Zanzibar is a unique coral island lying in the Indian Ocean a short distance from Tanzania. With Pemba, and about 50 other islands, Zanzibar originally was an independent country until 1964 when it was united with Tanganyika to form Tanzania under President Julius Nyerere. Presently it has its own President and a degree of autonomy.
Zanzibar experiences ideal holiday weather for most of the year. The heat of summer is seasonally often cooled by windy conditions, resulting in pleasant sea breezes, particularly on the North and East coasts. Being near to the equator, the islands are warm all year round, but officially, summer and winter peak in December and June respectively. This is illustrated statistical weather information shown below. Zanzibar is blessed with an average of 7-8 hours of sunshine daily.
Country InformationTime Zone- GMT + 3 Currency- Tanzanian Shilling (Tsh) Official languages- Kiswahili & English Electricity- 220 – 240 V AC, 50 Hz Religion- Predominantly Islam International Dialing code- +255 24, followed by 7-digit local number
GovernmentZanzibar is an island state within the United Republic of Tanzania, and has its own semi-autonomous government made up of a Revolutionary Council and House of Representatives. The present government is led by the island’s President, Amani Karume. The government body responsible for tourism promotion is the Zanzibar Commission for Tourism.
EconomyFishermanFishing and agriculture are the main economic activities of the local people. Zanzibar was once the world’s largest producer of cloves, and her economy was based on large incomes thus derived. Although cloves are still a major export along with coconut products and spices, tourism has been ear-marked as the primary foreign exchange earner, with more visitors coming to Zanzibar each year. At this stage, the numbers are still low (less than 100,000 annually) and the potential for tourism is relatively untapped. Zanzibar’s tourism private sector is represented by the Zanzibar Association of Tourism Investors (ZATI).
Entry and Exit RequirementsAll visitors require a passport, valid for the duration of their stay. Preparations are under way for visitors to obtain visas at any entry point, and this time-saving facility is available to visitors arriving at Zanzibar International Airport. Other points in Tanzania currently offering visa on entry are Dar es Salaam and Kilimanjaro International Airports, and Namanga on the road border between Tanzania and Kenya. Nationals of some countries do not require visas, so it is advisable to check with your nearest Tanzanian Embassy, High Commission or Consulate prior to visiting.
Tanzania Embassy2139 R Street NW Washington DC 20008 United States Tel: + 1 202 9396128
Please refer to the VISA Information and Exemptions website for Tanzania and Zanzibar for more information.