There is a lot to see and to do on Zanzibar island. First and foremost, do enjoy the amazing white sand beaches especially at the north, east and south coast.
The sand has the consistency of castor sugar!
Zanzibar also has quite a lot of caves, e.g. Tazani near Nungwi.
A tour company in Jambiani “Mambopoatours” offers excursions off the beaten track. Also do a village tour that are offered all over the island.
The villagers don’t see tourists as intruders, to the contrary, they welcome foreigners.
Please do make sure that you are dressed with a t-shirt and knee-length pants – Zanzibarians are 98 % Muslims and walking through villages in beach gear is disrespectful.
A Zanzibar resident put together quite a lot of information on “Zanzibar Insider Buzz”, you can google it.
Zanzibar Island, a.k.a., The Spice Island, was an important stop in the Spice Trade centuries ago.
Today, it is one of the few places in the world where saffron is produced, and many other Middle Eastern/Asian spices (cardamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg, etc.) are grown here.
Visit one of the spice farms where you can see how anise, pepper, cloves etc. grow; you can sample some of the exotic fruit grown on the island. And do check out the “lipstick tree”.
Jozani Forest has excellent nature trails, featuring some very exotic (and large) trees and plants.
Even more interesting, though, are the Red Colobus Monkeys that live here.
These Monkeys can only survive on Zanzibar, nowhere else in the world, since they need a diet of 70 different plants, berries etc.
The Red Colobus Monkeys are a protected species. A major part of the entrance fees goes to the local farmers in the surrounding area.
In the past, the farmers killed the Monkeys because they destroyed their crops. Ever since they are compensated for their losses, the killing stopped.
They are very curious and playful and will likely pose for a picture. The entry fee (USD10) also include an optional visit to a beautiful mangrove forest which is highly recommended.
You can take the local daladala from Zanzibar Town for TZS 2000 per person.
They might want to charge you more (because you are a tourist).
The official price for everyone is TZS 2000.
There are a number of historically important (and frankly, just plain beautiful) buildings in Stone Town, like The House of Wonders and The Arab Fort.
It is easy to arrange a simple walking tour with a local guide who can teach you some history.
The market in Stone Town is one of the largest, most vibrant open-air markets anywhere.
Here, you can find several varieties of bananas, “elephant garlic” unique to the island, the largest avocados you’ll probably ever see, and more.
Prices are extremely reasonable.
Even if you have no intentions of purchasing food, the spectacle alone is worth a visit.
If seeing raw meat and fish covered in flies makes you squeamish, avoid that part of the market.
Overall, pretty much all food that is not packaged in plastic is covered in flies.
Seaweed Center (Seaweed industry development project), (Paje, East Coast, Zanzibar), 3% of the world’s commercial harvest of Seaweed is taking place in Zanzibar island.
The industry has ~15,000 women seaweed farmers.
The Seaweed Center is a socially responsible business that provides female seaweed farmers in Paje, Zanzibar with opportunities to improve their personal standards of living and develop economic activities that benefit the entire community.
The project comprises a factory and gathering site to produce soaps and creams from seaweed that are sold locally and begin to be distributed throughout East Africa.
Tours are available, showing the life of seaweed women, the work and the value added activities.