Friday, July 19, 2024
Tanzania Travel Guide - Travel S Helper

Tanzania

travel guide

Tanzania, formally known as the United Republic of Tanzania, is a vast nation in Eastern Africa that is part of the African Great Lakes area. Southern Africa is home to parts of the nation. It is bounded to the north by Kenya and Uganda, to the west by Rwanda, Burundi, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, to the south by Zambia, Malawi, and Mozambique, and to the east by the Indian Ocean. Kilimanjaro, Africa’s tallest peak, is located in northeastern Tanzania.

Tanzania’s population of 51.82 million (2014) is varied, including ethnic, linguistic, and religious groups from all over the world. Tanzania is a presidential constitutional republic, and Dodoma has been the formal capital city since 1996, housing the President’s Office, the National Assembly, and several government departments. Dar es Salaam, the historic capital, still houses the majority of government offices and is the country’s largest metropolis, main port, and key commercial center.

European colonization began in mainland Tanzania in the late nineteenth century with the formation of German East Africa, which gave way to British authority after World War I. Tanganyika administered the continent, but the Zanzibar Archipelago remained a distinct colonial administration. Following their separate independence in 1961 and 1963, the two countries joined to become the United Republic of Tanzania in April 1964.

Flights & Hotels
search and compare

We compare room prices from 120 different hotel booking services (including Booking.com, Agoda, Hotel.com and others), enabling you to pick the most affordable offers that are not even listed on each service separately.

100% Best Price

The price for one and the same room can differ depending on the website you are using. Price comparison enables finding the best offer. Also, sometimes the same room can have a different availability status in another system.

No charge & No Fees

We don’t charge any commissions or extra fees from our customers and we cooperate only with proven and reliable companies.

Ratings and Reviews

We use TrustYou™, the smart semantic analysis system, to gather reviews from many booking services (including Booking.com, Agoda, Hotel.com and others), and calculate ratings based on all the reviews available online.

Discounts and Offers

We search for destinations through a large booking services database. This way we find the best discounts and offer them to you.

Tanzania - Info Card

Population

63,852,892

Currency

Tanzanian shilling (TZS)

Time zone

UTC+3 (East Africa Time)

Area

23,200 km2 (9,000 sq mi)

Calling code

+255

Official language

Swahili - English

Tanzania | Introduction

Geography

Most of the continent is covered by a broad central plateau with elevations ranging from 900 to 1800 meters. The Great Rift Valley is cut across the nation by the Eastern Arc and the Southern and Northern Highlands mountain ranges.

Tanzania is home to Africa’s tallest peak (Mount Kilimanjaro), lowest point (the lake bed of Lake Tanganyika), and a part of the continent’s biggest lake (Lake Victoria, which it shares with Uganda and Kenya).

Climate

The weather in Tanzania ranges from humid and hot in low-lying regions like Dar es Salaam to hot during the day and chilly at night in Arusha. There are no distinct seasons like winter and summer; only dry and rainy seasons exist. Tanzania has two rainy seasons: the Mango Rains, which last from late October to December, and the Long Rains, which last from March to May.

During the lengthy rains season, several major resorts and tourist sites on Zanzibar, as well as the Mafia Island Marine Park, shut, and many routes in the national parks become inaccessible. As a result, most excursions in the parks are limited to the park’s major roadways. Travelers should make appropriate preparations for their journey.

Temperatures in Dar may easily go over 35°C during the dry season. During the noon heat, seek shade and apply plenty of sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher.

The following are the best times to visit:

  • June to August: This is the conclusion of the lengthy rainy season, and the weather is at its finest now — pleasant during the day and chilly in the evening. However, since water is abundant in the parks and animals are not compelled to cluster in a few places to rehydrate, as they do in the midst of the dry season immediately after Christmas, this is not always the greatest time of year for safaris.
  • January to February: The ideal time to visit the Serengeti is now. Huge herds of Wildebeest, Zebra, and Buffalo typically move to better grazing grounds around this time. During this time, you may be able to see some of the Serengeti’s 1.5 million wildebeest begin their historic trek. Be aware that this is most likely Tanzania’s hottest season, with even natives complaining about the heat. You have been forewarned.

Wildlife and conservation

Tanzania’s protected areas account for about 38% of the country’s total land area. The Ngorongoro Conservation Area is one of Tanzania’s 16 national parks, as well as a number of wildlife and forest reserves. Jane Goodall’s continuing research of chimpanzee behavior, which began in 1960, is located in Gombe Stream National Park in western Tanzania.

Tanzania is a biodiverse country with a diverse range of wildlife habitats. White-bearded wildebeest (Connochaetes taurinus mearnsi) and other bovids migrate in huge numbers through Tanzania’s Serengeti plain every year. Tanzania is also home to approximately 275 reptile species, many of which are absolutely endemic and included on the Red Lists of several nations maintained by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Tanzania has created a Biodiversity Action Plan to help save species.

Demographics

The population was 44,928,923 at the time of the 2012 census. The population under the age of 15 accounted for 44.1 percent of the total.

Tanzania’s population distribution is highly unequal. The majority of the population lives around the northern border or along the eastern coast, with the rest of the country being sparsely inhabited. The Katavi Region has a density of 12 per square kilometer (31/sq mi), whereas the Dar es Salaam Region has a density of 3,133 per square kilometer (8,110/sq mi).

Approximately 70% of the population lives in rural areas, but this number has been decreasing since 1967. Dar es Salaam, the biggest city and commercial center of Tanzania, with a population of 4,364,541 people. Dodoma (population 410,956), Tanzania’s capital and seat of the National Assembly, is situated in the country’s central region.

There are about 125 ethnic groups in the population. The Sukuma, Nyamwezi, Chagga, and Haya peoples each have a population of over a million people. Tanzanians are mostly of African origin, with a minor percentage of Arab, European, and Asian descent. Bantu people make up the bulk of Tanzanians, including the Sukuma and Nyamwezi. The nomadic Maasai and Luo, both of whom are found in larger numbers in neighboring Kenya, are among the Nilotic peoples.

Arabs and Indians, as well as minor European and Chinese populations, make up the population. Many Shirazis also identify as such. During the 1964 Zanzibar Revolution, tens of thousands of Arabs and Indians were murdered. In 1994, the Asian population on the mainland totaled 50,000 people and 4,000 in Zanzibar. Tanzania had an estimated 70,000 Arabs and 10,000 Europeans.

In recent years, several albinos in Tanzania have been the victims of violence. Attacks against albinos often include hacking off their limbs in the bizarre superstition notion that owning albinos’ bones would bring riches. The nation outlawed witch doctors in an attempt to stop the practice, but it persists, and albinos continue to be targeted.

Tanzania’s overall fertility rate in 2010 was 5.4 children born per woman, with 3.7 in urban mainland regions, 6.1 in rural mainland areas, and 5.1 in Zanzibar, according to Tanzanian official data. 37.3 percent of all women aged 45–49 had given birth to eight or more children, and 45.0 percent of presently married women in that age range had given birth to as many children.

Religion

Religious surveys were removed from official census reports after 1967, thus current data on religion are unavailable. In 2007, religious leaders and sociologists estimated that Muslim and Christian groups are about equal in size, accounting for 30 to 40% of the population each, with the rest made up of individuals of other faiths, indigenous religions, and “no religion.”

According to 2014 estimates, 61.4 percent of the population is Christian, 35.2 percent is Muslim, 1.8 percent practices Traditional African religion, 1.4 percent is unaffiliated with any religion, and 0.2 percent practices other faiths. In the mainland, more than 99 percent of the population is Muslim, while in Zanzibar, more than 99 percent of the population is Muslim. Ahmadiyya Muslims account for 16 percent of Muslims, 20 percent of non-denominational Muslims, 40 percent of Sunni Muslims, 20 percent of Shia Muslims, and 4% of Sufi Muslims.

