At first, Changuu Island (known more commonly as Prison Island) was the location where slaves were detained and held until they were transported to places in the Middle East or Europe. After that, the island was transformed into a quarantine center where people with deadly diseases were left, so they wouldn’t spread their illnesses with the healthy.
Today, the island is a nature reserve, and a beautiful place to spend the day when you visit Stone Town, Zanzibar.The island is a popular day-trip destination from Stone Town. About 20 minutes from the city by traditional Dhow sailing boat, the island offers excellent snorkelling, a beautiful and quiet white sandy beach, giant turtle sanctuary and coral rag forest.
Other marine life is also reasonably rich and Changuu provides good snorkelling. It is by no means the most extensive or varied snorkelling spot off the coast of Zanzibar, but being so close to Stone Town and so easily accessible makes it ideal for those who want to see ‘under the sea’ a little while on a city break.