Spice Tour in Zanzibar

Cardamom, the princess of spices

While in Zanzibar this past weekend, I went on one of their famous spice tours. Spices were once the major export of Zanzibar, and they’re still intimately tied with the island, but intertwined with tourism. The tour consists of touching, smelling, and ultimately tasting the spices and fruits of Zanzibar. Throughout my one-on-one  guided tour, a local was making me various things made from banana leaf and adorned with hibiscus flowers — I ended up with a purse, a ring, a frog necklace, a hat, and a cone to hold samples of the spices. My guide told me about the origins and uses of various spices and fruits, and we ended the tour with a generous sampling of fruits, fresh coconut water, and a local lunch using the spices we saw.

Clove, the king of spices. The most expensive spice in the world.

Nutmeg


Vanilla


I forgot the name of this, but the fruits can be crushed to make dyes/paint:

Henna. Henna leaves mixed with something acidic will produce the dye used for henna tattoos and such.

Jack fruit. Super heavy (too heavy for branches) and not very delicious.

Cinnamon.

Touch me not: not a spice but a plant that shrivels upon touch.

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