-autonomous archipelago off the coast of Tanzania, is a popular destination for tourists seeking a unique blend of African, Arab, and Indian cultures. However, with any travel destination, safety is a top concern for visitors. So, is Zanzibar safe? The answer is not a simple yes or no, as safety can depend on various factors such as location, time of day, and individual actions.

Understanding Zanzibar’s history and culture is crucial to assessing its safety. The island has a complex past of colonialism, slavery, and political tensions, which have left lasting effects on its society. Additionally, Zanzibar’s population is predominantly Muslim, and visitors should respect local customs and dress modestly. While Zanzibar has a reputation for being safe, visitors should still exercise caution and take necessary precautions to ensure a safe and enjoyable trip.

Key Takeaways

  • Zanzibar’s safety can depend on various factors such as location, time of day, and individual actions.
  • Understanding Zanzibar’s history and culture is crucial to assessing its safety.
  • Visitors should exercise caution and take necessary precautions to ensure a safe and enjoyable trip.

is zanzibar safe

Understanding Zanzibar

Zanzibar is a semi-autonomous archipelago located off the coast of Tanzania in the Indian Ocean. It consists of two main islands, Unguja and Pemba, as well as several smaller islands. The islands have a rich history and culture, heavily influenced by the Arab and Swahili traders who have inhabited the islands for centuries.

The majority of the population in Zanzibar is Muslim, with a small Christian and Hindu minority. The Muslim community plays a significant role in the culture and daily life of the island, with mosques and prayer times being an integral part of the community.

Zanzibar has a complex history, having been ruled by various empires and colonial powers over the centuries. The island was an important center for the Arab slave trade in the 19th century, and this history is still visible in the architecture and culture of the island.

Today, Zanzibar is a popular tourist destination, known for its stunning beaches, coral reefs, and historic Stone Town. However, the island still faces challenges such as poverty and lack of infrastructure.

It is important for visitors to be respectful of the local culture and customs while visiting Zanzibar. Dress modestly, especially when visiting religious sites, and be mindful of local customs and traditions.

Safety Overview

Zanzibar is generally a safe place to visit, with a low crime rate and friendly locals. However, as with any destination, visitors should exercise caution and take necessary safety precautions.

While violent crime is rare, petty crimes such as pickpocketing and bag snatching can occur, particularly in crowded areas and tourist hotspots. Visitors are advised to keep a close eye on their belongings and avoid carrying large amounts of cash or valuables.

Sexual assault is also a concern, and visitors, particularly women, should avoid walking alone at night and be cautious of accepting drinks from strangers. It is recommended to use reputable tour operators and avoid unlicensed taxis.

Terrorism is not a significant threat in Zanzibar, but visitors are advised to remain vigilant and aware of their surroundings, particularly in crowded areas and public transportation.

In case of emergency, visitors can dial 112 for police assistance. It is also recommended to keep a copy of important documents, such as passports and travel insurance, in a safe place.

Overall, visitors to Zanzibar can have a safe and enjoyable trip by taking necessary safety precautions and being aware of potential risks.

is zanzibar safe

Health Precautions

When traveling to Zanzibar, it is important to take necessary health precautions to ensure a safe and healthy trip. Here are some key health considerations to keep in mind:

Malaria is a concern in Zanzibar, particularly during the rainy season. Travelers should take measures to prevent mosquito bites, such as wearing long sleeves and pants, using insect repellent, and sleeping under mosquito nets. Anti-malarial medication may also be recommended by a doctor.

Doctor Visits

It is recommended to visit a doctor before traveling to Zanzibar to ensure all necessary vaccinations are up to date. If any health concerns arise during the trip, there are medical facilities available on the island.

Yellow Fever Vaccination

Yellow fever vaccination is not required for entry into Zanzibar unless arriving from a country with a risk of yellow fever transmission. However, it is still recommended to get vaccinated to protect against the disease.

Mosquito Bites

Mosquito bites can cause a variety of illnesses in Zanzibar, including malaria and dengue fever. Travelers should take measures to prevent mosquito bites, such as wearing long sleeves and pants, using insect repellent, and sleeping under mosquito nets.

Insect repellent is an important tool for preventing mosquito bites and other insect-related illnesses. Travelers should bring a strong, effective insect repellent and use it regularly.

Rabies is present in Zanzibar, and travelers should avoid contact with stray animals. If bitten or scratched by an animal, seek medical attention immediately.

Altitude Sickness

Altitude sickness is not a concern in Zanzibar, as the island is at sea level.

As with any travel during the COVID-19 pandemic, travelers should take necessary precautions to protect themselves and others. This may include wearing a mask, practicing social distancing, and following local guidelines and restrictions.

Travel Preparations

Before embarking on a trip to Zanzibar, it is important to make adequate travel preparations. This includes obtaining the necessary travel documents such as a valid passport and visa where applicable. Travelers are advised to check with their respective embassies or consulates for the latest travel advisories and requirements.

It is also important to ensure that one has sufficient cash or payment options such as credit cards. While most businesses in Zanzibar accept credit cards, it is advisable to carry some cash, especially when traveling to more remote areas where card payments may not be accepted.

Travel experts recommend that travelers should carry identification documents such as a passport or ID card at all times. This is particularly important for foreigners who may be required to present identification when asked by the authorities.

For those traveling with family or solo, it is important to research the area and accommodations beforehand to ensure that they are family-friendly and safe. It is also advisable to inform friends or family of one’s travel plans and itinerary in case of any emergencies.

Overall, while Zanzibar is generally considered a safe destination for tourists, it is important to exercise caution and make adequate travel preparations to ensure a safe and enjoyable trip.

is zanzibar safe

Accommodation and Hospitality

Zanzibar offers a wide range of accommodation options, from luxury hotels to budget-friendly guesthouses. Most hotels are located in the popular tourist areas of Stone Town, Kendwa, and Nungwi, while guesthouses can be found in more remote areas of the island.

Hotels in Zanzibar are known for their exceptional hospitality and customer service. Many hotels offer all-inclusive packages that include meals, drinks, and activities. However, it is important to note that the quality of service can vary significantly depending on the hotel.

In addition to hotels, there are also many residential properties available for rent on the island. These properties range from small apartments to large villas and can be a great option for those looking for a more private and secluded vacation.

Overall, Zanzibar is a safe destination for travelers looking for comfortable and affordable accommodation options. It is recommended to do thorough research and read reviews before booking any accommodation to ensure a pleasant stay.

Exploring Zanzibar

Zanzibar is a beautiful island located off the coast of Tanzania. It is a popular tourist destination known for its stunning beaches, rich history, and unique culture. While safety concerns have been raised in the past, Zanzibar is generally considered a safe place to visit.

One of the most popular destinations in Zanzibar is Stone Town. This historic town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is known for its narrow streets, bustling markets, and beautiful architecture. Visitors can explore the town on foot or take a guided tour to learn more about its history and culture.

Zanzibar is also home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Visitors can relax on the white sand beaches, swim in the clear blue waters, and enjoy a variety of water sports, including snorkeling and diving.

For those interested in wildlife, Zanzibar offers a unique opportunity to go on a safari. Visitors can explore the island’s national parks and see a variety of animals, including elephants, lions, and giraffes.

In addition to its natural beauty, Zanzibar also has a number of attractions for visitors to explore. These include the Jozani Forest, the Prison Island, and the House of Wonders.

Sailing is another popular activity in Zanzibar. Visitors can take a boat tour around the island and enjoy the stunning views of the coastline.

Finally, Zanzibar is known for its sunny weather. Visitors can enjoy the warm temperatures and sunny skies year-round, making it the perfect destination for a beach vacation.

Overall, Zanzibar offers a unique and exciting travel experience for visitors. With its beautiful beaches, rich history, and unique culture, it is a destination that should not be missed.

Road Safety

When it comes to road safety in Zanzibar, travelers should exercise caution and be aware of the potential risks. The road infrastructure is generally poor, with many roads being unpaved and lacking proper signage. Additionally, drivers may not always follow traffic laws and may drive recklessly.

Taxis are a popular mode of transportation in Zanzibar, but travelers should ensure that the taxi they are using is licensed and in good condition. It is also recommended to negotiate the fare before starting the journey to avoid any surprises.

Seatbelts are not always available in taxis or other vehicles, so travelers should be prepared to bring their own or ask the driver if they can provide one. It is also important to note that self-driving is not recommended in Zanzibar due to the poor road conditions and lack of proper signage.

Car hire is available in Zanzibar, but travelers should ensure that the company is reputable and that the car is in good condition. It is also recommended to obtain a road map and familiarize oneself with the area before driving.

Fuel is readily available in Zanzibar, but travelers should be aware that the quality may not be consistent. It is recommended to fill up at reputable stations and to keep a spare can of fuel in case of emergencies.

Pedestrians should exercise caution when crossing the road, as drivers may not always give way. It is also important to note that police road blocks are common in Zanzibar, and travelers should ensure that they have all necessary documentation and permits before driving.

In the event of an accident, travelers should contact the police and their embassy or consulate for assistance. It is also recommended to take photographs of the accident scene and to exchange contact information with the other party involved.

is zanzibar safe

Respecting Local Customs

When traveling to Zanzibar, it is important to respect the local customs to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience. Zanzibar is a conservative Muslim society, and visitors should dress modestly, especially when visiting religious sites or local villages.

Women should cover their shoulders and knees, and avoid wearing tight or revealing clothing. It is also important to remove shoes before entering mosques or homes, as well as to ask for permission before taking photos of people or their property.

Visitors should also be aware of the potential for political demonstrations and avoid participating in any protests or gatherings. It is important to stay informed about local events and follow the guidance of local authorities.

By respecting local customs and traditions, visitors can show appreciation for the local culture and foster positive relationships with the local community.

Emergency Services

Zanzibar has emergency services that can be contacted in case of an emergency. These services include the police, ambulance, and fire department. It is important to note that the emergency services may not be as efficient as in some other countries, but they are available and can be relied on in case of an emergency.

The police in Zanzibar are responsible for maintaining law and order. They can be contacted in case of any criminal activity, accidents, or other emergencies. The emergency number for the police is 112. It is important to note that the police may not always be able to respond immediately due to limited resources, but they will do their best to help in any way they can.

The ambulance service in Zanzibar is provided by the Ministry of Health. The emergency number for the ambulance is 122. The ambulance service is available 24/7 and can be contacted in case of any medical emergency. It is important to note that the ambulance service may not be as efficient as in some other countries, but they will do their best to provide medical assistance as quickly as possible.

Fire Department

The fire department in Zanzibar is responsible for responding to any fire emergencies. The emergency number for the fire department is 114. It is important to note that the fire department may not always be able to respond immediately due to limited resources, but they will do their best to put out the fire as quickly as possible.

In case of an emergency, it is important to remain calm and provide as much information as possible to the emergency services. It is also important to note that the emergency services may take longer to respond in certain areas of Zanzibar, especially in rural areas.

Financial Safety

Zanzibar is a relatively safe place when it comes to financial matters. However, visitors should still take necessary precautions to ensure the safety of their valuables.

Visitors are advised to keep their valuables, such as passports, cash, and credit cards, in a safe place. It is recommended to use hotel safes or lockers to store valuables. If carrying cash or credit cards, it is advisable to keep them in a secure wallet or money belt.

ATMs are widely available in Zanzibar, particularly in Stone Town and other major towns. Visitors are advised to use ATMs located inside banks or shopping malls, as they are generally safer than standalone ATMs on the street. It is also recommended to withdraw cash during the day and in well-lit areas.

Visitors should be cautious of skimming devices when using ATMs. Skimming devices are used by criminals to steal credit card information. It is recommended to check the ATM for any unusual devices or cameras before inserting a card. If in doubt, visitors should use a different ATM.

Overall, visitors to Zanzibar can have confidence that their financial safety is relatively secure, as long as they take necessary precautions to safeguard their valuables and use ATMs with caution.

Dealing with Crime

Zanzibar is generally safe, but like any other place, it has its share of crime. Visitors should take precautions to ensure their safety and avoid becoming victims of crime.

Tourists should be cautious when walking alone at night, especially in less populated areas. It is advisable to walk in groups or use taxis when traveling at night. Visitors should also avoid displaying large amounts of cash or expensive jewelry in public areas.

Precautions

To prevent theft, tourists should always keep an eye on their belongings and never leave them unattended. It is also advisable to lock doors and windows when leaving hotel rooms or rental properties. Visitors should also be cautious when accepting food or drinks from strangers, as there have been reports of drink spiking.

Tourists should ensure that the doors to their accommodations are secure and locked at all times. It is also advisable to use a doorstop or wedge to prevent the door from being forced open.

Visitors should ensure that windows are secure and locked at all times, especially when leaving the accommodation. It is also advisable to keep curtains or blinds closed at night to prevent outsiders from seeing inside.

Overall, visitors to Zanzibar can have a safe and enjoyable trip if they take the necessary precautions. By remaining vigilant and aware of their surroundings, tourists can avoid becoming victims of crime.

Enjoying Zanzibar Responsibly

Zanzibar is a beautiful and vibrant island that attracts tourists from all over the world. While it is generally a safe destination, visitors should take precautions to ensure they enjoy their time on the island responsibly.

Alcohol is readily available on the island, but visitors should be aware that excessive drinking can lead to dangerous situations. It is important to drink responsibly and in moderation, especially when participating in water activities or other physical activities.

Bars and Stores

Zanzibar has a variety of bars and stores that sell alcohol and other goods. Visitors should be aware of their surroundings and avoid walking alone at night. It is also important to keep an eye on personal belongings, especially in crowded areas.

Tour Operators

Tour operators on the island offer a variety of activities, from snorkeling and scuba diving to spice tours and cultural experiences. Visitors should research tour operators before booking and choose reputable companies with good safety records.

Zanzibar offers a variety of opportunities for exercise, from beach volleyball and soccer to yoga and fitness classes. Visitors should be aware of the heat and humidity and take breaks as needed. It is also important to stay hydrated and wear appropriate clothing and sunscreen.

The sun can be intense on the island, and visitors should take precautions to protect their skin. It is important to wear sunscreen with a high SPF and reapply frequently, especially when spending time outdoors.

Overall, visitors to Zanzibar can enjoy their time on the island responsibly by taking precautions and being aware of their surroundings. By following these guidelines, visitors can have a safe and enjoyable experience on this beautiful island.

Traveling from Dar es Salaam

When it comes to traveling from Dar es Salaam to Zanzibar, there are a few options available. One of the most popular ways to get to Zanzibar is by ferry. There are two types of ferries available: the regular ferry and the overnight ferry.

The regular ferry is the cheapest option, but it can be quite crowded and uncomfortable. The journey takes around two hours, and it can be quite bumpy, especially during the rainy season. It’s important to note that the regular ferry can be cancelled or delayed due to bad weather, so it’s always a good idea to check the weather forecast before you travel.

The overnight ferry is a more comfortable option. It takes around 8-12 hours to get from Dar es Salaam to Zanzibar, depending on the type of ferry you choose. The overnight ferry is more expensive than the regular ferry, but it’s a good option if you want to avoid the crowds and have a more comfortable journey. The overnight ferry also has cabins available, so you can sleep during the journey.

It’s important to note that both the regular ferry and the overnight ferry can be quite busy, especially during peak season. It’s a good idea to book your tickets in advance to avoid disappointment. You can book your tickets online or at the ferry terminal in Dar es Salaam.

Overall, traveling from Dar es Salaam to Zanzibar by ferry is a safe and reliable option. However, it’s important to be aware of the weather conditions and to book your tickets in advance to avoid any issues.

Covid-19 Guidelines

Zanzibar has implemented safety measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19. Travelers should be aware of the guidelines before visiting the island.

Entry Requirements

All travelers must present a negative Covid-19 PCR test result taken within 72 hours before arrival. Children under 5 years old are exempt from this requirement. Travelers may also be subject to a health screening upon arrival.

Mask Mandate

Masks are mandatory in all public areas, including indoor spaces and outdoor areas where social distancing is not possible. Failure to comply with the mask mandate may result in fines.

Social Distancing

Travelers should maintain a distance of at least 1.5 meters from others in public areas. Restaurants, bars, and other establishments are required to enforce social distancing guidelines.

A curfew is in place from 10:00 pm to 4:00 am. Travelers should plan their activities accordingly.

Vaccination

Zanzibar has launched a vaccination campaign for its residents. However, vaccination is not mandatory for travelers.

Health Facilities

Zanzibar has designated health facilities to handle Covid-19 cases. Travelers should familiarize themselves with the location of these facilities in case of an emergency.

Travelers should also monitor the situation and follow the guidelines issued by the local authorities.

Additional Safety Tips

While Zanzibar is generally a safe destination, it is always important to take precautions to ensure your safety. Here are some additional safety tips to keep in mind:

  • Avoid walking alone at night : It is always best to walk with a group or take a taxi at night. If you must walk alone, stick to well-lit areas and avoid dark alleys or side streets.
  • Be aware of your surroundings : Keep an eye out for any suspicious activity or people. If you feel uncomfortable, trust your instincts and move to a safer location.
  • Protect your valuables : Keep your valuables such as cash, passports, and electronics in a secure place. Use a money belt or a hotel safe to store them.
  • Be cautious when using ATMs : Use ATMs located in well-lit areas and avoid using them at night. Cover the keypad when entering your PIN and be aware of any suspicious looking devices attached to the ATM.
  • Respect local customs : Zanzibar is a predominantly Muslim society, so it is important to dress modestly and respect local customs and traditions.
  • Be cautious when swimming : While the beaches in Zanzibar are beautiful, there are strong currents and undertows. Always swim in designated areas and never swim alone.

By following these additional safety tips, you can help ensure a safe and enjoyable trip to Zanzibar.

Frequently Asked Questions

What safety measures should tourists take in zanzibar.

Tourists should take the same safety precautions they would in any other unfamiliar location. They should avoid carrying large amounts of cash or wearing expensive jewelry in public. Tourists should also be cautious when using public transportation and avoid walking alone at night. It is recommended to book accommodations in safe and well-lit areas.

What is the crime rate like in Zanzibar?

While Zanzibar is generally a safe destination for tourists, visitors should still take precautions to avoid becoming victims of crime. Petty theft, such as pickpocketing and bag-snatching, can occur in crowded areas. Violent crime is rare, but tourists should still be aware of their surroundings and avoid walking alone at night.

Are there any areas in Zanzibar that tourists should avoid?

Tourists should avoid the Michenzani and Mwanakwerekwe areas of Zanzibar City after dark, as these areas have a higher crime rate. Visitors should also be cautious when traveling to remote areas of the island, as medical facilities may be limited.

What is the general attitude towards LGBT individuals in Zanzibar?

Homosexuality is illegal in Zanzibar, and the general attitude towards LGBT individuals is not accepting. Same-sex couples should avoid public displays of affection and exercise caution when traveling together.

Can tourists consume alcohol in Zanzibar?

Alcohol is legal in Zanzibar, and tourists can consume it in licensed establishments. However, public intoxication is frowned upon, and visitors should exercise moderation when consuming alcohol.

Is Zanzibar safe for solo female travelers?

Zanzibar is generally safe for solo female travelers, but they should still take precautions to avoid becoming victims of crime. Women should avoid walking alone at night and should dress modestly to avoid unwanted attention. It is recommended to book accommodations in safe and well-lit areas.

Submit a comment Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

Is Zanzibar Safe To Visit

Is Zanzibar Safe To Visit

Is Zanzibar Safe To Visit? Nestled in the turquoise embrace of the Indian Ocean, Zanzibar beckons travelers with its exotic allure, pristine beaches, and vibrant culture.

