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North Zanzibar

Look at this! And even crazier, look at the road to get there, right outside the resort gates.

Zanzibar is a study in contrasts, and the literal dump on the bumpy road to our resort Essque Zalu just made our entrance

more surprising.

We entered the lobby, designed to look like the sails of a wooden dhow boat, to find staff waiting for us, and cool winds.

And from there, we stepped toward our huts on the Indian Ocean to see the endless color of water, a bit gentler than the Caribbean's fluorescence, but just as calming.

The resort was designed beautifully with huts on promontories of the ocean

as well as a long jetty into the sea with a fresh seafood restaurant.

The weather changed quickly in Zanzibar, and one minute it was sunny and the next, the winds were nearly blowing us up up and away!

In the evenings, we'd walk down the jetty for fish as the pink came and went in the sky.

Essque Zalu was the most rejuvenating stop after the dusts of the safari,

and we loved walking the shore when the tides were out, and soaking in the still saltwater pool.

We mostly enjoyed lunch under the baobab trees and coconut water by the pool, but one afternoon, we took a little adventure with some local men on a dhow, traditionally used for fishing. Our hotel had set up the excursion, which involved driving through the village

to the ocean. First things first? Walk into the boat.

Our guides (who seemed to be related, although didn't speak English well) brought us along the coast where we snorkeled a bit, and just enjoyed cruising with no sounds but the calm.

I could've sat up here for months in the afternoon sun.

We didn't talk much, but smiled a lot, the water so clear you could look straight down over the starfish below.

The sun set over the sea, other dhows making shadows on the waves.

And with that, our beautiful, changing, powerful trip to Africa came to an end with a last breakfast of tamarind jam on toast and halloumi omelets.

From the Zanzibar locals showing us around, to the gasps watching animals in the wild, it truly was our best trip yet, and we absolutely can't wait to be back in Africa.

Our last morning, we flew to the capitol of Tanzania, Dar es Salaam, for a quick nap in the hotel and lot of traffic (and people selling everything from iPhone covers to ice cream since the traffic was so continuously bad!) and then the long flight home.

Asante sana, Tanzania and your hospitable, generous people. Fingers crossed, we'll be back before long!