Roman Catholics and Protestants make up the majority of the Christian population. The high number of Lutherans and Moravians among Protestants reflects the country’s German past, while the number of Anglicans reflects Tanganyika’s British heritage. Due to missionary activities, Pentecostals and Adventists are also prevalent. The Walokole movement (East African Revival), which has also provided fertile ground for the development of charismatic and Pentecostal organizations, has influenced all of them to different degrees.

On the mainland, Muslim communities are centered around the coast; however, significant Muslim populations may also be found in interior metropolitan centers and along historic caravan routes. Sunni Muslims make up the vast bulk of the Muslim population. Dar es Salaam, Tanzania’s biggest and wealthiest city, has a mostly Sunni Muslim population.

Other religious organizations, including as Buddhists, Hindus, and Bahá’s, have strong congregations, mostly on the mainland.

Language

Tanzania’s official languages are Swahili and English. Swahili, on the other hand, is the most widely spoken language in the country, with English used mostly in business and higher education. Individual ethnic groups speak over 100 distinct languages, but Swahili is nearly widely spoken across the nation.

Time of Day

This is when having a basic understanding of Kiswahili may be inconvenient. Tanzanians and Westerners do not work at the same time. This is not to be confused with Africa time, which is the idea that appointments are flexible and individuals may show up whenever they choose. It is irrational for Tanzanians for the day to begin in the middle of the night.

Because dawn and sunset are almost same all year, at 6 a.m. and 6 p.m., the day begins at 6 a.m., which is 0 hours. Tanzanians always deducted 6 hours for western time when stating time in Kiswahili. To a Tanzanian, 11 a.m. is 5 a.m. A Tanzanian will tell time in English if they wish to use the western standard, and in Kiswahili if they want to use the local standard, to prevent any misunderstanding.

If you wish to practice your Kiswahili, bear this in mind while speaking with a Tanzanian about appointment times. If you say Saa kumi na moja asubuhi (11 a.m.) instead of Saa tano asubuhi (5 a.m.), you’ll have to wait 6 hours if the person comes on time, plus whatever long it takes to be fashionably late!

Internet & Communications

In Tanzania, staying in contact while traveling is seldom an issue. Even in certain national parks, you can obtain good cell phone coverage.

Telephone calls

Tanzania’s state-owned telecom, “Tanzania Telecommunications Company Ltd” (TTCL), operates all pay phones and landlines in the country. Telephone fixed-lines, like in other developing nations, are out of reach for the majority of the population. However, in the last five years, the mobile network has exploded throughout Africa, and Tanzania is no exception. Most Tanzanians choose this option since there are numerous old mobile phones for sale and the cost of obtaining a SIM card is just 2000 Tsh. When most people start a job, the first big purchase they make is a phone. Although service disruptions are frequent, the main mobile service providers operate across the nation, even in some of the most rural regions.

If you appreciate a cab driver or tour guide, ask for his or her phone number. This is often the most effective method of contacting them.

Using a cellular phone You may buy a local SIM card for 500 Tsh from a number of Tanzanian service providers if you have a “unlocked” GSM 900/1800MHz frequency phone (the same frequency used in the rest of the globe excluding the United States and Canada). AirtelVodacom and Tigo are the most popular. Zantel is a newcomer on the mainland, and it presently boasts the best network coverage because to a national roaming deal with Vodacom.

Time on the air Scratch-cards, which are widely accessible, may be used to recharge your “Prepaid” mobile phone account. Simply search for stores or even tiny tables with posters for different mobile service providers put up along the route. The denominations of these cards are 500, 1000, 5000, 10000, 20000, and 50000 Tsh. You’ll need at least a 10000 Tsh-card if you intend on making regular calls outside of Africa.

Making calls within Tanzania to a mobile phone – Dial “0 & (telephone number)” or “+255 & (telephone number)”

Making calls within Tanzania to a landline – Dial “0 & (city code) & (telephone number)” or “+255 & (city code) & (telephone number)”

Telephone codes for the Tanzanian cities (These numbers are only used when calling landlines) – Dar es Salaam (22), Morogoro & Mtwara (23), Zanzibar & Pemba (24), Mbeya (25), Iringa (26), Arusha & Tanga (27), and Mwanza (28).

Making international calls – Dial “+ & (country code) & (area code, if any) & (telephone number)” or “000 & (country code) & (area code, if any) & (telephone number)”

Except for the initial “0” and the “+255” country code, all cellular carriers altered the second digit in October 2006. So, for example, Vodacom has changed its phone numbers from “4” to “5”, e.g., 744 is now 754. It’s possible that certain publications, books, travel guides, and advertising haven’t made the required changes. All Vodacom phone numbers beginning with 744, 745, 746, and 748 should be replaced with 754, 755, 756, and 784.

Internet

Internet cafés are becoming extinct in Tanzania as more people get Internet-enabled mobile phones. They used to be common in large cities like Dar es Salaam and Arusha, and they may still be.

International telecommunications are limited in capacity and may be unstable at times.

Some mobile service providers have begun to provide wireless internet access. The major service providers are Zantel, Vodacom, Tigo, and Airtel. Mobile internet access is available in all metropolitan areas and many rural regions that have mobile phone service. Many parts of Dar es Salaam, Arusha, and many smaller towns, as well as Zanzibar town, have wireless 3G connectivity.

You may use the mobile browser on your phone to access this service. To use it with a computer, you’ll need to buy a CDMA PC Card or a USB mobile receiver that connects to your computer. This will cost you about 200,000 Tsh. It will also work if you have an unlocked CDMA phone and a modem cord.

Scratch cards, like mobile phones, are used to earn airtime. For 1 Mb, connection fees are about 60 Tsh, or US$0.05 per MB. So you’ll have to pay $50 for 1 GB of download and upload. It’s not cheap.

A Tanzanian pay-as-you-go SIM card, on the other hand, is an excellent choice for mobile phone usage. A call to Europe is less expensive than the other way around, and data is affordable for email and online surfing.

Some providers, such as Powernet (Bibi Titi Mohammed Road, Elia Complex) 0658769376, 0787769376, 0757769376, 0777769376, provide unlimited Internet access everywhere in Dar-Es-Salam for Tshs 30,000/-. (USD 20).

Emergency

Emergency Services: 112

In 2006, there was a major controversy concerning the emergency service number, which resulted in the Chief of Police’s resignation. During an armed robbery at a renowned Indian restaurant, an employee called 112 to alert the authorities to the incident. He hung up after letting the phone ring for almost 30 minutes. The next day, the media revealed that the emergency line had been unplugged for more than a month and that the police had failed to notify the public.

Fortunately, the emergency number has been restored; nevertheless, if possible, go directly to the closest police station rather than calling 112.

Economy

Tanzania is one of the world’s poorest nations. Tanzania’s gross domestic product (GDP) was projected to be $43.8 billion in 2014, or $86.4 billion when measured in purchasing power parity (PPP). Tanzania is a middle-income nation, with a per capita GDP of $1,813 (PPP), 32 percent lower than the average of $2,673 for the 45 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, and placed 23rd among them.

Tanzania’s per capita GDP increased at a rate of 3.5 percent per year on average from 2009 to 2013, outpacing just nine nations in Sub-Saharan Africa: the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Lesotho, Liberia, Mozambique, Sierra Leone, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

South Africa, Switzerland, and China were Tanzania’s top trade partners in 2012, accounting for $5.5 billion in exports. Switzerland, China, and the United Arab Emirates were its top import partners, accounting for $11.7 billion in total.

Tanzania fared well throughout the Great Recession, which started in late 2008 or early 2009. Tanzania was insulated from the slump by strong gold prices, which bolstered the country’s mining sector, and the country’s weak integration into global markets. Tanzania’s economy has grown quickly since the crisis ended, owing to strong tourism, telecommunications, and banking industries.

However, according to the United Nations Development Program, recent economic development has benefitted mainly the “very few,” leaving the bulk of the people behind. Except for Burundi, Tanzania’s 2013 Global Hunger Index was the worst in the EAC. Except for Burundi, the percentage of people who were undernourished in 2010–12 was the highest in the EAC.