Yet, beneath this tropical paradise, one question often lingers in the minds of wanderlust-driven adventurers: Is Zanzibar Safe To Visit ?

This enchanting island, with its rich history and warm hospitality, has long been a dream destination for many.

To unlock the secrets of Zanzibar’s safety, we embark on a journey that unveils the hidden gems, safety measures, and practical tips that ensure a secure and unforgettable adventure in this captivating corner of the world.

Is Zanzibar Safe To Visit

Table of Contents

Zanzibar is generally a safe destination for tourists. However, like any other place , it’s essential to stay informed and take precautions to ensure a safe and enjoyable visit.

Safety Overview

Zanzibar, an enchanting tropical archipelago off the coast of Tanzania, is a popular destination known for its pristine beaches, vibrant culture, and historical sites. While it offers a remarkable travel experience , safety concerns are natural when exploring a new place. Let’s delve into the safety aspects of Zanzibar to help you plan your trip with confidence.

Crime and Personal Safety:

Zanzibar is generally safe for tourists. However, petty crimes like pickpocketing can occur in crowded areas, so it’s wise to keep an eye on your belongings. Violent crime against tourists is rare, but it’s always best to exercise caution and avoid poorly lit or deserted areas at night.

Health Precautions:

Before traveling to Zanzibar, ensure you’re up to date on vaccinations and take precautions against malaria. The island’s healthcare facilities may not be up to Western standards, so having travel insurance with medical coverage is advisable.

Natural Hazards:

Zanzibar is susceptible to weather-related hazards like tropical storms and high tides. It’s essential to monitor weather forecasts and heed local advice, especially during the rainy season.

Political Stability:

Zanzibar has a history of political tensions, but in recent years, it has maintained relative stability. Keep yourself informed about the current political situation and any travel advisories issued by your government.

Cultural Sensitivity: Respect the local customs and traditions, including conservative dress codes, when visiting Zanzibar, which is predominantly Muslim. This will help you have a culturally enriching and incident-free experience.

Safety Overview

Is  Zanzibar Safe To Visit At Night?

Visiting Zanzibar at night can be safe, but it’s crucial to exercise caution and make informed choices to ensure a secure and enjoyable experience.

Safety Considerations:

Exploring the Nightlife: Zanzibar, with its vibrant nightlife and cultural allure, offers a unique experience after the sun sets. The island comes alive with bustling markets, live music, and beachfront gatherings. However, like in any tourist destination, it’s essential to be mindful of your surroundings.

Tourist Areas vs. Less Traveled Paths: Tourist hotspots like Stone Town generally have a higher level of security. These areas are well-patrolled and often crowded, providing a sense of safety. Venturing into less traveled paths at night may require more caution, so it’s wise to stay within well-known areas if you’re unfamiliar with the surroundings.

Transportation at Night: If you plan to move around Zanzibar at night, choose registered taxis or transportation services recommended by your accommodation. Avoid unlicensed vehicles and be sure to agree on fares before starting your journey.

Avoiding Overindulgence: Partaking in the local beverages and cuisine can be an enjoyable part of the Zanzibar experience, but moderation is key. Overindulgence can make you more vulnerable to accidents or theft, so drink responsibly.

Staying Alert: While violent crime against tourists is rare, petty theft can happen, particularly in crowded areas. Keep a close eye on your belongings, avoid displaying expensive items, and use discreet bags when possible.

Is It Safe To Park In Zanzibar

Parking in Zanzibar can be safe, but it comes with some unique considerations. Understanding the local parking landscape and taking precautions can help ensure a hassle-free experience.

Parking in Zanzibar:

Limited Parking Infrastructure: Zanzibar, with its narrow streets and bustling markets, has limited parking infrastructure, especially in popular tourist areas like Stone Town. Finding a parking spot can be a challenge, and parking spaces may not always meet international safety standards.

Street Parking: Street parking is common in Zanzibar, but it’s essential to park in well-lit areas and avoid leaving valuables in your vehicle. While theft is relatively rare, taking precautions can reduce the risk of petty crimes.

Hotel and Accommodation Parking: Many hotels and accommodations in Zanzibar offer secure parking facilities for their guests. If you’re staying at such establishments, it’s advisable to use their designated parking areas for added security.

Parking Fees: In some areas, you may encounter parking attendants who charge fees for watching over your vehicle. While these fees are generally nominal, it’s a good practice to agree on the cost upfront to avoid misunderstandings.

Alternative Transportation: Considering the limited parking options and traffic congestion in some areas, you might opt for alternative transportation methods such as walking, biking, or using taxis when exploring Zanzibar’s attractions.

What Are The Safest Parts Of Zanzibar

Zanzibar is generally a safe destination, but some areas are known for their enhanced safety measures and lower crime rates. When seeking safety in Zanzibar, consider staying in well-established tourist areas and resorts.

Safety in Zanzibar:

1. Nungwi and Kendwa: Located on the northern tip of Zanzibar, Nungwi and Kendwa are known for their pristine beaches and relaxed atmosphere. These areas are popular with tourists and are generally considered safe, with a vibrant nightlife and numerous accommodation options.

2. Stone Town: Zanzibar’s historic capital, Stone Town, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It’s a popular tourist destination with a visible police presence, making it one of the safest parts of the island. However, be cautious of crowded areas and pickpocketing.

3. East Coast Beaches: The eastern coast of Zanzibar boasts beautiful beaches and is less crowded than the north. Areas like Paje and Jambiani offer a serene escape with a reputation for safety.

4. Resort Areas: Many of the island’s resorts prioritize guest safety, offering secure accommodations with private beaches. Staying in these resorts can provide a heightened sense of security.

5. Local Guidance: Seek advice from residents or your accommodation staff regarding safe areas to explore. They can provide valuable insights into current conditions and any areas to avoid.

What Are The Safest Parts Of Zanzibar

Crime In Zanzibar

Zanzibar, like many tourist destinations, experiences some crime, but it is generally safe for visitors. However, being informed about potential risks and taking precautions is crucial for a worry-free trip.

Crime Overview:

1. Petty Theft: Petty theft, such as pickpocketing, can occur in crowded areas and markets. Tourists should exercise caution with their belongings and avoid displaying expensive items in public.

2. Violent Crime: Instances of violent crime against tourists are relatively rare in Zanzibar. However, it’s essential to remain vigilant and avoid poorly lit or deserted areas at night.

3. Beach Theft: While Zanzibar’s beaches are beautiful, some areas may have occasional reports of beach theft. Don’t leave valuables unattended on the beach, and consider using hotel safes.

4. Scams: As in many tourist destinations, be aware of scams that may target tourists, such as overcharging for services or fake tour operators. Deal with reputable businesses and clarify prices in advance.

5. Cultural Sensitivity: Respect the local customs and traditions, including conservative dress codes, when visiting Zanzibar. This can help you avoid misunderstandings and ensure a harmonious stay.

Police Presence: Zanzibar has a visible police presence in many tourist areas, which contributes to overall safety. Tourists can seek assistance from the police if needed.

Avoiding Bad Areas in Zanzibar

While Zanzibar is generally a safe destination, it’s essential to be aware of certain areas that may have higher crime rates or be less tourist-friendly. Being informed and taking precautions can help you avoid potential risks.

Understanding Safe and Less Safe Areas:

1. Tourist Hotspots: Popular tourist areas like Stone Town, Nungwi, Kendwa, and Paje are generally safe and well-patrolled by the police. Staying in these areas can provide a safer experience.

2. Less Traveled Areas: Venturing into remote or less traveled parts of the island may come with increased risks. These areas may lack proper infrastructure and have lower police presence. It’s advisable to exercise caution and avoid going alone, especially at night.

3. Beaches and Isolated Spots: While Zanzibar’s beaches are breathtaking, some isolated spots may have occasional reports of theft. Avoid leaving valuables unattended on the beach and consider using hotel safes.

4. Consult Local Advice: Seek advice from residents or your accommodation staff about areas to avoid. They can offer valuable insights into current conditions and any specific safety concerns.

5. Monitoring Current Affairs: Stay informed about the local political situation and any travel advisories issued by your government. This can help you make informed decisions about where to go and when.

Things To Consider When Visiting Zanzibar

When planning a trip to Zanzibar, several essential factors deserve your attention to ensure a memorable and worry-free experience. From understanding the local culture to considering your health and safety, here are key aspects to keep in mind.

Cultural Sensitivity:

1. Dress Code: Zanzibar is predominantly Muslim, and it’s important to respect local customs. Dress modestly, particularly when visiting religious sites or local communities.

2. Greetings: Learning a few Swahili greetings, such as “Jambo” (hello) and “Asante” (thank you), can go a long way in showing respect for the local culture.

3. Public Displays of Affection: Public displays of affection are generally discouraged, as they may be considered inappropriate in this conservative society.

1. Vaccinations and Malaria Prophylaxis: Check with your healthcare provider for necessary vaccinations and consider taking malaria prophylaxis, as the island is in a malaria-prone region.

2. Food and Water: Practice caution when consuming street food, and drink bottled or purified water to avoid gastrointestinal issues.

3. Healthcare Facilities: While healthcare facilities are available, they may not meet Western standards. Travel insurance with medical coverage is advisable.

1. Avoiding Bad Areas: Stay informed about areas with higher crime rates and exercise caution, especially in less touristy or remote parts of the island.

2. Transportation: Choose registered taxis or recommended transportation services, and agree on fares in advance to avoid overcharging.

3. Weather: Monitor weather forecasts, especially during the rainy season when tropical storms and high tides can affect your plans.

Cultural Experiences:

1. Spice Tours: Explore Zanzibar’s rich spice heritage with guided spice tours, a fascinating and educational experience.

2. Local Cuisine: Savor the island’s delicious seafood and unique dishes, like biryani and pilau, at local eateries.

3. Water Activities: Enjoy snorkeling, diving, and swimming in the crystal-clear waters of the Indian Ocean.

Things To Consider When Visiting Zanzibar

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about “Is Zanzibar Safe To Visit”:

1. Is Zanzibar Safe To Visit for Tourists?

  • Generally, yes. Zanzibar is considered a safe tourist destination, but it’s essential to take standard travel precautions and be aware of your surroundings.

2. Are There Any Safety Concerns in Zanzibar?

  • While Zanzibar is safe, petty crimes like pickpocketing can occur in crowded areas. It’s also wise to avoid poorly lit or remote places at night.

3. Are There Areas in Zanzibar That Should Be Avoided?

  • Some less-traveled or remote areas may have fewer safety measures. Staying in well-established tourist areas is recommended for added security.

4. What Health Precautions Should I Take When Visiting Zanzibar?

  • Ensure you have the necessary vaccinations and consider taking malaria prophylaxis. Use bottled or purified water and be cautious with street food.

5. Is Zanzibar Safe for Solo Travelers?

  • Zanzibar can be safe for solo travelers, but it’s crucial to follow safety guidelines, stay in well-traveled areas, and avoid walking alone at night.

6. How About Political Stability in Zanzibar?

  • Zanzibar has experienced political tensions in the past, but recent years have seen relative stability. Stay informed about the current political situation and any travel advisories.

7. What Cultural Considerations Should I Keep in Mind?

  • Respect local customs, particularly the conservative dress code in predominantly Muslim areas. Learning a few Swahili greetings can also enhance your experience.

8. What Are Some Recommended Activities in Zanzibar?

  • Enjoy spice tours, savor the local cuisine, and engage in water activities like snorkeling and diving in the crystal-clear waters of the Indian Ocean.

9. How Can I Ensure My Safety in Zanzibar?

  • Keep an eye on your belongings, use registered taxis or recommended transportation services, and stay in accommodations with good security measures.

10. Is Travel Insurance Necessary for Zanzibar?

  • Yes, it’s advisable to have travel insurance with medical coverage when visiting Zanzibar, as healthcare facilities may not meet Western standards.

So, Should You Take A Trip To Zanzibar?

In conclusion, embarking on a journey to Zanzibar offers a tantalizing blend of natural beauty, cultural richness, and adventure. While questions about safety may flicker in the minds of travelers, the consensus is clear: Zanzibar is a destination waiting to be explored. By adhering to standard travel precautions, respecting local customs, and staying informed about current conditions, you can unlock the secrets of this enchanting island with confidence. So, should you take a trip to Zanzibar? Absolutely. Let the turquoise waters, spice-scented air, and warm hospitality of Zanzibar beckon you to discover its unique treasures and create memories that will linger in your heart forever.

Related Posts:

  • Adults-Only All-Inclusive Beach Vacation Spots (19…
  • All-Inclusive Adults-Only Jamaica Vacation Packages…
  • All-Inclusive Adult-Only Honeymoon Vacations (19…
  • All-Inclusive Adults-Only Honeymoon Retreats With…
  • Best All-Inclusive Adults-Only USA Vacation Packages
  • All Inclusive Adults Only 5 Star Vacations

Is Zanzibar Safe for Tourists? All you will need to know & a few tips to keep in mind for 2023

Zanzibar is the semi-autonomous archipelago off the coast of Tanzania in the Indian Ocean. Zanzibar consists of two main islands of Zanzibar and Pemba and many other small islands.

While Zanzibar is part of  Tanzania , it has grown into a major travel destination for beach and diving adventures, that it enjoys semi-autonomous popularity of its own. This is why many people keep asking about all aspects of safety when it comes to visiting Zanzibar.

zanzibar beach

Is Zanzibar Safe?

The Zanzibar Islands are safe to visit for all tourists from all around the world. In 2019 alone, Zanzibar received more than half a million international visitors that came to explore the beautiful beaches, rich history and tasty dishes.

The safety of a place is hard (if not impossible) to state with full and absolute certainty. While we maintain that Zanzibar is safe to visit, we have to mention that common sense travel safety tips still play a huge role in keeping you and your things safe.

Like any place, there are bad patches where you are advised to take extra caution or not walk alone at night. This is true on all continents, and quite fairly for almost any tourist centre.

Petty crimes like muggings and pickpocketing do happen so you need to be aware of this and keep vigilant. We've mentioned some safety tips below.

Politically, Zanzibar and Tanzania as a whole are very stable. Tanzania has the longest record of political stability in East Africa.

Safety For Females

Safety on a trip is important to everyone, even more so for females. This is even more critical when a female is travelling alone to a foreign place where they don't know anyone or the local customs.

While many solo female travellers have been to Zanzibar and had a great time, it can be quite daunting and scary. The same petty crime could still happen - plus some offensive cat-calls especially if you are moving around alone.

The best advice here is to move with someone - be it your local guide or some trusted person, and avoid moving late at night in some areas. 

Safe To Swim In Zanzibar

zanzibar swimming in the ocean

The beaches in Zanzibar are gorgeous and the Indian Ocean water makes for great swimming. For people who are not advanced with swimming, it is advisable that you be careful when swimming in low tide. This is because the tide can rise and make it hard to swim ashore. 

Some beaches where the tide doesn't fluctuate so much are the best options for swimming since you can swim all day long. 

Remember that Zanzibar is close to the equator and the sun is really hot, so carry sunscreen to avoid getting sunburnt.

Safety For LGBTQ

Safety for people of the LGBT community is another concern that comes up when international travel is being planned. This is equally important for Zanzibar.

lgbt flag

Tanzania's law does not recognize or protect the rights of any other sexual preferences aside from heterosexual relationships. This is the case for many places in Africa - and other parts of the world. 

Sexual preference is not a requirement for you to enter Tanzania and you will most likely not need to answer to anyone about that. If you are using the services of a reputable tour operator and staying in places that are familiar with tourists from all around the world, you will not experience any issues.

Public displays of affection are completely frowned upon - even for heterosexual relations, and you should remember that.

All in all, the choice comes down to the traveller - you. You can read more about the laws, and be forthright with your hotel/tour operator to make sure that you have the confidence to visit and enjoy the place.

Safety Tips For Zanzibar

Here is a quick refresher of common safety tips to keep in mind whenever you are travelling.

1. Leave Valuables At Home Or At The Hotel.

Whether it is an expensive watch or any other kind of jewellery, having it with you can always attract the attention of bad characters.

2. Respect The Local Muslim Culture.

Since most of the people in Zanzibar are Muslim, a conservative dress code is recommended. It doesn't have to be a Hijab or something that completely covers you, but very short shorts, skirts or dresses should be left for closed resorts where everyone is used to it. In principle, cover from your shoulders to your knees.

As it is your duty to respect the culture and sensitivity of the local people, make sure you are modestly dressed especially in public areas. Tourists can be fined for having a dress code that goes against this.

3. Leave Your Passport At The Hotel.

Losing your passport in a foreign or unfamiliar place will definitely ruin your entire holiday. If you need to carry some documentation with you, make a photocopy of your passport and carry that with you.

You could also save the paper and ink and have a picture on your phone. This applies to any other important documents you will have with you.

4. Careful With Street Food.

Food is a great way to experience anyplace and street food is the best way to experience life with the locals. If you have a sensitive stomach or some allergies, you should steer clear of much of the street food offerings.

5. Check With Your Doctor.

While yellow fever is no longer a strict requirement for much of East Africa, malaria is very much present. Before you get any anti-malaria medicines, ask your doctor to advise you. The same advice goes for your regular medication and doses.

6. Don't walk alone at night

Like many places all around the world, it is advisable that you avoid walking alone at night. This is because you might end up in a sketchy place or situation, with little help.

If you enjoy the nightlife, make sure to go with friends or your guide. As the saying goes, there is safety in numbers.

Final Thoughts

As earlier stated, safety is not something where the answer is absolute. Things can always change on a daily basis - for better or for worse.

The situation at the time of your travel is what determines your level of safety. Your chosen hotel or travel operator is a direct and important source of information especially as your trip draws closer.

Our criteria for choosing partners - such as tour operators and accommodation is based on a demonstrated high level of respect for ALL people and the environment. We do this, such that we can give you the best personally-vetted options in any place. You can always reach out to us for these recommendations.

Related articles

  • Best time to visit Zanzibar
  • Top things to do in Zanzibar
  • Common questions about visiting Zanzibar

Image removed.

Quick Links

  • Safari Blog
  • Attractions
  • Destinations
  • Privacy Policy

Top Destinations

Safari partner.

Our single most enduring value is RESPECT , for all people and all nature - without exception.

Respect - in its widest and deepest form.

e-mail: [email protected]

Copyright © 2023. All rights reserved for Safari Partner.

Enduring Values.

Our Soulful Travels

Is Zanzibar Safe To Visit in 2024? (What to Know Before You Go)

Sharing is caring!

Last Updated on: 23rd October 2023, 03:34 pm

Is Zanzibar safe?

That’s a question we get asked all the time!

Zanzibar is just a short 4-hour flight from South Africa, so it’s a destination we return to over and over again.

Visit it once and you’ll want to keep returning to the Spice Island too…

Therefore, we feel confident that we can answer the question, “Is Zanzibar safe to visit?”

If you’re planning a trip to this idyllic island in East Africa, safety should be a top priority.

In this guide, we’ll provide you with important information and tips to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience in Zanzibar.

Key Takeaways:

  • Zanzibar is a safe destination but travelers should exercise caution in certain areas.
  • Crime rates are generally low but petty theft can occur, especially in tourist areas.
  • Travelers should take general safety precautions and be respectful of local customs and culture.
  • It’s important to understand the weather patterns and environmental conditions that can impact safety.
  • Health and hygiene considerations should also be taken into account when traveling to Zanzibar.

Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase from one of them I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you, which allows me to keep this blog up and running!

is Zanzibar safe?

Is Zanzibar Safe?

Understanding the safety situation in zanzibar.

When it comes to safety concerns, Zanzibar has a mixed reputation.

So, is Zanzibar safe for tourists to visit?

