Walk in the footsteps of Zanzibar’s most famous son, Freddie Mercury, international rock ‘n roll royalty and lead vocalist and songwriter of the British based rock band Queen.
Born Farouk Bulsara in Shangani, Mercury’s family had immigrated to Zanzibar from India before his birth. He spent his early years living, playing, and walking through its winding alleyways in the old town of Stone Town. The Mercury family lived here until they fled to Britain in 1964 to escape the Zanzibar Revolution, in which thousands of Arabs and Indians were killed.
Stone Town serves as part of Zanzibar’s main city, and is dotted with 19th century styled buildings, an old fort, and a diverse collection of Swahili influences.
Take a guided tour through Shangani, where Mercury was mostly raised. Visit the Zanzibar Gallery Shop, once the home of the Mercury family, wonderfully decorated with faded photographs of the musical icon. Admire the colourful triangular streamers, draped across whitewashed walls, wood shutter windows, and blue painted timber doors.
Next, head off to the Zoroastrian Fire Temple where the Parsi family worshipped and where Freddie Mercury was initiated as a child.
End the musical history tour with a seafront lunch at Mercury’s restaurant, a modern-day tribute to the man, his wide vocal range, and his music.