Getting there and getting around

Getting there: Getting money

Your point of arrival into Zan­zib­ar will be Stone­town wheth­er you arrive by air or by sea. It is very import­ant that you note that there are very few ATMs out­side Stone­town. There is one at the gas sta­tion in our neigh­bour­ing vil­lage, Paje, and a few in the north­ern part of the Island. Most places, includ­ing our house, are cash-only!

Getting there: Finding the house

Zan­zib­ar is not huge, but the roads are below inter­na­tion­al stand­ards, and the 50-kilo­met­er jour­ney from Stone­town to Jam­bi­ani takes around 75 minutes by taxi.

If you wish, we can arrange a taxi to pick you up from the air­port (or sea port) and take you straight to the house when you arrive.

When the driver picks you up, he will be hold­ing a Dude’s Gues­t­house sign with your name on it so you know whom to look for. Please let us know at least one day in advance if you wish to book a pickup ser­vice on arrival. In order to pick you up, you must noti­fy us of your flight num­ber (if trav­el­ling by flight) and your time of arrival (flight or ferry).

The price is approx­im­ately $30, to be paid in cash dir­ectly to the driver upon arrival.

You can also hail a taxi at the air­port, but be pre­pared to haggle with the driver to get a decent price. Cars can be ren­ted in Stone­town, though not actu­ally at the air­port. If you’re feel­ing very adven­tur­ous, you can also take dala dala no. 309 to Jam­bi­ani, but we don’t recom­mend that.

Getting around: Local transportation and rentals

The Zan­zib­ari equi­val­ent of pub­lic trans­port is the dala dala. They have no fixed time tables but run con­tinu­ously through­out the day, pick­ing up pas­sen­gers who flag them down. Rid­ing in a dala dala is cheap and an exper­i­ence, but we do not recom­mend going far. The seats are nar­row, low, hard, and uncom­fort­able, and the many holes in the road mean you fre­quently bang your head again­st the low ceil­ing. On the oth­er hand, a trip from Stone­town to Jam­bi­ani – tak­ing any­where from an hour and a half to over three hours – costs only around 50¢.

In gen­er­al, most people prefer to rent a car to get around the island, or hire scoot­ers or bicycles for loc­al trans­port.

Note that driv­ing a loc­al car in Zan­zib­ar requires a sep­ar­ate per­mis­sion apart from hav­ing an inter­na­tion­al driv­ing per­mit. Car rent­als can help you fix this when you rent.