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Tumbatu Island is the third-largest island making up Zanzibar, part of Tanzania in east Africa. The island is located off the northwest coast of Zanzibar's main island, Unguja.

The wedge-shaped island is eight kilometres (5.0 miles) long but only two kilometres (1.2 miles) wide at its widest point (in the south). It is surrounded by a reef, making it somewhat isolated from the rest of Zanzibar, even though its southern shore is only two kilometres (1.2 miles) from Mkokotoni on Unguja.

The island has two towns, Jongowe and Kichangani, both in the south.

Historically, the island is of interest. Islanders who belong to the Shirazi ethnic group claim descent from Persian royalty which reputedly arrived in the ninth century, and there are important ruins at Makutani in the southeast of the island which were once one of Zanzibar's main settlements.


  • Finke, J. (2006) The Rough Guide to Zanzibar (2nd edition). New York: Rough Guides.

Coordinates: 5°49′07″S 39°13′23″E / 5.81861°S 39.2231°E / -5.81861; 39.2231