Happy Thursday Everyone!!! I’m excited to share my experience on planning our honeymoon to Zanzibar with you all. A few days ago, I put up a post on my Instastory asking which post you would prefer to read. The majority picked “Things to do in Zanzibar”. I put up that post on my personal page and the majority picked “Planning a trip to Zanzibar”! I also had a couple of people ask me to write on both topics which I think is a brilliant idea. If you have more questions, do leave a comment below.
It leaves you speechless,
Then turns you into a storyteller.
Planning the trip to Zanzibar wasn’t as difficult as I expected.
* THIS SECTION WAS UPDATED 9TH SEPTEMBER 2018*
A friend of mine recently travelled to Zanzibar. She departed from Lagos and was able to get visa on arrival. So I guess it’s not compulsory to apply through the Nigerian embassy. But do make sure you have all the items listed below.
The Visa process is pretty straightforward, we applied for the single entry visa. Documents needed are:
1. A valid Nigerian passport
2. Identity card
3. 2 recent passport sized photos (ensure your ears are visible, I had to retake my
4. A filled Tanzanian visa application form
5. Tanzanian Visa application fees. You would be told to pay after you have submitted your
application. As at 2018 the regular fee is 16,300 naira, 22,600 naira for express visa,
32,000 naira for USA passport holders, 79,300 for Business visa fee)
6. An Invitation letter (not mandatory)
7. An Introduction letter from applicant’s employer
8. Itineraries and Hotel reservation
9. Current bank account statement
10. Proof of Yellow fever vaccination
The visa process takes only 2 days. The application form says you should apply in person but errrm welcome to Nigeria lol. I think we were the only ones that went to apply in person that day, every other person there seemed to be helping someone out.
It was a round trip so we booked our flight from Nigeria- Dubai-Zanzibar-Dubai-Nigeria, with emirates and fly Dubai. The flight to Zanzibar was quite long. We departed from Lagos and Arrived in Abuja.
The first stop at Dubai was just for a few hours and the second stop at Dubai was for 3 Nights. If you would like to know more about our Dubai trip, do let me know below.
We had an agent help with searching for the best flight available.
You can easily check for cheap flights on Travelstart, Wakanow or Jumia Travel. Return flight to Zanzibar for one person should be about 270,000 Naira. (could be more or less, depends on the period). I would recommend you book about 2 months to date for more affordable flights, we booked ours about a week to departure. LOL
The hotel we stayed in was recommended to us by Sola’s friend who had stayed there before, and I will gladly recommend to anyone looking to travel to Zanzibar.
Langi Langi hotel is an old hotel just at the edge of the Indian ocean. I can remember how Sola’s friend, Collins kept emphasizing how amazing the hotel was, he talked on and on for hours about their service and food. I was a bit worried at some point because he made it seem perfect. WHICH IT WAS.
We got the contact of owner of the hotel, Mr. Sele, from Collins prior to our trip. He was very friendly. After chatting on several occasions, we finalized our room package which was 2 sea view rooms and 2 garden view rooms for our 4 night stay.We paid a total of 340 USD for 4 nights (about 119,000 Naira) this is nothing compared to what we got (in my opinion). Complimentary breakfast included with airport pickup and drop off for 30 dollars.
Tip: Don’t be in a hurry to book your hotel online. Try to contact the hotel directly and ask if there are deals or discounts available, let them know your purpose for visiting – hotels seem to go the extra mile for guests that are celebrating something.
On arrival, we were really impressed. We were welcomed with fresh juice and warm smiley Tanzanians. What stood out for us during our stay was their service, they were more focused on customer satisfaction than the money, in fact they refused to allow us make payments till we were checking out. Asides the complimentary breakfast, We were given complimentary dinner the first and last night. We had a couple of free drinks.
tip: If you’re a foodie like me, travel with lots of snacks to munch on between meals. (Crackers, cereal, oats. etc.)
We were given the sea view rooms for 3 nights (instead of the agreed 2 nights which was awesome). We could see the ocean from our balcony. We stayed at the garden view room the last night, this was closer to the pool area, it had live animals like antelopes squirrels and others, they were so cute. The rooms were large and very clean.
The beach took my breath away. I could stare at it all day. I tried to take blog worthy pictures, but I was busy being a honeymooner. Can you blame me?
The hotel is located at the far North of Zanzibar which is about an hour from the airport but definitely worth it. The further North in Zanzibar you go, the more private and less crowded the beach is.
If You would like a hotel that is closer to the tourist attractions then you should stay at the Southern part of Zanzibar, more culture and more crowd. You’ll save up about 30000 Tanzanian shilling (about 14 USD) on taxi from the North to the South and back.
Look out for my post on Things to do in Zanzibar.
The best website to book for a hotel is bookings.com, I would recommend that any day, any time. You can then check Trip advisor for reviews on the hotel.
Final Tip: don’t pay for items in dollars. Convert your dollars to their currency and negotiate at all times!
I believe I’ve covered everything as regards planning a trip to Zanzibar, if you have more questions, do leave a comment below. Or send me a DM on Instagram @gingerlielifestyle
Till my next post. Take care.
I’d like to write a post on our honeymoon experience in Dubai, what would you like to read about?
1. How to get a Dubai Visa?
2. Things to do in Dubai
3. Hotels to stay in Dubai
4. Where to eat
And any other suggestions??