Hotels in Nungwi, Tanzania

by Joanne Thomas
A traditional sailing dhow off the island of Zanzibar

A traditional sailing dhow off the island of Zanzibar

spiaggia zanzibar con barca a vela image by Claudio Brocchieri from

The village of Nungwi, which sits at the northernmost tip of Tanzania's Zanzibar Island, is a dhow-building hub and fishing village turned busy beach destination that attracts a diverse crowd of international travelers. As such, its lodging options, which spread along the coast in both directions from Nungwi, vary considerably in price and ambiance. They include mellow yoga retreats, informal and intimate cottage resorts, and Western-style luxury hotels.

Doubletree by Hilton Resort Zanzibar - Nungwi

The Doubletree by Hilton Resort Zanzibar - Nungwi is located directly on a palm-fringed beach at the northernmost tip of Zanzibar Island. Its notable facilities include a free-form swimming pool with a swim-up cocktail bar, and three on-site restaurants serving both local and international dishes. Complimentary provisions include wireless Internet access throughout the property, daily yoga classes on the beach and live Zanzibari music performances in the evenings. Every guest room features a private balcony with views over the Indian Ocean. The two-room suites come with a complimentary fruit basket every day, a fully stocked mini bar and a complimentary 30-minute massage.

The Z Hotel

The Z Hotel sits within a tropical garden adjacent to one of Nungwi's white sand beaches. Its contemporary architectural touches include floor-to-ceiling glass French doors and balconies in every guest room, complemented by Swahili touches like thatched roofs and tropical wood balustrades. The decor includes modern designer furnishings, Turkish marble floors and high-end Egyptian linens. The most spacious of six room categories are the roof-top suites; oceanfront cottages with private decks over the water; and the Z Suite, which boasts two terraces and a private hot tub. The Cinnamon Cocktail Bar's al fresco seating offers a panoramic view of the sun setting over the Indian Ocean, which guests enjoy with Asian fusion tapas and classic seafood specialties. The more formal restaurant, Saruche, offers intriguing African-European fusion dishes on its four-course Table de Hote menu.

Smiles Beach Hotel

Smiles Beach Hotel boasts its own private beach area with thatched cabanas and sun loungers in Nungwi, as well as a restaurant, coffee shop and yoga center. The hotel's concierge can arrange local activities like deep-sea fishing, tours of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Stone Town of Zanzibar, and scuba diving courses and excursions. Last-minute safaris on the Tanzanian mainland are also available. Guests have a choice of bed and breakfast; bed, breakfast and dinner; or full-board rates. The guest rooms are elegant but unfussy and include mosquito nets, air conditioning, and tea- and coffee-making facilities.

Flame Tree Cottages

Flame Tree Cottages is a boutique beach resort within a private tropical garden. Dive centers, deep-sea fishing charter companies and numerous restaurants are found within a few minutes' walk of the resort. Each of the 16 suites has a different configuration; they all feature wireless Internet access, air conditioning, a refrigerator and mosquito net canopies over the beds. The Desert Rose honeymoon suite offers two verandas; the Jasmine suite has a furnished, tiled veranda; and the Langi Langi suite has a small garden. The buildings of the resort were constructed using locally sourced materials and the services of local craftsmen. A variety of activities are available directly through Flame Tree Cottages, including snorkeling at Kendwa Coral Garden, sunset sailing by dhow and reef fishing trips.

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  • spiaggia zanzibar con barca a vela image by Claudio Brocchieri from