Zanzibar is an archipelago in the Indian Ocean, 25 to 50 km off the coast of Tanzania, consisting of numerous small islands and two large ones: Unguja (the main island, sometimes informally referred to as Zanzibar) and Pemba.
Zanzibar is well known as the Spice Island, but also for its beautiful white beaches and fabulous marine life. Zanzibar was once a separate state with a long trading history within the Arab world; it united with Tanganyika to form Tanzania, and still enjoys a high degree of autonomy within the union. The capital of Zanzibar, located on the island of Unguja, is Zanzibar City, and its old quarter, known as Stone Town, is a World Heritage Site.
Zanzibar and its surrounding islands are ranked highly for their marine life. It is also the home of the endemic Zanzibar Red Colobus, the endemic subspecies of the Blue Monkey and the tree Hyrax and the elusive Zanzibar Leopard. The most important forest is Jozani Forest, a small reminder of how Unguja’s forests once where. The word “Zanzibar” probably derives from the Persian Zangi-bar, “coast of the blacks”; it is known as Zanji-bar in Arabic.