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Forodhani Backyard: The place Zanzibar’s Coronary heart Beats

Overlooking the calm blue sea is a backyard that was constructed eight many years in the past, impressed by Arab structure. At its coronary heart is a grand dome, as soon as adorned by Sultan Khalifa throughout his 25-year reign over Zanzibar in Tanzania.

Right here, amidst lush greenery, palm and jojoba bushes are vigilant guardians of this historic backyard, known as Forodhani Backyard.

Situated within the coronary heart of Stone City, simply exterior the Outdated Fort, Forodhani Backyard is in style for its vigorous night meals market, the place a wide range of meals distributors supply scrumptious dishes in a vibrant and communal setting.

Forodhani performs an necessary function in Zanzibar’s tradition and financial system. It serves as an epicenter of tradition. It showcases the island’s wealthy heritage via meals, music and social gatherings. Forodhani additionally promotes native companies, attracts vacationers with its numerous cultural experiences and supplies a livelihood for many individuals within the space.

Forodhani is commonly interpreted as that means ‘customs,’ because it’s near the unique Zanzibar Customs Home. This displays its historic function in customs and waterfront commerce. In the present day, it thrives as a cultural and gourmand heart, providing a glimpse into Zanzibar’s traditions and avenue meals scene.

Maintain studying as we discover the world of Forodhani Backyard in Zanzibar, specializing in the eating expertise it affords each locals and vacationers. With the next helpful info, you possibly can discover the Forodhani Backyard by yourself or select to discover it with a meals tour.

Associated learn: The Greatest Meals Markets in Stone City, Zanzibar

Right here is our overview:

Zanzibar’s Forodhani Backyard

Culinary delights

Meals at Forodhani is not only about nourishment, but additionally a supply of enjoyment and delight via its flavors, high quality and cultural significance.

The meals market affords a tempting mixture of native and worldwide dishes that may tantalize the style buds of all who go to.

With a wealthy historical past influenced by Arab, Indian, African and Swahili cultures, the backyard has change into a culinary haven the place conventional and unique flavors come collectively.

Fish at a food stall at Forodhani Garden in Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Fish at a meals stall at Forodhani Backyard in Stone City, Zanzibar, Tanzania.

Should-try Zanzibari dishes at Forodhani Backyard

Many vacationers get excited once they enter Forodhani. They will’t assist it. The vitality is contagious. The lights, the meals, the ocean, the individuals. You’re certain to be swept away by the magic of Forodhani.

However no matter you do. Don’t let these native gems slip via your fingers. Listed here are the very best Zanzibari delights you merely can’t go away with out savoring.

Zanzibar pizza

Zanzibari pizza is a neighborhood favourite.

These scrumptious pizzas are made with a singular mix of minced meat, greens, eggs, vibrant sauces and a skinny, crispy dough, leading to an explosion of taste.

The creators of Zanzibar pizza take nice satisfaction in frying their crispy, stuffed treats. Like a pleasant cross between crepes and savory pancakes, these scrumptious fried dough pockets supply an unimaginable number of fillings, starting from avocado and squid to lobster and cheese to Snickers bar and banana.

To start the method, the distributors flatten a ball of dough and place one other smaller piece on prime to strengthen it. Then comes the thrilling half, the place they let their creativity run wild by piling on numerous meats, sweets, spices and greens. Savory choices embody combos akin to floor beef, rooster, and mushrooms for meat lovers, or mayo, tender processed white cheese, chopped greens, and egg for many who favor vegetarian delights.

For many who crave one thing candy as a substitute, Zanzibar pizzas will be full of indulgent fillings akin to Nutella or mango mixed with cheese.

As soon as all of the elements are added to the pocket-like construction created by folding the edges neatly collectively, distributors fry these culinary wonders on a scorching tava (a big flat or concave frying pan) utilizing ghee (clarified butter). The result’s a crispy texture that tantalizes the style buds with each chunk.

Lastly able to serve after an intensive cooking course of, these scrumptious pizzas discover themselves gracefully positioned on paper plates earlier than being generously smothered in spicy mango chili sauce for an additional burst of taste.

The worth of a Zanzibari Pizza is Tshs 3000 / $1.20.

Cooking a Zanzibar Pizza in Forodhani Garden in Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Cooking a Zanzibar Pizza in Forodhani Backyard in Stone City, Zanzibar, Tanzania.

