Stone Town, also known as Mji Mkongwa (outdated town in Swahili), is the fabled main town of Unguja Island – the main island of the Zanzibar archipelago, and the island individuals usually refer to simply as Zanzibar. The name Zanzibar will often conjure photos of advantageous white sands, the solar reflecting of the sparkling Indian Ocean, crystal clear waters, aromatic spices, coconut palms and a balmy breeze. While this is all very true, if you are planning to go to Zanzibar, make sure you drag your self away from the pool side for an afternoon, a day, and even a couple of nights to explore the wonders of Stone Town!
An excellent place to start out any go to to city could be at Darajani. Located on the borders of the old city, it is a bustling, busy and hectic market where men on creaky bikes weave between baskets heaving with papayas or pineapples, wizened outdated bibis (elderly ladies) in brightly colored dresses bargain over onions and chillis, and young males linger at street corners, chatting, tucking into slices of watermelon, or refreshing themselves with fresh coconut water, straight from the nut! This is a great place to stock up on spices, which might be obtained cheaper than on the extra touristy retailers.
Those feeling much more adventurous can head for the Suma street, located reverse Darajani and to the left of the heaving daladala (bus) terminal). This street is the place to purchase fabrics – anything from cheap cotton kangas to heavy, waxed kitenge, sequined rolls of airy chiffon and swathes of bold animal-print.
Heading into the principle town, now’s the right time to lose your self (fairly actually) in the maze-like alleys and zig-zag pavements of the outdated city. Alongside the way in which you’ll walk past street-sellers selling kaskata (a kind of peanut candy) or mandazi (cardamom flavoured semi-sweet donuts) or delicious sambusa (Swahili for samosa). Open store-fronts reveal tailors working away inside, and gangs of laughing children will run past you and disappear across the nook. And, in fact, there are various curio retailers, most selling beaded jewellery, wooden carvings and stylised wildlife or Masai paintings, some selling genuine and interesting antiques. This is your chance to strive your hand at some correct bartering!
Throughout your travels, you may end up in Jaws Nook – the central assembly level for Zanzibaris to come back, play dominos or bao (a really complicated and difficult local sport), alternate information, and possibly drink a spiced espresso or freshtangawizi (ginger tea). If you end up right here within the evening or at night, make certain to try some barbecue octopus from one in every of the road sellers! Just method the table and pick out a clear cocktail stick, and snack on whichever chew-dimension items you want. Usually there is a few chilli salt and sauce to go together with it. Simply be sure you rely what number of items you could have had, so after you have completed you’ll be able to inform the seller and he will tell you how much you owe. Usually it is around a hundred-250 Tshillings per piece, relying on the scale.
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