Safety in Zanzibar island

by Laura Camile - 5 years, 4 months ago

Once you are in the amazing place, you want to feel safe and relaxed, unfortunately, in Zanzibar, if you are not in resort/hotel/etc you are not very safe. Sad to say that, but my experience says exactly that. First of all, religion, of course. That's why you must to respect that. This is what mostly depends on you - no showing naked parts of body, better to hide knees and shoulders. Probably you already have heard about two british tourists in shorts who were burnt with acid in the streets of Stone Town, Zanzibar. That's why me and my friends always tried to be aware of clothing there. Because, of course, as tourist you will be in the center of attention anyways, because YOU are ready to spend money there. When locals notice tourists, they start to follow them asking for money or just giving any directions, so in the end they can say that they showed you the way and you MUST to give money. So that's what happened to me and my two friends. We went to Stone Town to look around, because of course the architecture is amazing! And at some point in those narrow streets we got a little bit lost. So we asked someone which way should we take to the main market, and from nowhere appeared the guy in very poor clothes and slippers made from tires and he started follow us saying "yes yes, this is the way", and we asked him to leave us alone, but unfortunately he didn't, so in the end we didn't pay attention to him; we appeared to the main market and he started screaming that it's time for us to pay for him because he showed us the way. We got very angry and told him to go away, but than he started to invite his 'friends' from all the corners saying to memorize our faces and when we are in Stone Town next time to take actions, which meant we won't leave the town healthy. We really got scared, and asked what shall we do to make him go away, and the only answer was money.. Crazy, huh? But it really made us worry, we never wanted to come back to the center again, just because of some 'cyzi (engl. crazy)' people there, because we didn't feel save. Sad, huh? And the other thing, why you should be very careful, are people close to public transport, pretending that they are drivers and collecting money for the ride, and in the end they dissapear with money and you have to pay again. It is just for your own consideration, that if you want to explore city, you have to be really aware of your safety, because even if they say they have a lot of security in town, they won't be able to look after everyone. But on the other hand, it is amazing land, just try not to get yourself in that kind of situation, though it is some kind of experience and adventure as well ! :)

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