Zanzibar dreaming: my wishlist of where to stay

There are few things I enjoy more than being by the beach and Zanzibar is one of the most beautiful that I’ve experienced yet. I really think I’m designed to live by the coast. Swimming in the wild ocean whose grandness awes and frightens me and yet, floating and moving through the water soothes me so. Relaxing on sandy beaches, watching the world go by and surrendering to the natural pace of time. Finding nourishment from the fruits of the sea and, in East Africa, the delicious Swahili cuisine!

I know babymoons are technically supposed to happen before delivery but, I’m dreaming of a postpartum Zanzibar vacation this Autumn. It helps that a handful of my friends are planning trips there this year. Answering their requests for tips has me researching and getting inspired myself!

Here’s my wishlist of where to stay…

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TGIF! with Bi Kidude

Bi Kidude Photo by Andy Jones

The legendary singer and maverick (look at that photo!), Bi Kidude, passed away yesterday at over 100 years of age. Born in Zanzibar as Fatma Bint Baraka, she is considered the undisputed queen of Taarab and Unyago music. 

A grassroots advocate for women's rights, Bi Kidude participated in the Unyago movement which involves educating young girls against the dangers of sexual abuse and oppression. She herself escaped her forced marriage at age 13 which, was no doubt quite a feat, especially in 1920s Zanzibar.

Bi Kidude received the prestigious WOMEX award in 2005 for her contribution to music and culture in Zanzibar and a 'Sports and Arts Award' from Tanzania's President in 2012.

Today, a celebration in remembrance of the feisty Bi Kidude.

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Tanzania Independence Day

Dar-es-Salaam

Tanzania celebrates Independence Day today.

My mother is from Tanzania and as a result, I have spent a bit of time there, particularly when I was younger. I will never forget Decembers when myself and my many cousins were "shipped off" to our grandparents house for the entire holiday season. Waking up to Mount Kilimanjaro right outside the window. Spending days creating missions in the outdoors such as: how to get mangos down from the tree and; exploring the mystery land beyond the stream at the bottom of  the farm. What a stream! So refreshing in that harsh December heat that we played in it daily (against the adults' wishes) and absolutely clear – you could see every little movement in the water below. Yes, I reminisce… 

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