The best escape reasons to this Zanzibar spa holiday

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Create your own personal experience of a lifetime and immerse yourself with a wellness escape Zanzibar imbued in legend and mystery. Explore this Zanzibar spa holiday natural holistic sanctuary, and the mystery of its surrounds.

When I reflect on Zanzibar, the first thought that comes to my mind is a diverse dramatic flair. The second, is colour. And Zanzibar has nailed fashioning this fusion of cultures with panache, including that of African, Arabian, Indian and European for over more than a millennium. And this while still in the light of retaining all its indigenous elements!  Today it is an ideal getaway for a cultural tourism escape, a wellness escape, or perhaps a combination of both. 

“It retains its urban fabric and townscape virtually intact and contains many fine buildings that reflect its particular culture, which has brought together and homogenized disparate elements of the cultures”, explains UNESCO.

And when you are thinking “Wellness Destination”, Zanzibar, to a more than adequate degree qualifies! Let’s see exactly what spices this up as the ideal wellness escape Zanzibar:

  • Wellness
  • Stone Town (World Heritage site)
    • Feel the history & modern day vibe
    • Spices
    • Pamoja Zanzibar Festival
    • Festival partners 
    • Afrodance
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Escape Zanzibar Wellness

An intimate boutique destination, Essque Zalu Zanzibar has its own natural cove. Sketched between lush green forest, and the turquoise Indian Ocean you can inhale a hint of spice in the warm tropical air. 

The spa which has eight treatment rooms, is world class with a distinctively local influence. Plus the unique Zanzibar Spa has partnered with the award-winning Africology brand. Together they have created a series of locally inspired spa rituals designed to take guests on a unique, multi sensory wellness journey. 

The signature indigenous Africology treatments use 100% organic and natural ingredients, while the recently launched Maasai Ritual is a multi-sensory delight.

The Maasai of East Africa have a long tradition of healing rooted in the powerful natural surroundings of the land. Resonating with indigenous techniques and inspired by nature’s energy.

It is an immersive experience created to transport guests to another place, offering a complete break from reality. Treatments are carried out in a specially designed Maasai ‘Village’ by Zanzibarian and Tanzanian therapists with an in-depth knowledge of the culture. 

Guests are cocooned in traditional tents, with variants of the instantly recognisable red and black woven fabrics synonymous with the tribe and intricate wood carvings creating beautiful Maasai-inspired ambience. Bathed in the soft glow of suspended lanterns and the heady scent of locally sourced essential oils, the two hour ritual takes place during or after sunset. This is intended to take guests on a journey of renewal steeped in the sights, sounds and sensations of Maasai customs.

The following experiences are included at this Zanzibar spa holiday experience:

1. Foot ritual, a fresh coconut and sand scrub, recalling the natural scrubs used to clean the feet and smooth the skin in local traditions. This is followed by a light foot massage with fresh Zanzibar lime, coconut and lime essential oil to relieve tension and reduce muscle pain.

2. A traditional ‘singo’ or scrub and aromatherapy massage, a treatment traditionally administered to brides-to-be a week before their wedding to ensure their skin is soft and glowing. The body is scrubbed in a traditional ritual which uses the leaves of the Moringa, also known as the ‘Miracle Tree’. It has been used around the African continent throughout history for its anti-ageing properties. The leaves are mixed with cinnamon powder, ylang ylang and raw sugar to leave skin exfoliated, glowing and smooth. Next the scrub is followed by a relaxing 45 minute aromatherapy massage using coconut oil.

3. African facial, an intense rejuvenation treatment which de-stresses and rehydrates with pure natural oils such as avocado oil, Marula oil and Moringa oil. This involves a fresh yogurt cleanse, followed by a cucumber tonic, raw sugar scrub and facial massage, inspired by a traditional treatment in which sugar is caramelised over a fire and combined with oils to create a powerful scent.

After long hours playing out in the sun rehydrate the skin with a Honeybee After Sun Cocoon using a blend of pure honey and Aloe or a Little Bee Facial using a Rooibos tea and mask with a natural SPF. For something a little more indulgent the Choco-Boo Massage includes a soft chocolate exfoliation and coconut massage for hands and feet. The Coconut Cocoon offers a choice of flavourings from strawberry to mixed berry, to butterscotch and vanilla.

The resort also offers a mixture of contemporary villa and suite accommodation crafted from local materials.

Stone Town 

The architecture of Stone Town is teeming with tales, legends and history from when Sultans, Arabs, Europeans and Zanzibaris charted its history. Places of interest in Stone Town include:

  • Anglican Cathedral & the slave markets
  • The Palace of the Sultans
  • Tippu Tib’s House (slave trader and plantation owner)
  • The Old Arabic Fort
  • Forodhani Park
  • Famous Zanzibar doors along the cobbled streets. 
  • Henna art, amidst fruit and vegetable markets. 

Prepare yourself for a walk through the long history of Zanzibar and its numerous rulers. 

Feeling the history & today’s vibe 

With awesome views of both Stone Town and the Indian ocean, it’s a super spot to be entertained. Filled with energetic people throughout the day, although as mentioned, it really comes alive at night (when everyone gathers). And you are bound to leave mesmerised!

