Stone Town, Zanzibar
Half day trip
The tour was designed to give our customers an in-depth historical knowledge and experience of the past life of missionaries, their works and the historical sites they established as mission centers, Churches, hospital and schools, including ransom sites from sold slaves brought to Zanzibar from the East and Central African slave trade routes.The first missionaries came from Portugal when Portuguese gained control of Zanzibar and established Catholic Mission and trading in Stone Town which dominated the shipping lane of East Africa . We will take you around Stone Town at Old Fort to view the ruins of the first Catholic Chapel built by Portuguese missionaries. It was later demolished by Oman forces in the eighteen century.
Zanzibar fell in the hands of the Sultan of Oman who moved to rule Zanzibar in 1841 after the defeat of the Portuguese.Sultan Sayyid Said, a devout Muslim, demonstrated gesture of religious tolerance for other religions while simultaneously exuding confidence in the religion of his ancestors. In 1844 more permanent Christian missionaries arrived in East Africa and visited Zanzibar. Trading houses were established in Stone Town by American, Germany, French and English firms which obviously stimulated international maritime businesses across the East Africa coastline.
During the Arab colonial era, under the spirit of tolerance, many other religious institutions were allowed to exercise their faith on the Zanzibar Island. Hindu temples were built as well as two Christian Cathedrals which are found in Stone Town. One is a Protestant Cathedral built in 1873-1879 located at the former Slave Market site and the other of the Roman Catholic Cathedral which was built in 1893. Both are located in the heart of Stone Town near the Zanzibar Old Fort and Beit al Jab. There are also various Mosques and a Zoroastrian Temple found in Stone Town.
Discover the amazing courage and role played by the Missionaries of which the well known Dr. David Livingstone was one. His passion was to see the slave trade being abolished. Through his efforts the UK government became involved and played a big role in the abolition of the inhumane slave trades in East Africa, including Zanzibar. Dr.Livingstone's speech made in 1857 urged the British Government to send workmen and missionaries to come and assist with the slave problem. The trade was finally abolished in 1876. The house where Dr. Livingstone use to stay, by the courtesy of the Sultan of Zanzibar, is also an interesting focal point. The first introduction of the Swahili language King James Bible version was made in 1891 in Zanzibar by Bishop Edward Steer, a British national.
With this tour you will also have the opportunity to visit the Mbweni Ruins which were established by the missionaries as a care center. Ransoms were paid for slaves who were brought from different parts of East Africa to be auctioned.They were then set free and introduced into the medical field, teaching and Church ministry. This was an act which marked a significant symbol of the Christian faith of redemption, paid for the world by Jesus Christ.
Exciting places of interest to be visited are waiting just for you! There is the Anglican Cathedral in Mbweni, the first Christian School in Kiungani, Roman Catholic Cathedral in Stone town and another Anglican Cathedral at the former Slave Market, including other former Schools and the projects they established many decades ago. You will visit some of the most popular sites where missionaries introduced beautiful services, such as at the Mission Hospital in Mkunazini, famously known as Kwakimoto, St.Marys School in Mbweni ,St.Paul`s in Kiungani and St.Monica Schools and St.Joseph Mission School in Vuga street in Stone town and also the UMCA Press where several books and articles were printed and published.
At the end of the tour we offer you a superb lunch and soft drinks at one of two Church restaurants. This could be at Roman Catholic or Anglican Cathedral as both offer very delicious local Swahili food !