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Swimming at Nungwi and Kendwa according to Lonely Planet

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Sydney, Australia
posts: 257
reviews: 32
Swimming at Nungwi and Kendwa according to Lonely Planet

I am reading the Lonely Planet on Tanzania and want to clarify some things.

It says that Nungwi lacks any sort of substantial beach during much of the year because of shifting tidal patterns and erosion caused by development. It also says that you can swim around the clock at Kendwa beach.

Is this the case? From what I've read on hear I got the impression that you can swim (almost) around the clock at Nungwi contrary to what Lonely Planet says.

Thanks

Poznan, Poland
posts: 188
reviews: 29
1. Re: Swimming at Nungwi and Kendwa according to Lonely Planet

Hi,

I just got back from Zanzibar. I stayed a couple days both in Kendwa and in Nungwi (and many other places). In Kendwa there are almost no tides and at the place I have stayed the ocean is quite deep (4-6 feet) nearby the shore so yes – it is great for swimming and playing in water. I didn’t care for Kendwa though because it is too touristy and too party-oriented for me.

At Nungwi the tides seemed almost as intense as in the southeast. Don’t know if it is a general rule, but neither of the two hotels I stayed in Nungwi had a real sandy beach. During the high tide the sea would come up all the way to the tall rocky cliffs. In another part of the village - by the boatbuilding place and Nungwi fish market there was a long and sandy beach.

Sydney, Australia
posts: 257
reviews: 32
2. Re: Swimming at Nungwi and Kendwa according to Lonely Planet

Could you tell me where you stayed in Nungwi?

Poznan, Poland
posts: 188
reviews: 29
3. Re: Swimming at Nungwi and Kendwa according to Lonely Planet

I stayed at Mnarani Beach Cottages for one night and at Essque Zalu for two (mu friends had a huge villa rented at Essque Zalu so I joined, place is amazing but way over my budget:)

Calgary, Canada
posts: 105
reviews: 34
4. Re: Swimming at Nungwi and Kendwa according to Lonely Planet

Hi Redsnapper30.

I am glad to see you came back from your exciting trip to Zanzibar. Now that you have had the opportunity to enjoy it I would like to hear your honest opinion about the island comparing it to any other island (or even see) destination in the world.

On the cultural side, how would you compare Stone Town to something else (Sharm el Sheikh or Warsaw (?) or… ).

Chicago
posts: 361
reviews: 36
5. Re: Swimming at Nungwi and Kendwa according to Lonely Planet

I was in Zanzibar a couple of weeks ago and stayed at the Doubletree in Nungwi. I wrote up a review and included pictures which show morning low tide and afternoon high tide, and as you'll see, the differences were dramatic. But I think it was by 1 or 2 in the afternoon when the water was plenty deep and just beautiful. But don't even think about swimming in the ocean in the morning if you're in Nungwi.

As for the beach, there was plenty of it and very soft sand. I didn't experience the erosion and we walked all the way down to the Z Hotel. I much prefer the Caribbean and Hawaii - I just got bored in Zanzibar, found the food to be generally bad, and found it incredibly hot and humid, but having been on safari, it seemed like a good option. But it all depends upon what you're looking for. I hope this helps.

Edited: 11:25 pm, February 11, 2013
Poznan, Poland
posts: 188
reviews: 29
6. Re: Swimming at Nungwi and Kendwa according to Lonely Planet

Dear Drago,

Answering your question: Zanzibar was completely different from all The places I visited before. My up-to day beach and leisure destinations were mostly Europe (Chroatia, France, Italy, Spain), Egyptian Red Sea resorts, and Florida. I don’t think you can compare these places to equatorial Africa.

I found Zanzibar to be the place of contrasts – from the most luxurious resorts and the local villages where life seems to not chance since many centuries. You might be right that there are better places for beach holiday. Zanzibar is poor, remote, quite pricy (true!) and there are problems with – to us – basic services like internet, electricity or decent shopping). It is bothersome that sometimes you see the lack of care for local heritage, ruined palaces, public places) but one needs to remember that it is a very poor country still ruled by a post-communist, revolutionary regime.

I had a great and very mind-opening time in Zanzibar. The purpose of my trip was to have some leisure time during the first week (staring at the palm trees, reading in hammock, eating well) and some work done during the second week, as I traveled with a TV crew shooting a show on Zanzibar’s cultural and historic heritage and cuisine. Both goals were well accomplished.

Will Zanzibar become my favorite vacationing spot? Probably not. There are so many other places to see. Do I regret my trip there? No- I had a great time and learned a lot.

Hope this answers your question.

dorset
posts: 473
reviews: 45
7. Re: Swimming at Nungwi and Kendwa according to Lonely Planet

Hello. We stayed in Nungwi in December, and made a visit to Kendwa. Based on that visit, there is definitely water at Kendwa all day. In Nungwi, it depends exactly where you are. We were on the South Beach (staying at Nungwi Inn - also close to Z Hotel, Langi Langi etc). The bit of beach in front of us always had some sea for swimming in, and the beach stayed fairly wide. I believe if you stay on the Eastern side of the Nungwi peninsula that it is more tidal.

Baltimore, Maryland
posts: 514
reviews: 156
8. Re: Swimming at Nungwi and Kendwa according to Lonely Planet

I stayed in Kendwa and you can swim all the time. There is almost no tidal differences and the currents are very weak there. The downside is the beach is full of people trying to sell you things so the swim is not that relaxing

Sydney, Australia
posts: 257
reviews: 32
9. Re: Swimming at Nungwi and Kendwa according to Lonely Planet

Oh I didn't even consider hawkers! Is this a problem at other beaches I wonder?

Chicago
posts: 361
reviews: 36
10. Re: Swimming at Nungwi and Kendwa according to Lonely Planet

I noticed very little of it at the Doubletree. However, the Doubletree's beach chairs are all situated on a raised area where you actually need to take a few steps down to the water, so this may actually deter the hawkers from hanging out in the area. I can't speak for the rest of the beach in Nungwi.