Poverty

Tanzania has an extremely high rate of poverty. Tanzania has made limited progress in combating severe hunger and malnutrition. According to the 2010 Global Hunger Index, the situation is “alarming.” Rural children suffer from much higher rates of malnutrition and chronic hunger, despite the fact that the gap between urban and rural children has decreased in terms of stunting and underweight. Inadequate infrastructure investment, restricted access to agricultural supplies, extension services, and finance, limited technology, as well as trade and marketing assistance, and significant reliance on rain-fed agriculture and natural resources all contribute to low rural sector productivity.

Around 68 percent of Tanzania’s 44.9 million people live on less than $1.25 per day, and 16 percent of children under the age of five are malnourished. According to the United Nations Development Programme, the most significant problems Tanzania confronts in poverty reduction include unsustainable exploitation of natural resources, uncontrolled agriculture, climate change, and water-source encroachment (UNDP).

According to the UNDP, Tanzanians have limited resources in terms of financial services, infrastructure, or access to better agricultural technology, which exacerbates hunger and poverty in the nation. According to the United Nations’ Human Development Index, Tanzania is ranked 159th out of 187 nations in terms of poverty (2014).

Entry Requirements For Tanzania

Visa & Passport

Citizens of Namibia, Romania, Rwanda, Hong Kong, Malaysia, and other Commonwealth member nations do not need a visa for visits of less than three months (except the United Kingdom, Canada, Bangladesh, New Zealand, Nigeria, India & South Africa). A three-month single entrance Tourist Visa costs $50 and a three-month double admission Tourist Visa costs $100. Visas are available upon arrival in Dar es Salaam, Kilimanjaro, Mwanza, and other ports of entry. Please be aware that if your flight arrives at the same time as other foreign planes, the wait may be extended. Visas are valid for a period of time after they are issued. However, getting a visa before to travel is strongly advised. A US passport holder can only get a $100 multiple-entry visa. Travelers leaving from the United States may pay an extra $20 for a three-day fast service. The current criteria may be found on the Tanzanian Embassy’s website in the United States. Visas are also available through any of Tanzania’s diplomatic missions across the world. The cost of a visa to enter Zanzibar is $50, while the cost to leave is $25.

If you are not visiting Tanzania for tourist reasons, you must meet additional criteria. A temporary work permit, known as a CTA, is required for any kind of commercial travel (Carrying on Temporary Assignment). This was $200 and needed the completion of a form. A total of six passport-sized photographs will be needed. It may be problematic if you don’t have this. If you are not a tourist, it will be impossible to enter Zanzibar without it. For additional information, see the Tanzania Immigration Service website.

When going by ground from Nairobi, Kenya to Arusha, Tanzania, keep in mind that you must cross the border on foot at the Namanga border crossing. Scammers in the no man’s land between Kenya’s and Tanzania’s border control offices will attempt a variety of schemes, including providing exorbitantly low currency conversion rates and posing as authorities selling Tanzania visa stamps. Those trying to sell Tanzania visa stamps will ask to view your passport, then put an item (a tiny Tanzanian bank note) in your passport, shut it, and ask for the visa-on-arrival cost. Do business only with established government buildings’ immigration offices and neighboring banks. Stopping or interacting with individuals in the no man’s space in between is not recommended.

How To Travel To Tanzania

By plane

Julius Nyerere International Airport (IATA: DAR) in Dar es Salaam (formerly known as Mwalimu Julius K. Nyerere International Airport and Dar es Salaam International Airport) and Kilimanjaro International Airport  (IATA: JRO) in Kilimanjaro, which is halfway between Arusha and Moshi, are the two major airports.

Tanzania is served Internationally from:

Europe 

  • KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (Amsterdam), +255 22 213 9790 (Dar) & +255 27 223 8355 (Arusha). Daily flights with stopover in Kilimanjaro.
  • Swiss International Air Lines (Zurich), +255 22 211 8870. 5 flights a week (Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday) with a stopover in Nairobi.
  • Turkish Airlines (Istanbul). Daily flights.

Middle East and Asia

  • Emirates (Dubai), +255 22 211 6100. Daily flights.
  • Qatar Airways (Doha), +255 22 284 2675, 1019, Julius Nyerere International Airport, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Daily flights.
  • Oman Air.
  • Etihad airways.
  • Flydubai.

Africa

  • Fast Jet. a low cost airline.
  • South African Airways (Johannesburg), +255 22 211 7044. Twice daily flights.
  • Ethiopian Airlines (Addis Ababa), +255 22 211 7063. Daily flights (except for Monday) with a stopover in Kilimanjaro.
  • Kenya Airways (Nairobi), +255 22 211 9376 (Dar) & +255 24 223 8355 (Zanzibar). Three daily flights with some stopping in Kilimanjaro.
  • Egypt Air.
  • Air Seychelles.
  • Comores Aviation.
  • Carriers originating from Malawi, Mozambique also maintain regular flights to Dar es Salaam.

Domestically

  • Air Tanzania , +255 22 211 8411, bookings@airtanzania.com.
  • Precision Air, +255 22 212 1718, Along Nyerere/Pugu Road, P.O Box 70770, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, info@precisionairtz.com or pwreservations@precisionairtz.com also flights to/from Kenya.
  • Coastal Aviation, +255 22 211 7959, P. O. Box 3052, 107 Upanga Road, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, safari@coastal.cc.
  • ZanAir, +255 24 223 3670, P.O.Box 2113, Zanzibar, Tanzania, reservations@zanair.com.
  • Regional Air provides almost daily service to all major cities, including Dar es Salaam, Arusha, Mwanza, Mbeya, Zanzibar, and most national parks.

By car

It’s not advised to drive in Tanzania, or throughout most of Africa, unless you have already experienced the driving conditions in developing countries. Nonetheless, here is some useful information for those thinking to undertake the challenge.

Drive on the left side of the road

Tanzanians drive on the left (like in the United Kingdom, India, Australia, and Japan), rather than the right (as in North America and most European nations). Experienced drivers from “right-hand drive” nations will require about half a day to adapt to the shift. Fortunately, the pedals are not reversed, even if the gear change, windshield wipers, and turn signal activators are. Simply follow the flow of traffic. Even if you have some experience driving on the other side of the road, you should always be cautious since you may quickly get confused, putting you at danger of a head-on accident or striking a person.

Choice of vehicle

If you’re renting a car when you arrive, a 4×4 sport utility vehicle with high road clearance is your best bet, particularly if you want to go on safari in one of the national parks. Vehicles such as the Land Cruiser, Hilux Surf (4Runner), and Range Rover may be found. Mini-SUVs like the Toyota RAV4 and Honda CRV should be avoided since they can’t always handle the terrible road conditions in Tanzania’s national parks. Another problem is the availability of four-wheel drive vehicles. Always-on 4×4 vehicles are not the greatest option for off-road driving. These cars were designed to drive across minor mud holes or in the snow on solid roads. What you’ll find in Tanzania’s national parks is very different, and it necessitates the use of a good 4-wheel drive vehicle capable of navigating big mud holes and sandy roads. Even so, you may find yourself trapped.

Navigation

  • Nelles Maps of Tanzania, Rwanda & Burundi is the best map. They’ve gone to tremendous lengths to identify even the tiniest towns along the routes, which is useful for navigating areas with few markers.
  • Along the major roadways, there are markings and white concrete pillions. They indicate the next major city or town along the road as well as the remaining kilometers.

Driving in the city

This only pertains to Dar es Salaam; the rest of the cities and villages are tiny and simple to navigate. Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., the city center is highly crowded. The roadways are small and there are few traffic signals. Because it’s a dog-eat-dog environment, aggressive driving abilities are required, as no one will let you past if you just sit and wait at stop lights. The streets are clogged with parked and moving vehicles, SUVs, trucks, scooters, and hulking guys carrying ridiculously laden carts. Traffic congestion may last for hours, particularly near Kariakoo Market.

The locals refer to a few roundabouts in downtown as “keeplefties” since the sign instructing vehicles to “Keep Left” while approaching the roundabouts was called after this interesting Mzungu innovation. The Swahili term mzungu means “white” outsiders. It’s not pejorative, and it’s more akin to calling a Caucasian a white person.