While the vast majority of visitors enjoy a safe and incident-free trip, there have been reports of petty crime and opportunistic theft. It’s essential to exercise common sense and caution during your visit to the island.

Zanzibar’s crime rate is generally low, and violent crime is rare.

That’s why important to take precautions while in crowded areas and avoid carrying large amounts of cash or valuables in public. Pickpocketing and bag-snatching can occur in busy tourist areas, so it’s best to keep an eye on your belongings at all times.

As with any travel destination, it’s crucial to keep up-to-date with the latest safety information and advice. It’s recommended to check your government’s travel advisory website before embarking on your trip to Zanzibar.

Plus, you definitely need to purchase travel insurance before visiting Zanzibar! We recommend SafetyWing !

It’s worth noting that Zanzibar is a developing country with limited resources, and the police force can be overstretched. It’s crucial to take responsibility for your own safety and stay vigilant at all times.

There have been reports of safety concerns in certain areas of Zanzibar, such as Paje and Matemwe beaches, after dark. It’s recommended to exercise caution and avoid walking alone in the dark, especially on the beach.

Overall, Zanzibar is a relatively safe destination for tourists, with the majority of visitors experiencing a trouble-free stay. By taking sensible precautions and staying aware of your surroundings, you can ensure a safe and enjoyable trip to this beautiful island.

is Zanzibar safe?

Safety for Different Traveler Groups in Zanzibar

When it comes to traveling, safety is a top concern for many. Zanzibar, like any other destination, has its own unique safety considerations.

We want to provide you with a comprehensive guide to ensure you have a safe and enjoyable trip.

Is Zanzibar Safe for Tourists?

The short answer is yes.

Tourists visit Zanzibar every year, and the vast majority have a safe and trouble-free trip. However, it’s important to take necessary precautions and stay vigilant when exploring the island.

Is Zanzibar Safe for Families?

Zanzibar can be a great destination for families with children.

However, it’s best to research family-friendly accommodations and child-friendly activities before your trip. Make sure to supervise your children when swimming and be aware of any potential hazards when exploring the island.

Is Zanzibar Safe for Solo Female Travelers?

While Zanzibar is relatively safe for solo female travelers, it’s essential to take necessary precautions.

Dress modestly, avoid walking alone at night, and use a reputable taxi service when traveling.

Is Zanzibar Safe for Females?

Overall, Zanzibar is considered safe for females.

However, like any other destination, it’s important to remain aware of your surroundings and take necessary precautions to ensure your safety, such as avoiding walking alone at night.

is Zanzibar safe?

Is Zanzibar Safe for Americans?

Americans visit Zanzibar every year and have a safe and enjoyable trip.

However, like any other destination, it’s essential to remain vigilant and take necessary precautions to ensure your safety, such as being aware of your surroundings and avoiding walking alone at night.

Is Zanzibar Safe for Babies?

Zanzibar can be a great destination for families with babies.

However, it’s important to research family-friendly accommodations and infant-friendly activities before your trip. Be aware of the hot and humid weather and take necessary precautions to ensure your baby stays hydrated.

zanzibar safe to travel

These boutique hotels in Zanzibar are suitable (and safe) for all types of travelers!

Safety Tips for Traveling to Zanzibar

At our publication, we believe that safety should be a top priority for all travelers.

Here are some important safety tips to keep in mind when visiting Zanzibar:

  • Research your accommodation: We recommend booking your stay at reputable hotels and resorts with good reviews and security measures in place.
  • Avoid walking alone at night: Stick to well-lit and busy areas, and travel with a companion or group when possible.
  • Be aware of pickpockets: Keep a close eye on your belongings, especially in crowded areas, and use a money belt to keep your valuables safe.
  • Be cautious on the beaches: While the beaches in Zanzibar are beautiful, there have been reports of theft and harassment. Avoid leaving your belongings unattended and be cautious of strangers approaching you.
  • Stay aware of your surroundings: Zanzibar is a relatively safe destination, but it’s still important to be aware of your surroundings. Keep an eye on your belongings and avoid walking alone in the dark.
  • Take precautions with transportation: When using public transportation, make sure to choose reputable companies and vehicles that are in good condition. If you’re renting a car, ensure it has working seat belts and avoid driving at night.
  • Be mindful of cultural customs: Zanzibar is a Muslim-majority region, so it’s important to be respectful of local customs and dress appropriately. Women should cover their shoulders and legs, and men should wear long pants.
  • Drink bottled water: Tap water in Zanzibar is not always safe to drink, so stick to bottled water to avoid getting sick.
  • Carry hand sanitizer: To avoid getting sick from germs, carry hand sanitizer and make sure to use it before eating or touching your face.
  • Keep up with your vaccinations: Before traveling to Zanzibar, make sure you’re up-to-date on your routine vaccinations. It’s also recommended to get vaccinated against hepatitis A and typhoid.
  • Know the location of healthcare facilities: In case of an emergency, it’s important to know where the nearest healthcare facilities are located. The two main hospitals in Zanzibar are Mnazi Mmoja Hospital and Makunduchi Hospital.

By following these safety tips, you can help ensure a safe and enjoyable trip to Zanzibar.

Wondering whether you need to rent a car in Zanzibar to explore the island properly? Read our guide here !

zanzibar safe to travel

Zanzibar’s Position within Tanzania and East Africa

Located off the coast of Tanzania, Zanzibar is an archipelago consisting of two main islands and numerous smaller ones. While it has its own government and legislative body, it is considered to be a semi-autonomous region of Tanzania.

So, to answer the question, “Is Zanzibar a country?” the answer is no, but it does have a unique cultural identity and history.

When traveling to Zanzibar, it’s important to keep in mind its position within Tanzania and East Africa.

If you plan to visit other parts of Tanzania or East Africa, take into account the necessary travel arrangements. There are several flights and ferries available to take you to and from Zanzibar, making it accessible to travelers from all over the world.

Popular destinations such as the Serengeti National Park and the Ngorongoro Conservation Area are easily reachable from Zanzibar.

Although safety concerns exist around Tanzania, generally speaking, Zanzibar is considered a safe destination. However, it’s always important to take precautions and remain aware of your surroundings. When traveling to any foreign country, it’s a good idea to research the current political climate and any health or safety advisories before departing.

As is the case in many developing countries, poverty and its associated issues exist in Zanzibar, and visitors should be mindful of this. However, it’s important to remember that tourism plays an essential role in the local economy.

Your visit can contribute positively to the community by supporting local businesses and engaging in responsible tourism practices.

is Zanzibar safe?

Zanzibar’s Cultural and Religious Environment

One of the most fascinating aspects of Zanzibar is its cultural and religious diversity.

The majority of the population is Muslim, and Islam plays an important role in daily life. When visiting mosques or other religious sites, it’s important to dress modestly and remove your shoes before entering.

Alcohol consumption is generally accepted in tourist areas and at hotels , but it’s important to be respectful and avoid public intoxication. Outside of these areas, alcohol may not be widely available or may be prohibited.

Overall, understanding and respecting the local culture will enhance your experience and help you navigate with ease.

is Zanzibar safe?

Weather and Environmental Safety in Zanzibar

When planning a trip to Zanzibar, it’s essential to consider the weather and environmental safety conditions.

What’s the best time to visit Zanzibar? Read this guide to find out !

Zanzibar experiences a tropical climate, with a rainy season typically occurring from March to May and November to December. During this time, there may be heavy downpours, so it’s important to pack appropriate rain gear.

In addition to the weather, travelers should also be cautious when swimming in the ocean. While Zanzibar’s beaches are breathtakingly beautiful, there are some safety considerations to keep in mind.

Strong currents and tides can be dangerous, so it’s important to avoid swimming alone or in unguarded areas.

It’s also common for jellyfish to be present in the water during certain times of the year, so be aware of any posted warnings and avoid swimming during these times if possible.

By taking these precautions, you can help ensure a safe and enjoyable trip to this beautiful destination.

zanzibar safe to travel

Exploring Zanzibar’s Popular Tourist Destinations

Zanzibar is home to numerous tourist destinations, each offering a unique experience that makes it worth a visit. From its sandy beaches to its historical, cultural, and natural sites, tourists are guaranteed to find something that suits their interests.

A visit to Zanzibar is not complete without experiencing the enchanting Stone Town .

This historical town is a UNESCO World Heritage site and home to numerous landmarks, including the House of Wonders, the Old Fort, and the Palace Museum . Stone Town is known for its maze-like alleys, bustling markets, and architectural marvels that reflect its rich Swahili culture.

Want to take a walking tour of Stone Town? Find the best rated ones here !

It’s worth noting that while Stone Town is a popular tourist destination , visitors should always be cautious and aware of their surroundings as the town can be crowded and chaotic. Nevertheless, the town is generally safe to explore, and tourists can enjoy their time there by taking guided tours or exploring on their own.

Zanzibar’s Other Popular Tourist Destinations

Zanzibar is also home to other popular tourist spots, including the beautiful beaches of Nungwi and Kendwa, the Jozani Chwaka Bay National Park , and the Prison Island , home to giant tortoises. These destinations offer exciting activities such as snorkeling, diving, and wildlife viewing.

Like Stone Town , these destinations have safety measures in place, and tourists should always exercise caution and follow the rules and regulations to stay safe.

zanzibar safe to travel

Zanzibar Tourism Industry

Zanzibar’s tourism industry has been growing over the years, with more tourists visiting the island each year. The government has implemented safety measures and regulations to ensure the safety of tourists and their property.

Visitors are advised to choose reputable tour operators and hotels with good reviews and to be cautious when dealing with strangers.

The tourism industry has also greatly impacted the island’s economy, creating employment opportunities for locals and contributing to the island’s infrastructure development.

Visitors are encouraged to support the local economy by purchasing locally-made goods and services and respecting the local culture and customs.

Overall, Zanzibar’s tourism industry has much to offer, and with the right precautions and preparations, visitors can make the most of their time in this beautiful island destination.

zanzibar safe to travel

Safety Assessment: Is Zanzibar Safe for Tourists?

After exploring Zanzibar’s safety aspects, we can confidently say that it is a relatively safe destination for tourists. As with any trip, there are risks and safety concerns to consider, but by taking precautions and being aware of your surroundings, you can have a safe and enjoyable time in Zanzibar.

The Crime Situation in Zanzibar

While crime does happen in Zanzibar, it is mostly petty theft and opportunistic crimes. As a tourist, you may be targeted for theft, but by keeping your belongings close and being aware of your surroundings, you can minimize the risk. Additionally, the government and tourism industry have taken measures to improve safety and security for tourists, such as increased police presence and security measures at popular tourist sites.

To ensure a safe trip to Zanzibar, we recommend taking general safety precautions such as staying in well-lit areas at night and avoiding walking alone in isolated areas. When exploring the island, it’s best to use a reputable tour company and check with locals or your hotel staff for any safety tips in the area you’re visiting. It’s also important to be mindful of ocean safety, as strong currents and marine life can pose risks. Lastly, keep an eye on your health by drinking bottled water and practicing good hygiene.

Specific Safety Concerns for Different Traveler Groups

Zanzibar is generally safe for families, solo female travelers, and American tourists. However, it’s important to take additional precautions, such as ensuring children are supervised at all times and avoiding walking alone at night. Female travelers may also want to dress modestly and research cultural norms before traveling. Additionally, LGBTQ+ travelers may face discrimination and should be aware of local laws and customs.

is Zanzibar safe?

Is Zanzibar Safe FAQs

Is it safe to go to zanzibar right now.

Zanzibar is generally considered safe for tourists. However, it’s essential to check the latest travel advisories, local guidelines, and safety precautions, especially regarding health and security conditions, before planning your trip.

Is Zanzibar dangerous for tourists?

Zanzibar is a popular tourist destination and is generally safe for visitors. Like in any place, it’s important to exercise standard safety precautions such as safeguarding your belongings and being aware of your surroundings.

What to know before going to Zanzibar?

Before visiting Zanzibar, it’s important to research and plan your trip thoroughly. Understand the local culture, respect traditions, follow any health guidelines (like malaria prevention), and be prepared for the tropical climate.

Do I need malaria tablets for Zanzibar?

Malaria is prevalent in Zanzibar, so taking malaria prophylaxis is highly recommended. Consult your healthcare provider before your trip to determine the most suitable malaria-prevention medication for you.

Can you travel to Zanzibar when pregnant?

Travel during pregnancy should be discussed with your healthcare provider. Zanzibar has some health risks, so it’s essential to assess these in consultation with a medical professional.

Can babies travel to Zanzibar?

Yes, babies can travel to Zanzibar. However, ensure you take the necessary precautions to protect them from tropical diseases and the sun. Consult your pediatrician for specific recommendations.

Can I travel to Zanzibar unvaccinated?

While vaccinations aren’t typically required for entry into Zanzibar, it’s advisable to be up-to-date on routine vaccines and consider vaccinations or boosters for diseases like hepatitis A, typhoid, and yellow fever, depending on your travel history and activities.

What not to do in Zanzibar?

– Avoid public displays of affection, as these may be considered disrespectful in some areas. – Dress modestly, especially in more conservative areas and when visiting religious sites. – Do not engage in illegal drug activities, as drug use is strictly prohibited in Zanzibar. – Respect the local culture and traditions, including asking for permission before taking photos of people.

is Zanzibar safe?

So, Is Zanzibar Safe?

Overall, Zanzibar is a safe and beautiful destination for travelers. By taking general safety precautions, being aware of specific safety concerns for different traveler groups, and understanding the cultural and religious environment of the island, tourists can enjoy a memorable and safe trip.

Zanzibar Travel Planning Guide Do I need travel insurance for Zanzibar? YES — With basic coverage averaging just $5-10 USD per day, enjoy peace of mind with a plan from SafetyWing , one of the biggest names in travel insurance. Is it safe to rent a car in Zanzibar? Yes — Renting a car in Zanzibar is one of the best ways to explore the island and the safest way to get around! I always rent with Discover Cars , which checks both international companies and local Tanzanian companies, so you get the best rates. Will my phone work in Zanzibar? Maybe — It depends on your company, so check with your provider. If you don’t have free Tanzanian service, buy an Airalo eSim for local coverage. What’s the best way to book my Zanzibar accommodations? For Zanzibar hotels, Booking.com is usually the best site but you can also check TripAdvisor for a larger variety of local options. What’s the best site to buy Zanzibar flights? For finding cheap Zanzibar flights, I recommend using the WayAway App to search and find the best deals – plus you’ll get cashback on your purchases! ( Read more )

' src=

Luxury Family & Wellness Travel Writer

Hey there! I'm Daniella Schoeman - the founder of Our Soulful Travels. I'm a part time travel writer and full-time freelancer based in the gorgeous Garden Route of South Africa.

I've been traveling with my family since I was an infant and believe that a travel is part of my DNA. Now, I wander all around Africa and Europe with my husband and son. I'm on a mission to help parents discover the joys of traveling with their children without compromising on luxury.

I have a background (and postgraduate degree) in psychology and know the transformative healing power of travel. Therefore, my focus is on creating content around wellness travel that helps you improve your mental well-being.

I'm also a self-proclaimed luxury hotel addict and have partnered with hundreds of hotels/resorts around the world.

Similar Posts

A Local’s Guide to Taking a Fun New England Road Trip in the Spring (2024)

A Local’s Guide to Taking a Fun New England Road Trip in the Spring (2024)

Last Updated on: 9th September 2023, 03:44 pm One of the best ways to see the northeastern United States is by taking a New England road trip. The region is easily one of the most beautiful in the country, for its sweeping coastal vistas, quaint architecture, picturesque small towns, and heavyweight historical sites. The best…

Honest Air Mauritius Review: What it’s Really Like Flying with Air Mauritius (2024)

Honest Air Mauritius Review: What it’s Really Like Flying with Air Mauritius (2024)

Discover the truth in our Air Mauritius review as I share my personal experience flying with this island-bound airline. Get the inside scoop today!

Top 5 Wellness Retreats in South Africa (And Why You’ll Love Them)

Top 5 Wellness Retreats in South Africa (And Why You’ll Love Them)

Last Updated on: 9th September 2023, 01:53 pm Do you feel like you need a break from the stress and chaos of everyday life? Look no further than the wellness retreats in South Africa. These retreats offer a transformative experience that can help you rejuvenate and reconnect with yourself. South Africa is home to some…

9 Magical Christmas Markets to Visit Around the World (2023)

9 Magical Christmas Markets to Visit Around the World (2023)

Last Updated on: 9th September 2023, 03:34 pm It’s the most magical time of the year again and to make it even more special you may want to wander to one of these Christmas Markets. Many northern hemisphere destinations are blessed with snowy winters which create an enchanting landscape for the bright lights of Christmas…

10 Best Boutique Hotels in Zanzibar to Book in 2024

10 Best Boutique Hotels in Zanzibar to Book in 2024

Last Updated on: 9th September 2023, 01:42 pm Planning a trip to Zanzibar and need to find the right accommodation? You’ve landed on the right post! I’ve visited Zanzibar on multiple occasions and stayed in a wide variety of accommodations. But the boutique hotels in Zanzibar are my favorite, by far! If you’re planning a…

Hotel White Lisboa: Honest Hotel Review (2024)

Hotel White Lisboa: Honest Hotel Review (2024)

Last Updated on: 29th September 2023, 05:56 pm Earlier this year we spent 3 weeks traveling through Portugal to see more of this beautiful country. Our adventure started upon arrival in Lisbon after 16 hours of travel, so we were quite tired. Luckily for us, our first night in the country was spent in luxury…

Privacy Overview

Where Tiana Travels

What NOT to Do in Zanzibar (14 Mistakes to Avoid)

By: Author Tiana Thompson

Posted on Last updated: November 16, 2023

Categories Africa , Tanzania

Home » What NOT to Do in Zanzibar (14 Mistakes to Avoid)

  • 187 Share on Twitter
  • 289 Share on Facebook
  • 644 Share on Pinterest
  • 228 Share on LinkedIn
  • 480 Share on Email

Zanzibar is a stunning island located in the Indian Ocean, off the coast of Tanzania . It’s well known for its stunning beaches, turquoise oceans, and lush rainforests.

zanzibar tanzania

I recently had the pleasure of visiting this beautiful island destination, and am currently planning my next trip to Zanzibar for early next year. It got me thinking about some of the things I wish I knew before visiting for the first time that could be important to know for newcomers planning a visit here.

Read on as we dive into a few of the things you’ll wanna make sure to do – or not do – when traveling to Zanzibar.

⚡ Related read: Where to stay in Zanzibar (2023): Best Areas & Hotels

zanzibar packing checklist

This free packing checklist is designed to guide travelers preparing for a trip to Zanzibar, Tanzania.

It provides detailed suggestions across a range of categories such as accessories, documents, clothing and shoes, toiletries, electronics, and more, offering a comprehensive overview of the essentials.

By using this checklist, you'll be well-equipped for a memorable and hassle-free journey to this beautiful East African destination!

Check out my Zanzibar vlog on my YouTube channel!

14 Mistakes to Avoid Making in Zanzibar

1. don’t wear revealing clothing.

Though there are tons of fun and adventurous things to do while in Zanzibar – dressing skimpy isn’t one of them. Zanzibar is in a conservative Muslim country, and it’s important to dress modestly when out and about. Leave the miniskirts and tank tops at home, and opt for something a little more covered up.

In fact, tourists can actually be fined for not dressing appropriately, so it’s best to err on the side of caution.

It’s best to wear loose-fitting clothing items that covers your chest, stomach, and legs. Try to avoid clothing that is see-through or too tight.

Here are some clothing recommendations for both women and men that are suitable for your trip to Zanzibar.

