Teenagers can be the least rewarding of travel companions, requiring electronic access at all times and emitting a seen-it-all-before vibe. Yet there are no restricting age limits to adventures, they can journey any distance, and they have more of an appreciation for local culture. With its world-class watersports, fascinating history and beautiful beaches, Zanzibar makes for a terrific trip with teens. We’ve chosen 5 of the best hideaways…

Indigo Beach, Bwejuu

i-escape: Indigo Beach, Zanzibar

If your family includes kids of varying ages, this friendly barefoot beach hideaway, an hour from Stone Town, is a great option. It welcomes children over 4 and has a kids’ club during school holidays for those up to 10. There are also 2-bedroom family bungalows, and the WiFi signal reaches the infinity-pool area where there are loungers and bean bags. Meals (featuring much local seafood) are taken in a Bedouin tent in the lush gardens, and there are bikes to rent.


  • Diving
  • Snorkelling
  • Fishing
  • Boat trips
  • Cycling
  • Creative workshops (seasonal)

Matemwe Beach, North Zanzibar

i-escape: Matemwe Beach, Zanzibar

For those on more of a budget, this unpretentious and sociable guesthouse is a winner. There’s a super beach with a fringing reef on your doorstep, plus a large circular pool. You get unlimited WiFi for a one-off payment, and families stay in 2-storey suites with beach or bush views. The food is excellent, with buffet dinners twice weekly.


  • On-site dive school
  • Snorkel the reef
  • Cruise around the lagoon on the hotel’s dhow
  • Hire a bike and cycle to Matemwe village
  • Sail or fish with local fishermen

Dhow Inn, Paje

i-escape: Dhow Inn, Zanzibar

Paje is a world-class kitesurfing destination, with sections for experts and 2 safe lagoons for beginners – ideal for the teen who thinks they’ve done it all. Try this well-priced and immaculate retreat, spread around 3 sparkling swimming pools, with its own private patch of sugary beach and free WiFi throughout.


  • Kitesurfing
  • Scuba diving and snorkelling
  • Boat trips to spot dolphins
  • Visit Jozani Forest to see the endemic Red Colobus monkey
  • Games room
  • Volleyball

Fundu Lagoon, Pemba Island

i-escape: Fundu Lagoon, Zanzibar

This is the place to come to celebrate exam results or enjoy the last proper family holiday before teenagers fly the coop: it’s a truly special and secluded spot. Arrive by ferry then speedboat (or a twice-daily propeller plane) to find irresistibly simple tented rooms, thatched roofs, a long palm-fringed beach and no children under 12. By day splash in the hilltop infinity pool overlooking the ocean; by night, marvel at the canopy of stars overhead.


  • Superlative diving (some consider it the best in Zanzibar)
  • Snorkelling
  • Sailing and fishing
  • Misali Island marine sanctuary – sea caves and nesting turtles
  • Kayaking through mangroves
  • Cruising in the dhow at sunset

Breezes Beach Club, Pingwe

i-escape: Breezes Beach Club, Zanzibar

If you want to fly and flop after a gruelling exam schedule, head to this one-stop-shop beach resort. All rooms have sofabeds that are ideal for those travelling with one teen, otherwise book 2 adjacent bedrooms; some have balconies. There are no fewer than 4 restaurants to satisfy even the most gigantic of appetites, plus there’s a dive centre on site. And the internet room will enable bragging about the trip to friends back home…


  • On-site dive centre
  • Snorkelling
  • Hire bikes and cycle to local villages or to the headland
  • Windsurfing and sea-kayaking
  • Tennis courts on site
  • Spa treatments, a Jacuzzi and steam room
  • Day trips to Dolphin Bay

Take a look at our other top holidays for teenagers >>