If you’re parked on the street in Dar, locate a space, lock your doors, and leave. A parking valet in a yellow neon vest will approach you for payment when you return. The cost for two hours is 300 Tsh. Either the attendant will give you a ticket or the ticked will be on your windshield already. If you have a ticket on your windshield, DO NOT leave without paying it. The attendant will very certainly be compelled to compensate for the missing funds, since he is likely to earn no more than 3000 Tsh a day.

Carjacking is rare, but stealing goods by unlocking doors or leaping through open windows is not. Keep your windows and doors shut and locked. Thieves have been known to take mirrors, paneling, spare tires, and anything else that isn’t inscribed with the license plate number or fastened into the vehicle’s body while cars are stopped at traffic signals or parked in unguarded places. Pick your parking spaces wisely, and don’t leave valuables out in the open. You may either leave a modest tip for the parking attendant to keep an eye on your vehicle (500 to 1000 Tsh) or locate a secure parking place, particularly if you’re leaving your car overnight.

Routes

The “Dar es Salaam to Mbeya” route (A7/A17) connects Dar es Salaam with the Southern Highlands, passing via Morogoro, Iringa, and Mikumi National Park, as well as the Selous and Ruhaha National Parks. The “Dar to Arusha and the Serengeti” route (B1) connects Tanga and Moshi to the Northern Circuit, which includes Mount Kilimanjaro, Saadani, Tanrangire, Ngorongoro, and Serengeti National Parks.

Dangers and annoyances

Tanzanians drive extremely quickly and will overtake on a blind bend without hesitation. Furthermore, most commercial cars are under-maintained and overweight, and you’ll notice a lot of them broken down on major roads. NEVER presume that the drivers’ brakes are functioning or that they have thoroughly considered the hazardous move they are about to undertake.

The majority of Tanzania’s roads are in poor condition, with potholes and hazardous grooves created by heavy transport trucks. All major highways pass through towns and villages, and traffic calming devices (also known as speed bumps or road humps) are often used to ensure that cars slow down as they pass through. Unfortunately, few are properly marked, and most are difficult to notice until you are very next to them, and if you approach too quickly, you may be thrown off the road. If you enter any town too quickly, you may not be able to escape these and other dangers. Because animals and children often rush out onto the roadway, this protective driving attitude is also sensible.

If you have a collision with a pedestrian, go to the closest police station and report it. Even if you’re certain it wasn’t your fault, don’t get out of your car and try to fix the problem. Tanzanians are among of Africa’s kindest people, yet they have been known to take things into their own hands. This is because to their distrust of the police and the idea that anybody with money, such as wealthy foreigners, can buy their way out of a situation.

Move out of the path if you come upon a caravan of government cars. Although this is arguable, they have priority and will not hesitate to drive you off the road if you do not yield. You may potentially face a fine from the cops if you don’t yield.

In Tanzania, license plate colors may be used to identify car registration. Privately owned cars have yellow plates that begin with “T” and are followed by three digits. Tanzanian government plates are similarly yellow, however they only show letters and typically begin with the letter “S.” (the fewer the letters, the higher up in the food chain the owner is). Diplomatic plates are green, while red plates are for international development agencies, blue plates are for the United Nations and related organizations, white plates are for taxis, buses, and commercial (safari) vehicles, and black plates are for the military and police. In Zanzibar and Pemba, this code does not apply.

Passing Etiquette

Following vehicles will activate their right turn signal lights to signify their intent to pass you. Engage your left turn signal if the road is clear; otherwise, activate your right turn signal. When trying to pass, keep an eye out for this.

By bus

The bus is an excellent method to enter Tanzania. Fly to Nairobi, then take a bus to Arusha, which is a fantastic base for Mount Meru and the Ngorongoro Crater. You should also consider visiting Tanzania’s south central region, which is free of tourist hawkers. Tanzania’s roads are in poor condition; there are no freeways and just a few multiple lane portions on major routes. Buses in most villages slow down or halt due to traffic, police, and speed calming devices. For your information, a private car journey from Dar to Iringa takes at least 6 hours. It’s mainly a two-lane road that the Chinese have just renovated, so it’s in excellent shape for the most part.

Buses departing from Dar go on the same route (A7) until they reach Chalinze, which is approximately midway between Dar and Morogoro and takes less than two hours.

If you’re heading to Arusha, the bus will take the A17 north. Saandani National Park, Pangani, Tanga, Lushoto, Kilimanjaro, and Moshi are some of the other noteworthy sites along this road. You may also take a bus from Arusha to Mwanza or Kigoma, but after you’ve passed through the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, the roads are in terrible shape, and you’ll be in for a bumpy trip.

If you continue beyond Chalinze, you’ll travel via Morogoro (also the Dodoma exit), the Selous Game Reserve’s entrance point, Mikumi National Park, the ancient major gate to the Udzungwa Mountains Parks, and Iringa, the Ruaha National Park exit.

With a new campground at the Msosa entrance to the Uduzungwas (the Iringa side of the park) and the gateway to Ruaha (probably Tanzania’s finest park), Iringa is the spot to go to see the southern circuit. It’s a fantastic location to spend a few days.

You may either travel west to Mbeya or south to Songea after Iringa. If you wish to see Lake Tanganyika, enter Malawi, or go north to Kigoma, Mbeya is the place to go. The roads north of Mbeya aren’t sealed, so it’ll be a lengthy and miserable journey. Take the bus to Songea to view Lake Nyasa (also known as Lake Malawi). Despite the fact that Mozambique is just a short distance away, there are no formal entrance points.

Finally, you’ll take the B2 if you’re heading south of Dar. The primary path to the Selous and the Rufiji River is through this route. You may also stop at Kilwa, Lindi, and lastly Mtwara along the route. Bring a cushion since the road isn’t completely sealed.

Aside from the highways linking Nairobi, Arusha, and Dar es Salaam, the roads connecting smaller towns and villages are in poor condition, but they are gradually improving. Traveling from Arusha to Dodoma, for example, is slow. Returning to Chalinze and then boarding a bus to Dodoma may be more expedient. This is true for any trip between cities that aren’t on the way to Dar.

Namanga, on the border with Tanzania, is a bustling outpost that typifies much of Africa. Even the bus will wait for you to cross the border here. You can even get off on the Kenyan side, walk over the border, and board the Tanzanian side of the bus.

It is also feasible to travel by bus from Dar to Malawi, Uganda, and Rwanda.

If you’re buying tickets in a bigger city, make sure you go to the correct ticket sales counter. Also, arrive long before the bus is due to leave to guarantee that you are escorted to the right bus and that your baggage is checked in with the real bus driver. There is a scam at Arusha’s bus terminal where individuals try to mimic bus ticket salespeople and bus drivers.

Bus Lines

  • Tahmeed Buses connect Mombasa with Tanga and Dar in Tanzania.
  • Royal Coach, one of the finest buses available, goes to Arusha.
  • Dar Express services many cities, including Nairobi, Kenya.
  • SumrySutco, and Upendo connect the beautiful southern part of Tanzania, Iringa and Mbeya to Dar and further S.W.
  • Taqwa Coach Company have buses to and from Dar to Malawi, Zambia and Kenya.

How To Travel Around Tanzania

In Tanzania, the bus is the most prevalent mode of transportation. Although first-class air-conditioned buses are available on the Dar-Moshi-Arusha route, most vehicles have a basic design and the roads are bad (Dar Express – ticket office on Libya Street downtown or office no. 45 at Ubungo). Dar es Salaam is served by almost all buses. Ubungo, Dar’s primary bus terminal (from which all buses depart), is located 8 kilometers west of the city center.

Several of the nicer “intercity buses” provide free beverages and cookies. In Dar, minibuses known as Dala-Dalas may be used to go about the city for a low price. Except for longer trips, the fee is posted on the front next to the entrance and is typically TSH 250 for adults (2011). The bus route is also painted on the front and sides of the vehicle, for example, ‘Posta-Mwenge,’ and a color coding system is used. The major downtown daladala hub is Posta (located outside the central post office on Azikiwe/Maktaba Street). Kariakoo, Mwenge, Buguruni, Ubungo, and others are among the others.

