As you may or may not know Fly Dubai have recently introduced direct flights to Zanzibar from Dubai, with other airlines including Qatar airways and Kenya airways also offering some very affordable flights (albeit with a short one stop connection in between).
With so many inexpensive routes now available to this little island paradise we thought we should go and check it out (basically, we just really wanted to go!) to see exactly what it has to offer.
A direct flight to Zanzibar takes around 6 hours from Dubai so it could be a great option if you simply want to get away for a few days over a long weekend. Once we arrived at the very small tropical airport (and an attempt at some very basic Swahili to try and negotiate the taxi price down a little) we were soon on our way to our first stop on the east side of the island. We arrived at The White Sand Luxury Villas, which is located just a few minutes south of Paje, in just under an hour. We were greeted with very warm welcomes, invited for a delicious late breakfast and then given a tour of the beautiful resort.
When we were finally shown into our villa we could see why they were called ‘luxury’ villas, in which the resort doesn’t take the term lightly! Okay we were extremely lucky and were staying in a family villa even though there were just two of us, but still, even for a family the spaciousness of the engulfing tree-house like lodge, complete with separate house for kitchen and lounge, not to mention the private pool and outside dining area would be enough to please even the most privileged of families.
Outside shower and bath...amazing!!
With monkeys and tropical plantation everywhere it felt like we were staying in the middle of the jungle and yet were still only a minutes walk from the beautiful white sand beach. And what a beach it is! Some of the softest sand you will ever feel between your toes and beautiful turquoise waters to compliment it. It’s not a busy resort with the beach being very quiet, so it’s more catered to relaxation than anything but there are still certain activities and trips on offer to keep you amused.
Monkeys all around the villa!
We had just missed the end of the kite surfing season but were keen to check out The Rock Restaurant, a now quite famous seafood based restaurant situated on a rock (as you might expect) which at tide is surrounded by sea and can only be accessed by boat. It’s a great little restaurant and the food is excellent, but I think the views from the outside terrace of the clear turquoise waters are what really set this place apart. Being just a 15-minute drive from the White Sand Luxury Villas it’s well worth a visit.
The Rock Restaurant
If you’re interested in a stay at White Sand Luxury Villas, don’t worry, you don’t have to fork out a fortune for the family villas, with some other affordable options available. For more information visit their website at www.whitesandvillas.com or email them on firstname.lastname@example.org
Stay tuned for our next post where we’ll be giving the low down on the west side of the island and provide a glimpse into what Stone Town has to offer.