Urojo Soup (Zanzibar Combine)

With its roots in India, Urojo Soup is often known as ‘Zanzibar Combine.’ It’s a savory deal with from Zanzibar. Its base is a mix of atta flour, gram flour and hearty potatoes, seasoned with a mix of spices.

This tasty and barely thick soup is historically served with boiled eggs, crispy bagia and chutney. These toppings add layers of texture and taste to a preferred Zanzibari culinary expertise.

Making this soup is a little bit of an concerned course of as a result of it requires creating toppings to accompany it. The soup itself is a satisfying meal, loaded with potatoes in a creamy sauce and served with bhajias (fried fritters) and crispy potato or cassava shavings. You too can improve the flavour by including coconut chutney and sizzling sauce on prime.

This pleasant dish is broadly loved as in style avenue meals in Stone City and Dar es Salaam, that includes numerous Indian chaats akin to dahi poori, sev poori, bhel poori, and even pani puri. Zanzibar Combine exemplifies the standard roadside avenue meals expertise that gives heat carb-filled goodness to take pleasure in.

A bowl of Urojo soup prices Tshs 2000 / $0.80.

Serving Urojo soup at a food stall at Forodhani Garden in Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Serving Urojo soup at a meals stall at Forodhani Backyard in Stone City, Zanzibar, Tanzania.

Seafood skewers

Fancy some seafood on the go? Forodhani’s seafood kebabs provide the choice of not having to hold your favourite fish on a foil platter.

Put together to be pleasantly stunned whenever you come throughout a plethora of avenue meals distributors in Zanzibar providing a pleasant number of grilled and barbecued seafood on skewers prepared for fast consumption.

The locals have a deep appreciation for all issues seafood, which is obvious within the overwhelming number of lobsters, crabs, shrimp, scallops and extra. What’s actually exceptional is that not solely do these scrumptious treats come at extremely low costs, however additionally they exceed your expectations when it comes to availability in comparison with what you may usually discover again house.

Seafood kebabs embody a wide range of recent seafood akin to prawns, octopus and fish. The skewers are sometimes served with a facet of spicy or tangy sauces, making them a tasty and fragrant deal with for seafood lovers.

The worth of a seafood skewer is Tshs 5000/$2.

Seafood Skewers at Forodhani Garden in Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Seafood Skewers at Forodhani Backyard in Stone City, Zanzibar, Tanzania.

Grilled Plantains are domestically generally known as “Ndizi Choma”

Ndizi Choma is a scrumptious and in style avenue meals which you could take pleasure in at Forodhani Backyard in Zanzibar. The plantains or bananas are seasoned with an appetizing mix of native spices and herbs.

The result’s a mouth-watering deal with with a barely caramelized exterior and a young, candy inside. Ndizi Choma is a well-liked snack with a steadiness of savory and candy flavors, making it a must-try when visiting Forodhani Backyard.

The fragrant scent of those grilled plantains wafting via the backyard will tempt your style buds.

The worth for a portion of grilled bananas is Tshs 2000/0.80.

Rooster Shawarma

Strolling via Forodhani, you’ll be drawn to the sight of beef or rooster slowly roasting on a vertical cone. The aroma is irresistible.

And when it’s time to serve, native distributors wrap the expertly seasoned and thinly sliced meat in heat, tender flatbreads.

The worth of a rooster shawarma is Tshs 3500 / $1.40.

Tastefull snacks at Forodhani Garden in Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Tasty snacks at Forodhani Backyard in Stone City, Zanzibar, Tanzania.


The prawns at Forodhani are seasoned and succulent. They’re cooked to only the correct temperature and burst with the flavour of Zanzibari spices.

Prawns are often bought in parts. A single portion is about one cup.

The worth of prawns is Tshs 5000/$2 per portion.

Grilled prawns at a food stall at Forodhani Garden in Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Grilled prawns at a meals stall at Forodhani Backyard in Stone City, Zanzibar, Tanzania.


One other delicacy at Forodhani is squid. These tender items of squid are both grilled or fried to perfection. While you pop them in your mouth, you get a pleasant mixture of chewy and tender textures. Should you’re a seafood lover, you’ll benefit from the squid served at Forodhani.

Squid can also be bought in parts.

The worth of squid is Tshs 4000/$1.60 per portion.


Octopus dishes at Forodhani Backyard are an impressive alternative for seafood lovers. The octopus served at Forodhani is thought for its meaty texture and the wealthy taste it will get from the sturdy marinating course of, making it a preferred seafood dish in Zanzibar.

Like squid, octopus is bought in parts at Forodhani.

A portion of octopus prices Tshs 4,000/$1.60.