Take the daladala, sit down if one is available, and pay the conductor (‘konda’) when he waves his pile of money at you in a significant manner. The konda announces the names of the stations; if you don’t know where you are or what your goal stop is called, it will be difficult to determine where to get off. If possible, ask someone at your destination, because the daladala stops sometimes have no signs at all – people ‘just know’ that certain street corners are the daladala stop, and the names aren’t always obvious (for example, ‘Sudani’ on the Masaki-Posta line, near the Sudanese ambassador’s residence on Toure Drive). When you hear/see your stop and want to get off, say “Shusha!” (let me off), and the konda will bang twice on the chassis, causing the driver to veer to the side and come to a complete stop. The daladalas are not particularly late; the Msasani and Mwenge pathways on the east side of town are the most recent.

Three-wheeled tuktuks/baby taxis/CNGs/bajajis whizz about as well. They are less expensive than taxis and can avoid traffic bottlenecks. Although it’s probably not the safest choice, I’ve never heard of any bajaji-related issues. You may negotiate the price ahead of time, but the driver may not know your destination (8there is no such thing as ‘knowledge’ in Dar es Salaam) and therefore will not know how much to charge. The drivers I’ve had have typically offered quite reasonable rates at the destination (maybe with a decent’skin tax’ for white folks), and you can usually tell if they’re attempting to rip you off by their leer. It’s useful to know the Swahili words for “right” and “left”: kulia (right), kushoto (left), moja kwa moja (straight), simama (halt), asante kaka (thanks brother).

Private cabs are also a good option, but be careful to haggle the price before taking one. Fellow passengers may be able to provide recommendations for a fair fare. Some locations (such as the Dar es Salaam Airport) have a robust taxi cartel that sets fixed rates.

Flying across Tanzania is quicker and safer if you can afford it.

Even the busiest highways are in bad shape, and bus drivers aren’t renowned for their patience or driving abilities. In Tanzania, road accidents take more lives than any other cause of mortality.

Car rental entails renting a vehicle for personal use.

Tanzanian car rental is inexpensive, and there are many dependable 4WD jeeps such as Landcruisers and Landrovers available for hiring. In Tanzania, 4WD vehicles are comfortable and can endure any weather conditions. Choose private transport in a Landcruiser or Landrover to travel comfortably everywhere in Tanzania, whether in rural regions or national parks.

In major airports such as Dar es Salaam Julius Nyerere Airport, Kilimanjaro International Airport, major cities, and all towns that are peripheral to tourist destinations like Moshi, Mwanza, Arusha, and Karatu around Ngorongoro, there are several local Tour Operators that have fleets of cars for hire.

Destinations in Tanzania

Cities in Tanzania

  • Dodoma
  • Arusha
  • Dar es Salaam
  • Kigoma
  • Mbeya
  • Moshi
  • Morogoro
  • Mwanza
  • Mtwara

Other destinations in Tanzania

  • Arusha National Park
  • Mount Meru – Mount Meru is an active stratovolcano in Tanzania, situated 70 kilometers (43 miles) west of Mount Kilimanjaro.
  • Mikumi National Park
  • Mount Kilimanjaro – The world’s tallest freestanding mountain and Africa’s highest peak. It is possible to climb it with the assistance of a guide.
  • Ngorongoro Conservation Area – includes the Ngorongoro Crater and the Olduvai Gorge
  • Ruaha National Park
  • Serengeti National Park
  • Stone Town
  • Tarangire National Park
  • Udzungwa Mountains National Park

Things To See in Tanzania

Tanzania has wonderful national parks where you may view some of Africa’s most beautiful flora and wildlife. Several national parks and wildlife reserves may be found in Tanzania. The Northern Circuit (Serengeti, Ngorongoro, Manyara, and Tarangire) and the Southern Circuit (Serengeti, Ngorongoro, Manyara, and Tarangire) are the two types of safaris available in Tanzania (Selous, Mikumi and Ruaha). This is an oversimplification, since it excludes other fascinating but more difficult-to-reach parks like Katavi and Gombe, to mention a few. The first two groups are more accessible to tourists, since many tour firms provide a range of packages for them.

Safari in Tanzania

A safari can cost anywhere from US$250 to US$1,500 per person per night, depending on the level of comfort (fly-tents, self-catering, and guides with vehicles) and the size of the park (Manyara and Tarangire). Luxury lodges and tented camps in the Serengeti can cost anywhere from US$250 to US$1,500 per person per night. You are welcome to bring your own car, as long as it is a 4×4 with sufficient clearance. There is an advantage to hiring a guide and a vehicle since safari vehicles have open roofs that offer a far better vantage position for observing animals. Even if you’re driving your own car, many parks will need you to hire a licensed guide before entering the park. A day with a guide may cost about US$35 including tip. Guides are useful since they are familiar with the park and can assist you in finding creatures like as lions, leopards, rhinos, cheetahs, and hyenas.

As of July 2008, park fees for Manyara and Tarangire were US$35 per person and US$10 for vehicle/driver costs. There is a US$200 vehicle charge, a $50 per person park fee, and a $10,- vehicle/driver fee for Ngorongoro. It costs US$100 per person to visit the Serengeti, plus a $10 vehicle/driver charge. These charges are valid for a period of 24 hours. If you come in the afternoon, you will not be charged again if you return in the morning the following day.

Warrior Trails, Ranger Tours, and Leopard Tours are among of the most well-known safari businesses. Ajabu Adventures, Bush2Beach Safaris, Bushmen Expeditions, Fay Safaris, and Tanzania Tour Company are among the other prominent tour operators rated by the Tanzania Association of Tour Operators. Serena and Sopa are well-known hotel locations with amenities all throughout the Northern Circuit. Smaller excursions and lesser-known accommodation facilities, on the other hand, may be just as excellent, if not better, than the bigger tours and lodges.

Head to the southern circuit for cheaper rates and some of the most magnificent parks while avoiding safari vehicle traffic congestion, especially Ruaha National Park, where fees are still just $20 per person and the animal range is considerably wider and the landscape breathtaking. Iringa is an excellent location for exploring the region and planning your safari excursions.

If you search online for any of the following trips, you’ll discover trustworthy businesses like Worldlink Travel and Tours that are fairly priced and make the vacation pleasant and stress-free.

Wildlife Viewing

  • Serengeti National Park – Lions, cheetahs, leopards, hippopotamuses, elephants, zebra, buffalo, waterbuck, crocodiles, gazelle, warthogs, and wildebeest live in the Serengeti National Park, which has been featured in many Discovery Channel programs. The wildebeest migration, which takes place every year between the Serengeti and the Masai Mara, is a significant draw (Kenya). As of July 2008, park fees are $50 per person per day, with a guide in a 4-wheel drive vehicle needed. If seeing the migration is your primary reason for visiting the Serengeti, you should let your tour operator know since it may necessitate traveling much farther away, which may be more expensive.
  • Ngorongoro Conservation Area – Wildlife abounds in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, especially in the Ngorongoro crater. Ngorongoro consists of the highlands around the crater (which are rich in elephants) and the crater itself, both of which were formed by the same volcanic activity that created Kilimanjaro and the Great Rift Valley (similar animals to Serengeti, but at higher densities and with a small population of black rhino). As of July 2007, park costs are $50 per day per person, plus $200 per car for a six-hour game drive in the crater.
  • Ruaha National Park and Selous Game Reserve – Ruaha National Park and Selous Game Reserve are less well-known but equally rewarding. These parks have a far wider diversity of animals than the Serengeti, and if you’re searching for a less touristy location, these are the places to go. Ruaha is renowned for having the greatest number of elephants and giraffes of any African park, earning it the nickname ‘Giraffic Park.’ It is also an excellent location to view huge prides of lions and the elusive and uncommon hunting dogs. Apart from Ngorongoro, Selous is the only location in the world where you may observe rhinos. You may also go on a real wilderness walk through unspoilt and beautiful landscape in the Uduzungwa Mountains Park. There are just a handful locations on the planet like this. With new gates opening on the Iringa side of the park, as well as excellent campsites, it is a fantastic complement to any Tanzanian vacation.
  • Tarangire National Park – Tarangire National Park is located in Tanzania’s northern circuit and is called after the Tarangire River that runs through it. The park covers about 2,600 square kilometers. During the dry seasons, the park, like the Serengeti, has a high concentration of animals. In addition, over 570 bird species have been discovered, making the area a birdwatcher’s dream. Safari lodging is offered at high-end safari hotels and campgrounds.