Clothing recommendations for women

Loose-Fitting Maxi Dress

zanzibar safe to travel

A maxi dress with sleeves is a great option for women, as it covers both the chest and legs. The AUSELILY Women’s Short Sleeve Maxi Dresses is a comfortable and stylish choice.

Lightweight Short or Long-Sleeve Shirt

zanzibar safe to travel

A breathable, short-sleeve shirt can be paired with pants or a long skirt. The AUTOMET Women’s Long Sleeve Basic Tee is available in multiple colors and is available as a short-sleeve or a long-sleeve option.

Flowy Wide Leg Pants

zanzibar safe to travel

These Casual Loose Wide Leg Pants are comfortable, stylish, and provide ample coverage for your legs. They also have multiple colors to choose from!

zanzibar safe to travel

A Fold-Over Flare Long Maxi Skirt is a versatile option that can be dressed up or down and offers plenty of coverage. They come in both patterns and basic plain colors.

Clothing recommendations for men

Long-Sleeve Button-Down Shirt

zanzibar safe to travel

A Men’s Long-Sleeve Chambray Shirt is lightweight, breathable, and offers sun protection.

Linen Pants

zanzibar safe to travel

Stay cool and comfortable with these Men’s Drawstring Linen-Blend Pant , which provide coverage while keeping you cool in the Zanzibar heat.

Short Sleeve Henley Shirt

zanzibar safe to travel

The Men’s Regular-Fit Short-Sleeve Henley Shirt is a modest, casual option for everyday wear. It comes in a few different color options and is lightweight and breathable.

Lightweight Cargo Pants

zanzibar safe to travel

These Men’s Lightweight Cargo Pants are a great option for men who want to stay comfortable and modest while exploring Zanzibar.

Remember, the key is to choose loose-fitting, modest clothing items that cover your chest, stomach, and legs.

2. Don’t drink the tap water

The tap water in Zanzibar is not safe to drink due to the risk of waterborne diseases and contaminants. To ensure you stay healthy during your trip, it’s essential to drink only bottled water or use a reliable water purification method. You’ll find bottled water readily available in most places, but you might want to consider an eco-friendly alternative to reduce plastic waste.

When I traveled to Zanzibar, I brought along the LifeStraw Go Water Filter Bottle to ensure I always had access to clean, safe drinking water. This water bottle has a built-in filtration system that removes 99.9999% of waterborne bacteria and 99.9% of waterborne protozoan parasites.

zanzibar safe to travel

The LifeStraw Filter Bottle is easy to use: simply fill it with water from any source, and the filter will remove harmful contaminants as you drink through the straw.

It’s ideal for travelers who want to stay hydrated and healthy without relying on single-use plastic bottles! It’s an excellent investment for your health and safety and has the added benefit of being environmentally friendly.

I found it incredibly handy during my trip, and I highly recommend it to anyone traveling to Zanzibar or other destinations where tap water might not be safe to drink. It’s one of the essentials on my list of must-have travel accessories.

3. Don’t drink alcohol in excess

Zanzibar is a dry country, so there’s no need to bring any alcohol with you. And forget about trying to buy any while you’re there – it’s not sold in stores.

Of course, the same rules don’t apply if you’re staying in a resort in Zanzibar. There you will be able to buy alcoholic drinks, but it’s still best to drink in moderation.

⚡ Read more: Tanzania FAQ: Everything you need to know before visiting

Subscribe for travel tips, weekly roundups of new posts, and exclusive travel deals & discounts. No spam, I promise.

4. Don’t visit Stone Town on a weekend

Visiting Stone Town is an essential part of any trip to Zanzibar! This UNESCO World Heritage Site is steeped in history and culture.

But, it’s a maze of narrow alleyways and bustling markets and can be overwhelming for first-time visitors. I highly recommend joining a guided tour to make the most of your time in Stone Town.

During my trip to Zanzibar, I joined this group guided tour of Stone Town , and I’m so glad I did. Our local guide provided a wealth of knowledge about the island’s history and took us to some of the most significant sites, including Freddie Mercury’s childhood home, the Old Dispensary, and the Old Fort.

zanzibar safe to travel

The tour began with a hotel pickup before we set off on a walking tour through the winding streets of Stone Town. Our guide shared fascinating insights about the spice island’s history as we visited landmarks such as the Anglican Cathedral Church, the House of Wonders, and the Slave Chambers, where we learned about the island’s dark history of slavery.

Joining a guided tour of Stone Town was a fantastic decision that allowed me to fully appreciate the rich history and vibrant culture of this unique destination. I highly recommend the tour for anyone visiting Zanzibar!

Not only will you learn about the island’s history, but you’ll also have the opportunity to meet locals and discover hidden gems that you might miss otherwise.

5. Don’t forget your insect repellent

Mosquitoes are rife in Zanzibar, so it’s important to pack a good insect repellent.

You’ll find plenty of mosquito repellent for sale in Zanzibar, but it’s best to come prepared. Most hotels and resorts will have insect repellent available, but it’s always a good idea to have your own just in case.

I like the Bug Soother mosquito repellent spray . It’s DEET-free, environmentally-friendly, and comes in a travel size which is super convenient.

zanzibar safe to travel

It also has a nice lemongrass smell, and doesn’t smell weird like a lot of other popular mosquito repellent brands.

6. Don’t leave your belongings unguarded

Zanzibar is a safe place to travel, but it’s still important to be careful with your belongings. Don’t leave your bags or valuables unguarded, and always keep your passport and money on you.

There are plenty of safe places to stay in Zanzibar, so there’s no need to worry about your safety. Just use your common sense and you’ll be fine.

7. Don’t be afraid to get off the beaten path

Zanzibar is a beautiful island, and there’s plenty to see and do away from the main tourist areas. If you’re willing to explore, you’ll be rewarded with some amazing hidden gems.

I would recommend only doing this if you’re confident you can find your way around, as getting lost in the jungle can be a little daunting.

I also wouldn’t recommend this to a solo traveler in Zanzibar, as it’s always best to have someone with you just in case.

⚡ Related read: My Top Safety Tips for Solo Female Travelers

8. Don’t take pictures of people without their permission

It’s considered rude and disrespectful to take pictures of people without their permission and is something you should definitely not do in Zanzibar.

You may be intrigued by the many beautiful native people in their colorful cultural clothing, but it’s best to ask first before snapping a photo.

If you’re caught taking pictures of people without their permission, you may be asked to delete the photos or, in more extreme cases, to leave the country.

If you want to take a picture, always ask first.

9. Don’t swim at the beach after dark

The beaches in Zanzibar are beautiful, but it’s best not to swim at them after dark. There have been cases of people being robbed and attacked at night, so it’s best to be safe rather than sorry.

There are also not much (if any) light on the beach after dark, so it can be difficult to see where you’re going.

If you want to swim at the beach, try doing it during the day instead.

10. Don’t forget your sunscreen

Zanzibar is a hot and sunny place, and it’s easy to get sunburned.

Make sure to pack a good sunscreen, and apply it regularly while you’re there. You’ll be able to buy sunscreen in Zanzibar, but it’s always a good idea to have your own just in case.

I recommend the Banana Boat spray-on sunscreen because it’s easy to apply (and smells delicious).

zanzibar safe to travel

I went for SPF 100 just to be on the safe side, but you should be okay with any sunscreen that’s SPF 50 or above.

11. Don’t miss out on the food

Skipping out on the local food is a definite thing to not do in Zanzibar!

Zanzibar is known for its delicious food, so be sure to try as much as you can while you’re there. The best way to do this is to head to the markets and try the local food.

zanzibar safe to travel

You’ll find a variety of different foods in the markets, from seafood to curries to sweet desserts.

Some of the best local dishes you must try while in Tanzania are:

  • Mbausi (a spicy beef dish)
  • Pilau (a rice dish with meat or vegetables)
  • Mashua (a type of squash)
  • Samosas (fried pastry filled with meat or vegetables)
  • Mkate waMbaazi (flatbread made from millet flour)

Be sure to sample them all – you won’t be disappointed!

12. Don’t walk around alone at night

It’s not safe to do so, as there have been cases of people being mugged and attacked. If you’re out and about after dark, it’s best to stick with a group of people.

Zanzibar is known to be extremely dark at night, so it’s easy to lose your way and be a potential target for danger.

Knowing where is the best place to stay in Zanzibar is half the battle – Choose a hotel that’s in a good location and has a high safety rating and good reviews.

Or opt for one of the resort hotels on Zanzibar island – they tend to be very safe and secure and located outside of the hustle and bustle of the city center.

You can search through over 1,000 hotels, resorts, and vacation rentals in Zanzibar here 👇

If you’re traveling solo in Zanzibar, try to avoid walking around at night. It’s always better to be safe than sorry!

13. Don’t haggle excessively

Zanzibar is known for its lively markets, where you can buy all sorts of souvenirs to take home with you. However, it’s important to haggle for a good price – don’t be afraid to bargain.

Just remember not to haggle too much, as you may offend the seller.

Tanzania is also a poorer country, so remember to be respectful of people’s belongings and don’t expect them to give you things for free.

Haggling at markets is expected but be polite about it.

14. Don’t go to Zanzibar during the rainy season

It’s not only uncomfortable, but also potentially dangerous to travel to Zanzibar during the rainy season. The roads can be quite dangerous to drive on, and there’s a higher chance of getting sick from the mosquitoes.

If you’re able to, try to avoid traveling to Zanzibar during the months of April, May, and November.

⚡ Read more: When is the best time to go to Tanzania?

Overall, Zanzibar is a wonderful place to visit with plenty to offer tourists, and with a bit of common sense you’ll have a great time.

The best way to enjoy your trip to Zanzibar is to relax and go with the flow. Be prepared for things to be a little different than what you’re used to, but don’t let that stop you from enjoying everything the island has to offer.

Just remember to be respectful of the culture and people, always abide by the law, and to pack your sunscreen, insect repellent, and sense of adventure!

Pin this post!

Pin this post for later to help you plan for your Zanzibar trip.

zanzibar safe to travel

Hi, I’m Tiana – founder of and author here at Where Tiana Travels. I’m a 20-something with a love for all things travel, photography, and food. I have been living abroad for the past 5 years and solo traveling the globe in my free time. I created this blog to share my travel stories and inspire other women to go out and see the world.

  • 335 Share on Facebook
  • 17 Share on Twitter
  • 130 Share on Pinterest
  • 29 Share on LinkedIn
  • 158 Share on Email

Tuesday 20th of June 2023

Hello Tiana, Thank you for the great article. I just had 3 questions on the Stone Town Tour:

1. Why do you recommend NOT visiting Stone Town on a weekend? We are on a short trip to Zanzibar and hence wanted to visit Stone Town on a Sunday.

2. How much time will ideally be needed to cover all the places in Stone Town? Will 3 hours be enough?

3. My tour guide is including Stone Town + Prison Island + Spice Tour on a same day. Will it be too much to cover?

Kind Regards Nirupam Dubai

Tuesday 25th of July 2023

@Nirupam, please share your tour guide details

Tiana Thompson

Friday 30th of June 2023

Hi Nirupam! The only reason i suggest not visiting on Sunday is just because its SO crowded on weekends, as thats when the locals go to do their shopping for the week. Of course if you're only on a short trip and can only go on a Sunday, definitely do it! It's worth seeing, just be prepared for the crowds. :) 2. Three hours will be more than enough to see the highlights of Stonetown. 3. Prison Island and Stonetown can easily be done together with no problem. I did a full-day spice tour, which was great because it was a little bit outside of the city and we had time to shop and even make a Swahili meal after. It might be a bit much to do all three in one day, but if you're short on time I'd say to go for it to at least get to see a little bit of all three.

🇹🇿 11 Zinger Facts about Zanzibar - Fact City

Wednesday 3rd of May 2023

[…] Further reading: https://factcity.com/tag/Africa https://wikitravel.org/en/Zanzibar https://wheretianatravels.com/what-not-to-do-in-zanzibar/ […]

Feisal Kassim

Friday 7th of April 2023

I thoroughly enjoyed reading your article on "What Not to Do in Zanzibar". As someone who is planning a trip to Zanzibar in the near future, I found your tips and advice to be incredibly useful.

Your insights on respecting the local culture, being mindful of waste and environmental impact, and avoiding overly touristy areas resonated with me. It's so important to be a responsible traveler and make a positive impact on the places we visit.

I also appreciate your recommendations for alternative activities and experiences that showcase the authentic side of Zanzibar. From exploring the maze-like streets of Stone Town to visiting local markets and trying new foods, it's clear that there is so much to discover beyond the typical tourist hotspots.

Thank you for sharing your knowledge and expertise with your readers. Your passion for travel and commitment to responsible tourism are truly inspiring. I look forward to putting your advice into practice on my own Zanzibar adventure.

Boozy Brits’ ‘new Magaluf’ resort with skimpy outfit fines and ‘after dark’ risks - london24news.co.uk

Tuesday 4th of April 2023

[…] the white sandy beaches, sun and booze are calling your name, then travel blogger WhereTianaTravels warns there are some things not to […]

A Local's Guide to Visiting Dubai on A Budget | Where Tiana Travels

Friday 17th of February 2023

[…] What NOT to Do in Zanzibar: 14 Common Mistakes to Avoid […]

African Budget Safaris Logo

  • Client Reviews
  • Safari Blog
  • Send an Inquiry
  • Map of Africa
  • Contact Details
  • African Safari Cost
  • Travel Insurance
  • You are here 
  • The Budget Safari Blog
  • The Best of Zanzibar: 12…

Zanzibar travellers

The Best of Zanzibar: 12 of the Most Popular FAQs about Zanzibar Travel

Posted by Landia Davies on August 21 2023 in Beach Holidays & Getaways Enquire Now!

 Zanzibar is exotic, exciting, and mysterious. Adding Zanzibar to an East African safari is popular and easy to do. To help you plan your Zanzibar adventure, here are answers to 12 of the most frequently asked questions about travelling to Zanzibar on holiday. Get all the answers you need to plan your ultimate budget Zanzibar holiday.

For any other questions or more in-depth info talk to a travel expert who has been on an affordable Zanzibar holiday and knows the ropes.

Most Popular FAQs about Zanzibar Travel:

  • Is Zanzibar Safe for Travel?
  • When is the best time to go to Zanzibar?
  • How expensive is Zanzibar?
  • Is Zanzibar worth visiting?
  • How many days do you need in Zanzibar?
  • Do I need a visa for Zanzibar?
  • What vaccinations do I need for Zanzibar?
  • Which part of Zanzibar has the best beaches?
  • What's the best way to get to Zanzibar?
  • Should I take malaria tablets for Zanzibar?
  • What is the Zanzibar culture like?
  • Is Zanzibar good for honeymoons?

Nungwi beach, Zanzibar

1. Is Zanzibar Safe for Travel?

Yes, it is safe to travel to the Zanzibar Islands. This is one of the safest African destinations, even for solo female travellers.

The Zanzibar Archipelago is part of Tanzania, which is one of the most stable African countries. Tanzania is ranked as the most peaceful country in East Africa, in fact.

The local people are generally welcoming and laid-back. Thanks to the picture-perfect beaches, sunny weather, and rich culture Zanzibar is a popular tourist destination. Thus, it features all the necessary tourism infrastructure for a comfortable and safe holiday. Many international travellers enjoy their time on the islands so much that they return time and again.

Zanzibar holiday travel

With tourism comes opportunities for crimes to make a quick dollar by stealing your stuff. While Tanzania isn‘t as bad as some other African countries, it still pays to be alert and take steps to protect yourself and belongings as you would traveling anywhere else.

That said, the only annoyances you are likely to encounter in Zanzibar are the Papasi and Beach Boys. Particularly evident in tourist-dense areas around Nungwi and Kendwa, the Papasi sell tours, and push their wares, sometimes over-zealously. The best way to deal with these persistent salesmen is to firmly decline and not give them attention. If you feel harassed report the problem to your lodge or tour company so that they can assist. That said, within your resort and on private beaches, this will not be an issue.

6 Travel Safety Tips for Zanzibar:

  • Dress appropriately and respect Muslim cultural norms.
  • Don't take your valuables to the beach.
  • Lock your valuables in the hotel safe when you go out.
  • Don't walk around alone after dark.
  • Check with your lodge or trusted locals if there are any crime hotspots at the time of your travels. Certain beaches, like the stretch between Kendwa and Nungwi, are known as hotspots.
  • Stay alert in Stone Town to prevent falling prey to pick-pockets and bag snatchers.

How Safe is Zanzibar for Solo Female Travelers?

Zanzibar travel safety

When you start searching, the internet is full of solo travellers who have had a great time in Zanzibar. In Nina Zara's post 'Is Zanzibar Safe for Women Traveling Alone?' on Safari Junkie, she says:

if you stay in hotels with security and use common sense, the chances are very low to have a bad experience as a solo female traveler on Zanzibar.

Is it safe to swim in the sea in Zanzibar?

Yes, Zanzibar is very safe for swimming. The Indian Ocean is warm and the waves tend to be small. Zanzibar is a popular destination for snorkelling and scuba diving.

Zanzibar snorkelling

Conditions do vary from beach to beach and season to season, but overall many of Zanzibar's beaches are ideal for swimming. Depending on the tides, there can sometimes be seaweed in the water, particularly along the East Coast. You may also encounter sea urchins in the rocky shallows (especially at low tide). Watch where you walk and wear booties (diving boots) to protect your feet against the coral.

Are there sharks in Zanzibar?

There are reef sharks in Zanzibar which are harmless. Then at Mafia Island, you can swim with whale sharks. These sharks are endangered and safe to swim and dive with. Lastly, great white sharks are occasionally spotted in the deep waters but there have been no shark attacks recorded in Zanzibar.

Is Stone Town safe at night?

Erring on the side of caution, the answer is no. Muggings and robberies do happen, especially in dark alleys at night. So, don't walk around by yourself at night.

Only take registered taxis or taxis recommended by trusted locals, your hotel or B&B, and friends. Alternatively, you can arrange an escort, to walk with you, at some hotels and restaurants.

Stone Town travel safety

The same rules apply in most major cities across the globe. Don't wear flashy jewellery, or keep your valuables on you. Keep your wits about you and don't divulge where you are staying freely. During the day you should be fine walking around on your own, but keep your eyes open.

2. When is the best time to go to Zanzibar?

The best time to go to Zanzibar is from mid-winter to spring or in mid-summer (southern hemisphere timing). These are Zanzibar's dry seasons. The long dry season is over winter and spring and the short dry season is in mid-summer. 

Zanzibar island reef

Remember this is a tropical region which means the cooler temperatures of winter are still warm. So, you'll still enjoy pleasant beach weather.

What is the best month to visit Zanzibar?

June to September or October are the best months to visit Zanzibar Islands. This is when you're most likely to get clear blue skies and balmy temperatures. This is also the best Tanzania safari season, making it an ideal time for a bush and beach break. If you struggle with heat and humidity then the sunny winter-to-spring dry season is the best time to visit Zanzibar.

Zanzibar beach walk

Mid-December, January, and February are also ideal months to visit Zanzibar. These months fall in the short dry season which offers the best weather for sun-worshippers who like hot weather. During these months you're likely to experience clear skies, little if any rain, and high temperatures. In early December you may still get some rain, usually in the form of intermittent afternoon rain showers. By mid-December, the afternoon rain showers are less frequent but the holiday crowds haven't arrived yet. Thus mid-December is an excellent time for a summer holiday in Zanzibar, without the masses.

If you are planning your Zanzibar holiday for November to February then it is best to stay on the southwest coastlines, because the prevailing monsoons come from the northeast. For Zanzibar holidays during the southwest monsoon season (June to October) head to the northeast coastline.

Best time for scuba diving in Zanzibar

July to August and February to April are the best times to go scuba diving on Zanzibar Islands. April is, however, the rainiest month, so think twice about visiting then.

