One of those places that strikes a cord in my inner explorer is Zanzibar. Just the name alone gets me excited. Images of ocean traders, white sandy beaches, and deep Africa parade through my head.
Zanzibar is about 20 miles off the coast of East Africa in the Indian ocean. Zanzibar is a part of Tanzania and operates "semi-autonomously." Zanzibar served as a hub for spice and Ivory trading in 1700.
When we are on the east side of Africa, our intent is to use Zanzibar as a launch point into the interior of Africa. The ability to spring to many parts of Africa is fantastic from this part of the continent. Mt. Kilimanjaro, Victoria Falls, and the Serengeti National park are all do-able from there.
Zanzibar charges a whopping $100 USD per visa for US Citizens. This rate means that we will have to pay $400 to get in. Ugh. Just as my mind was thinking, "Damn that's absurd" I read that the Tanzanian government sets the visa charge equal to what the USA charges Tanzanian citizens for the equivalent visa. Still absurd, but the Tanzanian government pegging the amount to the US amount sounds fair to me. The visa is a multi-entry type and lasts for 12 months.
A survey of options shows that mooring ball rates run about $40 per week, and $100 per month. So hanging out for an extended period is quite do-able. Zanzibar, here we come!