When visiting wildlife parks, stay as near to the viewing areas (park’s heart) as feasible and depart as early as possible in the morning, since animals are most active just after dawn.

Islands In Tanzania

  • Zanzibar is a Tanzanian island that comprises the islands of Zanzibar and Pemba. Beautiful beaches and a historical Stone Town may be found in Zanzibar. Scuba diving, snorkeling, and swimming with dolphins are all popular activities in Zanzibar. Spice excursions and the Jozani Forest, which is home to a tiny population of red Colobus monkeys, are two more attractions.
  • Mafia Island Marine Park is located south of Zanzibar and offers excellent scuba diving and snorkeling opportunities. You may also get the opportunity to swim with whale sharks, since this is one of the few places on the planet where they gather each year.
  • Bongoyo Island is easily accessible by boat from Slipway. It features a beautiful beach with great snorkeling in clean water, but you may be better off bringing your own snorkels since renting them is expensive. Because the island is not affected by the tides, you may swim at any time. There are two prices: a resident price and a’muzungu’ price, both of which are still quite affordable.
  • Sinda Island is a tiny deserted island that lies between the inner and outer sinder’.
  • Mbudya Island – The Silver Sands hotel can take you to Mbudya Island. Although the water seems to be clean, it is shockingly muddy under the surface, making snorkeling impossible.
  • Lazy Lagoon – On the secluded 9-kilometer-long white-sand island with uninhabited beaches, there are just 12 accommodations. It has beautiful azure blue water that is excellent for swimming at all tides and snorkeling to be fascinated by the shoals of iridescent tropical fish hidden amid the immaculate coral gardens that surround the island. The island is accessible from the mainland, 70 kilometers north of Dar es Salaam, just south of Bagamoyo town. Bushbabies, wild pigs, genets, baboons, duiker, and Suni antelope live there. The bandas were well-equipped, with solar-powered hot water, a wide shaded verandah, and roomy rooms with enormous windows.

Mountains In Tanzania

  • Mount Kilimanjaro is Africa’s highest peak and one of the world’s tallest freestanding mountains. Many individuals come to Tanzania just for the purpose of climbing this peak. Tourists tend to congregate here. You may either hire a travel agency to arrange your trip up the mountain from your home country, but you’ll pay a lot more for the convenience, or you can jump on a plane and save money by arranging it in Arusha or Dar. Be aware that there are just as many inept and dishonest trek organizers as there are professional and honest ones. Make sure your guide follows through on his promises by asking around.
  • Mt Meru is an active stratovolcano in Tanzania, situated 70 kilometers (43 miles) west of Mount Kilimanjaro. On a clear day, it can be seen from Mt Kilimanjaro at a height of 4,565 meters (14,977 feet), and it is Africa’s ninth or tenth tallest peak, depending on definition. Much of its mass was lost approximately 8,000 years ago owing to an eastward volcanic explosion, comparable to Mount St. Helens in the United States, which erupted in 1980. In 1910, Mount Meru erupted in a small eruption. Several tiny cones and craters in the area are likely the result of several periods of volcanic activity.

Things To Do In Tanzania

  • For people interested in seeing Tanzania’s wildlife, there are many National Parks to choose from. You can get in for about $100 US and get a tour (as well as perhaps a night’s lodging). The best parks, while being overrun with visitors, are located in the country’s north. The finest national park in the south is Ruaha (locals actually say this is the best park, especially if you want to see wild animals as opposed to semi-tame ones in the northern parks). Don’t get caught up in the tourist traps of the north; the south has some fantastic parks and towns (base yourself in Iringa), and you’ll feel less like a tourist and more like a guest if you go this way.
  • Another fun activity is scuba diving in and around Pemba and Zanzibar.
  • In Bagamoyo, you may also visit a number of historical Slave Trade sites, which might be an interesting, though sad, trip.
  • Beaches: Tanzania boasts some of the world’s finest and most pristine beaches? With its white beach, palm palms, and cold Indian Ocean water, they are just beautiful!
  • With the help of a tour operator, kayak the gorgeous coastal waterways.
  • Tanzania is home to two of the world’s finest Stone Age sites: Isimila Gorge (near Iringa) and the oldest known instances of human art among the rock drawings near Kolo, north of Kondoa, Dodoma — some of which are estimated to be 30,000 years old.
  • Tanzania’s major attraction is Mount Kilimanjaro. Kilimanjaro is Africa’s tallest peak. Many tourists go to Tanzania in order to climb this massive peak. The main peak is believed to be 5895 meters high, making it a formidable mountaineering task.Camping safaris in Tanzania are one of Tanzania’s most popular safari excursions. Camping safaris are available in a variety of forms, including luxury mobile camps and luxury tented camps. There are also simple camping safaris that are both cheap and pleasant. Budget camping safaris are another name for basic camping safaris.

Food & Drinks in Tanzania

Food in Tanzania

  • Produce is often of excellent quality. Meat and milk may be challenging for western palates and diets, so make sure any meat is well cooked. You won’t have any problems at hotels, but if you go to a small town, be sure to filter or boil all water before drinking it, and peel all fruits and vegetables before eating them.
  • Mtori (cooked beef and bananas) and Mchicha (vegetable stew with pork or fish) are two popular local meals.
  • If there is a food that may be considered Tanzania’s national dish, it is most certainly Ugali. It’s a polenta-style meal prepared with maize flour that goes well with cooked meats and stews and is eaten with your hands. Recipes differ from town to village, and everyone makes it their own manner. It’s boring and unattractive to many foreigners, but it’s worth a try, and some upmarket restaurants offer it.
  • If you can stomach the enormous quantities of sugar added to this drink, Chai Maziwa (chai with milk) is a local favorite and well worth tasting.
  • Food on the street is likewise inexpensive and abundant. Barbecued corn on the cob, as well as chipped potatoes (fries) barbecued over a roaring fire, are delicious.
  • Mandazi is a delicious doughnut-like snack that is prepared fresh every morning. It’s great with coffee in the morning and as a snack.
  • Due to Tanzania’s significant South Asian population, a wide range of restaurants provide food from all across that area of the world. Any restaurant near Hindu temples (especially in Dar) is an excellent choice. You won’t be disappointed if you see where the local Indians eat. The majority of the cuisine is prepared with a lot of Ghee, or clarified butter, which may be difficult to stomach for certain individuals.
  • Chips Mayai (chips fried in an omelet) are a Tanzanian speciality that can be found at virtually every African food stall. They’re very excellent at pili pili (hot sauce).

Drinks in Tanzania

  • Bottled water is inexpensive and readily accessible throughout the United States. You should only consume tap water if you have no other choice; otherwise, it should be filtered with a high-quality filter and purifier or heated to a boil before drinking. Tap water has been discovered to be polluted with e-coli germs in recent testing.
  • Konyagi is a fantastic gin-like beverage that is exclusively available in Tanzania.
  • Kilimanjaro, Serengeti, and Safari are three domestic beers that are western-style and extremely excellent. Tusker, Stella Artois, and Castle are some of the imported beers.
  • Locally made banana beer is also available on occasion, although it is not recommended for consumption. You’ll sip it out of a hollowed gourd, as is customary. The visitors are served first, followed by the elders. Fermented bamboo juice (Pombe) is a popular drink in certain areas of Tanzania.
  • Many eateries provide passion fruit, mango, and orange drinks, which are delicious when the fruits are in season.
  • Stoney Tangawizi (ginger ale – tangawizi means ‘ginger’ in Swahili) is one of the most popular soft beverages available.
  • Orange Fanta, Bitter Lemon, Soda Water, Tonic Water, and Lassi are all popular drinks (a sweet or salty yogurt drink).
  • A lot of excellent coffee estates may be found in northern Tanzania. Despite the fact that coffee is not as popular in Tanzania as it is in Ethiopia, with a little research, you may get a good cup of java to replace the instant “Africa” coffee provided in most eateries.

