South Beach, Zanzibar, Tanzania
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Safina Bungalows Zanzibar Reviews
Simple, cheap & near the beach Sep 15, 2011
Stayed here for a couple of nights while in Zanzibar. Safina is Swahili for "Ark". It is located near South beach in Nungwi, which is on the northern tip of Zanzibar. It's not really accessible from the airport or the ferry unless you have a car, but has the advantage that it is in a more isolated section of Zanzibar and not overcrowded.
There is nothing too fancy about this place, and it is a simple bungalow style complex nestled inside some nice gardens with all varieties of tropical plants and trees. The rooms are basic with ceramic tile floors, reasonably comfortable beds (with mosquito netting) and a functional bathroom with sink, toilet and shower. My room also had an overhead fan that worked, which was nice for moving the air around a bit.
There were a few negatives I noticed. Some tiny little ants in the room, but they seemed only on the floor, so didn't bother me much and I kept my belongings off the floor. The door locks are padlocks with skeleton key, but the door latches and bolts from inside don't seem all that strong. It would be easy to break in, so I kept important stuff with me. This is always good practice anyway.
Well, despite a few negatives, the room was very cheap (~$40 USD). There is free breakfast, but nothing substantial (bread, fruit, coffee/tea & juice). Pretty average and simple place for accommodations, but it's cheap and close to the beach (a couple minutes walk). There are some souvenir shops to look at on the way. The beaches are really nice here, and I include a few photos to show the beach area here.
I asked the manager a couple times for a brochure on the hotel, but he never gave me one. The information on the main sign (at least the website) is outdated. I'm not sure they have one. There are a few restaurants to eat at in the area and some other more upscale (and more expensive) hotels nearby. If you don't mind paying a little more these might be a step up for a bit more comfort.
Part of the Under African Skies (Sep. 5-19, 2011) travel blog
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