The best hotels in Zanzibar

Zanzibar, off the coast of East Africa, offers warm seas, tropical beaches, lush interiors, exquisite resorts, an incredible history, a fascinating culture, and inviting locals. Located just a few degrees south of the equator, Zanzibar offers a tropical climate and great weather all year round. Whether you choose to spend your days lazing at the pool, sipping cocktails on the beach, or snorkelling and diving in warm waters, your Zanzibar holiday will be unforgettable.

But that said, not every Zanzibar hotel is created equal, and of course, you want your holiday to be memorable for all the right reasons. With that in mind, here’s our pick of the best Zanzibar hotels where you can be guaranteed a fabulous time:

Riu Jambo

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The new 4 Star Riu Jambo (previously known as La Gemma dell’Est) is located on the North Western coast of Zanzibar, directly on one of the best beaches at Nungwi where the tidal movement is minimal.

At Riu Jambo, you can enjoy imported alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages in all bars and restaurants, 24 hours a day, plus dine around options for dinner. If you like holidays packed with activities, you have the chance to practice watersports like snorkelling, kayaking, stand up paddle boarding, as well as enjoying group fitness activities in the RiuFit programme. With your package, you can enjoy one free scuba try out in the pool. And the little ones in the family can enjoy RiuLand kids’ club, where they’ll find a heap of activities just for them.

Kae Beach Resort

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The four star Kae Beach Resort in Zanzibar offers an incredible atmosphere on one of the best beaches on the island. Party on the beach like something out of a movie, play volleyball, work out at the outdoor gym or go for a dip in one of the two swimming pools. You can also indulge your food fantasies with buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner! You can also enjoy fabulous sunsets due to the resort’s incredible location on the western side of the peninsula.

Diamonds Mapenzi Beach Resort

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One of the oldest hotels on the island, Diamonds Mapezi is an excellent and affordable choice for people who want an action-packed holiday. This unpretentious resort has a fantastic fun vibe and great water sport facilities including complimentary windsurfing equipment and canoes. It also offers an all inclusive package with the choice of three restaurants – the buffet is one of the best on the island! Plus your mini bar is stocked daily with soft drinks, water and beer.

The low tide on the east coast adds to the experience when you can walk out across the beach for 1.5 kilometres to the reef.

Breezes Beach Club & Spa

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Breezes Beach Club & Spa Zanzibar is an ideal choice for those in search of a romantic getaway. Famous for its attention to detail, intimate and private dining, and its beautiful Zanzibari decor with stunning carving, glistening brass and rich fabrics which creates an elegant and unique atmosphere.

Breezes lies along a pristine and untouched beach on the south east coast of Zanzibar, which is the most quiet and untouched part of the island chosen by the reputable Conde Nast Traveler magazine as one of the top 30 island beaches in the world.

When you dine at Breezes, you can expect a different menu every day, each of which has been crafted to reflect an inspirationally delicate fusion of the Arabic, Indian, Persian, Asian and Swahili flavours that characterize traditional Zanzibari cuisine.

Sea Cliff Resort & Spa

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The five star Sea Cliff Resort & Spa offers something uniquely special in Zanzibar. This beautiful resort located on the West Coast of Zanzibar features a combination of modern facilities mixed with the original exotic architecture of historical Zanzibar. The cliffside location overlooking the Indian Ocean in Mangwapani provides panoramic views across the sparkling ocean and shimmering white beach. You can also enjoy complimentary snorkelling equipment, non-motorised watersports, use of bicycles, and a return shuttle trip to Stone Town.

 Zuri Zanzibar

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In Swahili, the native language of Zanzibar, Zuri means beautiful. It is an apt description for the unique Zuri Zanzibar. The hotel boasts its own private spice garden, a one of a kind in the area. The bungalows and villas are hidden amongst trees and flowers to ensure absolute privacy, and all have an outdoor shower and a large terrace. With one of the largest lagoons on the island, white powdery sands and the incredible colours of the Indian Ocean, this is the perfect place to sit back and relax. The perfect honeymoon spot!

Gold Zanzibar

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Set on a tideless white sand beach on the North West coast of Zanzibar, the five star Gold Zanzibar offers you the perfect luxury escape! Styled with a mix of African and Arabic influences with elegant Italian touches, you will feel like royalty from the moment you arrive. Your package includes breakfast, lunch, dinner and selected drinks daily, as well as afternoon tea with pastries and snacks, and a mini bar replenished once a day.

Riu Palace Zanzibar

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The Riu Palace Zanzibar is located on Nungwi Beach on the north coast of Zanzibar which means you can enjoy a beautiful white-sand beach with crystalline waters and minimal tidal changes. Enjoy a refreshing dip in one of the resort’s three pools, and indulge in delicious food in one of the three restaurants. Fun and relaxation are guaranteed with Riu Palace’s entertainment programmes and non-motorised watersports like snorkelling and kayaking which are included in your package.

Bluebay Beach Resort

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The five star Bluebay Beach Resort is the ideal place for you to recharge your batteries. Three restaurants, a great all inclusive plan, a beautiful beach and so much more. What are you waiting for?

Perfect for families looking for a fun-filled holiday with their kids, as well as a bit of adult time, the resort also offers a kids club for those aged between 3 and 13 years with weekly themed programmes and a range of indoor and outdoor activities. As well as arts, crafts and sports, the children also enjoy cultural experiences and even an introduction to the Swahili language.

Sandies Baobab Beach

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Situated on the north coast of Zanzibar, The Sandies Baobab Beach is perfect for families or couples looking for a break. With a beautiful beach that is unaffected by the tides, you can spend your days splashing in the water and your evenings watching the magical sunsets. Your package includes breakfast, lunch and dinner daily plus soft drinks, juices, selected wine, local beer, coffee and tea served at the restaurant during meals or at the pool bar.