Money & Shopping in Tanzania

Currency in Tanzania

Tanzania’s national currency is the Tanzanian Shilling (TSH, /=). There are five bills and six coins:

The denominations are 10000 (Red), 5000 (Violet), 2000 (Brown), 1000 (Blue), and 500 (Green).
Coins in denominations of 200, 100, 50, 20, 10, and 5 dollars.
The size and color of notes and coins differ. The biggest note is 10,000 dollars, while the smallest is 500 dollars.

It’s worth noting that Tanzanian currency exchangers typically charge various rates for different US$ denominations, with bigger and fresher notes receiving a better rate than older and smaller ones. The conversion rate differential between $1/$5 notes and $50/$100 bills may be as much as ten percent. Older US $100 bills are no longer recognized in Tanzania, and any bill issued before 2003 would almost certainly be rejected. It’s also advisable to avoid exchanging notes that have pen marks or other writing on them. Finally, be aware that if you withdraw a big sum of money, such as $400 US, you will be required to carry over 40 notes!

When buying in tiny stores, a.k.a. dukas, the 10000 and 5000 notes may be difficult to break. In Tanzania, it is generally the duty of the buyer to give precise change. However, if they do agree to give change, you may be left with many low-quality 1000 and 500 notes. You won’t have the same issues at the big hotels and restaurants that cater to foreigners.

In Tanzania, most shops, restaurants, and hotels accept Tsh as payment. Payment for tourist visas, national park entrance fees (which must be paid in US dollars by non-residents), and safaris and Kilimanjaro climbs, which are usually priced in US dollars, are among the exceptions (though payment will be also accepted in other currencies). Prices in Zanzibar are usually in US dollars (including the ferry ticket from Dar es Salaam to Zanzibar), and non-residents must pay in foreign currency for hotels (although the hotel will change Tsh for you).

Tanzanian Shillings may be exchanged into US dollars, Euros, and British Pounds at most hotels. Other currencies, such as Canadian or Australian dollars, may be accepted, albeit at much lower rates than the market rate. The city core and the Msasani Peninsula have the majority of ATMs. Equity Bank, Eco Bank, I&M Bank, KCB, Stanbic ATMs accept Master card, PLUS, Cirrus, Union Pay, American Express, JCB, and Diners Club compatible cards for withdrawals from bank accounts back home. Additionally, nearly all Tanzanian banks with ATMs will accept cash advances on credit cards such as Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Union Pay, JCB, and Diners Club provided you have a PIN number for your card. You may be shocked to learn that you’re a “shillionaire” if the ATM shows your home balance in TSh.

All Tanzanian banks have made it almost difficult to cash traveler’s checks. Credit card withdrawals from personal accounts are considerably simpler these days, thanks to the increased availability of ATMs.

Credit cards are accepted in major supermarkets, shopping malls, large hotels, resorts, and some travel agencies.

Shopping in Tanzania

Many tourist towns have marketplaces selling typical “African” items. Interesting presents include beaded jewelry, carved soapstone, and Masai blankets. Most “ebony” wood is false (shoe polish), with the exception of the Makonde tribe of Tanzania and Northern Mozambique, who carve masks and other sculptures out of ebony and mpingo wood in the extreme south-east of the nation. Prepare to haggle over everything. With the exception of Makonde masks, masks are not characteristic of most East African tribes, and those seen in marketplaces are either imported from West Africa or odd items created especially for visitors.

Paintings of the Tinga Tinga style, named for the painter who invented it, may be seen all over the place. Their unique design and colors make for eye-catching mementos. For TS 5,000 – 10,000, you can have a standard-size artwork. In Dar es Salaam, there is a Tinga Tinga school where you may buy paintings directly from the painters.

Air freight

If you purchase too many souvenirs on your trip, you may ship them home through air freight. Many airlines will enable you to check extra packages for a charge when you travel, which makes sense if you’re flying back home. However, if you want to continue, air freight may be the best option. Many of the stated prices do not include 20% VAT or a 13.5 percent “fuel fee” as of December 2008.

Traditions & Customs in Tanzania

Tourists should dress modestly or conservatively in general, particularly in Zanzibar, which is a strict Muslim country. Clothing that exposes too much flesh should be avoided by Western ladies. Brightly colored wrap-around cloths known as ‘Kangas’ are inexpensive, widely available, and may be used as a covert covering.

The Masai tribe, with their brightly colored attire, are enticing photographic subjects for any visitor. They do, however, demand to be compensated, and you should always inquire before taking photographs.

When addressing elders or superiors, Swahili speakers often employ the phrase’shikamoo’ (pronounced’she ka moe’ and literally meaning ‘I hold your feet’). ‘Marahaba’ is a common answer from an elder. ‘Chei chei’ is Zanzibar’s version of’shikamoo.’ When these verbal indications of respect are used, the traveler will get along swimmingly. Furthermore, a title following the’shikamoo’ is a helpful indication that you are not simply a stupid tourist —’shikamoo bwana’ for the gents, and’shikamoo mama’ when speaking to a female senior.

Tanzanians will also make the remark “pole na kazi” if you are working while they are not. “I’m sorry you have to work,” it actually implies. In response, a simple “asante” or “thank you” will sufficient.

Many Tanzanian salespeople are persistent, and a simple head shake with “asante sana” should usually enough. A strong “hapana,” which means “no,” will suffice as a final option. Please don’t use the term “hapana” carelessly; only use it as a last option for Tanzanians. Whatever you do, don’t tell someone you’ll come back to purchase anything from them later if you don’t intend to; it’s better to be honest and say ‘no’ than to have to avoid them for days. When you pledge to visit their booth or store, they have a strange way of finding you!

Saying “sihitaji” (pronounced see-hih-tah-jee) – “I don’t need that” – is the most polite approach to reject anything.

Culture Of Tanzania

Music

Tanzanian music comprises traditional African music, string-based taarab, and bongo flava, a unique hip hop style. Abbasi Mzee, Culture Musical Club, and Shakila of Black Star Musical Group are all well-known taarab singers. Bi Kidude, Hukwe Zawose, Diamond Platnumz, Ally Kiba, and Tatu Nane are some of the most well-known traditional artists in the world. Tanzanian rumba music is known as muziki wa dansi (or “dance music”), and notable performers include Simba Wanyika, Remmy Ongala, and Orchestra Makassy. Queen frontman Freddie Mercury was born in Tanzania.

Literature

Tanzania has a mainly oral literary tradition. Folktales, poetry, riddles, proverbs, and songs are all examples of oral literary genres. Despite the fact that each of Tanzania’s languages has its own oral history, Swahili accounts for the majority of the country’s documented oral literature. Because of the collapse of the multigenerational social structure, which makes transmission of oral literature more difficult, and because growing modernity has been accompanied by a devaluation of oral literature, the country’s oral literature has been decreasing.

Tanzania’s written literary heritage is still in its infancy. Tanzanians do not have a long-standing reading culture, and books are often costly and scarce. Tanzanian literature is mostly written in Swahili or English. Shaaban Robert (considered the father of Swahili literature), Muhammed Saley Farsy, Faraji Katalambulla, Adam Shafi Adam, Muhammed Said Abdalla, Said Ahmed Mohammed Khamis, Mohamed Suleiman Mohamed, Eulahabi, Gabriel Ruhumbika, Ebrahim Hussein, May Materru Balisidya, Abdulrazak Gurnah, and Penina O. Mlama are all notable figures.

