My Zanzibar diary continues today with our first full day spent on the island… After a crazy busy day exploring Stone Town and arriving at Melia Hotel Zanzibar the previous day, we woke up ready to explore some more of the hotel and include the Zanzibar beaches Hotel Melia has on offer.
We headed to the pool area (via the breakfast buffet) to lounge around and soak up the sun. On my one and only other island holiday (our honeymoon 12 years ago) we didn’t spend nearly as much time doing this as I would have liked so I made sure to prioritize it…. Being the first at the pool we had our pic of spots and chose a partially shaded lounger for an hour or two of reading and relaxing, plus a few dips to cool down of course.
Then it was time to explore a bit more. My husband wanted to find the gym which seemed like an odd choice for a holiday but I indulged him as it was located near the spa and I wanted to suss that out! He headed off for a session and I found another lounger near another pool with another amazing view and read a few more pages of my book and just enjoyed dozing in the sun.
This little spot was really lovely and private and I really enjoyed the time I spent here. No one else was around except for a few visiting birds and I loved being able to watch the dhows sail past from my vantage point! Surrounding the spa there were also loads of lovely tropical plants and flowers which made this a really pretty place to spend an hour or so relaxing! And of course, there can never be enough relaxing!! I’ve read that it’s JUST as important as exercise!
As someone who loves to discover everything there is to see about a place I wasn’t about to spend the whole day “lounging” about – although you totally could do that in a place like this! So after the “essential” gym workout (NOT MINE) we decided to follow where the path would lead and it was totally worth it. What we discovered was a beach walk that eventually came out at Gabi Beach – the dedicated beach for Melia Hotel.
This walk wasn’t really sign posted as most guests make their way to Gabi Beach via the 10 min golf cart shuttle but I’m so glad we made this discovery. It was another one of the highlights of our time at Melia… walking along the beach and coral reef at low tide, ducking under the overhanging reef that makes up the island, watching the local fishermen casting their nets and hauling their catch back to the village by bicycle… All of these sights we would have missed completely had we not followed our noses and been a bit more adventurous.
Once again I loved seeing Zanzibari locals going about their daily lives, nothing here was for the benefit of the tourists – unless you wanted a photograph, then you had to pay for the privilege! Our walk was probably about half and hour and during that time we were the only tourists on the beach… With the pristine white sand, gorgeous blue sky and endless warm ocean it really was a dreamlike experience!
And then we arrived at the gorgeous Gabi Beach, the dedicated beach for Melia Hotel guests that has amazing day beds, plenty of sun loungers and a restaurant serving lunch and cocktails… We headed there first! (by this stage we’d pretty much tried them all and decided on our favourite, the resort speciality, The Kiwenga!) In fact this little restaurant was to become our favourite lunch time spot and we headed back here almost every day as the setting really couldn’t be beaten. It’s pretty much a large wooden shack located right on the beach, there is seating “inside” but with no doors or windows this is really just a raised platform off the sand! Or you can choose to sit with the sand between your toes! Either option is pretty ideal! And after lunch all you need to do is stumble across the sand to the nearest available sun lounger for a nap in the shade of the palm trees before climbing the stairs to await the shuttle back to Melia Zanzibar!
If you enjoyed this post come back next Monday for more about our stay at Melia Zanzibar.
And if you would like to read more about my African Adventures exploring Zanzibar click one of the links below:
Traveling to Zanzibar
A walking tour of Stone Town
Exploring the Markets of Stone Town
Secrets of Stone Town
Our stay at Melia Hotel Zanzibar
Zanzibar Beach Bliss
Scuba Diving in Zanzibar
A Spice Tour on the Spice Island
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