Zanzibar, located off Tanzania’s coast, is renowned for its beaches and historic Stone Town. Recently it has also become a key stop on the international plague rave circuit, hosting European partygoers escaping mandatory lockdowns, masks or other restrictions.
Culture Musical Club presented two sets at Makor on Wednesday, sounding like two separate bands: first with elegant orchestral taarab; and secondly with lively, nonstop dance music.
Birds of Paradise Beach Festival
Zanzibar has always had an extensive music culture. Freddy Mercury spent part of his childhood here, while Stone Town hosts Africa’s premier music festival every year: Sauti za Busara. However, Zanzibar can also offer an idyllic retreat experience, boasting gorgeous beaches and captivating island culture – here are a few places that best showcase it.
Matemwe offers the perfect island retreat: its unspoiled beach is lined with some of the island’s most opulent resorts and is an idyllic spot to unwind and take advantage of the warm Indian Ocean breezes. Relax along its length or stop by one of its beach bars for a ginger beer called tangawizi and sunset cocktails – either way it offers plenty of island adventure!
One of the islands’ hidden gems, The Rock is an exquisite restaurant perched high atop an incredible rock in the Indian Ocean. A must-visit for foodies, its open air dining experience offers breathtaking ocean views paired with delicious meals such as seafood, grilled vegetables and delectable desserts – not forgetting its deliciously exotic cocktails!
One of the main draws to Zanzibar is its stunning beaches, most notably Paje and Jambiani with their powder-white sand and brilliant blue skies. Both beaches provide exceptional snorkelling opportunities – you can even swim out to one of its coral atolls for an up close view – plus warm, clear water with numerous fish to spot.
Zanzibar is well known for its spice trade, and visitors can learn more through Spice Tours – a free guided walking tour which visits various markets and farms around Zanzibar to gain more insight into this industry. Your guide will explain how spices are grown and processed while offering samples of local produce – an enjoyable and educational way to spend an afternoon. It runs all year round – don’t miss it if visiting Zanzibar!
Lost Paradise encourages visitors to dress in costume for its events, and this year was no different. Punters donned elaborate makeup, flowing dresses and fluoro wigs while others donned NBA team uniforms or dressed as angels or devils.
Zanzibar Music Festival
Zanzibar offers many exciting festivals throughout the year, ranging from music and food festivals to beachfront celebrations and cultural awareness programs. Soundscapes has been hosting electronic dance music events on Zanzibar since 2013, hosting their flagship Paje Beach event each February with world-class performers and DJs as headliners.
Sauti za Busara, meaning “Sounds of Wisdom,” in Swahili is an annual music festival that honors and unites African cultures and peoples. Held annually in February at Old Fort (Ngome Kongwe, Stone Town), it is considered the largest music event in East Africa and provides an invaluable showcase of Swahili culture and tradition, along with local talent like Bi Kidude from Culture Musical Club or Tanzanian pop and hip-hop artists from Tanzanian pop to hip-hop music artists like Taarab Legend Bi Kidude is present and celebrated alongside Tanzanian pop and hip-hop stars such as Bi Kidude and Culture Musical Club among many others!
Festivals aim to bring together artists from across the globe to share their love for music with fans worldwide and foster connections between music fans. Their line-ups are always impressive and the experience of attending one of these events truly unforgettable – their music sure makes you dance, while crowds can’t contain their excitement!
Africa Music Conference (AMC) is Africa’s premier networking and professional development opportunity for those working across all aspects of global music industry. It provides key decision makers a forum to share experiences, knowledge, and create new opportunities for business growth. The program features keynote presentations by international industry leaders as well as seminars, workshops and discussions.
The next edition will take place in 2022 and promises to be even more spectacular than before. Tickets can be booked online, with special discounts for Tanzanian citizens, African passport holders, and EAC residents.
Festivals in Zanzibar provide a wonderful way to experience local culture. From music fests and food fests, to celebrations dedicated to animals or commemorations of special dates – whatever suits your fancy! Plus you can share these memorable experiences with family and friends, making for an unforgettable trip. Whether looking for somewhere special to mark an important anniversary, birthday or simply fun memories; festivals in Zanzibar will ensure it becomes the highlight of your visit!
The annual Sauti za Busara (Sounds of Wisdom) music festival takes place annually in Stone Town, Tanzania around February. This renowned event showcases various talented African artists with particular attention being paid to women artists and newer talents; 2023 edition will have special focus on women artists. “Tofauti Zetu Utajiri Wetu” (“Diversity Is Our Wealth”) serves to highlight importance of cultural diversity across creative fields such as music.
Zanzibar hosts one of the world’s premier Afro Piano Festivals each year, which showcases Afro-influenced piano music. This festival provides musicians an invaluable chance to exchange ideas and gain knowledge from each other while giving up-and-coming artists exposure and developing their careers.
The Afro Piano Festival takes place every October at Stone Town’s Forodhani Gardens and is an absolute must for piano fans. Showcasing a wide range of genres from African and Afro-inspired to classical and contemporary pieces, as well as workshops and master classes tailored specifically towards music enthusiasts, it features performances across a variety of genres that should not be missed!
Zanzibar festivals showcase traditional African styles through dance and theater as well as music. Busara Promotions non-profit NGO organizes this festival each February; visitors and locals alike come out. There are three stages with various musical genres performed at it; legendary taarab performers like Bi Kidude perform alongside homegrown Tanzanian singers and musicians. Plus there’s the daily Movers & Shakers networking sessions.
Zanzibar’s Eid ul-Adha festival marks an integral part of Islamic faith. At this time, Muslims sacrifice animals as an act of devotion to Allah. Eid also presents families an opportunity to spend quality time together while feasting and taking part in festive music and dance performances, often alongside bonfires and mock fights.