Painting and sculpture

There have historically been few possibilities in Tanzania for traditional European art instruction, and many ambitious Tanzanian artists have left the nation to pursue their dreams. George Lilanga, one of Africa’s most well-known musicians, was born in Tanzania.

Tanzania has two distinct art forms that have gained worldwide acclaim. Edward Said Tingatinga created the Tingatinga style of painting, which consists of brilliantly colored enamel paintings on canvas portraying people, animals, or everyday life. Tingatinga’s style was copied and refined by other artists after his death in 1972, and it is currently the most popular tourist-oriented style in East Africa. Makonde is a sculptural style as well as a tribe in Tanzania and Mozambique. It’s famous for its tall Ujamaas (Life Trees) constructed of the hard, black ebony tree.

Food

Ugali is a popular meal in Tanzania, as well as other areas of eastern Africa. It’s typically made of maize and has a consistency that’s comparable to a stiff paste or porridge, earning it the nickname corn meal porridge. Ugali is made from a mixture of cassava and millet flours. Cooked green bananas and rice are other essential basics. Beef, goat meat, beans, yoghurt, a variety of seafood, and green leafy vegetables all contribute to the nutritional value of the meals.

Sports

Football is very popular in the United States. Young Africans F.C. and Simba S.C. are the most popular professional football teams in Dar es Salaam. Tanzania’s football regulating body is the Tanzania Football Federation.

Netball, boxing, volleyball, athletics, and rugby are all prominent sports.

Tanzania participates in the Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games, All-Africa Games, Africa Cup of Nations, CAF Champions League, African Women’s Football Championship, CAF Confederation Cup, and African Athletics Championships. Hasheem Thabeet, Mbwana Samatta, and Filbert Bayi are some of Tanzania’s most well-known athletes.

Stay Safe & Healthy in Tanzania

Stay Safe in Tanzania

Theft

In Arusha, Stone Town (Zanzibar), and Dar es Salaam, like in many poor countries, care should always be used, especially in tourist areas. Foreigners are often targeted by violent crime, especially those who travel alone at night, which is not advised. Con artists and pickpockets are also prevalent. Pickpockets frequent busy markets and bus terminals, such as Kariakoo. Don’t be misled by young children who are often coerced into a life of crime by older children or parents; never carry valuables in your pockets, and don’t wear costly photographic equipment around your neck. When you’re at the beach, don’t leave your luggage unattended or even out of sight.

Details may be found in the articles for each region or city.

Avoid lonely places in general, particularly after dark. It is safer to travel in big groups. You should be reasonably secure if there are a lot of people or security personnel nearby (e.g. city center locations).

Traveling a taxi with a known driver is the safest option, especially when it’s dark outside (late night or early morning). Taxi drivers have been known to rob tourists, but this is not frequent. Get the phone number of a reputable cab from your hotel or a local.

Robbers have halted buses on long-distance (often nighttime) trips on a rare occasion. If you must go a long distance by bus, it may be more cost-effective to divide it up into several day excursions, or to fly or train.

The police may or may not make a significant attempt to identify the perpetrators in the case of an incident, but getting a police record is required if you intend to file an insurance claim later or if critical papers are taken. Check the police record to see whether your documents were taken; if they weren’t, you may have trouble leaving the country. If your passport is stolen, you should notify your local embassy or consulate right once.

Walking

Because Tanzania has few sidewalks, stay aware of the traffic and be prepared to get out of the way if necessary, as cars do not make much attempt to avoid pedestrians. Cars take precedence in Tanzania.

When touts, salespeople, and dealers approach you and say “jambo,” the easiest method to avoid them is to either say nothing or say “thank you” or “asante” and go on. Some people may be insulted by the word “no,” while persistent touts will be encouraged by any sort of contact.

Corruption

Corruption is a problem in Tanzania, as it is in many underdeveloped nations. Police officers are underpaid, with many earning less than $40 a month. An official ready to overlook your violation, whether manufactured or not, may approach you for a bribe. Some tourists are reluctant to paying bribes to anybody, particularly in a nation where there are so many poor yet honest people.

Impersonating police, often in the form of a “immigration officer” who notices an issue with your papers, is a common scam. They’ll show you official-looking documents. There are, nevertheless, a large number of plainclothes police. If you are faced with someone in uniform, it is almost likely that they are a real cop.

Bribes are often referred to as “on-the-spot fines.” Those remarks are intended to start a discussion about money. You may be informed that the true amount is TSh40,000 or more, and that if you pay TSh20,000 or 30,000 right now, you may be on your way without having to go to the Police Station to pay a larger fine.

If you’re confident you’re in the right and don’t want to pay a bribe, consider the following options:

  • Other individuals should be involved. Fraudsters and corrupt authorities are reluctant to carry out their plans in front of a large group of people. Under the guise of not understanding the police, you may seek assistance from onlookers.
  • Invoke the help of higher powers. Insisting on going to the local police station to resolve an illegitimate problem is a smart approach to get rid of it. Suggestions for a visit to your country’s embassy (for example, to have an official there assist interpret the discussion owing to a lack of understanding of the local language and legislation) are also useful. They typically have a terrified expression on their face at this stage since they don’t want any actual authorities involved. Bribes are prohibited, and there is a corruption bureau where they may be reported.
  • Play dumb. Even if you do, politely explain that you don’t comprehend the nature of the violation. Tanzanians are indirect, preferring to suggest rather than ask directly what they want. Even if it’s your 100th visit, tell them you’ve just recently arrived in the nation. If you know any Kiswahili, keep it to yourself. It’s possible that it’ll only make things worse.
  • Make a request for a receipt with an official stamp, which is likely to be greeted with bewilderment and worry. The goal is to demonstrate that you are unaware that this is a bribe and that you are just trying to follow the regulations. They may send you on your way after 10 or 20 minutes of a circular, but always courteous, discussion. A word of warning regarding this strategy. Corrupt authorities have taken notice, and one individual who requested a receipt was informed that the cashier’s office was closed and would not reopen until the following morning. It was either pay the fine or spend the night in jail. This does not seem to be a bluff on the officer’s side. The fine was paid, but there was no receipt. Keep in mind that the game is always evolving.

Also take in mind the following:

  • Discussing money or negotiating a fine may give the impression that you are aware of the conversation’s context (i.e. you are willing to pay a bribe).
  • Directly accusing the officer of corruption is likely to backfire; it’s critical that you give the officer a chance to save face.
  • If you insist on traveling to the police station, you may be required to provide transportation for the officer. This may not be a smart idea if you are alone, and particularly if the “cop” is in plainclothes. If you are alone and are approached by many individuals, refuse to get into their car and insist on getting a cab. And after you’ve arrived at the station, just pay the fee and demand a receipt. This may wind up costing you more than the bribe, but at the very least, this policeman will not be able to extract any money from you, and he or she will be less likely to flag down other foreigners. Also, show respect for their authority by never raising your voice, swearing, or insulting them. It doesn’t matter whether you’re correct or not at that moment.

Excessive force incidents involving visitors are uncommon, but that doesn’t imply they don’t happen. For example, police officers have been known to be inebriated while on duty, which may severely impair their capacity to think. It’s better to be safe than sorry in any scenario when someone is attempting to extort money from you by force or threat of force; it’s just money.

Stay Healthy in Tanzania

Illnesses and diseases

The AIDS/HIV infection rate is high, as it is in most African nations. Tanzania’s HIV/AIDS infection rate was 9% as of the end of 2003, according to UNAIDS. However, this number is misleading since HIV infection rates in certain groups, including artisanal miners, nomadic fishermen, truck drivers, and sex workers, are considerably higher than the national average. In Tanzania, or anyplace else for that matter, do not engage in unprotected sex.

Malaria, after food-borne diseases, should be your first worry. Malaria is a mosquito-borne disease that is endemic to Tanzania. You may be in danger in virtually any region of the nation, but the risk is reduced at elevations over 2000 meters. Especially during the rainy season, extreme caution should be used between sunset and dawn. