Zanzibar Hotels

Coral Rock Beach Bungalows and Hotel

This small resort is located in the fishing village of Jambiani on the east peninsula of Zanzibar. This is a three star getaway by Zanzibari standards, but frequent travellers should expect something more akin to a two star eco-resort. Coral Rock recognises this on its own website. The Beach Bungalows and Hotel offer comfort and a relaxed service, rather than luxury facilities and perfection. Accommodation is either half (breakfast and dinner) or full-board (includes lunch).

Accommodation at Coral Rock Beach Bungalows and Hotel

Coral Rock has 14 Swahili style bungalows housing rooms of various sizes. All have Sea View though one is without a balcony. They are all en suite with showers. Rooms feature air-conditioning and ceiling fans as well as mini-bar fridges. They are furnished with traditional Swahili beds, furnishings and local art. The Hotel also offers two beach villas. These are two or three bedroom and feature all the amenities listed above. Rooms are basic and not huge, but they are clean and well cared for.

Food and Drink at Coral Rock Beach Bungalows and Hotel

The hotel restaurant looks out over the ocean. Food is al a carte so if you are not a fan of buffet food this hotel may be a good option compared to many resorts in this region. Breakfast is substantial and varied. Fresh fruit, breads, oats, eggs (cooked to order) pancakes and French toast all feature on the menu. Lunch is one dish from the extensive menu. Dinner includes a side dish and dessert also. Typical dishes on offer are traditional Swahili curries, fresh meat and seafood and Western options such as pizzas, pastas, burgers and sandwiches. The food is good quality and there is something for every taste or diet, extra food is competitively priced. The hotel bar offers a wide selection of drinks. These are also reasonable (between USD 5.50 and USD 8 for a cocktail, USD 3 for local beer). The restaurant and bar both have a calm and friendly vibe, appealing to young-hearted travellers especially.

Service at Coral Rock Beach Bungalows and Hotel

The staff and managers at Coral Rock are really friendly and warm even though most are local and have broken English. Employing locals and helping them develop their language is part of the hotel’s community investment policy. Service on offer is polite but laid-back. If you are looking for a meticulously professional service a higher rated resort might be a more appropriate choice.

Things to do at Coral Rock Beach Bungalows and Hotel

When it comes to activities the hotel has much to offer. The local village and beach can be explored by foot or on bicycle. Although the beaches are quiet and unspoilt, they are also left natural, meaning seaweed and sea urchins are characteristic. Some water-sports equipment is free to hire and one can also hire snorkelling and fishing gear. The hotel has its own dhow boat which guests can go sailing in; trips are organised regularly. The hotel pool is a good size for swimming or just taking a dip in to cool off from the sun.

The hotel can arrange many excursions and tours including, swimming with dolphins, visiting Stone Town and the spice plantations or the Jozani Forest. Though trips can add up in cost they are worth doing if one is staying in one place on Zanzibar for any length of time.

The hotel has its own TV lounge with laptops and internet available for guest use. The hotel also offers a massage parlour for those looking to completely de-stress.

How to get to Coral Rock Beach Bungalows and Hotel.

The complex is about an hour’s drive from Stone Town or Zanzibar Airport. The hotel will arrange transfers for approximately USD 55 one way (up to four people sharing). Alternatively one can take a taxi or hire a car.

Much of the coastline of this peninsula has been developed to reflect the luxury requirements of Western travellers. However, the surrounding villages and the roads reflect the poverty of Tanzania. Although hotel websites may advertise these places as ‘charming and traditional’ they may simply appear run-down.

Although the tourist industry has proved a destructive force in many parts of the country, it is also useful to bear in mind that many resorts and hotels are now contributing to funds to support locals, and that environmental projects are advancing through Zanzibar.

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