In my last post, I talked about the amazing Stone Town with its endless alleys and photo opportunities but I have to admit that my real love lies in the North of the island. Everything from the beach bar, hotel room and scenery screamed ‘exotic’ and why shouldn’t it when my daily view was this?
After weeks of campsites, okay hostels and the guest house of Stone Town, we couldn’t believe it when we arrived at the hotel and walked into our room…
I felt like a princess and despite the huge room and bathroom, only had to share it with one other girl from my group. We had a balcony, air con and fresh towels…I couldn’t believe it! Spoilt and loving it.
After getting over the shock of the amazing room, we ventured down to the beach which was just yards away and couldn’t believe what we saw. Bright blue sky, white sand and turquoise sea; it was everything the holiday brochures advertise and more! Oh yes, I could get used to this!
We had roughly 3 days in this picture perfect paradise and I used them wisely by spending as little time as possible with my group (more on that in another post) and by having fun instead. Our bar had a lovely area full of cushions which was so relaxing…especially when there was a power cut and you wanted to chill out with a good book so I did just that. Every day I took my journal, book and music to the beach and I just relaxed. It was just what I needed.
I also did something I’ve always wanted to do…get henna! I’m not sure why but I’ve never got around to doing it before but this time I took the plunge and went to one of the huts on the beach which had some stunning designs. Each hut had 3 or 4 women in them all talking amongst themselves and smiling and the lady that did my henna was so fast! Almost my entire hand was covered in 5 minutes and I fell in love with it!
After a while of letting it set, reading more of my book and just generally relaxing the hell out of Nungwi Beach, I headed over to the scuba diving office next door to ask about their dive spots and prices etc to see if it was something I wanted to do. One informal chat later and I’d booked a dive the next day before I even realised what I was doing – another amazing place to brag about when people ask where in the world you’ve seen the better side of the ocean
I spent the rest of my day sunbathing and taking photos on the beach before enjoying a lovely dinner in the bar and finishing the day off with a shower and a comfy bed; not much else I could ask for
The next day was D-Day – Dive Day and I couldn’t wait! I’d heard so much about the beautiful waters off North Zanzibar with its fantastic wildlife and visibility but someone clearly forgot to tell the clouds about my dive because there was a short but strong storm about an hour before my dive and I wondered if it would be called off but thankfully, the clouds disappeared, the blue sky came back out and before I knew it I was getting into my wetsuit (which wasn’t a pretty sight let me tell you!) and jumping into the dinghy for my new dive experience!
It wasn’t the best dive for a couple of reasons…the storm had affected the visibility and my dive guide had over-loaded my weight belt meaning that, not only was I sinking quicker than the Titanic but tilting to one side like a fish with an inner ear problem. However, it was a great experience I got to see an Octopus change colour and saw 5 turtles including the resident 3-legged one and another one scratching his butt on the coral – very cool! Not a bad way to spent $50 of my travel fund that’s for sure!
And how did I spend my afternoon you ask? By getting another henna tattoo of course…I told you I fell in love with them This one extended from my ankle to my big toe – beautiful! So I did more sunbathing, more reading and more writing in my journal taking in the beauty of my surroundings for my last few hours. Relaxing and making sure I did what I wanted without spending too much time with the group was exactly what I needed and I was sad that I would be leaving the next morning.
I spent my final night on the beach enjoying music, sending emails (to make sure Mum knew I was still alive) and watching the sun set on one of the most beautiful places I’d ever been to.
And let’s not forget breakfast on the beach in the morning where I had one more little photo opportunity
If you think these photos are pretty, just wait until the photo essay!