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Trip Report A week self driving in Zanzibar

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We are a young at heart Italian couple of 50 and 60. This was our first time in Zanzibar.
We rented our car on line a few weeks before travelling from Express Car Hire. This was a very good choice as Mr Daud was extremely punctual, professional and the car was in good shape. He met us at the airport and we went to their offices for a very quick exchange of documents. Our local permit was ready in advance and no time was wasted. We took down his number in case of emergencies and agreed to meet in five days time to exchange our Suzuki Escudo for a Vespa for our last two days in Stone Town. The price was $25 per day everything included.
As it was early morning and too soon to check into our hotel we drove to Jozani Forest and took a guided tour. This was pleasant though by no means mind blowing. We saw quite a few Colobus monkeys , a squirrel and some crabs. If you are going on safari anywhere else in Africa give it a miss.
After the park we went for a drive South before heading to the North East town of Bwejuu where we were staying. The roads were very good with few potholes and not that badly sign posted. It helped to have a tablet with local maps downloaded as the satellite system worked perfectly so it was almost impossible to get lost. We stopped in a few beaches on the East coast but couldn’t find anywhere nice to stop for a coffee. All the resorts are quite private and a fair distance from each other with separate driveways. We were stopped twice by the police.We were expecting it. Each time they were corteous and just checked our documents.
We arrived at Anna of Zanzibar in time for a huge lunch. This is a lovely small resort with just five rooms. It offers an all inclusive plan which is just as well as there isn’t much else in the surrounding area. The room, pool, grounds, staff , everything was excellent quality and quite rightly so as Anna is very expensive. Although we enjoyed our stay I would not return there as there are other better options value for money wise.
We spent two quiet days strolling on the beach. Surprisingly the beach was full of “beach boys” eager to talk and show you their little shops. There is a large Italian resort close by and many of the locals speak amazingly good Italian! We enjoyed their company but I can imagine that some people might find them annoying. Especially if you spend your whole time on this beach. Like other beaches in Zanzibar the tides make it impossible to swim for large portions of the day. A nice pool is important. At Anna’s only 3 of the rooms were occupied so we had a lot of privacy and full choice of pool lounges.
On the third day we left Bwejuu and headed to Pongwe for lunch at The Rock. (pre-booked and full). We were a little afraid this might be a tourist trap but in fact it was worth it. It is a very picturesque little place and fun for lunch. The food was ok and quite expensive but we enjoyed it.
Our next stop was Matemwe on the North East coast.........

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