Stone Town, Zanzibar is a living history


Each twist and turn brings something new – a former palace, a Persian bathhouse, a tumbledown ruin, a coral-stone mansion with carved doors and latticework balconies, or a school full of children chanting verses from the Quran.

Today Zanzibar Town (sometimes designated Zanzibar City) is the capital of the state of Zanzibar, and by far the biggest settlement on Zanzibar Island. It’s divided into two unequal parts, separated by Creek Rd: to the west is Stone Town, while to the east are the more recently built areas known as Ng’ambo (literally, ‘The Other Side’), with other suburbs such as Amaani, Mazizini, Magomeni and Mwanakwerekwe, an urban sprawl of shops, markets, offices, apartment blocks, crowded slums and middle-class neighbourhoods.