Discover the diverse culture of Zanzibar
In Stone Town, the old trading town of Zanzibar, representative stone houses were built in the 18th and 19th centuries. With coral stone and mangrove wood as building materials, the architectural style reflects the influence of different cultures, an interplay of Arab, African, Indian and European traditions. This style of building was the inspiration for the name Stone Town, which has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2000. Stone Town is also the oldest district of Zanzibar, the capital of the Tanzanian state of Zanzibar.
Particularly worth seeing are the intricately carved wooden doors, which can be admired while strolling through the alleys. Also typical are the baraza benches, raised seats in front of the house, which could also be used as pavements in former times during floods. Today, Stone Town residents sit there having tea while the children play and the souvenir dealers try to lure guests into their shops.
Beit-el-Ajaib - Palace of Miracles
Particularly worth seeing is Beit-el-Ajaib, the Palace of Miracles, which can currently only be viewed from the outside because parts of it have collapsed. The palace got its name because it was the first house in Zanzibar to have electricity, running water and even a lift. It was built in 1883 as a ceremonial palace for the then Sultan Barghash, before serving as the seat of the British and Zanzibari governments.
The Old Dispensary has a neoclassical façade and ornately carved balconies. Formerly used as a dispensary and hospital for the poor, the building now houses a cultural centre.
Ngome Kongwe - Old Fortress
In the past, the old fortress served as a prison and venue for executions. Many years later, the square courtyard was used by the British as a tennis court. Today it is home to shops and a cultural centre where, among other things, the famous Sauti-za-Busara music festival is held every February.
Beit-el-Sahel - Palace of the Sultan
Beit-el-Sahel, was the residence and seat of government of the sultans until the fall of the last sultan in 1964, after which the palace served as an administrative building. Today it is a museum that tells the story of Oman's ruling family, including that of the ill-fated Princess Salme.
Sights in Stone Town, Zanzibar
In addition, there is much to see in the city:
- The Darajani Market,
- the Anglican church above the former slave market with a highly recommended museum,
- the house of the famous slave trader Tippu Tip,
- the old Persian hammam baths,
- the Forodhani Park directly on the sea,
- and many renovated palaces.
These unique buildings and cultural sites have quite rightly earned Stone Town the title of Unesco World Heritage Site.
SeVi Boutique Hotel Zanzibar is located in a small bay in Kigomani next to Unguja's longest stretch of sand. Overlooking the sapphire waters of the Indian Ocean and Mnemba Atoll, the various traditional bungalows offer the ultimate retreat after your cultural trip to Stone Town.
Indulge in a bespoke Zanzibari ritual or massage at the spa by a wellness practitioner, discover the marine wildlife and underwater world while diving or snorkelling, or enjoy the fresh local ingredients of the spice island of Zanzibar over a delicious dinner overlooking the sea.