Zanzibar; information about the islands

Entertainment P0WR2THP0NERS July 25, 2016 0 20
The name of this island sounds as magical as the other African countries; Timbuktu, Casablanca or Kilimanjaro. This small archipelago in the Indian Ocean, is an idyllic place on earth. But unfortunately even this island are damages incurred in recent years. The island has still to go a long way to get up there again. But despite that the island is as magical as its name suggests!


  • History of Zanzibar
  • Economy
  • Population and culture
  • The islands

Mangrove forests around Zanzibar island
  • Island Group: Zanizbar island, Pemba island and surrounding islands
  • Location: 40 kilometers off the east coast of Africa, in the Indian Ocean
  • Size: 1660 km² Zanzibar and Pemba 985 km²
  • Climate: Wet season: mid-March to late May; short rains in November; temperatures average 26-28 degrees Celsius
  • Status: Semi-autonomous state in the United Republic of Tanzania
  • Population: 1.30356 million
  • Life expectancy: 48
  • Capital: Zanzibar City
  • Economy: Fishing, tourism, agriculture
  • Language: Official language is Swahili, Arabic second language
  • Religion: Muslim 95%, other 5% Christians and Hindus
  • Currency: Tanzanian Shilling
  • National anthem: Mungu ibariki Afrika
  • Holidays: January 1, January 12, 26 April, 1 May, July 7th, 9th December, December 25th

History of Zanzibar

The first Arab
The Arabs used Zanzibar as a base for their trade around the Indian Ocean. With the arrival of the Arabs, Islam was also introduced on the island.
The emergence of the Swahili
Two Masai on the beach of Paje, Zanzibar This began approximately in the fifth century of the first millennium. The Bantu people were the first inhabitants of the coastal areas. They have developed over the years a unique language and culture that came to be known as Swahili. They came into regular contact with the actor Arabs, hence the Swahili has many Arabic words. Next words took the Bantu too many habits of the Arabs. Including their religion and certain traditions.
Zanzibar in the second millennium
Zanzibar becomes a very important commercial center in the Indian Ocean. The Persians and Omanen find their way to Zanzibar and Zanzibar city begins to grow exponentially. In the thirteenth century Zanzibar going to beat his own coins and the cityscape with mud huts slowly being replaced by houses of coral stone. In the fifteenth century, China has found its way to the east coast of Africa. Late fifteenth century and traded with Arabia, Persia, India and Southeast Asia. Zanzibar's future looks bright, but then the Portuguese ...
Portuguese rule
The first Portuguese Rui Lorence Ravasco, set foot ashore in Zanzibar in 1503. That he was not coming to befriend manifested early on when he at arrival 20 Swahili Dhows overpowered and shot 35 islanders. Around 1525 the Portuguese rule takes over, they have a say in Pemba, Ungunja and the entire east coast of Africa.
The novice slave trade began to grow, the Portuguese needed many slaves to their colonies in India and also in the home country, Portugal, there was a great demand for slaves. Partly because of the slave trade began England around 1591 also show interest in the east coast of Africa and became a regular visitor to the island Ungunja. Meanwhile, the power of the Sultan of Oman is slowly but steadily growing. After several successful wars he decided, in 1650, to Mwinyu Mkuu; to help the king of Zanzibar to dislodge the Portuguese. After a long time we succeed and in 1695 the entire east coast of Africa into the hands of the Sultan of Oman.
Living under Omani rule
Entrance of the Arab Fort Around 1750, Oman has grown into a huge trading nation with the biggest export product; dates. The heavy and hard work on the dadelplantages had to be done by cheap forces. These were the African slaves ... Around 1770 is the export figure of slaves at approximately 3,000 slaves per year. Around this time also put the Dutch first set foot on Zanzibar. They were looking to put slaves to work on plantations in the Dutch East Indies.
Around the 18th century, does the cloves its onset. This is the moment that explodes the slave trade. So many slaves are traded that more in the coastal regions of Africa for slaves and the slavers have been pulling ever further inland in their search for slaves. Most slaves are indeed remain in Zanzibar to work on the clove plantations.
Meanwhile, Oman has a new Sultan who has close ties to the British. This is in the interest of defending Oman as this proves to be necessary. The British, in turn, will interfere with the slave trade. This is banned in England for some years and they want this prohibition also have input in Africa ... until the law is signed in 1896 which prohibits trafficking in slaves. The Sultaan of Oman ruled officially on the east coast of Africa, but sits with hands and feet tied to the British
Zanzibar is the twentieth century
During World War I the British have many Africans and Zanzibari at the service of the British army. After the First World War, England began to lose interest in Zanzibar and found that they were slow to stand on their own feet. After World War II, where Zanzibar played no further significance in England began to involve local people in politics. The first free elections were held in July 1957.
Fully autonomous Zanzibar had ended in June 1963. On December 10, 1963 Zanzibar was an independent Sultanate. Unfortunately, this was probably one of the shortest Sultan Aten which have ever existed. On January 12, 1964 the Government of Zanzibar was overthrown by a violent revolution. The island has had a long time to recover from here and free, presidential elections were only held again in 1980
The official flag of Zanzibar Politics and recent history
Zanzibar is a semi-autonomous state in the United Republic of Tanzania. They have their own President and a House of Representatives. The President of Zanzibar is also Vice President of Tanzania. The first free elections in 1980 are restless expired and were characterized by chaos and violence between rival parties. After years of talk, the two rival political parties have reached an agreement and since 2002 is the rest of the island returned. The 2005 elections were conducted without further incident.


