Banda Kuu Travel Guide

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  • Banda Kuu
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  • Off The Beaten Path
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Banda Kuu Things to Do

  • The school

    Nungwi school is made up of three long buildings painted in white and light blue, with no windows and often no desks and chairs - except for the geography room, the entire school seems very basic. There are classes in two sessions, one in the morning and one in the afternoon - kids need to attend one of the two. They all wear a neat uniform...

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  • The little Mosque

    We came across this little mosque on the outskirts of the village, while heading to the Mnarani aquarium. It's the only one we saw, which left us puzzled, as Nungwi has 8000 inhabitants, and all of them are of Muslim faith. No way all of them could squeeze into this tiny construction.Obviously there must be other mosques in town, or else people do...

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  • The traditional village

    The traditional fishing village of Nungwi is a charming place to visit, and it's onlly a pity that very few tourists venture there. It's a unique chance to see how normal people live, and visitors are welcomed with smiles and "jambos". Children in particular are adorable: they will run up to you to touch you and hold your hand - just because you...

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Banda Kuu Restaurants

  • african food with an italian twist

    A great little restaurant on the beach, where you can dine barefoot. Friendly staff and great food, and ultracomfortable wooden chairs with huge pillows. Service is slow, so while you wait have one of their memorable milkshakes. I found curries particularly delicious, especially those with coconut milk. However this very casual restaurant (more or...

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  • great view and seafood

    The Fat Fish restaurant is a locally-owned simple restaurant built in stilts in Nugwi. The place is nice, with a great terrace overlooking the sea and friendly (and somewhat slow) staff. The mixed grill proved to be delicious (rock lobster included) - as well as some other local dishes. Zanzibari-style curries are to die for, especially the...

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Banda Kuu Nightlife

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    by call_me_rhia Updated Apr 21, 2006

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    The Cholo's bar was supposed to be the happening place in Nungwi. The bar is really quaint, built with bits and pieces of wooden retrieved from the sea.. and with two old boats. Che Guevara watches over you while you drink there - there's a nice flag with his face there. And yet... when we were there, nothing was happening - no one sat there, and the place was definitely dead. For the record, the other handful of bars were just as deserted as the cholo. Nungwi is not exactly the happening place which people want you to believe. To us, anyway, it did not matter much.

    Dress Code: Dressed, obviously.

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Banda Kuu Transportation

  • Dala dalas

    Dala dalas are small local buses serving the island main arteries. Dala dala 116 is the one that links Nungwi to Stone Town. Dala dalas have two benches each facing the other and accommodate as many people as the driver decides it's logical to squeeze in. They usually depart when they are full. It's not the most comfortable mean of transportation...

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  • dhows

    Dhows were the traditional boats in this part of the world used to transport goods from zanzibar to countries in the mainland. Traditional dhows used to be made in Stone Town and in Nugwi. These types of boats are still used today, mainly for touristic purposes and for fishing.If you book a sunset cruise or if you go snorkeling or diving, chances...

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Banda Kuu Shopping

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    the minimarket

    by call_me_rhia Written Apr 23, 2006

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    If you need to buy some mineral water and don't feel like walking as far as the traditional village, or if you need some biscuits, a pen, a sun lotion or even... rent a bicycle, the worldwide minimarket - located right on the beach, is the place to go.
    Go there at low tide, since when the tide is high the shop turns into a little island and is completely surrounded by water - it also closes down for those hours.

    What to buy: Anything basic. You won't find much there except some basic survival stuff. Priorities...

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Banda Kuu Local Customs

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    by call_me_rhia Updated Apr 22, 2006

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    When the tide is slow, local people hand about the water and look for something in the shallow water... very mysterious... eventually I started to realize: some people looked for shellfish hidden under seaweed and corals, while other were out to see what their rudimental (but effective) traps had caught. There seemed to be an abundance of shelfish - sadly enough it never found it way onto our plates, as no restaurant was serving it. On rare occasions we also saw some women gather seaweeds, which they then hung to dry so that they culd be used to fertilize the earth.

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Banda Kuu Tourist Traps

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    by call_me_rhia Written Apr 23, 2006

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    While massages themselves are not a tourist trap, those performed in this part of the island surely are. Zanzibar does not have a tradition of massage, and it is quite evident if you try one - really nothing special.

    Unique Suggestions: In all fairness the massage girls are really lovely people and a great laugh - have a massage to enjoy their company rather than the massage itself.

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Banda Kuu What to Pack

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    by call_me_rhia Written Apr 22, 2006

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    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Bring coral shoes - it's really important as the sea is dotted with sea urchins. Every day a handful of tourists managed to walk on one of them, and all ended upp in tears - not to mention the fact that they could not manage to take out all the stingy bits.

    Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Bring some high-protective sun lotion (50 factor or something similar) unless you want to get a sunburn, even if you sit in thhe shade.

    Photo Equipment: Photo equipment is hard to come by... bring all you need with you.

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Banda Kuu Off The Beaten Path

  • Mnarani aquarium

    The Mnarani aquarium is a little walk away from the traditional village of Nungwi and, while the place itself is not spectacular, your visit will help the preservation of sea turtles.Injured turtles are nursed here at the aquarium - and they also have a reprduction project. For the 2 dollars entrance fee you can feed them seaweed and even swim with...

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  • Kendwa

    Kendwa is about 3 kilometres south of Nungwi, and it's easily reachable on foot via the beach - however only at low tide. When you there there you see first a posh all-inclusive 5 star hotel (la rosa dei venti) with a wonderful beach and a restaurant built on stilts, and then another great beach with simpler accommodation and a traditional...

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Banda Kuu Sports & Outdoors

  • Swimming in turquoise

    Swimming in turquoise waters... the best waters I have swum in... lovely in colour, not too cold and not too warm... just perfect. Many happy hours were spent this way. Sidenote: only in and arund Nungwi it's possible to swim most of the day, since this stretch of coastline is very little affected by tides (compared with the rest of the...

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  • diving and snorkeling

    For diving or snorkeling, the Spanish Dancer Dive Centre is the place to go.Single dives start of 40 euros, and snorkeling trips and 20 euros. Snorkeling at Mnemba (which I did not do) is considered a must, and costs 30 euros.Don't worry about not finding The people of the Dive Centre, they are on the beach and they will find you. Everthing (lunch...

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Banda Kuu Favorites

  • the other Nungwi: low tide at the beach

    Nungwi is not only a perfect white beach with turquoise waters... and it's not only a happy traditional fishing village... Nungwi is also the sea at low tide, when all sorts of sea creatures come out. it's the hidden submarine world that comes out to meet you. You can find all sorts of hidden gems: - colourful star fishes (red, green, brown and...

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  • Nungwi

    Nungwi is about an hour and some police checks north of Stone Town: it's at the very tip of the island and - except for a posh and secluded hotel - it's full of simple bungalows and incredibly white beaches. A true corner of heaven. Theorethically it's also famous for its nightlife and wild parties, but when I was there all bars remained happily...

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