Daytrip to Nungwi - Dhows, Turtles & a Stunning Beach

Daytrip to Nungwi - Dhows, Turtles & a Stunning Beach

Nungwi on the Northern tip of the island is a traditional fishing village famed for its beautiful white sandy beaches. For centuries, it has also been a well known centre of dhowDhows are the traditional sailing vessels in the western part of the Indian Ocean.Typical are the long thin hulls and triangular lateen sails. They have been plying between India, the Middle East and the East African coast for centuries, making use of the monsoon and carrying goods back and forth. building, the picturesque sailing boats of the Indian Ocean.

This full day excursion starts off with a visit to Mtoni PalaceBeit-el-Mtoni, the “Palace by the Stream”, owes this name to its beautiful location on the western shore of Zanzibar. When Sayyid Said Bin Sultan Albusaidi, Sultan of Oman and Zanzibar, moved his capital from Muscat to Zanzibar in 1852, he made it his main residence. At that time, over a thousand people lived in the palace and its immediate surroundings.

Probably the most famous member of the court was Princess Sayyida Salme, the Sultan’s daughter, who later eloped to marry German merchant Rudolph Heinrich Ruete and live in Hamburg. Her autobiography, “Memoirs of an Arabian Princess in Zanzibar” gives us fascinating and very detailed insights into everyday life in Zanzibar and at the Sultan’s court in the 19th century.

During the 1880s the palace was abandoned, and, although it is one of the oldest and most significant buildings on the island, it slowly sank into disrepair and oblivion.

In 2005, the Mtoni Palace Conservation Project was founded to preserve and restore this important historical monument.
, the residence of the first Sultan of Zanzibar. Our guide will show you around the impressive ruins and explain many details of life at the palace.

After a 45-minutes' drive through the island’s lush interior, you will arrive in Nungwi. There, a guided walk will take you around the village and to the dhow shipyard, where you will learn how those beautiful traditional sailing boats are still being constructed, like in the old times, without nails or indeed any metal at all.

Also included is a visit to the Mnarani Sea Turtle Project, a local NGO that has been set up to preserve those rare and endangered animals.

You can have lunch on the beach and enjoy an afternoon of swimming, watersports or sipping cocktails in a quaint beach bar, overlooking the Indian Ocean.