Sources of income
Clove has long been the main industry on the island. From early nineteenth century until about 1980, the revenue of which were very high. After the clove price crash of 1980, the Zanzibaris were also forced to find other sources of income. Besides clove the main resources of the island are agriculture, fisheries, coconut and seaweed products and various spices. But unfortunately was Tanzania, Zanzibar so, recently reported on the list of the 32 poorest countries in the world.
Seaweed farming
The seaweed farming was launched in 1989 in Zanzibar. Young seaweed tied to a rope and strung between two poles on the beach. Planting, tending and harvesting seaweed farmers do between high and low tide. It is harvested and dried, and then exported to Europe and Asia, where it is mainly used as a thickening agent. Unfortunately Zanzibar must also import a lot of commodities which export earnings reasonably into insignificance. The basic supplies that are mainly imported are:
  • Rice
  • Mais
  • Oil
  • Sugar
  • Wheat and flour
  • Mineral water
  • Beer

 The cattle goes to the meadow
The fresh fish is "brought" to the market
Partly due to the kite center comes tourism and more jobs for locals
Tourism is sharply in recent years been increasing. This brings with it advantages and disadvantages. Tourism brings additional revenue for the island, but unfortunately for the Zanzibari this extra income is not spent on improving the first necessity of life such as water. It also brings tourism and the businesses around there a lot of waste along with it. Zanzibar has no waste management as we know it and the waste there is, is very sober. Each day alone in Zanzibar town more than 200 tonnes of waste. The clean-up services are able to pick up 60 tonnes of waste and to process. The consequence is that waste is dumped everywhere, both on the land and coastal areas and the sea.
Shop with handmade bags in Stone TownDe locals and tourism
The population is on the whole happy with tourism. It brings them an extra source of income.
But like anywhere where tourism gets under way poses problems. 95% of the Zanzibaris are Muslim. The western tourist entails drinking and drug use and dresses very different. This drives a wedge between the older and younger generation on the island. Prostitution is a growing problem on the island.
Local fishermen already report that close to the coast, less fish being caught. Especially crab, lobster, octopus and cuttlefish have to pay for it. Local fishermen will have to move to the coral reefs in order to still provide an income. If the fish disappear from the reefs here will not be much. The demand for fresh fish by tourists driving the price up. This has the result that the local people are often unable to pay for the fish. Especially for their local dishes are the basic ingredients such as octopus and squid, become too expensive.
Mangrove roots are widely used as construction materials Building materials
The population has years of use made of natural materials that are present on the island. Especially sand, coral rock and trees had to pay for it. The result is that there is now occurs coastal erosion in various places. Also mangrove roots are widely used, they are known for their strengths and do not go moldy in the tropical climate. The result is that many mangroves have disappeared and / or substantially depleted. The mangrove is also called the nursery of the fish. Because of the unique ecosystem of the mangrove bring many fish and other animals here their young. If the mangrove forests disappear, so does this natural nursery. Finally, the mangroves also serve as a natural protection for the coast against storms and hurricanes. These now are increasingly likely to reach land
Income & Health
Income differences in the islands Ungunja, Pemba and Mafia are themselves large. But the income between the people in the urban and rural areas is very different. Half the population of Zanzibar live below the poverty line of 1 USD per day. The care on the island is poorly regulated and does not pay for most people. As a result, the average life expectancy in Zanzibar is 48 years.
The number of AIDS and HIV cases, compared to the rest of Africa, still low but the fear is that this will increase under the increasing influence of drugs and prostitution. There will also be more and more Tanzanians from mainland Africa to Zanzibar to find work, they often bring the HIV virus along. Furthermore it is striking that significantly more women than men are infected.
The locals also fun to be had on the beach