The worst time to go to the Zanzibar Islands

Avoid travelling to Zanzibar during the two rainy seasons–November and March to May. This is when NOT to visit Zanzibar.

The main rainy season is from mid-March to May. The rains usually peak in April, so avoid visiting this month. Also known as the long rains this season entails tropical downpours in the afternoons. These showers can be heavy on any of the islands in the Archipelago. The humidity is also high and the average temperatures climb to the mid-30°s Celsius.

Zanzibar rainy season

The short rains usually fall from November to early December and are less intense than the long rains. In the years when the short rains arrive on time, it dries up from mid-to-late December to February and then starts again in March.

What's Zanzibar's weather like?

The Zanzibar Archipelago is a tropical island destination. It is a sunny and warm place–perfect for beach holidays and outdoor activities.

Zanzibar local riding a bike

Temperatures vary with geographic location and altitude, but the islands are generally hot and sunny. Except of course in the monsoon seasons of March to May and November when it is windy and rainy.

3. How expensive is Zanzibar?

People often ask us if a Zanzibar holiday is expensive. The simple answer is no. You can definitely visit Zanzibar on a budget. Zanzibar has an excellent array of both accommodation and activities and as a result, it is possible to arrange any budget Zanzibar holiday.

Nungwi beach Zanzibar

International flights to Tanzania are likely to be the single biggest expense of a trip to the Zanzibar Islands. The best way to save money on your Zanzibar Island holiday is to keep an eye out for flight specials to Tanzania and even direct flight deals to Zanzibar, direct.

From Dar es Salaam on the mainland of Tanzania, you can then take the affordable ferry or fly to Stone Town on Zanzibar's main island, Unguja.

How much do Zanzibari holidays cost?

On a tight budget, you can spend as little as US$ 45 to US$ 50 per day on a Zanzibar holiday. That's a cost estimate based on simple, no-frills accommodation in shared dorms and basic beach huts, and meals at local eateries.

Travel blogger, Lauren, from Never Ending Footsteps spent an average of $51,53 US$ per day on her Zanzibar holiday in 2017. That excludes her return flights from London to Tanzania ($491) and Dar es Salaam to Stone Town ($80). Lauren's $51,53 daily budget included local transport, food, accommodation, travel insurance, a guidebook, and a total of $176 on activities/ entry fees at attractions. Some pretty impressive budgeting!

Stone Town streets, Zanzibar

On a less frugal budget plan for US$ 50 to US$ 100 per day. That's a more middle-of-the-road holiday budget at mid-range establishments. Based on Budget Your Trip data from actual travelers a one-week Zanzibar holiday for two people costs an average of US$ 748, about US$ 107 per day for two, which is around US$ 53 each.

Based on the daily average expenditure of previous visitors Zanzibar holiday expenses are as follows:

  • US$ 17 on meals per day
  • US$ 12 on local transport per day
  • US$ 51 on hotel accommodation per couple per night

Essentially "Zanzibar is one of those destinations that can fit into any budget!" as the seasoned traveler, Wandering Earl put it.

Is food expensive in Zanzibar?

No, you can eat cheaply in Zanzibar. On a tight budget, you can spend as little as about US$ 6 per day on meals. A mid-range estimate for daily food costs is US$ 17 per person. You will also need to budget for bottled water, around US$ 0.85 per day.

Stone Town market

You can buy cheap food at the fruit markets and small bakeries for breakfast and lunch.

For dinners visit the night market in Forodhani Gardens (Stone Town) to pick up fresh seafood at excellent prices. Darajani Market is another good dinner option for affordable meals.

Forodhani Gardens

According to Numbeo and Hiker's Bay, local beer will cost about US$ 2.40 (for a 0.5l draught), while an imported beer is around US$ 4.40, a cappuccino is US$ 2.40, and an inexpensive restaurant meal will cost around US$ 6.

4. Is Zanzibar worth visiting?

Of course, yes! Zanzibar is a bucket-list African destination for excellent reasons.

Zanzibar holiday trip

For an in-depth look at some of Zanzibar’s attractions here are 12 of the Best Reasons to visit Zanzibar Island.

Is Zanzibar a good beach holiday destination?

Yes, Zanzibar is a fantastic beach holiday destination. It is also an excellent value-for-money destination with lots of character and rich history. The culture is colourful and interesting. The old architecture is unique and the beaches are beautiful.

Stone Town World Heritage Site

Zanzibar also offers authentic experiences like spice tours and cooking classes, and unusual adventures like swimming with whale sharks, which make it an unforgettable island holiday spot.

5. How many days do you need in Zanzibar?

Seven days at the least. How long you need for a fulfilling Zanzibar holiday depends on what you want to do, but we recommend at least a week.

The Zanzibar Archipelago is surprisingly large and diverse. It consists of two main islands and numerous smaller islets, together covering an area of about 2,462 km² / 951 mi². The main island of Unguja is 85 km / 53 miles long and 39 km / 24 miles wide, covering about 1,464 km² / 565 mi². The second-largest island, Pemba is 67 km / 42 miles long and 22 km / 14 miles across. Across these islands, there is loads to do and see.

Spice plantation, Zanzibar Island

If all you have planned is to lie on the beach and relax, then a few days at a resort should suffice. However, to really get to know Zanzibar, there is an abundance of activities to suit all tastes. From spice plantation tours and cultural excursions, to island hopping eco-tours, diving in marine reserves, getting up close to endangered tortoises, as well as trips to forest reserves to spot rare colobus monkeys, Zanzibar is a treat to explore.

6. Do I need a visa for Zanzibar?

Zanzibar is a part of Tanzania, and thus the entry requirements and visas are the same for both destinations. US and UK citizens need tourist visas. These can be obtained on arrival in Tanzania but both the American and British governments encourage travellers to apply for an e-visa before travelling. The cost of a single-entry tourist visa is US$ 50 and US$ 100 for US citizens which gives them a 12-month multiple entry visa. The multiple-entry visa costs US$100.

European, Canadian, and Australian travellers all need tourist visas for Tanzania, also applicable to Zanzibar, while South African citizens do not need visas to visit Zanzibar Islands.

  • Zanzibar is a semi-autonomous part of the United Republic of Tanzania. Therefore, you do not need to obtain separate visas for mainland Tanzania and Zanzibar Islands.
  • When travelling to Zanzibar ensure that your passport is valid for at least six months from your date of departure from Zanzibar.
  • This information was accurate at the time of publishing, but visa requirements and costs are subject to change so please check the Tanzania Immigration website for the latest visa information, or check with your local travel agent.

7. Do I need vaccinations for Zanzibar, and which shots are recommended?

Yes, certain vaccinations are recommended for Tanzania and Zanzibar. The National Travel Health Network and Center (NaTHNaC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) recommend the following vaccinations for Tanzania and Zanzibar:

  • hepatitis (A and B)
  • yellow fever*

*Proof of a yellow fever vaccination is required if you are travelling from a country where yellow fever is present.

In addition to this, while Zanzibar is not a high-risk malaria destination, Tanzania is. Therefore, if you are combining a Tanzania safari with a Zanzibar beach break, it is recommended that you have malaria prophylactics which are both accessible and effective.

These are the recommended shots for travel to Zanzibar, but they are only general guidelines. We strongly advise that you consult with a travel clinic or your doctor when planning your holiday to Zanzibar to ensure that you get the shots that you need.

8. Which part of Zanzibar has the best beaches?

When planning Zanzibar holidays people often ask what part of Zanzibar is best to visit. What they really want to know is where the best Zanzibar beaches are...

Kendwa Beach, Zanzibar

The beaches along the northeastern coast of Zanzibar Island (Unguja) are the best for swimming, and diving, and easy to access. They are, however, the most popular Zanzibar beaches with the highest concentration of resorts, people, and tourist trappings.

Two of the finest beaches are in the far north of Unguja Island, Nungwi and Kendwa. The coastline in this area boasts powdery white sand and clear azure waters. There are also plenty of accommodation options here, especially in and around Nungwi.

Nungwi beach accommodation

The coral reef that shelters the east coast of Unguja from the open ocean, makes it ideal for swimming. The waves are gentle, the water clear and the tidal fluctuations less dramatic than on the south and west coasts. The reef is also ideal for snorkelling and scuba diving.

Pongwe Beach is very protected by an offshore reef making it arguably the best swimming spot around.

Pongwe Beach Head

For a more remote and deserted beach experience in Zanzibar, head south. Bwejuu and Paje are two of the best beaches on the southeast coast and Kizimkazi Beach, known for its dolphins, is an authentic spot on the southwest coast.

9. What's the best way to get to Zanzibar?

There are two ways to get to the tropical islands of Zanzibar–by ferry or plane.

You can fly to the main island of Unguja (often referred to as Zanzibar Island) and to Pemba Island. Most of the flights to Zanzibar are from Dar es Salaam, on the coast of Tanzania, to Stone Town on Unguja. It's a short 15-minute flight. There are also direct flights from the Seronera Valley in the Serengeti.

There are also a handful of international flights from destinations outside of Tanzania, including Doha, Nairobi, and Johannesburg. If you're travelling from the UK, Europe or the USA your best option is to fly to Dar es Salaam or Nairobi in Kenya. These cities are the two major travel hubs of East Africa, with many international flight routes. From Dar es Salaam or Nairobi, there are regular flights to Zanzibar.

Ferry terminal in Stone Town, Zanzibar

The cheapest way to get to Zanzibar is to take a ferry from Dar es Salaam. But, you don't always save that much by taking a ferry instead of a cheap flight from Dar. It depends on the ferry (some of the more modern ferries are quite expensive) and the flight specials available for your travel dates.

10. Should I take malaria tablets for Zanzibar?

Not necessarily. Tanzania is a high-risk malaria destination and if you are on safari on the Tanzanian mainland, then yes, you need to get malaria medication. Zanzibar, as reported by the WHO in 2022, has a less than 1% prevalence of the disease. This means that technically, you do not need to take malaria medication when visiting Zanzibar.

However, many Zanzibar holidays include visiting iconic safari destinations like the Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater, and thus travellers need to be prepared and malaria prophylactics are recommended.

Ask your local travel clinic or doctor for advice on how to prevent contracting malaria while travelling in Tanzania. There are a number of effective anti-malaria prophylaxes to choose from these days. Some anti-malaria treatments need to be started before you travel so check in with a medical professional in advance.

Find out more in Malaria Made Simple .

11. What is the culture of Zanzibar like?

The Zanzibari people are descendants of Africa, Arabia, India, Persia, and the Comoros Islands. The main religion in Zanzibar is Islam. Over 90% of the population is Muslim with a small minority of Christians, Hindus, Jains, and Sikhs.

Zanzibar culture

Swahili and Arabic influences are evident throughout the islands, especially at the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Old Stone Town. The unique blend of African, Arabic and European historical influences has shaped Zanzibar's intriguing contemporary cultural and architectural landscape. Remnants of Zanzibar's sinister past, as the main slave-trading port in East Africa between the 17th and 19th Centuries, also remain.

Stone Town Slave Trading

Can I drink alcohol in Zanzibar?

Islam prohibits the consumption of alcohol for devotees, but as a visitor, yes, you can drink alcohol. It is important to be culturally sensitive in Zanzibar, be discreet, drink in the appropriate places, and respect the local Muslim culture. Having a few drinks is fine. Going overboard, and being drunk in public is not advisable as it can land you into trouble, it is better to moderate your intake.

Tourist and ex-pat restaurants, upmarket hotels, and resorts are all geared toward the tastes of travellers and serve alcohol. There are even a few bars and stores that sell booze. Always avoid drunken behaviour, don't carry alcohol around openly in public, and definitely do not drink in public places.

Can I wear shorts in Zanzibar?

Zanzibar’s dress code for tourists can be split into resort, beach, and hotel wear, and public attire. You can wear shorts at the beach and at your resort or hotel. It's acceptable to wear bikinis and swimwear at the beach.

Kendwa beach, Zanzibar

In other places, it is better to dress more conservatively. Shorts should preferably be loose-fitting, three-quarter pants that end below the knee. Ladies should avoid wearing short shorts in public.

Walking around shirtless is not culturally acceptable, even for blokes. For women, wearing mini-skirts and skimpy outfits is sure to cause offence. Be particularly mindful when visiting Stone Town and mosques, where your torso and shoulders need to be covered too.

12. Is Zanzibar good for honeymoons?

Yes, oh yes! Zanzibar is one of the world's best honeymoon destinations. The authentic charm and picture-perfect beaches of Zanzibar make it a very popular romantic getaway.

Zanzibar beach sunset

The combination of picturesque tropical beaches, sunny weather, and secluded resorts provide an ideal setting for lovebirds to relax and get away from it all. Add to that Zanzibar's laid-back atmosphere and friendly locals and you get the ideal honeymoon setting.

Part of the charm of this island paradise is that couples can choose to be as active or idle as they want. Hammocks, gentle walks, lazy swims, soothing massages, and sunset sundowners await, as do island hopping boat trips, snorkelling and diving excursions, spice tours, cultural experiences, and eco-adventures.

Zanzibar island boat

Zanzibar Holiday Packages & Travel Advice

These high-quality Zanzibar Holiday Packages offer excellent value for money:

5 Day Zanzibar Adventure Tour Package

6-Day Zanzibar Honeymoon Package

8-Day Zanzibar Holiday Package

View all of our Budget Zanzibar Tours and Safaris that visit Zanzibar, Tanzania, and other African destinations in combination.

Zanzibar island holiday

For help planning your Zanzibar Island holiday on a budget, contact African Budget Safaris . Our friendly travel experts are here to answer any and all of your questions.

We look forward to welcoming you to Africa one day soon!

Stone Town, Zanzibar Island, girls

If you liked this post, these trips cover similar ground…

  • 11 Day Tanzania Safari & Zanzibar Holiday Package
  • 4 Day Holiday to Zanzibar - Beach, Stone Town & Spice Tour
  • 4 Day Zanzibar Beach Resort Holiday Package
  • 8 Day Best of Zanzibar Holiday Package
  • 5 Day Zanzibar Holiday Package - Adventure Tour
  • 5 Day Zanzibar Vacation Package
  • 6 Day Zanzibar Honeymoon Package

About the Author

Landia davies wordsmith & sculptor.

Landia Davies

Places Mentioned in this Post

Map

1. Mafia Island, Tanzania

2. Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania

3. Pemba Island, Tanzania

4. 67WP+9QW, Kendwa, Tanzania

5. Kizimkazi Mkunguni, Tanzania

Similar & Related Blog Posts

Below you’ll find further reading and articles related or similar to this post.

12 of the Best Reasons to visit Zanzibar Island

Landia Davies | March 01 2017

Zanzibar Beach pic

Where to stay in Stone Town, Zanzibar? (the 24 best cheap hotels)

Landia Davies | April 29 2022

Kholle House Stone Town, Zanzibar

Malaria Made Simple: How to Stay Safe on African Safaris

Briony Chisholm | February 13 2015

Sign

Recommended Vaccines for Travel to Africa: Vaccinations for African Safari Trips

Briony Chisholm | November 12 2018

African elephants

A Tanzania Safari and Zanzibar Holiday - one of the best African trips!

Daniel De Lapelin Dumont | October 08 2015

Maasai beadwork

East African Safari Bucket List: Best Things to Do in East Africa

Briony Chisholm | May 07 2015

Gorillas, Rwanda

What are the Benefits of Low Season Safaris in East Africa?

Landia Davies | September 04 2018

Migration in June

Handy Hints for Your African Honeymoon

Briony Chisholm | April 26 2018

Kissing giraffe

20 of the Best Beaches in Africa - Ultimate African Beach Bucket List

Katherine Murphy | October 11 2016

Hole in the Wall, South African Wild Coast

The Best Beaches to visit on African Safaris

Landia Davies | August 01 2012

Zanzibar beach

10 Best Things to Do in Zanzibar: the Top Zanzibar Island Activities

Stephanie Parker | February 03 2023

Paje Beach, Zanzibar Island

Private Group?

A private, tailor-made safari is within your reach. Experience all of your bucket-list safari related items on a budget now.

Johnny Africa

The Ultimate Zanzibar Travel Guide: Everything You Need To Know

Johnny

12 Comments

  • Last Updated On: September 10, 2023

Zanzibar has a very rich history and was once one of the most important areas in East Africa. Following Vasco de Gama’s visit in 1499, Zanzibar was ruled by the Portuguese and remained this way for almost two centuries.

Zawadi hotel luxury

Nowadays, it’s one of the most popular beach destinations in Africa and with good reasons. Zanzibar’s coastline offers some of the best beaches in the world, but sand and surf vary depending on what side of the island you’re on. On the east coast, waves break over coral reefs and sand bars offshore, and low tide reveals small pools of starfish, small minnows, and anemones. Up north, ocean swimming is much less susceptible to the tides, and smooth beaches and white sand make for dazzling days in the sun.

nungwi zanzibar

I spent numerous months traveling around Zanzibar as you can read in my detailed cost of living breakdown of Zanzibar . I stayed in numerous areas all over the island, really allowing me to get a feel of the place. This guide will serve to give an overview of all the things you need to know about traveling here!

Please enable JavaScript

How to get to Zanzibar

Zanzibar is easily accessible from the world now. It’s built itself as the premier beach destination in East Africa and it’s accessibility proves it. It’s not as upscale as the Seychelles and positions itself as a place both budget and luxury travelers can visit.

Zanzibar island is well connected by international flights around the world. Qatar flies direct from Doha allowing travelers from Europe and America to easily visit. In addition, Ethiopian Airlines has directs flights from Addis Ababa to Zanzibar allowing for easy international connections. Flights are getting cheaper by the day and it’s easy to use miles nowadays to book trips to Zanzibar. 

From Tanzania, you can quickly reach Zanzibar by air from popular places like Kilimanjaro and Arusha. If you’re staying deep in the Serengeti like Seronera, you can take direct flights to Zanzibar.

Take the ferry to Zanzibar

If you are traveling through Tanzania and on a tight budget (or just want to take a ferry on the high seas), there are regular ferry services from Dar Es Salaam to Zanzibar. This is a popular way to get to the island as it’s fast and cheaper than a flight. While flights will be roughly $60-80 one way, the ferry is half the cost.

From Dar Es Salaam’s main port, there are four ferries a day making this trip. The ferries are mostly newer with plenty of outdoor space allowing you to stretch out and enjoy the views. They seem to make new ferries every few years and on my recent trip in 2020, the ferry took 1h 45min to make the trip from Dar to Stone Town .

When you purchase your ticket in Dar Es Salaam, just make sure to reject the swarms of people that will offer to take your bag to the ferry. This is unnecessary and although they’re trying to make a living, you don’t need anyone to take your bags. The ferry terminal is pretty standard with a waiting room that you can absolutely get to yourself.

Entry Visas

As Zanzibar is part of Tanzania, it is subject to the same visa and entry requirements of the mainland. For most Western travelers, you will need a visa to enter Zanzibar/Tanzania.

The entry visa can be:

  • Purchased on arrival at the airport. The cost of this is $50 for every nationality besides the US which is $100.
  • Purchased online as an e-visa before arrival

In recent years, you can even pay for the visas by using a credit card ! No need to pay using USD cash anymore.

When to visit Zanzibar – best time of year

Zanzibar enjoys warm weather year round. The sun is strong and all your tropical beach dreams will be fulfilled here. Nevertheless, there are some times that are better than others. Here is a breakdown of the seasons in Zanzibar.

zanzibar safe to travel

High Season: June to October

Right after the stormy season, starting from June is when the high season begins. This time of year sees cooler temperatures but almost no rainfall. It’s popular as many people will visit the Serengeti during this time to witness the Great Migration and come to Zanzibar for beach time afterwards.

