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Rift Safari
Travelling along the Rift Valley: Pros and cons of Zanzibar

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is not just a crystalline colours tropical island but also Africa and like any African country it is not devoid of stark contrasts.

Pros of Zanzibar are no doubt its beautiful tropical beaches; the richness of marine life offering high quality diving; the history of its capital city nowadays known as Stone Town but originally named Zanzibar; the proximity to some of the best African national parks and the possibility to combine a safari in the northern parks or a safari in the southern parks of Tanzania with a beach holiday;
the numerous air links and the possibility to easily reach the island from most of parks, from Kilimanjaro, Dar es Salaam, Nairobi at reasonable and cheaper costs compared to other island such as Pemba and Mafia but also compared to other remote destinations along the mainland coast; finally the possibility to choose from a wider range of hotels, lodges, resorts where to stay: link to Zanzibar facilities or to the quick reference page where all facilities are listed per average price per person per night.

Conversely 15 years of tourism development have also brought some disadvantages:

While it is true that there are still miles of undeveloped beach, there is no doubt that Zanzibar is losing its appeal of remote, uncharted tropical paradise. That is the price for having the possibility to choose from a wider range of facilities able to satisfy more demanding travellers. Those wishing to spend their beach holiday should turn their attention to less accessible places along the coast of Tanzania, Pemba, Mafia or Mozambique obviously accepting higher costs and less choice.

The tourist income combined with the lack of specific skills to find employment or to engage in business ventures in the sector have brought to the beach boys figure, young guys who are trying to make ends meet unfortunately sometimes in a way a bit too insistent and annoying. You will find them almost everywhere but obviously a greater deal of them will concentrate in the more developed areas such as Nungwi, Kiwengwa and of course Stone Town.

Along with tourism many new goods have been brought in including plastic bags and plastic bottles but not along with the knowledge of what is biodegradable and what is not. Since behaviours change in the population cannot be taken for granted the Zanzibari people just continue as they always did to abandon to the sea what is no longer useful but the sea returns everything on the beach. The government on his hand has not achieved any effective system of waste collection, creating the paradox of a tropical paradise polluted by plastic. While most of facilities everyday clean up their stretch of beach we hope that the government will seriously begin to look for a solution at the bottom of the issue.