Should you crave the wealthy, delicate flavors of freshly caught crab – Forodhani Backyard is the final word vacation spot.

Crab dishes at Forodhani are celebrated for his or her delectable taste, making them a must-try for these in search of an unforgettable seafood expertise.

Crab is priced at Tshs 5000/$3 per portion.

What does the consuming expertise appear like at Forodhani Backyard?

The communal eating expertise at Forodhani Backyard is an absolute delight.

Because the solar units, the backyard comes alive with locals and vacationers mingling round shared plastic tables. The ambiance is vibrant and full of the fragrant smells of Zanzibar’s avenue meals.

You possibly can select to dine casually on the plastic tables, having fun with your meal whereas taking within the vigorous environment.

Or, if you happen to’re on the lookout for a extra cell expertise, take your meal to go and discover the close by waterfront. Take within the beautiful views and cultural interactions.

Within the night, creatives come out with their devices and props. And enchant everybody with dwell music and cultural leisure. This provides to your expertise and makes your night a memorable and genuine Zanzibari affair.

Jumping into the sea at sunset at Forodhani Garden in Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Leaping into the ocean at sundown at Forodhani Backyard in Stone City, Zanzibar, Tanzania.

Native drinks

To totally benefit from the expertise, complement the must-try Zanzibari dishes with a refreshing native drink. And Forodhani affords a wide range of scrumptious drink choices.

Sugar cane juice

Sugar cane juice in Forodhani is freshly extracted from sugar cane stalks. Distributors use a mechanical press to crush the cane, releasing the candy juice.

It’s served as a refreshing, cool drink and is a neighborhood favourite for its pure sweetness and hydrating properties.

The juice is commonly consumed with none added elements, permitting guests to benefit from the pure, pure style of sugar cane.

Sugar cane juice prices Tshs 2000/$0.80 per glass in Forodhani.

Fresh sugar cane juice at Forodhani Garden in Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Recent sugar cane juice at Forodhani Backyard in Stone City, Zanzibar, Tanzania.


For many who favor drinks with much less sugar, coconut water is a implausible choice as a consequence of its barely candy and nutty taste.

Madafu are younger coconuts and are a preferred and refreshing drink in Zanzibar.

One dafu is often sufficient for one individual. They’re loved by chopping open the highest with a machete to disclose the clear and barely candy coconut water inside. The water is cool and hydrating. This makes it the right pure drink to quench your thirst on a sizzling day.

The tender, jelly-like flesh contained in the dafu is edible and will be scooped out with a spoon. Madafu is a well-liked native deal with as a result of it combines candy, hydrating coconut water with tender, jelly-like flesh.

Additionally it is low in energy and sugar as a result of it’s about 94% water. It additionally incorporates no ldl cholesterol or fats.

Coconut water, which comes from the clear liquid inside younger inexperienced coconuts, incorporates pure electrolytes akin to potassium, sodium, and magnesium. These important vitamins assist replenish misplaced minerals within the physique, making coconut water a superb alternative for rehydration – particularly throughout train.

As well as, research have proven that coconut water may help decrease blood strain ranges – a profit for these with hypertension. Nevertheless, if you’re already taking treatment for hypertension, it might be smart to seek the advice of your physician earlier than including coconut water to your weight loss plan, as it might decrease your blood strain ranges excessively.

Whether or not loved with a scrumptious meal or on an empty abdomen at any time of day, you possibly can benefit from the refreshing style and quite a few well being advantages of coconut water. Its versatility makes it a nutritious beverage choice for a lot of events.

One dafu prices Tshs 3000/$1.20.

Tastefull Madafu at Forodhani Garden in Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Tastefull Madafu at Forodhani Backyard in Stone City, Zanzibar, Tanzania.

Security and hygiene

Whereas Forodhani Backyard affords a superb culinary and cultural expertise, it’s necessary to concentrate on security and hygiene.

Meals stalls and distributors typically adhere to native well being and hygiene requirements. Nevertheless, it’s good apply to eat in locations the place cleanliness is seen.

Vacationers are inspired to clean their fingers or use hand sanitizer earlier than consuming.

Additionally, take into account ingesting bottled water to make sure your well-being throughout your go to. Bottled water prices from Tshs. 2000/$0.80 per litre.

Freshly cut papaya at Forodhani Garden in Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Freshly lower papaya at Forodhani Backyard in Stone City, Zanzibar, Tanzania.