Population and culture

According to the latest census, there are currently 1.30356 million people in Zanzibar. 2/3 of the population lives on Ungunja. The largest towns on Zanzibar island are:
  • Zanzibar town with its famous old town; Stone Town
  • Chaani
  • Bambi
  • Mahonda
  • Makunduchi

Outside these cities, people live mainly in small traditional villages and live from farming, fishing and various tourist activities. Pemba has a population of about 366 355. The largest cities here are Chake, Wete and Mkoani. Finally we have the Mafia island with a population of about 40 801
The first language spoken is Swahili, called by the inhabitants themselves Kiswahili on Zanzibar. Swahili is spoken by many people along the East African coast, although it is not everyone's first language. Swahili is a language with great influences from Arabic and to a lesser extent from the Portuguese, Persian and English. Zanzibar is considered the place where the basics of Swahili lies. Swahili is still spoken here in his most poetic and purest form. The further you travel along the East Coast the simpler and more basic is Swahili. Zanzibar second language is Arabic. English is less common, although most people speak some basic English words.
A family on the beach Religion
Approximately 95% of the population is Muslim and a follower of Islam. Zanzibar and Pemba are also many mosques. The remaining 5% are Christians and Hindus. They also have their own places of worship in several places on the island. The Zanzibari also still believe very strongly in ancient African customs, myths and rituals. In some places of the island there is a kind of mix between the Islamic and African beliefs arise.

The islands

Details islands
  • The island of Zanzibar, also called Ungunja, is about 85 km long and 25 km wide.
  • It has a total area of ​​1,660 km²
  • The island of Pemba is a lot smaller than Zanzibar and is about 67 km long and 15 to 20 km wide.
  • The total area is 985 km².
Both islands are relatively flat and have small mountains or hills. They are surrounded by coral reefs, lagoons and mangrove forests. The highest elevation on Zanzibar has an elevation of 120 meters above sea level and the highest mountain on Pemba lies 95 meters above sea level. Pemba seems hillier than Zanzibar but it is not.
The climate is characterized by wet and dry seasons. The long rainy season begins in early March and lasts until late May. The short rainy season is during the month of November. In the period from June to October the average temperature is 26 degrees Celsius. From December to February, it is still slightly warmer daytime temperatures averaging 28 degrees Celsius.
The Northeast monsoon wind begins during November - December and lasts until February - March. The southwest monsoon winds, lasts from June to September - October. During the monsoon winds, it is an ideal time for wind and kite surfers. The sun worshiper can just pay. On the other side of the island because you're in the lee of the wind! The humidity on the entire island is relatively high, this may feel warmer than it actually is. Pemba is generally cooler than Zanzibar, but there is little rain.
View into one of the many bay Flora & Fauna
Unlike the mainland of Africa, live on Zanzibar no large land animals. On the entire island you will find several species of monkeys, bongos, white civets and mongooses. Bird lovers can also indulge themselves with the more than 200 different bird species that are present. Zanzibar is unfortunately no animals area Kenya. The numbers of animals are considerably lower than in other parts of Africa. So not all herds pass but still see plenty of animals.
Underwater life of Zanzibar should also not be beaten. This is very colorful, diverse and brimming with life. There is a large diversity of different types of seaweed and coral, fish and turtles. Especially the Hawksbill and Green Turtle are common in the waters around Zanzibar. The Green Turtle and Hawksbill lay their eggs mainly on the beaches of Pemba and sometimes that of Zanzibar. Unfortunately, many turtles are illegally slain by poachers but also by the locals. A turtle often takes more than one month's salary and the population is very poor. They also believe that the meat of the turtle has a medicinal effect. Fortunately, there is an increasing tendency towards the conservation and protection of the turtle. There are launched local initiatives to give the children at school about the importance of preserving the turtle and tortoise there are several shelters.
A tortoise on Prison IslandHet island and the vegetation
Zanzibar is an atoll which has dried up in the course of centuries to lie, hence the many coral reefs. There was a large amount of forest, but unfortunately lost by cap nearly two thirds of the original vegetation. The inhabitants have this wood used for the construction of their homes. Related materials above. The largest forest that is left now is the Jozani Forest. Fortunately, this forest is now protected by the government and NGO groups to further cap can be prevented. The main trees and shrubs on the island are the spices - trees, fruit trees and shrubs:
  • Coconut trees
  • Clove Trees
  • Banana trees
  • Citrus fruits
  • Black pepper
  • Cinnamon
  • Cardamon
  • Jasmine
  • Chili peppers
  • Henna
For personal use grow the inhabitants often; maize, cassava, yams, banana and pumpkin.