Why I love Stone Town

I’m obsessed with Zanzibar. I’m totally obsessed with Stone Town, which is fast becoming my favourite place in Africa. I love the narrow streets are as good as maze. I adore the the ornate doors,  the crammed Darajani market that brims with produce and mountains of spices. When I am not in Stone Town, I miss my morning walks.  I usually start at the street behind the market where old men sit next to small tables fixing watches.

I love walking around the market looking for fresh tuna and spices.  From Darajani, I head to Jaws Corner. This is where the men gather to drink kahawa (coffee) and chai (tea). I was a culture shock when I rented a flat for six weeks in 2010. Jaws Corner is a male zone.

I  showed up in  revealing dress ( a no no),  bought coffee and  had a smoke just so  the men would know without doubt that  there was new arrival and she dances to her own tune.  They are now very happy to see me when I’m in town.

Stone town, which is known as Mji Mkongwe (old town) dates back to the 19th century.

I love catching g a burka fluttering in the wind while the wearer has long turned a corner. I love that market area on Friday is lined with carpets and turns into a place of prayer.

The food here is delicious. It’s spiced just right.

This being Kangaville, I love spending afternoons going to from shop to shop starting in the old town, uttering my Swahili at its best. “Ninataka Kanga za Urafiki” I am looking for Urafiki brand kangas.

I love that Stone Town is a historic city and looks the part; from the old fort to the houses stacked on top of each other and the preserved former palace of the sultan.

I could go on and on. I’d rather show you pictures that make me miss the enchanting slice of the Swahili coast even when I am in Stone Town.


About leratomogoatlhe

I fell in love with traveling Africa on a four day trip to Accra in 2006. I started my journeys around the continent in 2008, when I went to Senegal, and around West Africa to launch my dream of knowing Africa through all my senses. I have been to 24 countries (and counting) over five years of stopping everything in my life to focus on one phenomenal continent. #AfricaRocks.
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3 Responses to Why I love Stone Town

  1. Celi Stewart says:

    Damn, girl. These pics have me missing the place. Stone Town’s homeliness would tempt any wanderer to settle for a bit.
    I’ll definitely be going back in this lifetime.

  2. SoWeTo? says:

    Stone Town is now definitely on my list of to-go-to places. I once seriously considered it, also lured by its 19th Century cobbles, but was discouraged by a friend who berated the place. Sounds so lovely. I have been thinking I am in total need of a holiday.

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