Ideas for vacationers when visiting Forodhani Backyard in Zanzibar

  • Timing is essential to having fun with the magic of Forodhani Backyard. It’s lovely throughout the day, however it actually involves life within the night. So purpose to reach at sundown to expertise its full attraction.
  • Convey money in small denominations and native forex. For instance, Tshs 5,000, 2,000, 1,000. Many stalls don’t settle for playing cards.
  • Bargaining or haggling is widespread, so be at liberty to barter costs, particularly if you happen to’re making an attempt a number of dishes.
  • Include an open thoughts and a way of journey, as Forodhani Backyard guarantees an unforgettable journey into the center of Zanzibar’s culinary and cultural traditions.
Visitors at Forodhani Garden in Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Guests at Forodhani Backyard in Stone City, Zanzibar, Tanzania.

Forodhani Backyard Meals tour

Expertise the colourful nightlife of Stone City by exploring Darajani Market and Forodhani Backyard Evening Market.

Embark on a singular 3-hour culinary journey in Stone City, starting with a handy lodge pickup at 17:00. Immerse your self within the native procuring tradition on the bustling Darajani Market, the place you’ll be amazed by the unimaginable number of meals on supply.

Afterward, take pleasure in refreshing tender drinks or Tanzanian beers whereas watching the altering sky colours on the charming Swahili Home Restaurant.

Take a while to find this UNESCO World Heritage Web site as you discover the tea spots, recreation gatherings and storytelling hubs all through the town.

Lastly, head to Forodhani Backyard for a night of avenue meals. Take pleasure in a wide range of native delicacies akin to Zanzibar pizza, urojo soup, shawarma, sugarcane juice, spiced tea or espresso.

At round 8:00 p.m., end your tour and chill out as we switch you again to your lodge.

Value: from $25
Free refund as much as 24 hours earlier than

E book instantly with the tour operator

Food tour at Forodhani Garden in Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Meals tour at Forodhani Backyard in Stone City, Zanzibar, Tanzania.

This implausible expertise contains dinner on the Forodhani Gardens Meals Market with mouth-watering dishes akin to Zanzibar pizza and urojo soup. Additionally, you will take pleasure in a drink on the Swahili Home with the steering of our educated workers.

The popular choice is booked upfront, shuttle service to/out of your lodge for added comfort.

How one can order meals in Zanzibar

While you exit, it’s enjoyable and a pleasant gesture to have the ability to say a phrase or two within the native language. Think about being on the market and having the ability to order a Zanzibar pizza in Swahili.

Tanzania is a various area that’s house to a myriad of languages. Nevertheless, the dominant language spoken in Zanzibar is Swahili (often known as Kiswahili).

Swahili just isn’t solely the principle language spoken in Zanzibar, however all through Tanzania and East Africa. It’s value noting that English can also be broadly spoken in Zanzibar. So, there isn’t any strain to recollect all the phrases. 😉

Associated learn: Zanzibar’s Magical Nightlife

Helpful Swahili phrases when ordering meals

  • “I want to eat…” – “Ningependa kula…” (nin-ge-pen-da ku-la)
  • “I want to drink…” – “Ningependa kunywa…” (nin-ge-pen-da ku-nya)
  • “Lunch” – “Chakula cha mchana” (cha-ku-la cha mcha-na)
  • “Dinner” – “Chakula cha jioni” (cha-ku-la cha jio-ni)
  • “Please, give me the menu” – “Tafadhali, nipe menyu” (ta-fa-dha-li, ni-pe me-nyu)
  • “I would love a salad” – “Ningependa saladi” (nin-ge-pen-da sa-la-di)
  • “Do you’ve?” – “Je, una _____?” (jeh, o-na ?)
  • “Can I’ve a espresso, please?”- “Naweza kuwa na kahawa, tafadhali” (na-we-za ku-wa na ka-ha-wa, ta-fa-dha-li)
  • “Please, deliver me the invoice” – “Tafadhali, leta bili” (ta-fa-dha-li, le-ta bi-li)
  • “I’m allergic to…” – “Nina mzio wa…” (ni-na m-zio wa)
  • “What is that this meals?” – “Chakula hiki ni nini?” (cha-ku-la hi-ki ni ni-ni)
  • “Fried banana” – “Chocha ndizi” (cho-cha n-di-zi)
  • “I would love fish” – “Ningependa samaki” (nin-ge-pen-da sa-ma-ki)
  • “I would love rooster” – “Ningependa kuku” (nin-ge-pen-da ku-ku)
  • “Thanks” – “Asante” (a-san-te)
  • “Please, select a drink” – “Tafadhali, chagua kinywaji” (ta-fa-dha-li, cha-gua ki-nywaji)
  • “Might I’ve some water, please?” – “Naweza kupata maji, tafadhali” (na-we-za ku-pa-ta ma-ji, ta-fa-dha-li)
  • “Tea with out sugar, please” – “Chai bila sukari, tafadhali” (chai bi-la su-ka-ri, ta-fa-dha-li)

Studying fundamental phrases like these could make your travels in Zanzibar extra satisfying and simpler on the subject of ordering meals.

