Zanzibar is famous for pristine white beaches and turquoise blue water all around the island, but if you have to choose a base for your stay, take the Southern part, and here is why:

Kizimkazi is famous for the dolphins that you can find in the waters off the beach. Usually, the tours leave early morning, but any time during the day you will find captains with their boats offering you to take you there. If you are lucky, you will be able to swim with the dolphins, but please note that they live in the wild. If you have concerns regarding the welfare of the animals, chat to the captain before the trip. Before you leave Kizimkazi, check out the oldest mosque in East Africa which you can find here. The best trip is the Sandbank Picnic, also known as Safari Blue, so ask your trusted tour guide about this great trip!

If you want some off the beaten track experience, have a look at www.mambopoatours-zanzibar.com or here for an interesting trip to an abandoned eco-resort. It is a very unusual trip and you will enjoy the experience of a different side of Zanzibar. You can have a nice walk through a local village which hasn't embraced tourism yet, but offers you a great insight into local village life. When the tarmac road turns into an African-massage-road, you will reach the abandoned eco resort after a few kilometers.The eerie atmosphere and buildings left there makes an interesting spot to wander around and explore.

Jambiani is a lovely former fishing village that has opened up to tourism and guests by offering a great selection of small guesthouses, medium-sized hotels as well as a string of restaurants offering local and international cuisine. The beach is shared among locals and guests, and the evening atmosphere is particular great for a walk down the beach. Jambiani also offers some great opportunities to go on a local village tour, learning about life in Zanzibar, or exploring Kuumbi Caves just outside the village (best done by bicycle).

Best Accommodation: Mango Beach House (but only has three rooms so make sure to book early!)

Best Restaurant: Bahari Pizza

 

Paje is the place for kite surfing and nightlife. During the windier months (July/August/January/February) the beach is full of kite surfers, and in the evenings you find plenty of restaurants and bars. Most famous parties are Thursdays Reggae Party at Demani Lodge, Friday Beach Party at Jambo Beach Bar and Sundays at Vuvuzela.

Best accommodation and restaurant: Ndame Beach Lodge

 

Michamvi is home to the world famous restaurant The Rock - a restaurant located on top of a rock in the sea. At low tide you can walk, at high tide they pull you across on a boat. Prices are higher than elsewhere, but the scenery makes it special.

If you have a couple of hours before or after lunch, a snorkeling trip to the nearby Blue Lagoon is recommended: lots of tropical fish!! Snorkeling is almost as good as the famous spots Mnemba and Chumbe.

For a sunset on the South East coast, visit Michamvi Kae. The powdery beach is out of this world, and you will find one of the funkiest bars around, Kae Beach. Grab a beer and walk to the beach, enjoy the sunset.