Which is one of the best vacation island, Mauritius or Zanzibar? It is a common query on the minds of South African travellers looking for a seashore escape on a tropical Indian Ocean island. However they’re each so totally different. So the quick reply to the query is: it relies upon.
It’s all right down to your preferences, so we’ve damaged it down to assist make the choice somewhat simpler.
Mauritius: Should you’re in Johannesburg, there are day by day direct flights to Mauritius on a number of airways together with Air Mauritius, FlySafair and SAA. Direct flights are additionally obtainable from Cape City on Tuesdays and Sundays. You’ll have to join by way of Johannesburg in case you are travelling from Durban. Direct flights are about 4 hours.
Zanzibar: There are direct flights to Zanzibar from Johannesburg with FlySafair on Tuesdays and Saturdays. You’ll have to join by way of Johannesburg in case you reside in Cape City or Durban. Direct flights are about 4 hours.
*Word: flight schedules can fluctuate all year long as a result of seasonality.
The winner: Zanzibar by a small margin, as flights from Johannesburg are barely cheaper (you may rating roughly R1,000 per individual in case you examine FlySafair). Nonetheless, if it’s a must to fly from Cape City or Durban, it would work out the identical.
The visa state of affairs
Mauritius: The island has been visa-free for South Africans since earlier than the Dodo disappeared.
Zanzibar: The islands and the Tanzanian motherland are visa-free for South Africans.
The winner: It’s a draw. Each are visa-free for 90 days.
The vaccination state of affairs
Aside from the same old routine and beneficial vaccinations, you’ll not want any jabs to go to Mauritius or Zanzibar.
The winner: One other draw!
Mauritius has been within the tourism sport for a very long time, so boutique spa lodges and unique luxurious resorts all providing a really Western expertise are the norm. However, though a lot of the lodging in Mauritius leans towards the upper finish, it additionally has a terrific assortment of self-catering villas and bungalows for smaller budgets and a extra easygoing island expertise.
Zanzibar lodging is a mixture of old-world Arabic decadence and trendy island luxurious. It is possible for you to to search out seashore lodges, wellness retreats, 5-star resorts, humble chalets, impartial lodges, and even a floating houseboat mattress and breakfast. And though the service isn’t at all times on par with Westernised luxurious resorts, the lodging gives historical past and the sort of allure you gained’t discover wherever else.
The winner: Mauritius if you need luxurious, Zanzibar if you need character.
Mauritius seashores are famously lovely and have a terrific vacation vibe. You possibly can anticipate yachts and paddleboarders floating by, households hanging out below palm bushes, and other people strolling alongside having fun with the heat of paradise. It’s also a well-liked honeymoon spot, so anticipate starry-eyed lovers having fun with candle-lit dinners so as to add an additional contact of paradise ambiance.
Zanzibar seashores are simply as beautiful, however you usually tend to discover white-sailed dhows perched on the shores and native fishermen bringing of their catch. Seashores are usually fairly full of crowds and native hawkers promoting crafts and coconuts. After all, there are additionally many seashores the place the sand is disturbed solely by the tide and fringe of tropical bushes in case you’re prepared to cough up a couple of further Rands. The encompassing islands, Pemba and Mafia, are even higher for a personal escape and residing out your castaway dream.
The winner: Mauritius if you need tranquillity, Zanzibar in case you benefit from the hustle and bustle.
See: The Wonderful Seashores of Mauritius
After which: The place Are the Finest Seashores in Zanzibar
The food and drinks
Mauritius is a multicultural island that has been influenced by the flavours of Asia, Europe, and Africa. It is possible for you to to strive distinctive dishes equivalent to palm tree hearts and chilli salt fruit, but in addition acquainted dishes equivalent to curry and dim sum. It’s also well-known for its Creole delicacies and road meals scene, so the eating choices are plentiful. Who doesn’t need to have the ability to style the world in a single vacation?
Zanzibar prides itself on its contemporary seafood and unique spices. Though Zanzibar is unquestionably a paradise for seafood lovers, the distinct Indian and African influences will fulfill spice lovers. However there are additionally native dishes equivalent to Zanzibar pizza and urojo that are not like something you might have ever tried earlier than, and a terrific expertise in case you are feeling somewhat adventurous along with your dinner plans.
