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The beaches in Zanzibar are some of the best beaches in the world, interspersed with picturesque fishing villages, where the people live a simple way of life, virtually unchanged in centuries.

Although there are more than 25 fantastic beaches in Zanzibar, the sand and surf can vary depending on what side of the island you’re on.

North coast

Up north, ocean swimming is much less susceptible to the tides, and smooth beaches and white sand make for dazzling days in the sun. This is the dhow building capital of Zanzibar island, so it is a good place to see traditional craftsmen at work. It also offers a variety of watersports and a fully equipped dive centre which specialises in trips to the spectacular Mnemba Atoll.

East coast

On the east coast, waves break over coral reefs and sand bars offshore, and low tide reveals small pools of starfish, small minnows, and anemones.

West coast

On the west coast of Zanzibar, Mangapwani beach is worth a visit, and to the east are the beaches of Matemwe, Pwani Mchangani, Kiwengwa, Uroa, Bwejuu and Jambiani, all with stretches of beautiful and uncrowded sands.

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Audley Travel specialist Erin

Start planning your tailor-made trip to Zanzibar beaches by calling one of our Zanzibar Archipelago specialists on 1 800 852 001

Suggested itineraries featuring Zanzibar beaches

Our itineraries will give you suggestions for what is possible when you travel in Zanzibar beaches, and they showcase routes we know work particularly well. Treat them as inspiration, because your trip will be created uniquely by one of our specialists.

Map of Zanzibar beaches

Places & hotels on the map

    Places near Zanzibar beaches