If you’re looking to have a wedding with a difference, Zanzibar is the answer! A superbe island on the Indian Ocean, Zanzibar is one of the most interesting countries in East Africa, due to its rich history, culture and cuisine. Moreover, its distinct landscapes can make your wedding a dreamy and memorable experience.
1. Why choose a destination wedding in Zanzibar?
Zanzibar became one of the most famous wedding destinations in the world and the reasons are countless. With its private islands, luxurious wedding venues, adventurous outdoor activities and exotic sandy beaches, this country has it all, making it the best place to escape for a one of a kind wedding.
Here are a few reasons to choose Zanzibar as your wedding destination:
- Beautiful beach venues. As an archipelago, Zanzibar hosts some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, such as Kiwegwa, Kizimkazi and Nakupenda. Nakupenda means “I love you” in Swahili, making it the perfect destination for a romantic wedding.
- Friendly people. Zanzibar is famous for its hospitality, the locals being generally helpful and friendly with tourists.
- Amazing wildlife. This beautiful island is known for its own unique ecology. Its many protected marine areas are home to coral reefs, whales and dolphins, while in the mangrove forests monkeys, colorful birds and cobras can be found. Zanzibar has one national park and many protected marine areas.
- Birthplace of Freddie Mercury. The famous Queen singer was born in Zanzibar, on 5 September 1946. In 2019, the first Muslim museum in Zanzibar was opened in Stone Town, commemorating 28 years from Freddie’s passing.
- The capital Stone Town was declared a UNESCO world heritage in 2000, thanks to its 19th-century architecture and the influence of the Swahili culture.
- Watersports. If you are an adventurous couple, you can find many interesting activities around the island, such as snorkeling, swimming with dolphins and even underwater weddings.
- Exotic cuisine. Being known as the ‘spice island’, along with Tanzania, Zanzibar has some of the most interesting flavors. The best thing is that almost everything is local and fresh, from exotic fruits such as durian and papaya to flavourful seafood.
2. Best wedding venues in Zanzibar – Tips on picking the ideal place for you
Wild places, warm beaches and friendly people – these are the main things that you will find on this beautiful island. But, when it comes to organizing a wedding, things are not always easy, mostly when it would take place in another part of the world. Here are a few ideas to help you decide on the best place to say ‘I do’:
- Choose a wedding theme. Would you like to exchange vows surrounded by an ocean view or in a wild mangrove, in the heart of nature? Or maybe an underwater ceremony, if you are both into water sports or exciting new adventures? Choosing a wedding theme is important when looking for the perfect venue and the good news is that Zanzibar is home to many spectacular places that can make your experience unique.
- Hire a wedding planner. Organizing a wedding in another country can be difficult sometimes, because you have to take many things into account, from paperwork to transportation of the guests. So, if this is your dream wedding destination, Weddo Agency will take care of all the aspects, by offering a wide range of services, from paperwork and transportation to organizing the ceremony. This way, you will make sure that you’ll both be relaxed and have the best times of your lives.
- Reflect your style. Your needs come first, so think about ways to reflect your style as a couple. For example, if you are both private people who appreciate intimate places, you can opt for a small wedding or even elope to this exotic destination. But, if a big ceremony abroad is your dream and your budget allows it, you can let your imagination flow – the island is full of luxurious places perfect for hosting large weddings.
3. Zanzibar destination wedding – things you need to know about the country
Zanzibar is an archipelago off the east coast of Africa, an autonomous territory belonging to Tanzania, having its capital in Stone Town. This means that Zanzibar has its own government, but it’s also under Tanzanian rule. The official language is Swahili and the national currency is the shilling, but the dollar can be used everywhere. Cash is the recommended paying method; the only places that take a card are hotels, where a 5% commission is added to the total transaction.
Here are some other things you need to know before eloping to Zanzibar:
- Gorgeous weather. Zanzibar can be visited all year round, but it’s recommended to avoid the rainy period from mid-March to May or November. The peak seasons are December-February and July-August when the average temperature is 30 Celsius degrees.
- Religion. The majority of the population is Muslim – 98%. Zanzibar has all the specific elements of a Muslim country, from women wearing hijabs or burqas to many historical mosques. A good piece of advice is to make sure your chosen outfit is decent. But, because Zanzibaris are open-minded in this regard, non-muslim religious weddings can be performed everywhere in the country.
- No need for a visa. To enter Zanzibar, EU citizens do not need a visa. All you need is a passport, but not a temporary one. At the airport, you will have to fill in a form with details about your visit, and right after that, you get your visa stamp.
- Condiment island. Ginger, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, and many more are the specific condiments of Zanzibar. Together with the culinary influences of those who have conquered the island over time, Zanzibar is a true culinary paradise for those who love exotic flavors. The food is delicious, with oriental or Indian flavors, seafood being the main culinary attraction in the area.
- Slow pace, no rush. Zanzibar is the ideal place to lose track of time and enjoy the slow pace of the island by lazing around on the beach all day long. For example, it’s good to know that your order at the restaurant can take up to two hours – this happens because the people of Zanzibar are taking it slow and are not familiar with the chaotic Western lifestyles. The Zanzibaris are warm, calm and relaxed people, and they are very hospitable towards tourists.
Even if it became popular in the last few years, Zanzibar is still an exotic country that a few have the chance to experience. Therefore, a wedding on the beautiful beaches of the island can be unique and timeless by combining the African and Muslim cultures with the modern vibes of the West. Many would say that Africa is not a destination for everyone, but the island of spices, located in the Indian Ocean, along with Seychelles, Mauritius, or Madagascar, should be on the top of the list for adventure lovers. Therefore, if you decide to tie the knot in gorgeous Zanzibar, remember to take it easy and adopt the calm vibes of the locals. This way, you can truly enjoy this corner of paradise and start your new married life in a heavenly setting. If this is your dream wedding, contact Weddo Agency for an offer and get your wedding journey started as soon as possible!
Photo sources: Shutterstock.com, Pexels.com.