Second High Season: Dec to Feb

December to February is the next high season. The temperatures are much warmer during these months and there’s a general low amount of rainfall. This is also the high season for winds which makes places like Paje extremely popular for kitesurfers.

Rainy Season: Mar to May

The big rainy season in Zanzibar is between March and May. During this time, lots of the resorts close down as you can see torrential downpours for weeks on end. Many of the people I spoke with said this time of year sees almost no tourists but it’s a welcome reprieve from the unbearable heat in the months prior.

November is the “small rainy season” where you can see spotty rain showers at various points of the day. I actually spent a month in Zanzibar during this month and did not find it bad at all. Sure there were some days where it rained, but for the most part, it was sunny and beautiful throughout my trip.

Different areas of Zanzibar

Zanzibar is a huge island. From north to south it is over 200km and 100km from east to west. It’s unlikely you’ll be able to explore the whole island on a trip if you have anything under a month.

If you’re visiting just to go to a resort for a week or less, it’s likely you’ll stay in one area and never leave that part of Zanzibar. Having spent over a month on the island, I was able to explore most of the island without much effort.

For the most part, Zanzibar is beautiful all around. You will find beautiful beaches, stunning properties and picturesque ocean views everywhere.

The capital of Zanzibar is where everyone will start off. Whether you fly or take a ferry, you will stop in Stone Town. Whether you choose to spend a night or two in the vibrant capital is up to you. If you’re looking for beautiful tropical beaches, this is not the place.

emerson tea house

The town is worth a night or two in my opinion if you have the time on your trip.

Nungwi and Kendwa

Located in the far north, Nungwi and Kendwa have in my opinion the most beautiful beaches on the island. The tides are not so extreme and you don’t see the crazy amounts of seaweed and sea urchins that you will find elsewhere. Think of stunning blue beaches and white sand for as far as you can see.

Nungwi

Nungwi is also home to all the huge luxury resorts. If you’re keen for upscale all inclusive 5* resorts with beautiful beaches, Nungwi is your place. Resorts like the Riu, Zuri, and Gemma will satisfy all your desires. Nungwi gets very busy during the high season. In recent years, it’s become somewhat of the party spot. In addition to ultra luxury resorts, there are plenty of budget options here which has kind of turned it into the Phuket equivalent of East Africa.

Kendwa, the town just south of Nungwi is a great option if you want to enjoy the same beaches without the big crowds of people. Both options are prime for enjoying sunsets as the areas in the east, while beautiful, don’t enjoy such things!

Matemwe, Kiwengwa, Pongwe, and the northeast

Matemwe is an area in the northeast of Zanzibar. It’s roughly 1.5 hours from the Stone Town airport by car.

Zanzibar Sunrise at Bandas

Matemwe is known to be a chilled out beach side area with a collection of boutique hotels. Unlike Nungwi with its huge resorts, there are few standalone restaurants here and no huge hotels. It’s much more chilled, laid back, and offers beautiful views of the beach. Being on the east side, the beaches here have huge high and low tides.

During low tide, the beach extends 500m out to where the reef breaks. It’s fascinating watching the tides come in and out twice a day. I stayed at a beautiful Boutique resort called Zanzibar Sunrise at Bandas which had Makuti style bungalows right in front of the beach.

It’s also the launching point to visit the famous Mnemba Atoll which is the private island off the coast of Zanzibar. This beautiful island is home to a protected Marine park and is home to endless options for scuba diving/snorkeling.

Paje, Jambiani, Michamvi in the southeast

In the southeast of Zanzibar is another very popular area for tourists to stay. This part of Zanzibar has perhaps the best beaches outside of Nungwi. The tides are extremely dramatic but the beaches are mostly sand as opposed to corals and urchins in the north.

Mr. Kahawa Paje Zanzibar

Paje is the biggest town here and is the kitesurfing capital of Zanzibar. The winds blow east to west here almost the entire year. Nearby towns like Jambiani, Bwejuu, and Michamvi are also crowd favorites.

The most famous restaurant in Zanzibar, The Rock , is located in this peninsula. It’s well worth the visit if you decide to stay here!

the rock restaurant zanzibar

How to get around Zanzibar

Zanzibar being a huge island requires planning to get from place to place. If you’re only staying for a few days, it’s unlikely you’ll need to read up on this because you’ll likely just take a taxi to your resort and call it a day. Here are some general price ranges for taxis that I found from taking taxis all over the island.

Typical Dala dala in Zanzibar

Note that these are just broad estimates. Your ability to negotiate and the desperation of your cab driver on the day will dictate your fee. Alternatively, ask your accommodation what they can offer. If you are booking a hotel with a super fancy resort, expect to pay much more than if you’re staying at a more personalized guesthouse.

Stone Town to Matemwe: $30-40

Stone Town to Nungwi: $40-50

Stone Town to Paje: $30-$40

Stone Town to Kiwengwa: $30-$40

Nungwi to Paje: $50-60

Paje to Michamvi: $10-$15

Matemwe or Kiwengwa to Nungwi: $25-30

Budget traveling in Zanzibar

For those that aren’t keen on taxis, then know that Zanzibar is serviced primarily by dala dalas which are the local forms of transport. Think old school hippie style vans. These are common throughout Africa and are the preferred method to get around for those on budgets. Some dala dalas are just trucks with the trunk converted as seating.

This method will be significantly cheaper than taking a taxi and especially useful if you’re a solo traveler. For example, Stone Town to Paje or Stone Town to Nungwi is roughly $2. Of course, with cheaper prices, you can expect it to be much slower. I’d budget for at a dala dala to take 2x as long as a taxi given how often it must stop to pick up and drop off people.

Which areas do I like the most?

Having spent much time on this island, I’ve been able to visit most of the areas. For most tourists, it’s likely you’ll stay at one hotel and stay in that area for the duration of your stay.

It’s not so feasible to just rent a car in Stone Town and cruise around the island. I’ve heard of some people doing this, but the police road blocks on the island make it less than ideal. However, if you are stuck on where to concentrate your efforts, then hopefully this part will help.

Zanzibar dhow

If you want the most beautiful beaches

The best beaches in Zanzibar are in the Nungwi and Kendwa area in my opinion. Paje and the area in the southeast are also very beautiful.

Residence hotel Zanzibar

If you like the big 5* all inclusive resorts

If you are keen for the big luxury resorts with multiple pools, big dining areas, and fancy common areas, then I think Nungwi will be your best bet. The beaches are fantastic here but the all inclusive style resorts here are big and luxurious.

Riu Palace Zanzibar

Recommended Hotels

  • Riu Palace Nungwi All Inclusive
  • Zuri Zanzibar

If you like boutique hotels on the beach

If you fancy upscale or midscale boutique hotels with beautiful beach views and luxurious accommodations but with few people, then my favorite areas are Matemwe and the southeast. The area of Michamvi is the boutique hotel capital in my opinion. Bwejuu, Paje, Jambiani all have really nice hotels as well.

Boutique Hotel matlai

The beaches here are also very nice in this part of the island.

  • Zawadi Boutique Hotel (The Ultimate hotel)
  • Matlai Boutique Hotel
  • Zanzibar Sunrise at Bandas
  • Jua Retreat

If you want cheap accommodation

The beauty of Zanzibar is that it is quite developed for tourism and there are budget options in almost every part of the island. However, I’d say the cheapest places you can find accommodations are in Nungwi, Paje, and of course Stone Town.

budget hotel nungwi

  • MITI Beach bungalows
  • Villa Kiota
  • Baladin Hotel
  • Michamvi Spirit Lodge

How much do things cost in Zanzibar

Zanzibar is a big island and has been really developed for tourism in the past decade. Zanzibar offers a variety of accommodation options throughout its 2,500 square km of space.

Whether you’re a luxury honeymooner with an unlimited budget or a budget backpacker, there are options available for everyone.

Africa in general is an expensive area to travel around so right off the bat, I would temper your expectations if you’re a budget traveler with ideas of Southeast Asia or Central American prices. It is much more expensive here and you will not find delicious $1 pad Thai on the streets.

zanzibar safe to travel

There is not much a of a street food scene in Zanzibar that compares to that of Asia. For the most part, you’ll visit tourist centric restaurants run by locals or tourist centric restaurants run by foreigners. The price for a main dish of grilled calamari with rice will be around $6-$10.

There are some restaurants that are part of hotels and the more upscale that hotel is, you can expect to pay more. Local beers like Serengeti and Safari can be had for about $3 for a 500ml bottle and liquor based drinks are slightly more.

Faradhani Market Stone Town

Of course, local prices will be lower than this but you will need to find the local spots which are always away from the main beach area.

Zanzibar is an island through and through

Zanzibar is a beautifl tropical island and feels like it. The different areas of Zanzibar are all tourist focused and life mostly revolves around the hotels and resorts. This means, there isn’t much life outside of the beach and hotels surrounding them. The exception is of course in Stone Town which is a proper city.

Zanzibar is large in size but you won’t really travel much between the different towns. You can rent a scooter yes but there are so many police checkpoints that will probably force you to pay bribes that it isn’t a feasible option to travel around.

Zanzibar is very different than say Bali which is also an island with a village like vibe in places like Canggu and Pererenan but offers total first world amenities like trendy restaurants, bars, cafes, and the like. If you’re a digital nomad looking to spend extended time in one place, I would highly recommend Bali over Zanzibar . The infrastructure on Bali is much more developed and the cost of living in Bali is half of what it would be on Zanzibar.

The currency in Zanzibar

Zanzibar uses the Tanzania Shilling (TZS). For almost all tourist centric hotel, prices will be quoted to you in dollars to keep things simple. While you’re at the resort, costs of services and goods will also be in USD. If you stay in a more rustic guesthouse or backpackers spot, it’s more likely you’ll see prices in Shillings.

If you dine outside your resort at a local restaurant, you can expect to pay in shillings. In essence, locals mostly always use shillings so it’s good to have some Tanzanian cash on you.

Hotels mostly accept credit cards but expect to pay a surcharge of 4-5%. Restaurants and bars outside of a big resort are mostly on a cash basis.

ATM Fees are outrageous

One thing that really stood out to me was just how crazy the costs of using ATMs are. They must be some of the most expensive ATMs I’ve ever seen.

Having traveled in Zanzibar for over a month, I had to visit the ATMs numerous times because many things are done in cash. ATMs are extremely pricey, with fees ranging from $6-9 per use!

Even worse, the ATMs cap out at 400,000 shillings which is $180. This won’t get you very far if you need to pay hotel bills in cash! You will need to visit the ATM numerous times and pay that fee each time. If you do not have a no fee debit card like Charles Schwab (US readers only sadly), then you should look into bringing USD or EUR cash and exchanging them in Stone Town.

Diving and Snorkeling in Zanzibar

Zanzibar is a paradise for lovers of underwater life. I spent many days diving in Zanzibar so I have lots of advice to offer. Although Zanzibar doesn’t compare to the diving I did on the nearby islands of Mafia Island and Pemba Island , it will offer vacation goers with more than enough to satisfy.

Diving Paje Zanzibar

As Zanzibar is a huge island, there are numerous areas to scuba dive in. Depending on where you stay (refer to the sections above), it will likely dictate where you can dive. For example, if you are staying in Nungwi, it’s unlikely you’ll want to go scuba diving in the southeast area of Paje. The drive alone would be almost 2 hours each way.

Mnemba Atoll

The most popular place in Zanzibar to scuba dive and snorkel is without a doubt the Mnemba Atoll . Located in Zanzibar’s northeast, this is a stunning marine park with crystal blue waters and loads of underwater life. It’s incredibly popular and everyone staying in the area like Nungwi , Kiwengwa, or Matemwe will be able to visit this area for a day of underwater activities.

Mnemba Atoll

The diving here, while popular, is not that great. The corals have been bleached to hell and there’s a ridiculous amount of over tourism. It’s completely packed full of people on all days making it not so enjoyable.

Diving in the southeast area of Paje

I dove in the southeast with Rising Sun divers while staying at the beautiful Zawadi Resort . This area is by far the most beautiful diving in Zanzibar. It’s undiscovered and untouched by the other dive shops making it a much more enjoyable experience.

Activities in Zanzibar

As you’d expect, there is as an endless amount of things to do in Zanzibar. Once you’re tired of laying on the beach, you can choose to do a variety of different tours from all around the island. I can’t list all of them because I don’t know all of them.

Spice tour zanzibar

If you walk through Stone Town, you’ll find a huge list of activities that all the tour agents offer and the price is of course negotiable. While extremely popular, I would actually recommend a visit to one of the spice farms in Zanzibar . It seemed like a super touristy thing to do but I found it to be so educational and interesting, I did it twice!

Kitesurfing Paje

Other than that, here are a list of things that are popular to do in Zanzibar:

  • Mnemba Island visit
  • Dolphin Swim tour (this is an ethically terrible tour so don’t do it)
  • Prison Island tour
  • Safari blue day trip
  • Scuba Diving (all over the island)
  • Snorkeling (literally everywhere)
  • Jozani Forest to see the primates
  • A visit to the Rock restaurant
  • Kitesurfing in Paje
  • Low tide reef tour
  • Parasailing in Nungwi
  • Dhow cruises (literally everywhere) for sunset or day time

Get out of Zanzibar

Zanzibar has more than enough to keep you occupied for weeks. The island is huge and different areas will give you something different.

The Aiyana Pemba luxury hotel

However, surrounding Zanzibar is a sea of other options. Outside of the standard safari options like the Serengeti , the Selous, Ngorongoro crater etc, there are nearby islands that are worth visiting.

Mafia Island

If you’re a scuba diver, then you will want to visit Mafia Island. While there are endless diving options in Zanzibar, they do not compare whatsoever to Mafia Island . This is perhaps the best diving in East Africa offering crazy amounts of fish life and beautiful corals.

Mange sandbank tanzania mafia island

Mafia Island is also much more rustic and lesser developed than Zanzibar. The beaches are more wild and you won’t any large resorts nearby. From Zanzibar, you will need to take a fligh tto Dar Es Salaam, and onwards to Mafia island.

Whale Sharks in mafia Island

Pemba Island

Of the three Tanzanian islands, Pemba Island is without a doubt the least visited. This is good for those that are looking for a breathtaking and undiscovered tropical paradise. Pemba’s natural beauty is unmatched in my opinion. The beaches here are incredible and devoid of the beachboys and crowds that are all over Zanzibar. The hotels like the Aiyana are absolute paradise.

pemba sandbank tanzania beach

The island itself still feels like it lives in the old ways and while driving around, you will feel like you’ve stepped back in time. The diving on Pemba is also spectacular although not quite as amazing as Mafia Island. However, if you want great diving and great beaches, then Pemba is your place.

Underwater villa manta resort pemba

There are only a handful of hotels on this big island so expect to pay more for your trip here. This is not a budget travel destination so plan for it that way.

Continue Reading:

  • Visiting Nungwi, Zanzibar: A Detailed Travel Guide
  • The Ultimate Travel and Kitesurfing Guide to Paje, Zanzibar
  • Visiting The Rock: Zanzibar’s Ultimate Restaurant With A View

Hotel Review For The Park Hyatt Zanzibar: Luxury In Stone Town

  • The Ultimate Guide To Diving & Snorkeling Mnemba Atoll, Zanzibar

Cost of Living in Zanzibar: How Much It Costs To Live In Paradise

Review of the matlai boutique hotel, zanzibar: paradise in michamvi.

  • Review of Zanzibar Sunrise Bandas: Matemwe’s Paradise Getaway
  • The Ultimate Travel Guide For Stone Town, Zanzibar

Aiyana Hotel Review: Pure Luxury In Pemba Island

The ultimate pemba island travel and diving guide.

  • Guide To Traveling Vilanculos and the Bazaruto Archipelago, Mozambique

Share The Love!

Related posts.

Zanzibar Sunrise at Bandas digital nomad

Why Africa’s Great Wildebeest Migration Is A Must

Park Hyatt Zanzibar

Leave a Reply Cancel Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 Yes, add me to your mailing list

Add Comment  *

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.

Post Comment

Thank you SO much for this blog! I am going for 2 weeks and my brain is spinning a little bit. I have my diving certification and deciding whether to stay in one area of which hotels halfway through, etc.

Hi Joslyn, glad you found it helpful! Enjoy Zanzibar, it’s realy amazing!

Awesome information here! Me and my family will travel to Zanzibar this December/January. We love snorkeling and while I have found loads of info on snorkeling the Mnemba Island online, there really isn´t much info beside that.

Is it possible snorkeling directly from the beaches in Zanzibar as opposed to taking boat trips all the time? In that case, which beach would you recommend for snorkeling directly from the beach?

We plan to split our time between Kendwa (heard that the reef isn´t that good but more for general hanging around and swimming) and some place on the eastern side. Is it possible for instance to walk all the way to the reef during low tide on the eastern beaches and just kind of jump in and start snorkeling?

We will be dividing our time between Zanzibar and Mafia Island so no biggies if beach snorkeling in Zanzibar isn´t worth it, but it sure would make for more fun beach days =)

Once again, thank´s for an awesome blog, you are a real inspiration!

Hi Mike, Zanzibar is a big place so it relaly just depends on where your hotel and resort is and if there is a good reef nearby. When I stayed at the Zawadi hotel there was a local reef that I could reach as the tides were rising and it was amazing. I would say that most places on the island don’t have an easily accessible reef nearby. Of course, you can always just pick up a snorkel and fins and try your luck but you’re likely not going to see much. But otherwise, save the diving for Mafia and relax while in Zanzibar!

Hey Johnny, thank´s for fast reply! Ok so follow up question (this should probably be posted in your section on Mafia Island instead but oh well). Same question but for Mafia Island, is it possible to snorkel directly from the beach, either in Kilindoni area or in Utende area, or do you need to take boat out every time? Especially in the marine park, it seems it would build up to a lot of money pretty fast together with the daily conservation fees.

Yes definitely in mafia can snorkel from the beach in the marinr park side !

At last what a great blog !!, bookmarked and taking this with me for referencing, just one point I might have missed how long can I stay without renewing my visa. I’m Just arranging flights hope to stay from December until April. Once agian well done much appriated

Hi Jonathan, glad you like the blog. The Tanzanian visa is good for 90 days and you can extend it inside the country for another 90 days for a total of 6 months. It’s quite easy to do and you just need to visit the immigration office in Nungwi or Stone Town. I’m not sure what the cost is but i wouldn’t be surprised if this changed from person to person.

Great Blog! We are looking to go to Zanzibar next Jan/Feb. We love snorkeling so wanted to ask you where the best place is to snorkel from the beach. I read it is possible to wait for low tide, then walk out to the reef edge to snorkel. I heard this was possible in the Kiwengna Mstemwe areas. Have you got any advice? I know we can do snorkel trips, but it would make it rather expensive to do those daily and we are on a budget. Thanks for any help!

Hi Judith, yes you can snorkel at low tide in matwmwe. Just watch out for the sea urchins! I never did it but my hotel informed me it was possible.

Thanks for sharing this amazing blog with us. I appreciate your efforts to write this blog in detail.

Thank you. Appreciate it.

Dangerous Zanzibar?

Want to go on safari or on the most beautiful beaches in Tanzania but you wonder if Zanzibar is dangerous? Indeed, you know that there are risks when traveling to Tanzania, but is this also the case for Zanzibar?

Safety of tourists on the island

So here is a guide (updated as of October 5, 2023) on the areas of Zanzibar to avoid and my advice for choosing the best place to stay.

Additionally, below you will find the map of Zanzibar to spot the places to avoid and the best areas to stay.