Helpful Swahili phrases when asking about vegetarian meals choices

  • “Is there a vegetable choice?” – “Je, kuna chaguo la mboga?” (jeh, koo-na cha-gwo la m-bo-ga)
  • “I would love solely vegetable meals.” – “Ningependa chakula cha mboga tu.” (nin-ge-pen-da cha-ku-la cha m-bo-ga too)
  • “Does this comprise meat?” – “Je, hii ina nyama?” (jeh, hee in-a nyama)
  • “Are you able to make it with out meat?” – “Je, unaweza kutengeneza bila nyama?” (jeh, oo-na-we-za koo-ten-ge-ne-za bi-la n-ya-ma)
  • “Please, no meat.” – “Tafadhali, hakuna nyama.” (ta-fa-dha-li, ha-koo-na n-ya-ma)
  • “I’ve a vegetarian weight loss plan.” – “Nina mlo wa kula mboga tu.” (ni-na m-lo wa koo-la m-bo-ga too)
  • “I’m a vegetarian.” – “Mimi ni mboga.” (mi-mi ni m-bo-ga)
  • “Is there an alternative choice to cow’s milk?” – “Je, kuna mbadala wa maziwa ya ng’ombe?” (jeh, koo-na mba-da-la wa ma-zi-wa ya ng’o-mbe)

Please observe that a few of these phrases won’t be understood in all places, because the idea of vegetarianism will not be as widespread in all components of Zanzibar or East Africa.

Some extra suggestions for ordering meals in Swahili

  • Be well mannered and use the phrase “tafadhali” (please) typically.
  • If you’re uncertain of what one thing is, ask the waiter or waitress to elucidate it to you.
  • If in case you have any dietary restrictions, remember to point out them when ordering.
  • Don’t be afraid to strive new issues! Swahili delicacies is scrumptious and diversified, so there’s something for everybody to take pleasure in.

By studying a number of fundamental Swahili phrases, you can also make your eating expertise in East Africa much more satisfying.

Historic insights

Forodhani Backyard has a deep historic significance within the historical past of Zanzibar. Initially known as the Jubilee Backyard, it was inbuilt 1936 to have a good time the silver jubilee of Sultan Khalifa il Bin Harub Al Stated.

Born on 26 August 1879, he reigned as Sultan from 9 December 1911 to 9 October 1960.

Zanzibaris celebrated his exceptional 25 years of reign as Sultan of Zanzibar. In recognition of this milestone, Sultan Khalifa himself instituted a Silver Jubilee Medal on 9 January 1937.

Forodhani Backyard: The place tradition meets culinary delights

Forodhani Backyard is a must-visit for many who wish to expertise the center of Zanzibar’s culinary and cultural traditions. It’s a culinary gem in Zanzibar that captures the spirit of the island.

This vibrant meals hub affords a various vary of native and worldwide dishes, giving guests an genuine style of Zanzibar’s culinary traditions.

The communal eating expertise and vigorous ambiance create a singular and memorable go to for vacationers.

With its deep cultural historical past and historic commerce hyperlinks, Forodhani Backyard embodies the essence of Zanzibar’s heritage.

Put it in your ‘to go to’ guidelines so that you simply don’t miss the chance to immerse your self on this extraordinary culinary and cultural expertise throughout your journey to Zanzibar.

Have you ever booked your Zanzibar lodging? Take a look at our information on the place to remain in Zanzibar for the very best locations!

Rafael Gomes de Azevedo
Rafael Gomes de Azevedo
He started his career as a columnist, contributing to the staff of a local blog. His articles with amusing views on everyday situations in the news soon became one of the main features of the current editions of the blog. For the divergences of thought about which direction the blog would follow. He left and founded three other great journalistic blogs,, and With a certain passion for writing, holder of a versatile talent, in addition to coordinating, directing, he writes fantastic scripts quickly, he likes to say that he writes for a select group of enthusiasts in love with serious and true writing.


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