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Monsoon clouds swirl over a boat moored in a coral lagoon off the eastern coast of Zanzibar

One of the most romanticized names in travel, Zanzibar has long been famed as an exotic trading outpost that has hosted all who have crossed the Indian Ocean. Few, however, have extolled its natural wonders – some of the best coral-fringed beaches in Africa, if not on the planet. The island remains ringed by crystalline waters, especially off the Northern and Eastern coasts, and remains a veritable beach-bum haven. Its location close to the Safari reserves of mainland Tanzania is both bane and boon – it lacks the tour group masses who frequent other Indian ocean islands, but at the same time remains little more than an afterthought to the conventional African holiday.

 

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