My 5th visit. Just getting below the surface. Take time and look carefully into the shadows of the workshops and godowns. You will miss most of it at first glance. A very friendly town which repays getting to know; A Swahili Stone Town smaller and gentler than Zanzibar. Its resources are limited but in a very beautiful setting. No cars, only donkeys for transport and they do leave traces!
Islam is very present. The older people are more laid back but many of the younger women wear the bui bui and cover their faces, as much a fashion statement as a religious one. Perhaps the only truly Islamic town where English is the official language. A window onto a very different world for English speakers interested in Islam.
Once you get there, living can be either high end or really cheap. No roads so no taxis, but dhows are the main form of transport.
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