Official languages: Kiswahili or Swahili is the official language while English remains the language of commerce and education.
Currency: Tanzanian Shilling
Welcome to Tanzania. Purged on the edge of the African continent, facing the warm Indian Ocean lies a paradise just waiting to be discovered. From the roaring peaks of Mount Kilimanjaro to the tropical paradise of the island of Zanzibar just off shore, a world of possibilities awaits. The friendly and inviting Tanzanian people also play a critical role in making this country such an amazing tourist destination. Wildlife here is at its best, tropical beaches, the awe inspiring mountains, age old ruins and a fascinating blend of cultures, all wrapped up in one adventure filled, exhilarating package. Step inside and be amazed beyond your wildest dreams.
Why is Tanzania so unique? Probably due to the fact that they have the highest mountain on the African continent, the great Mount Kilimanjaro. Millions of adrenalin junkies and mountaineers flock here to climb to the almighty summit with its snowcapped peaks. Tanzania also boasts the tropical island paradise of Zanzibar, which offers an escape from reality with the beautiful white sand beaches and exclusive resorts on offer. There’s also the Serengeti, the vast and breathtaking African safari heaven which sees the Great Migration with its thousands of wildebeest and zebra traveling across country borders. Should we mention the Ngotongo crater where impeccable fossils and early humanoid remains are still being discovered? To crown it all, Tanzania with its magically peaceful lifestyle and rich history is uplifted by the warm and inviting locals that help make this country one in a million.
Must see places in Tanzania
It’s Africa’s highest mountain and attracts thousands of mountaineers and adrenalin junkies from across the globe. It’s also a beautifully scenic hiking destination and a stop that you should not miss when traveling to this country.
The largest intact caldera in the world spans 122 square miles of land and plunges down a whopping 2000 feet into the earth, and it sits in the heart of Tanzania. Named a UNESCO World Heritage Site, you will be able to find almost every type of African plains mammals here. The crater is also home to the densest lion population in Africa.
Stone town is set in Zanzibar and is a famous UNESCO World Heritage Site. Once the thriving epicenter of the great spice route, the now crumbling German-era buildings with its cobwebbed entrances takes you back to a world that time forgot. Hundreds of opportunities for exploring and discovery lay within this ancient ruin city that has seamlessly integrated with modern times. The labyrinth of winding streets leads to the most amazing bazaars, mosques and the beautiful town square.
This iconic island was once an independent state and merged together with Tanganyika to form Tanzania. Often chosen as a honeymoon destination this beautiful tropical paradise will entice travelers from far and wide and has the most amazing collection of activities, unrivaled by others like it.
Selous Game Reserve
Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Selous covers an area larger than the country of Switzerland and offers a remote wildlife experience unlike any other. It’s also the biggest wildlife reserve in the world, houses all the African plains animals and is famous for its exceptionally large herds of elephants.
Though smaller this hiking experience can be just as rewarding as its giant neighbor Kilimanjaro. Mount Meru is Tanzania’s most easily accessible spot to view buffalo, colobus monkeys and giraffes and is one of the only reserves that allow you to walk around and explore the area on foot.
Serengeti National Park
Safari through the famous wildlife park where the big 5 are almost a sure sight. The nearly 15 000 square feet this park covers houses an amazing array of wildlife coupled with breathtaking raw natural beauty.
Tarangine National Park
On display here are the giant silver trunked baobab trees that grow close to the Tarangine River that attracts a spectacular collection of African wildlife.
Lake Manyara National Park
Here you can see the amazingly huge flock of pink flamingos that use the park as their breeding ground. It’s also home to the famous tree climbing lions and the large herds of elephants grazing in the massive acacia trees.
Things to do in Tanzania
See a bull fight
See a bull fight – on the island of Pemba, traditional bullfighting (which definitely does not include killing of the bulls) has been an entertainment act since the 16th century Portuguese rule and serves as a great cultural exchange opportunity.
Hot Air Ballooning
Hot Air Ballooning – Over the great Serengeti that is. From high up you can explore all that the area has on offer and the views are breathtaking in every sense of the word.
Tour Ruaha River Gorge
Tour Ruaha River Gorge – Zanzibar’s second largest, and definitely wildest reserve is famed for its massive herds of elephants, buffalo and over 400 different bird species.
See the chimps at Lake Tanganyika
Visit Sakuma Museum
Take Spice Plantation Tour
Best time to visit Tanzania
Tourists travel to Tanzania from July through October
Rainy season in Tanzania runs from March to May and roads tend to become washed out and some parks even have to close down. If you are looking at climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, January, February and September, when its warm and dry is the ideal time to travel. For viewing the Great Migration you should consider traveling from December to March as this is when the most animals will be on the move. The best general safari times are June to November during the dry season when animals are drawn to the watering holes. On the other hand if you are planning an island vacation to either Zanzibar of Pemba, July through October are favorable times for travel.
Did you know?
- Nyama Choma – Essentially its meat grilled on an open fire and spiced with traditional flavors.
- Ugali – It’s a traditional maize meal porridge that is served as a meal on its own or as a side dish.
- Mishkaki – Tender and deliciously flavored, these beef kebabs are true to Tanzania and a must try.
- Wali wa Nazi – This traditional dish is basically just rice cooked with coconut milk and its served as a side dish or a dish on its own and it is simply delicious.
- Matoke – This staple food consists of boiled and mashed plantain and is a definite must try when visiting the country.
A big day in Tanzanian culture, locals dress up in traditional garments and sing and dance in the spirit of commemorating the day that Zanzibar and Tanganyika aligned to form what we know today as Tanzania.
Karibu Travel & Tourism fare
Held annually in Aruska this fare sells all things Tanzanian and it’s the perfect place to buy souvenirs and experience all that Tanzania has to offer for tourists (May-June)
Mwaka Kogwa Festival
Tanzanian men trash one another with banana stalks in order to settle old arguments and the women dress up and sing and dance before a grass hut is set alight and the festivities kick off. It’s a vibrant, showy display of what forgive and forget should look like and definitely an event that you should attend when visiting during this time (July/August)
The Great Migration
Animals are always seen in great masses in the great Serengeti but December through February see the zebras and wildebeest at their peak for the great migration across borders (December – February)