Zanzibar Arts and Culture Map

SEA launches our on-line map of Stone Town galleries, boutiques, arts and crafts sellers

Arts in Zanzibar

Zanzibar has a rich chest of artistic expression and practice. From its architecture to fine art to the many authentic and beautiful craftworks. Many of the artists, as in other places, gravitate to the capital city, and the same holds here.

But where do you, as a visitor, or somebody living here, find out about where to see artworks, visit artists or purchase craftworks? Nowadays the average visitor will roam the internet first, but try that for Zanzibar and you will miss out on a vast number of fascinating people, projects and places.

Photography Studio/Shop
A Studio or Shop that sells Photography or exhibits Photos.
Music Studio/Shop
A place where music is tought, produced and/or sold.
Handcraft Shop
A shop selling selfmade items like textiles, wooden products or cosmetics. Some of these shops also offer workshops.
Design Boutique
A Design Boutique sells a well-choosen stock of products like home-textiles, jewellery and souvenirs displayed in a professional way.
Unique Gallery
A unique Gallery sells paintings and sometimes sculptures or handcrafts by real artists.
Commercial Gallery
The paintings sold by commercial Galleries are neither unique nor rare but frequently reproduced.
Souvenir Shop
The Souvenir Shops are lead by local people and mostly sell imported souvenirs, like jewellery, small paintings and bags.
Souvenir Store
A Souvenir Store sells nearly every kind of souvenir, but is much larger than a normal Souvenir Shop.

We decided, with the help of 2 young Zanzibari scholars and two young German volunteers, to scour the Stone Town area first and track down and categorise all the shops, galleries, ateliers for the arts and crafts, and even include souvenir shops too. You’ll be able to find photography studios, unique design boutiques, arts studios and more – see the icons and description we created for further clarification.Whilst over half of the Stone Town area small shops are now selling souvenirs from other parts of Tanzania, East Africa and even China, with our icons, you’ll be able to immediately identify the Zanzibar craftpeople, designers and artists too.

Please send us your favourite photos, comments and requests so we can add them to our map. We will be moving outwards from the centre across the Island of Unguja as well as Pemba over the next few months. So if you are an art lover, or collector of crafts, or artist or arts group or location which loves the arts, let us know and we can add your details to the map.

Part 2 is now being undertaken. We are asking the many hotels in town about their interest in the arts. Did you know that you can find a fabulous ceiling mural at Africa House, for instance, painted by two if our well-known artists. Which other hotels and restaurants immerse you in the diverse and fascinating cultural influences found here that make it such a rich and engaging city?

Enjoy your roaming!

If you want to contact us with studios etc, the best way is through
FB: @SustainableEastAfrica or email:
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