We recently noticed that international airfares to East Africa had fallen quite a bit, and thought it would be a good time to recommend Zanzibar, a quick local flight from Dar es Salaam or Nairobi. The city itself is a fascinating mix of African, Portuguese, and Arabic cultures. The beach on the east coast is amazing, the color of the water and sky unlike anything I have ever seen. For the city, we like Emerson Spice, and for the beach we like Matemwe Beach Village (their slogan “no shoes, no news” says it all). For the more adventurous, get yourself to Chole, the small island next to the excellently named Mafia, the neighboring island of Zanzibar. Stay in this Tree house on Chole — you won’t regret it. Besides the amazing experience of the tree house and the incredible access to the marine reserve, the innkeeper’s stories are worth the visit.