The winner: Mauritius in case you’re searching for all kinds, Zanzibar in case you’re after seafood.
Additionally learn: 9 distinctive issues to strive in Dodoland
And this: 12 tantalising issues to strive in Zanzibar
Mauritius is tremendous organised and undoubtedly the place to be in case you love water sports activities or are taken with making an attempt them out for the primary time. You will see that the same old windsurfing, scuba diving, paddle boating, kayaking, and snorkelling, but in addition uncommon additions equivalent to glass-bottom boat rides, undersea walks, aquagym, and water polo. On land, you may fill your days with golf, biking journeys, yoga lessons, and procuring. And Mauritius additionally has a number of bars and golf equipment in case you get pleasure from drinks and dancing after dinner.
Zanzibar is unquestionably extra targeted on rustic rest than Mauritius, although you will see that a couple of wonderful actions. You possibly can take excursions of the spice orchards, one thing very distinctive to this a part of the world. Equally so is a visit to Stone City, the traditional coronary heart of Zanzibar which stands frozen in time. Except for these, there’s the same old kite browsing, scuba diving, and snorkelling.
Tip. When you’ve got time and need to take advantage of out of your journey to East Africa, pair a trip to Zanzibar with a visit to the mainland. The Serengeti and Kilimanjaro are properly price the additional effort.
See: The Nice African Expertise: Tanzania Calling
The winner: Mauritius wins arms down for the sheer range and quantity of actions, however Zanzibar is an efficient name in case you’re simply planning on lazing round and stress-free.
Mauritius is a superb vacation vacation spot in case you are travelling with youngsters. Many lodges in Mauritius have nice youngsters’ services and provide babysitting providers. Most resorts have devoted youngsters’ golf equipment, swimming pools, and age-appropriate actions to maintain them entertained.
Zanzibar is extra appropriate in case you are travelling alone, with mates, or simply along with your associate. There will not be as many family-friendly resorts, although in fact, you will see that sure stays which might be geared up to take care of youngsters. There will not be as many actions which might be suited to children, although some kiddos could be blissful to tag alongside on historical past excursions or play on the seashore whereas the dad and mom do their water actions.
The winner: Mauritius.
Additionally learn: Suggestions for Flying With Kids
Mauritius attracts numerous worldwide vacationers, so typically the costs replicate the demand. There’s an abundance of luxurious, all-inclusive 5* vacation packages obtainable (extra so than low-budget stays and backpackers) and flight costs can ramp up, particularly in peak season. Travelling to Mauritius could be costly, however it’s undoubtedly potential to expertise a dreamy honeymoon or tropical escape in case you plan it proper.
Zanzibar is significantly much less developed so discovering low-cost flights, lodging, and cost-effective Zanzibar vacation packages is way simpler. Flights can typically be discovered for about R7,500 pp return from Joburg and packages together with lodging, flights and meals for about R25,000 pps. Nonetheless, Zanzibar is not at all a rundown island vacation spot – it additionally has numerous unique seashore resorts and lodges that can provide an unique personal island expertise and cost you accordingly.
The winner: Zanzibar, however you would possibly be capable to discover much less luxurious stays for a similar value in Mauritius.
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The decision: Once more, it actually is dependent upon what you need and anticipate.
Mauritius is sugar and spice and every little thing good. There are fewer alternatives for exploring past the island, however Mauritius is the place that conjures up desires of trying to find waterfalls, ingesting cocktails, and golden afternoons frolicking on the seashore. And it does for a purpose. It’s a heavenly place with an abundance of actions and world-class resorts that make it a well-liked vacation spot amongst folks wanting a simple vacation of rest and luxurious.
Zanzibar could also be much less developed and a bit tough across the edges, however it’s cherished for its tradition, attention-grabbing experiences, and ornate structure. It’s extensively well-liked with folks wanting a extra rugged and genuine expertise. Zanzibar additionally provides you the choice of exploring the opposite two important islands that make up the archipelago and the mainland. A visit to Zanzibar will make for unforgettable throwback tales.
Each are superior, however for various causes. So if you are able to do each in your lifetime, even higher!
The very best time to go to Mauritius
The very best time to go to Zanzibar