Monday, September 1, 2008

Tanzania Travel Tips

Tanzania is a land of tropical forest, savannah, grasslands, mountains, shimmering lakes, sandy beaches and coral reefs. It is one of the world’s last great wildlife refuges. Tanzania also has fascinating mix of people and cultures living on the mainland and residing on the islands of Zanzibar including Masai.

Bagamoyo Town

Bagamoyo town was the centre of the 19thcentury slave trade. The name Bagamoyo is derived from the Swahili bwaga moyo, which means "where the heart lays down its burden".

Many of the European explorers passed through here, including Burton, Speke, Grant, Stanley and Livingstone.There are unlimited tourist attractions within easy reach of Dar es

Salaam, the arrival City. These include the Islands of Zanzibar, Pemba and Mafia located in the range of 50 – 100 km away; national parks,which include Mikumi, Selous, Serengeti, Ngorongoro, Lake Manyara and Tarangire. The permanently snow capped Mt. Kilimanjaro (the highest in Africa) is also within reach from Arusha and Moshi Towns.

Getting in and around Dar es Salaam /Tanzania

By Air - Dar es Salaam is approachable through International Airlines flying into Mwalimu Julius Nyerere International Air Port which is thirty minutes drive from the City Centre. These include British Airways, KLM, Swiss Air, Air Tanzania, Precision Air, Kenya Airways, Ethiopian Airlines, Air Malawi, Gulf Air, Emirates,Yemen Air and South African Airlines among others. Connections can also be made through Kilimanjaro International Airport (KIA) which is forty five minutes fly to the Dar es Salaam City and thirty minutes drive from the Arusha City.

By Bus - Dar es Salaam, is about 900 kilometres (twelve hours drive) from Nairobi, Kenya. Intercity buses abound, and you can reach almost any town, big or small, by bus.

Car Hire – There are many car hire companies in Dar es Salaam, Arusha

and other major towns. They can be hired with or without drivers. An International Driver’s License is required, and the driving is on the left hand side of the road.


Swahili and English is spoken in major towns and tourist areas, a visitor should be able to get along quite well with English only.

Widlife and excursions

Sightseeing - Tanzania is indeed unsurpassed Africa in the bounty of its wildlife and the beauty of the land: Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain; all of Africa’s Great Lakes; the best game parks in the world; hiking and nature trails such as the Usambara Mountains; the fabulous island of Zanzibar.

Shopping - Locally made products are available at good prices: batiks, Tingatinga paintings, carvings (especially the Makonde artwork), basket ware, jewellers of all kinds, textiles, and more.


The Tanzanian climate is tropical with temperatures averaging 26.6°C. The central plateau is dry and arid with hot days and cool nights, while the northwest highlands are cool and temperate. June to September is the cooler season. The “long rains’ are from-March to

May and the “short rains” are between October and December. The hottest months are between October and February with temperatures averaging 32°C. .


In Dar es Salaam the coast, summer wear would suffice. For safaris in the north, during the day, light clothing. Sturdy shoes are recommended. Canvas hats. For Kilimanjaro or other treks, check with a mountain specialist before departure. To bring: sunscreen, lotions, sunglasses, mosquito cream and binoculars.

On safari, avoid brightly colored clothes, they may alarm the animals, browns, beiges and khaki are preferred. Short-sleeve shirts/blouses and shorts are ideal, but pack a sweater, it can be chilly in the early morning and in the evening.


The basic unit is the Tanzanian shilling. It advisable to carry American dollars. Bureau dechange also accept the major convertible currencies. Travelers’ cheques are exchangeable in some places. Major credit cards are accepted in the larger hotels.

Electricity 230 volts AC, 50 Hz


Travelers may enter Zanzibar directly by air or by sea (e.g., cruise ships). There are frequent air and ferry services from Dar es Salaam, and some services from Tang