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Zanzibar is an archipelago in the Indian Ocean off the coast of Tanzania. The name "Zanzibar" is often used to refer to the main island of the archipelago, also called Unguja. The second island by extension is Pemba; then some smaller islands, like the island of the Prison, Bawe, Chapwani, Chumbe, Mnemba, Misali.
Zanzibar's name probably derives from the Persian Zang-i bar ("Land of the Blacks"). In the past the archipelago was independent; in 1964 it was joined with Tanganyika to form Tanzania.
It has a population of 640,000 inhabitants and it is situated just below the equator. It enjoys a rich history as for decades it was a key trading location for East Africa and it boasts a beautiful landscape and stunning beaches.
What makes Zanzibar so different from the thousands of other tropical islands is its capital Stone Town. The colours, perfumes and smells of Stone Town make an enormous impression on visitors. The senses are exalted, sometimes in a rather exaggerated manner.
As you visit the area, you will discover its narrow and tortuous roads, its bazaar, the mosques and the imposing Arab houses. One of the typical characteristics of these old houses are the carved wooden doors complemented by impressive bronze ornaments. UNESCO has declared this city to be a Universal Heritage site.
There are countless activities to do in Zanzibar, including the visits to the spice plantations, to the Jozani Forest inhabited by endemic species of Colobus monkey and the Sykes monkey, and the snorkelling expeditions along the coast of Bawe island, in front of Stone Town.
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