The sources for this article are diverse and very serious: Statistics, government recommendations, economic studies, international media, press articles.

Tanzania dangerous country?

5 or 6 years ago, the question about security in Tanzania did not arise. Indeed, Tanzania was not a dangerous country for tourists. But in recent years, Tanzania has changed with political tensions and the risk of terrorist attacks.

See the map below Numbeo.com which ranks cities on their crime index:

Tanzania and Zanzibar dangerous

Travelers visiting Tanzania are therefore recommended to exercise caution as there is a real threat of militant attacks, terrorism and kidnappings in some places.

Dangerous regions in Tanzania

As recommended in 2023 by Government of Canada , the United States and France, here are the regions where tourists should not go:

  • on the border with Mozambique,
  • in the Mtwara region (threat of militants attacks, terrorism and kidnappings).
  • border with Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo (Kinshasa),

Tourists are advised to be extremely careful throughout the territory and in particular Dar-Es-Salaam . See all areas formally discouraged  on the map published on France Diplomacy .

Is it dangerous to go to Zanzibar at the moment?

NO, currently, traveling to Zanzibar is not dangerous. L' island of Unguja called Zanzibar is not mentioned as a risk destination in the travel recommendations currently published by the French Government.

This is what you can see on the map below where the island of Zanzibar on the east coast of Tanzania is not on the way or in orange:

French government map indicating whether zanzibar is dangerous or not

Moreover, since the arrival of the Covid, Zanzibar has become one of the most popular seaside destinations in the world. Indeed, the borders having remained open to tourists, the magnificent beaches of this island off the Indian Ocean have filled up! You should know that tourism is the island's main economic resource, so everything is done to protect them!

According to forums, travel agencies and blogs, Zanzibar is not dangerous for tourists . Indeed, we often talk about theft or scams but it is the same thing on all tourist sites around the world! So OK to go but be careful…

«  Violent incidents are to be reported not only in Dar es Salaam but also in other cities (notably in Arusha and Zanzibar ), as well as in resorts in Zanzibar where tourists have been assaulted. Vigilance is therefore essential . » Extract from the latest recommendations of Diplomatie.belgium.be

Zanzibar dangerous in terms of crime?

To be able to assess whether Zanzibar is a dangerous place, I studied the Numbeo 2023 ranking .

However, on this site, in 2023 Zanzibar has an index of crime of 57.27 which is a high average. Indeed, if we compare with other cities around the world Zanzibar would be more dangerous than Las Vegas , Casablanca , Istanbul , Cancun ou Medellin .

In fact, the overall crime rate has been increasing in recent years but it is mainly non-violent crimes (theft, pickpockets, scams). Indeed, the rate of homicide and violent crime have decreased in recent years. According to the latest data, the homicide rate is 6 per 100 inhabitants, which is a moderate rate.

Furthermore, insecurity in Zanzibar presents a great geographical disparity. Apart from a few areas to avoid, the island is completely safe.

Below are some places to avoid in Zanzibar:

Dangerous Zanzibar – Places to avoid in Zanzibar

There are no truly dangerous areas in Zanzibar where tourists could risk their lives. However, there are places that are less suitable for tourists and therefore less safe.

This is the case of Stone Town , capital of Zanzibar, popular with tourists for its old town, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. But even if it is interesting to make a short visit there during the day, it is not the ideal place to choose your accommodation. Indeed, as in many poor cities, drugs wreak havoc and can lead to violence. See the article in Le Monde: “  Zanzibar: among the old junkies of Stone Town « 

Other places to avoid in Zanzibar, especially at night, are beaches or areas that are too isolated from tourist places, poorly lit or not very busy.

Map of Zanzibar

To better identify the best places to stay in Zanzibar , here is the map of the different regions of the main island:

Best place to stay in Zanzibar

All the coasts are beautiful around Zanzibar. Wherever you go, you will have beautiful beaches, white sand and turquoise waters. As a result, I will not detail here the characteristics of all the coasts of the Island. For more information on the most beautiful places on the island, see my article: Where to go in Zanzibar – Which coast to choose?

However, I will tell you where the 2 most legendary beaches : Porcupine et Kendwa . Indeed, these beaches are part of most beautiful beaches in the world on many rankings. They are located at the extreme north of Zanzibar (place where the tidal phenomenon is the least sensitive).

Most beautiful beach in Zanzibar

Otherwise, it's on the East Coast (less isolated and more lively) that I recommend you to stay because it is on this coast that there are the most paradisiacal beaches of Zanzibar.

Pongwe most beautiful beach in Zanzibar

Pongwe beach is reputed to be one of the most beautiful in Zanzibar. It is located on the East Coast from Zanzibar.

With secluded lagoons and idyllic beaches along the entire length of this stretch of coastline, this dream beach is home to some very beautiful 5 star hotels of Zanzibar including:

  • Tulia Zanzibar Unique Beach Resort
  • Tikitam Palms Boutique Hotel
  • Melia Zanzibar

recommended beach hotel far from dangerous areas of Zanzibar

Which hotel in Zanzibar?

If you are looking for an EXCEPTIONAL hotel on the most beautiful beach in Zanzibar, I recommend you The Island - Pongwe Lodge :

best place in Zanzibar

And for a nice hotel, well placed and cheap, here is a 5 star hotel in best quality price report that I had the chance to test: the Karafuu Beach Resort & Spa .

Find out below what this hotel looks like that I recommend for those looking for low prices:

Karafuu hotel picture

Similar publications

Honeymoon in the Philippines - Honeymoon Destination in December

Honeymoon in the Philippines - Perfect Honeymoon Destination

Visit Reunion Island by car in 1 week My itinerary and map of my circuit

Visit Reunion Island by car in 1 week - My itinerary + circuit map

Which island to visit in Guadeloupe: La Désirade for its beaches

Where to go in Guadeloupe - Best place for tourism and beaches

Swim with dolphins in Reunion Island best places

Swim with dolphins in Reunion

Leave comments cancel reply.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Nats Travel

Is Zanzibar Safe For Tourists? All you need to know before you go

Are you wondering whether zanzibar is safe for tourists.

After traveling to Zanzibar on my own as a female traveler and meeting a friend there, I can tell you that Zanzibar is a safe place for tourists to visit.

Based on my own experience while visiting Zanzibar, I would like to provide you with safety tips in Zanzibar in terms of crime, culture, natural disasters, swimming in the ocean, drinking tap water, and more so you are safe and enjoy your vacation.

As the owner of this website, I’ve included some recommendations for your trips. When you use the links to make a purchase, I may get a small commission. You will not get charged extra. Full disclosure .

When planning your trip, use my recommended travel resources ✈️Find the cheapest flights with WayAway flight aggregator 📷 Book tours with GetYourGuide or Viator 🏨 Find accommodation with Booking or Expedia 🛜Stay connected with Airalo eSIM 👩‍⚕️ Wherever you travel, bring insurance with you SafetyWings

Is Zanzibar Safe?

Zanzibar is a very popular tourist destination. This archipelago off the coast of Tanzania is renowned for its pristine beaches, crystal-clear turquoise waters, and rich cultural heritage. The government and local people try their best to keep it a safe place for all visitors.

Even though Zanzibar is a safe place, you have to know that traveling to Africa is different than traveling to Europe, so you need to be cautious and adapt to the local culture.

Crime in Zanzibar

As tourism is the main source of income for the country, crime in tourist areas is low, however, it does exist. When you are visiting Zanzibar or any African country, there is no need to bring expensive and flashy jewelry with you.

When going to the beach, do not take your passport, credit, and debit cards, cash, and other valuable things with you, and keep them in your hotel safe. Unless you are a group of people and someone can still watch the belongings. Never leave your belongings unattended on the beach as they can be stolen very easily.

When you are going out of your hotel for a tour, visiting different places or Stone Town, take a copy of your passport instead of your actual passport and some cash. When in Stone Town, take care of your bag, have it close to you, and keep valuable things in a smaller pocket inside the bag. Always make sure the bag is closed.

While you are shopping in Stone Town when the prices are not fixed, you should negotiate the price, just make sure you are not putting the price too low to offend the person.

If you want to go for a tour, always book through a reputable company online or through the hotel you are staying in. You will be approached by sellers on the beach or street trying to offer you a tour, so be nice and tell them you already have tours organized.

Never walk on the streets or the beach after dark. It is very dangerous. Not only because of thefts but also the sexual assault of women. Especially in the Stone Town.

For example, I arrived in Tanzania, Dar Es Salam at night and had to take a ferry to Zanzibar. However, there were no ferries at night, so instead of going to the port in the middle of the night, I waited at the airport, which was a safe place, and took a taxi in the morning to the port to take my ferry to Zanzibar.

I was glad I decided like this as in the port area there was nowhere to stay inside a building to be safe.

Religious and cultural customs

Zanzibar is a Muslim country, therefore people are more conservative. There are certain rules that you need to follow to respect the culture and religion and not get in trouble.

When you are on a beach and in your hotel resort, you can wear a bikini and clothes you like. However, when you go for a tour, visiting villages, Stone Town, make sure you are dressed more conservatively.

This means wearing anything up to your knees at least and covering your shoulders. It is illegal to dress unrespectfully while outside of your hotel resort.

Zanzibar being a Muslim country means, that it is also a dry country, so you will not be able to buy alcohol there in stores. Also, do not bring alcohol with you to the country. However, there is alcohol in your hotel resort where you can drink.

When it comes to drinking alcohol, make sure you are not going over the top and ending up on the streets lost as this is not only dangerous but can lead to trouble if police see you.

Otherwise, local people are very friendly, nice, and laid back and you can get into conversation with them easily. If you want to take a picture of anyone, just ask for their permission.

Natural disasters

There are no natural disasters in Zanzibar. The only thing that can happen is longer rain during the rainy season. Therefore it is better to avoid going during this time if you love sunny weather and want to enjoy the white sandy beaches.

Swimming in Zanzibar

Swimming in Zanzibar is very safe. Usually, there are no big waves, but it also depends on the season and the beach you are on.

Some beaches experience big differences in low and high tides, so, during the low tide, you may see some starfish or sea urchins. Therefore I recommend wearing shoes for water and taking care where you are stepping.

Zanzibar is also popular for snorkeling and scuba diving. Many people are worried about sharks in Zanzibar. I have never seen any, but I didn’t dive or snorkel there.

In any case, there are only reef sharks that can be spotted on reefs and great white sharks could be swimming in the deep waters. On Mafia Island, there are whale sharks which are safe to swim and dive with.

Therefore, Zanzibar is safe to swim when it comes to sharks.

Tap water in Zanzibar

Never, never drink tap water in Zanzibar. The water is not clean and can cause stomach issues. Always drink bottled water or bring a special water bottle with a filtration system.

When you are having a drink in a restaurant or a bar, rather ask for it without ice as you don’t know whether the ice is not made of tap water.

If you have a very sensitive stomach, you may be cautious with street food and fruits.

Malaria and Yellow Fever in Zanzibar

Unfortunately, there is Malaria present in Zanzibar. The good news is it is not as bad as in some other African countries, like Kenya for example. It is more dangerous during the rainy season, but during the dry season, mosquitoes are not so present.

I was told by the Italian owners of the hotel where I stayed who live in Zanzibar with their little daughter that they don’t even use any repellents.

In any case, bring mosquito spray with a strong repellent with you and use it if you are out early in the morning or later in the evening. 

There is no Yellow Fever in Zanzibar. However, if you are coming from a country where Yellow Fever is present, you must have a Yellow Fever vaccination.

Safety in Zanzibar for female travelers

Do you want to visit Zanzibar as a solo female traveler? No problem, Zanzibar is safe even for solo female travelers.

However, stay around your hotel resort and if you want to go for a tour, always book it with a reputable company or hotel where they will pick you up and drop you off in your hotel.

Safety in Zanzibar for LGBTQ

As a Muslim country, the law of Zanzibar does not support any other than heterosexual relationships. However, if you are not showing a public display of affection, you are completely fine.

By the way, the public display of affection is also not tolerated among heterosexual partners. Therefore do not kiss in public in Zanzibar.

Beach in Zanzibar

FAQs: Is Zanzibar Safe?

Do you still have some questions about Zanzibar? Check out these FAQs to get more information.

Is it safe to walk at night in Zanzibar?

No, it is not safe to walk at night in Zanzibar. As crime and sexual assaults are common in Zanzibar, it is better not to walk at night. If you have to go somewhere at night, take a taxi.

According to Numbeo , safety while walking during daylight is high, while walking at night is moderate.

Is Zanzibar expensive?

Yes, Zanzibar is quite an expensive destination. However, to lower your costs, choose less luxurious hotels, sometimes all-inclusive or half-board could be a better option as dining in the hotel can be costly. 

If you are coming to Zanzibar just to relax on the beach, it will not cost you so much as if you go on different tours. You can also connect Zanzibar with Tanzania, where you will save money on flights and use a ferry to come to Zanzibar from Dar Es Salam.

When is the best time to visit Zanzibar?

For your dreamy beach vacation, the best time to visit Zanzibar is during the long and short dry seasons. The long dry season is from June to October and the short dry season is January and February.

These times are also best for your safari in Tanzania therefore you can make both trips at the same time.  For more details, read my article here.

Conclusion: Is Zanzibar safe for tourists?

So, is Zanzibar safe for tourists? While no destination is entirely risk-free, Zanzibar is not a dangerous country and continues to attract travelers seeking a unique and unforgettable experience.

Zanzibar offers a wealth of attractions, from the picture-perfect beaches to the historical wonders of Stone Town and the aromatic spice farms. To make the most out of your trip to Zanzibar, stay informed, exercise caution, and follow my recommended safety practices.

By doing so, you can greatly minimize any potential risks and enjoy a memorable experience on this lovely island.

Nat is the owner and author of Nats Travel. She is in love with beach destinations, Africa, coffee, and chocolate. She loves to explore new places, countries, and cultures. Planning the next trip, searching for places to stay, and things to do, and reading reviews to have the best possible time. This is her passion.

Similar Posts

17 Best Hotels In Zanzibar (With Map!)

17 Best Hotels In Zanzibar (With Map!)

When is the rainy season in Zanzibar: Best time to visit

When is the rainy season in Zanzibar: Best time to visit

9 Best Surf Spots In Zanzibar

9 Best Surf Spots In Zanzibar

Is Zanzibar Worth Visiting? Things To Do & reasons to visit

Is Zanzibar Worth Visiting? Things To Do & reasons to visit

Leave a reply cancel reply.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

Tanzania Horizon

  • All National Parks in Tanzania
  • Which vehicles are used for safari?
  • What is the best time for safari?
  • What should be on my packing list?
  • When can I see the Great Migration?
  • How do accommodations on safari look like?
  • What are the visa requirements for Tanzania?

Ngorongoro Crater

Gombe stream.

  • How do I prepare for my hike?
  • How to choose the best route?
  • What is the best time to climb Kilimanjaro?
  • Where will I sleep on the mountain?
  • Kilimanjaro Gear List
  • How much do I tip my mountain team?
  • Lemosho Route

Marangu Route

  • Which vehicles are used for daytrips?
  • How does a schedule look like
  • Which things should I pack for a daytrip?
  • What are the costs for a daytrip?

Marangu Waterfalls

  • Gombe National Park

Arusha National Park

  • What is the best time to visit Zanzibar?
  • How to arrive in Zanzibar?

Where are the best beaches in Zanzibar?

  • What to pack for my Zanzibar vacation?
  • Best things to do in Zanzibar
  • Excursions & Activities in Zanzibar
  • How is the culture in Zanzibar?

Blue Safari

Sandbank picnic, jozani forest, stonetown tour.

  • Tanzania Safari Groups
  • Kilimanjaro Climbing Groups in Tanzania

Is Zanzibar safe for tourists?

Is Zanzibar safe for tourists?

Our tips for your safety:

  • Leave your valuables at your accommodation It is advisable to store your valuable items, such as jewelry, watches, bracelets, and your wallet, in the safety deposit box provided at your hotel or accommodation. As a tourist, you may be perceived as wealthier by the locals, so it is important to take precautions. It is recommended to only carry a small amount of cash with you when going for a walk, and avoid walking on the beach or empty streets at night.
  • Show respect for local traditions Zanzibar is mainly inhabited by people practicing Islam, and their dressing is conservative. If you plan to vacation in the region, it is advisable to dress modestly, especially when visiting remote areas. It is recommended that you cover your knees and shoulders and refrain from wearing short skirts and shorts. Public displays of affection are not commonly accepted.
  • Visiting religious institutions and historical sights It is advisable to be cautious when visiting religious sites, particularly in crowded areas and during religious demonstrations, especially on Fridays in and around Stone Town.
  • Enjoy the local cuisine, but safely! It is strongly advised to avoid drinking tap water in Zanzibar due to safety concerns. The majority of the drinking water is imported from the mainland. Additionally, it is recommended to exercise caution when consuming food and fruits sold on the streets, as these may not be suitable for those with a sensitive stomach.
  • Behavior in public Zanzibar is largely a Muslim community. Although locals are familiar with Western ways, tourists should always be respectful. This means not displaying too much public affection, making an effort to cover arms and legs and being discreet when consuming alcohol. This is especially relevant during Ramadan, the month of fasting when daytime eating and drinking should be done with respect. Keep in mind that as a traveler, you are also an ambassador of your own home country.

What do I need to know about crime in Zanzibar and street vendors?

Visitors should be mindful of their unfamiliar surroundings and stay alert at all times. In Zanzibar, many locals pose as tour guides for various activities such as historic tours in Stone Town or swimming with wild dolphins. These street vendors and so called “beach boys” can be persistent and pushy, so it’s important to politely inform them that arrangements have already been made. It’s best to book such activities through reputable tour operators or local hotels in Zanzibar.

  • Beach boys & beach vendors Keep in mind that many of them are trying to make a living from this as a result of lack of alternatives. They will try to approach you and tell you all kind of stories to get your attention. It is advisable not to respond and to not believe in their stories and not to follow them into unfamiliar places. 
  • Local Police If you’re wondering about the safety of Zanzibar, it’s worth noting that most police officers are generally friendly and willing to assist tourists during their visit. However, there have been incidents where tourists have been fined for minor offenses without receiving a formal ticket. If this happens to you, be sure to request a proper ticket, as this may result in the fine being waived.

General Safety Tips:

A few safety tips you might find useful while traveling to Zanzibar :

  • Keep your passport, jewelry, and other valuables in the hotel safe.
  • Stay alert for pickpockets and keep your money hidden.
  • Don’t carry large amounts of cash.
  • If you’re robbed, don’t resist.
  • Avoid walking alone at night and exercise caution in isolated areas and on beaches.
  • If you’re staying in a residential property, lock all doors and windows at night.
  • If police fine you for an infraction without providing a ticket, ask for one.
  • To avoid bag-snatching, keep your distance from the road and keep your bag close to you.
  • In case of an emergency, dial 112.
  • Gay travelers should be aware that homosexuality is considered illegal in Tanzania and public displays of affection can lead to arrest and imprisonment.

Safety travel tips for solo travelers in Tanzania and Zanzibar:

If you are a solo traveler, Zanzibar is generally considered to be a safe destination. However, it’s advisable to avoid drawing unwanted attention to yourself. 

  • Try to blend in and immerse yourself in the local culture as much as possible. 
  • It’s also recommended that you don’t go out alone at night and avoid drinking alcohol to prevent getting into trouble. While no place is completely free from danger, it’s important to be mindful of your behavior and surroundings when traveling alone. 
  • Seek advice from your accommodation and let them know where you plan to go, and ask them to arrange your transportation. 
  • Purchasing a local phone card and obtaining the phone numbers of local taxi and bajaji drivers can also be helpful in communicating with them directly for pickup.