It is also a favourite spot because it is the perfect place to cool down from the heat of the day. With the gentle breeze of the water, and misty spray you will be comfortable in no time. 

The activities within Forodhani Gardens are endless, but what really captures the heart and mind is the local divers. Some of the acrobatic stunts performed is startling. But often funny, is watching a tourist give it a go… 

The thrill seeking divers are egged on by cheering crowds! Spurred on, they fearlessly leap over the Mizingani Sea Wall, striking mid-air poses, somersaults, and other epic stunts. Sometimes landing unflatteringly in the water below, while others do have the landing nailed. 

The Mizingani Seafront is a linear promenade almost 360 metres in length. And the seawall is an integral part of the Park.

PAMOJA ZANZIBAR FESTIVAL 

Pamoja Zanzibar is the concept by Radek Bond Bednarz, musician and producer, founder of Eklektik Session international platform. The first Pamoja Zanzibar Festival took place in July 2021 and presented interactions between African and European artists. The spectacular idea of unity and diversity was also a great opportunity to explore Zanzibar’s Swahili culture, the result of a fusion of African, Asian and European influences. 

The second Pamoja Zanzibar Festival will be touring Tanzania and Zanzibar between 20-27 March 2022 , focusing on traditional Tanzanian Gogo tribe music represented by Sinaubi Zawose of the Zawose music family. Sinaubi carries on the legacy of his world acclaimed father Hukwe Zawose and is planning to come for the very first time to perform Europe later this year. But first SINAUBI ZAWOSE & PAMOJA ZANZIBAR featuring finest Polish and Tanzanian musicians  will come together and tour mainland Tanzania/Zanzibar, so don’t miss and bring your dancing shoes !!!

Sinaubi Zawose learned music as a traditional dancer and drum player at the age of 10 under the supervision of his father, Dr. Hukwe Zawose, a prominent Tanzanian musician, a member of the Gogo ethnic group. Sinaubi learned to play the ilimba, a large lamellophone similar to the mbira, as well as several other traditional instruments. Hukwe Zawose came to national and international attention after Julius Nyerere invited him to live and work in Dar es Salaam. He also gained attention for his work with Peter Gabriel and released two albums on Gabriel’s Real World Records label.

Sinaubi reached semi-final of the East Africa Got Talent show in Nairobi/Kenya. Being among the top ten (out of 5000) Sinaubi made history as first artist from Tanzania playing traditional African instruments like Zeze live on stage. In 2021 Sinaubi started collaboration with Radek Bond Bednarz, musician and producer, founder of Pamoja Zanzibar cultural platform and festival. Later that year Sinaubi’s second album TANZANIA was presented at WOMEX Worldwide Music Expo 2021 in Portugal.

SPICE TOUR

One cannot visit Zanzibar without embiaring the history of the spices. Spices such as nutmeg, cinnamon, pepper, cloves and everything else which brought the Sultans of Oman to Zanzibar. And there are so many plantations outside Stone Town. You would be missing out if you do not embark on a spice tour that will be imbibing your senses with amazing smells and learning about the history of each spice and how they came to Zanzibar. Accordingly with reason it is recognized as the “Island of Spices”.

Not only will you savor different aromas of spices, but you get to taste a variety of fruits ranging from coconuts to rose apple, guava, mangoes, passion fruit and custard fruit. Also, learn to understand how rare plants like henna, perfume tree and lipstick tree are used for their value in preparing cosmetics. 

You can be assured that all ingredients of the standard spice rack are represented.

Afrodance 

Watch BBoy Nikki a dance choreographer, performer and instructor conduct an afrodance class in Stone Town Zanzibar.  This specific dance is called Michamvi. If you’re looking to learn or step up your afrodance skills get in touch with Bboy Nikki.

It’s gratifying to immerse oneself in the traditions of the destination you are visiting. And Bboy Nicky ensures an amusing time for all during his classes. 

Different Afrodance techniques are a combination of energetic dance styles that originate in Africa. It is important to note that behind every dance move is a meaning. It’s a gift if you are taught the meaning behind the step. After all dancing is an exploration. Hence why many dances from part of the intangible UNESCO World Heritage. 

Therefore the first important step in learning to Afrodance is learning to listen. Give your full attention to the sound. Absorb it.  Develop a sensitivity to the music. Then you can interact harmoniously. Lastly remember pose and to utilise all of your space. 

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Tracy Burrows102 Posts

    If there is one thing that I have learnt, it is the more I see, the more there is to see! My name is Tracy Burrows and I am the managing editor of Out There Global, a community driven travel magazine platform for cost effective, luxury, unusual and extraordinary but mostly immersive travel ideas around the globe. From Jan 2014 - Dec 2016 I managed the LatestSightings.com blog (a United Nations World Summit Award Winner: Culture & Tourism 2016 & National Geographic partner). I was also consulting editor at MOZambique Magazine, and contributor at Sawubona Magazine (South African Airways inflight magazine). Prior to my career I obtained a tourism marketing degree, and graduated from a 2 year 'Hospitality Management in Development Program' in California. Following this I acquired a journalism diploma and since it's been all about travel and writing! And my nourishment comes from all those who have impacted me: family; friends; and strangers alike. So thank you for inspiring me, and for joining our journey!

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