Safety travel tips for female travelers in Tanzania and Zanzibar:

While Zanzibar is considered a safe destination for travelers, it’s essential to take extra precautions as a female solo traveler to ensure your safety. Below are some safety tips to keep in mind when traveling solo as a woman in Zanzibar:

  • Do your research: Familiarize yourself with the culture, customs, and laws of the area before you travel.
  • Stay in a safe area: Choose a hotel or guesthouse in a well-lit area and avoid staying in isolated areas or walking alone at night.
  • Dress modestly: Avoid wearing revealing clothing to avoid unwanted attention from locals.
  • Be aware of your surroundings: Trust your instincts and leave immediately if you feel uncomfortable in a certain area.
  • Avoid traveling alone at night: If you must, make sure you have a trusted companion with you.
  • Use cards instead of carrying large amounts of cash.
  • Stay connected: Keep a working mobile phone with you at all times to stay connected with family and friends and call for help if needed.
  • Use a reputable taxi service if you need to get somewhere.
  • Keep an eye on your drink: Never leave it unattended to prevent being drugged and robbed.
  • Stay in touch with your family and let them know your whereabouts to ensure your safety.

We hope that those tips will help you to fully enjoy your Zanzibar vacation. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you need any further information. We are happy to assist you.

Read more about Zanzibar

The best things to do in Zanzibar

The best things to do in Zanzibar

best roof top bars & restaurants in Stonetown

The best roof top bars & restaurants in Stonetown

Kilindi Zanzibar1

The best Honeymoon accommodations in Zanzibar

Best hotels in zanzibar

The best hotels in Zanzibar

Zanzibar Diving Special: Mnemba Island & Reef Best diving spots in Zanzibar

Exploring the Underwater Paradise: The best diving spots in Zanzibar

scuba diving tour preparation | tanzania horizon

Top 10 Hotels in Zanzibar for divers

Best Time of the Year to Visit Zanzibar Sunshine Hours

What is the best time of the year to visit Zanzibar?

zanzibar-ferry

How to arrive Zanzibar?

How is transportation organized in Zanzibar?

How is transportation organized in Zanzibar?

Where are the best beaches in Zanzibar?

  • Terms & Conditions
  • Privacy Policies
  • Private Safaris & Groups
  • Private Climbs & Groups
  • Selous Game Reserve
  • Machame Route
  • Day Trips in Tanzania
  • Visit Zanzibar

Contact Information

Tanzania Safaris Tour Company

Privacy Overview

Message us for any inquiry, send us a message.

zanzibar safe to travel

  • Kindle Store
  • Kindle eBooks

Promotions apply when you purchase

These promotions will be applied to this item:

Some promotions may be combined; others are not eligible to be combined with other offers. For details, please see the Terms & Conditions associated with these promotions.

Buy for others

Buying and sending ebooks to others.

Additional gift options are available when buying one eBook at a time.  Learn more

These ebooks can only be redeemed by recipients in the US. Redemption links and eBooks cannot be resold.

zanzibar safe to travel

Download the free Kindle app and start reading Kindle books instantly on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required .

Read instantly on your browser with Kindle for Web.

Using your mobile phone camera - scan the code below and download the Kindle app.

QR code to download the Kindle App

Image Unavailable

ZANZIBAR TRAVEL GUIDE 2023-2024: Zanzibar Unveiled: Your Passport to Paradise – Explore the Best of 2023-2024, from Spice Tours to Pristine Beaches!

  • To view this video download Flash Player

ZANZIBAR TRAVEL GUIDE 2023-2024: Zanzibar Unveiled: Your Passport to Paradise – Explore the Best of 2023-2024, from Spice Tours to Pristine Beaches! Kindle Edition

Discover the allure of Zanzibar with the "Zanzibar Travel Guide 2023-2024." Immerse yourself in the vibrant mosaic of this enchanting island as you navigate the historic streets of Stone Town, indulge in the aromatic spices of local markets, and unwind on pristine, sun-drenched beaches. This comprehensive guide is your key to unlocking the hidden gems, cultural wonders, and breathtaking landscapes that define Zanzibar. Packed with practical insights, insider tips, and captivating narratives, it transcends the conventional guidebook, offering a personalized journey through the heart of the Indian Ocean. Whether you're a first-time visitor or a seasoned explorer, let this guide be your compass to an extraordinary Zanzibari adventure.

  • Print length 152 pages
  • Language English
  • Sticky notes On Kindle Scribe
  • Publication date November 27, 2023
  • File size 3047 KB
  • Page Flip Enabled
  • Word Wise Enabled
  • Enhanced typesetting Enabled
  • See all details

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B0CP4FNV7B
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ November 27, 2023
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 3047 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Sticky notes ‏ : ‎ On Kindle Scribe
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 152 pages

Customer reviews

Customer Reviews, including Product Star Ratings help customers to learn more about the product and decide whether it is the right product for them.

To calculate the overall star rating and percentage breakdown by star, we don’t use a simple average. Instead, our system considers things like how recent a review is and if the reviewer bought the item on Amazon. It also analyzed reviews to verify trustworthiness.

No customer reviews

  • Amazon Newsletter
  • About Amazon
  • Accessibility
  • Sustainability
  • Press Center
  • Investor Relations
  • Amazon Devices
  • Amazon Science
  • Start Selling with Amazon
  • Sell apps on Amazon
  • Supply to Amazon
  • Protect & Build Your Brand
  • Become an Affiliate
  • Become a Delivery Driver
  • Start a Package Delivery Business
  • Advertise Your Products
  • Self-Publish with Us
  • Host an Amazon Hub
  • › See More Ways to Make Money
  • Amazon Visa
  • Amazon Store Card
  • Amazon Secured Card
  • Amazon Business Card
  • Shop with Points
  • Credit Card Marketplace
  • Reload Your Balance
  • Amazon Currency Converter
  • Your Account
  • Your Orders
  • Shipping Rates & Policies
  • Amazon Prime
  • Returns & Replacements
  • Manage Your Content and Devices
  • Your Recalls and Product Safety Alerts
  • Conditions of Use
  • Privacy Notice
  • Your Ads Privacy Choices

How safe is Zanzibar 2023?

travel-faq

**How Safe is Zanzibar 2023?**

Zanzibar is a popular tourist destination known for its stunning beaches, rich culture, and historical significance. But when it comes to safety, many travelers wonder how safe it is to visit Zanzibar in 2023. The truth is, Zanzibar is generally considered to be a safe destination for tourists. The island has a low crime rate, and locals are known for their hospitality and friendliness towards visitors. However, like any other travel destination, it’s important to take certain precautions to ensure a safe and enjoyable trip.

One of the most common concerns for travelers visiting Zanzibar is the prevalence of petty crime such as theft and pickpocketing. While these incidents do occur, especially in crowded tourist areas, travelers can minimize their risk by taking simple precautions such as keeping their belongings secure and being aware of their surroundings. It’s also recommended to avoid walking alone in poorly lit areas at night, and to use reputable transportation services when getting around the island. By staying vigilant and using common sense, tourists can greatly reduce their chances of encountering any safety issues during their visit to Zanzibar.

Is Zanzibar safe for solo travelers?

Are there any health concerns in zanzibar, how safe is the nightlife in zanzibar, are there any safety concerns for lgbtq+ travelers in zanzibar, how safe are the beaches in zanzibar, what are the common scams to be aware of in zanzibar, what are the safety tips for traveling around zanzibar, are there any political concerns for travelers in zanzibar, what are the safety tips for exploring zanzibar’s historical sites, is zanzibar safe for families with children, are there any cultural customs to be aware of in zanzibar, what are the safety concerns for wildlife encounters in zanzibar, frequently asked questions about zanzibar safety.

Zanzibar can be a great destination for solo travelers, as long as they take the necessary precautions to stay safe. Traveling solo in Zanzibar is generally safe, but it’s important to be aware of your surroundings and avoid walking alone in remote or poorly lit areas.

As with any travel destination, there are some health concerns to be aware of when visiting Zanzibar. It’s recommended to take necessary health precautions such as getting vaccinated before your trip, using mosquito repellent to prevent mosquito-borne diseases, and drinking only bottled or filtered water to avoid water-borne illnesses.

Zanzibar is known for its vibrant nightlife, with plenty of bars, clubs, and beach parties for visitors to enjoy. The nightlife in Zanzibar is generally safe, but it’s important to exercise caution and drink responsibly, especially in crowded areas. It’s also recommended to use reputable transportation services when traveling to and from nightlife spots at night.

Zanzibar is a conservative society, and public displays of affection are generally not accepted. LGBTQ+ travelers should be mindful of local attitudes and cultural norms, and avoid public displays of affection. Overall, Zanzibar is relatively safe for LGBTQ+ travelers, but it’s important to be respectful of local customs and sensitivities.

Zanzibar is known for its stunning beaches, and for the most part, they are safe for visitors. However, it’s important to exercise caution when swimming or partaking in water activities, as strong currents and tides can pose a danger to inexperienced swimmers. It’s also advisable to heed any warnings or advisories posted by beach authorities.

While Zanzibar is generally a safe destination, tourists should be aware of common scams that target travelers. Some scams involve overly aggressive street vendors, fake tour companies, and fraudulent money changers. To avoid falling victim to these scams, it’s recommended to only use reputable tour operators and to be cautious when dealing with street vendors.

When traveling around Zanzibar, it’s important to use reputable transportation services and to be cautious when navigating the island’s roads. It’s also advisable to avoid traveling alone in remote or poorly lit areas, and to be mindful of local traffic laws and regulations.

Zanzibar has a history of political tensions, and travelers should be mindful of local political developments and avoid getting involved in public demonstrations or protests. Overall, tourists are unlikely to encounter any political disturbances during their visit, but it’s always best to stay informed and exercise caution.

Zanzibar is home to a rich history and many historical sites that are well worth exploring. When visiting historical sites in Zanzibar, it’s important to respect local customs and traditions, and to be mindful of any rules or regulations set by site authorities. It’s also recommended to use a reputable tour guide to enhance your experience and ensure your safety.

Zanzibar can be a wonderful destination for families with children, as long as parents take the necessary precautions to ensure their safety. It’s important to keep an eye on children at all times, especially in crowded tourist areas, and to use reputable transportation services when getting around the island with young ones.

Zanzibar has a rich cultural heritage, and tourists are encouraged to be respectful and mindful of local customs and traditions. It’s important to dress modestly and to be aware of any religious or cultural sensitivities, especially when visiting religious sites or interacting with locals.

Zanzibar is known for its diverse wildlife, particularly in the Jozani Chwaka Bay National Park. While wildlife encounters are generally safe, it’s important to exercise caution and respect the natural habitat of the animals. Visitors are advised to adhere to any guidelines set by park authorities and to avoid feeding or interacting with wild animals.

In summary, Zanzibar is a relatively safe and enjoyable travel destination for tourists. By taking necessary precautions, staying informed, and being respectful of local customs, visitors can have a wonderful and memorable experience exploring the island’s natural beauty, historical sites, and vibrant culture.

About The Author

Leave a comment cancel reply.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

IMAGES

  1. The Most Practical Zanzibar Travel Guide You Should Have Now (Updated

    zanzibar safe to travel

  2. Is Zanzibar safe for travel?

    zanzibar safe to travel

  3. Guia de viagem de Zanzibar

    zanzibar safe to travel

  4. How Safe is Zanzibar for Solo Female Traveller

    zanzibar safe to travel

  5. Is Zanzibar safe to visit?

    zanzibar safe to travel

  6. 12 Important Things to Know Before You Travel to Zanzibar, Africa

    zanzibar safe to travel

VIDEO

  1. welcome to zanzibar #travel #zanzibar #africanbeach #zanzibarisland #dance #playa

  2. Zanzibar #zanzibar #travel #vacation #africantravel #funny #trending #zanzibartours #zanzibartravel

COMMENTS

  1. Is Zanzibar Safe to Visit in 2024? (Expert Opinion & Safety Tips)

    Yes. Zanzibar is mostly safe to visit, and with the right precautions, you shouldn't be in any danger. However, keep an eye on your valuables as petty theft is common in the country, especially around tourist attractions. Violent crime is rare, but it does occur.

  2. Tanzania Travel Advisory

    July 31, 2023 Tanzania - Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution O T C Reissued with obsolete COVID-19 page links removed. Exercise increased caution in Tanzania due to crime, terrorism, and targeting of LGBTI persons . Some areas have increased risk. Read the entire Travel Advisory. Reconsider Travel To:

  3. Tanzania, including Zanzibar

    Hide Non-Vaccine-Preventable Diseases Hide Stay Healthy and Safe Learn actions you can take to stay healthy and safe on your trip. Vaccines cannot protect you from many diseases in Tanzania, so your behaviors are important. Eat and drink safely Food and water standards around the world vary based on the destination.

  4. Travel advice and advisories for Tanzania

    Avoid non-essential travel to the area within 20 km of the border with Burundi and 20 km from the shoreline of Lake Tanganyika along the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo (Kinshasa), due to the presence of armed groups and traffickers, and the threat of kidnappings.

  5. Tips on Zanzibar Island Warnings or Dangers

    Take anti-malaria medication and avoid mosquito bites by using bug spray, covering skin with clothing at dusk, and sleeping under a mosquito net. The sun is strong in Zanzibar. Wear plenty of...

  6. Is Zanzibar Safe? Health, Crime and Transport Safety

    In short, Zanzibar is extremely safe and many travellers return here over and over again. Whether travelling solo, with family and friends or as part of an organised tour, there are a few warnings and dangers travellers to this part of the world need to be aware of to make their trip to Zanzibar safe. Day tours in Zanzibar? Here are my top picks...

  7. I Traveled to Zanzibar During the COVID-19 Pandemic

    One travel reporter's take on visiting Tanzania's scenic island of Zanzibar amid COVID-19.

  8. Tanzania travel advice

    27 December 2023 Updated: 30 October 2023 Latest update: (CORRECTION) Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Tanzania in the near future. Download map (PDF) The FCDO advises...

  9. Safety and security

    Safety and security Mozambique border You should take particular care near the border between Tanzania and the Cabo Delgado province of Mozambique. This is due to the risk of attacks by groups...

  10. Is Zanzibar safe to visit?

    Tours If you are wondering is Zanzibar safe, rest assured: the island is extremely safe for tourists. As tourism is the primary source of income in Zanzibar, the local authorities take the safety of tourists very seriously.

  11. Is Zanzibar Safe? A Comprehensive Guide to Staying Safe While Traveling

    Zanzibar is generally a safe place to visit, with a low crime rate and friendly locals. However, as with any destination, visitors should exercise caution and take necessary safety precautions. While violent crime is rare, petty crimes such as pickpocketing and bag snatching can occur, particularly in crowded areas and tourist hotspots.

  12. 15 Zanzibar Travel Tips To Know BEFORE You Go

    Before to travel Zanzibar you should know that "Zanzibar" is not the official name of the island. When people refer to Zanzibar it is technically all of the Zanzibar Archipelago. Zanzibar Island is real name is "Unguja."

  13. Is Zanzibar Safe To Visit

    Crime and Personal Safety: Zanzibar is generally safe for tourists. However, petty crimes like pickpocketing can occur in crowded areas, so it's wise to keep an eye on your belongings. Violent crime against tourists is rare, but it's always best to exercise caution and avoid poorly lit or deserted areas at night. Health Precautions:

  14. Is Zanzibar Safe?

    No, thanks Zanzibar is popular for its pristine beaches and rich history. Here is all you should know about safety, with some simple tips to make sure you never have to worry while you are visiting Zanzibar.

  15. Is Zanzibar Safe To Visit in 2024? (What to Know Before You Go)

    Key Takeaways: Zanzibar is a safe destination but travelers should exercise caution in certain areas. Crime rates are generally low but petty theft can occur, especially in tourist areas. Travelers should take general safety precautions and be respectful of local customs and culture.

  16. 14 Mistakes to Avoid Making in Zanzibar

    1. Don't wear revealing clothing Though there are tons of fun and adventurous things to do while in Zanzibar - dressing skimpy isn't one of them. Zanzibar is in a conservative Muslim country, and it's important to dress modestly when out and about. Leave the miniskirts and tank tops at home, and opt for something a little more covered up.

  17. Zanzibar Holiday Travel Guide

    6 Travel Safety Tips for Zanzibar: Dress appropriately and respect Muslim cultural norms. Don't take your valuables to the beach. Lock your valuables in the hotel safe when you go out. Don't walk around alone after dark. Check with your lodge or trusted locals if there are any crime hotspots at the time of your travels. Certain beaches, like ...

  18. The Ultimate Zanzibar Travel Guide: Everything You Need To Know

    As Zanzibar is part of Tanzania, it is subject to the same visa and entry requirements of the mainland. For most Western travelers, you will need a visa to enter Zanzibar/Tanzania. The entry visa can be: Purchased on arrival at the airport. The cost of this is $50 for every nationality besides the US which is $100.

  19. Zanzibar dangerous? Areas to avoid and best place to stay

    To be able to assess whether Zanzibar is a dangerous place, I studied the Numbeo 2023 ranking. However, on this site, in 2023 Zanzibar has an index of crime of 57.27 which is a high average. Indeed, if we compare with other cities around the world Zanzibar would be more dangerous than Las Vegas, Casablanca, Istanbul, Cancun ou Medellin.

  20. Is Zanzibar Safe For Tourists? All you need to know ...

    By Nat May 24, 2023 November 20, 2023 Zanzibar Are you wondering whether Zanzibar is safe for tourists? After traveling to Zanzibar on my own as a female traveler and meeting a friend there, I can tell you that Zanzibar is a safe place for tourists to visit.

  21. Is Zanzibar safe for tourists?

    Safety travel tips for female travelers in Tanzania and Zanzibar: While Zanzibar is considered a safe destination for travelers, it's essential to take extra precautions as a female solo traveler to ensure your safety. Below are some safety tips to keep in mind when traveling solo as a woman in Zanzibar:

  22. Is it Safe to Travel to Zanzibar? Uncover the Truth Here!

    When planning a trip to a foreign destination, your safety should always be a top priority. With its stunning beaches, unique culture, and rich history, Zanzibar is a popular destination for travelers from around the world. But is Zanzibar safe for tourists? Fortunately, Zanzibar is generally a safe place for travelers. The local people are

  23. ZANZIBAR TRAVEL GUIDE 2023-2024: Zanzibar Unveiled: Your Passport to

    Discover the allure of Zanzibar with the "Zanzibar Travel Guide 2023-2024." Immerse yourself in the vibrant mosaic of this enchanting island as you navigate the historic streets of Stone Town, indulge in the aromatic spices of local markets, and unwind on pristine, sun-drenched beaches.

  24. How to Travel to Zanzibar: A Luxury Ferry Ride or a Relaxing Flight?

    Travellers enjoying a safari trip to the Serengeti have a few options when flying to Zanzibar. One way is to fly directly to Abeid Amani Karume Airport (Zanzibar) from Serona, with prices ranging from $400 to $450 per person. Other airstrips offering flights to Zanzibar include Grumeti and Koge.

  25. How safe is Zanzibar 2023?

    But when it comes to safety, many travelers wonder how safe it is to visit Zanzibar in 2023. The truth is, Zanzibar is generally considered to be a safe destination for tourists. The island has a low crime rate, and locals are known for their hospitality and friendliness towards visitors. However, like any other travel destination, it's ...

  26. Mbudya island on Instagram: " ️ WELCOME TO MBUDYA ISLAND @abeid

    78 likes, 0 comments - mbudya_island on December 27, 2023: " ️ WELCOME TO MBUDYA ISLAND @abeid_mnyamwezi CONTACT US FOR BOAT AND YACHTS TRANS..."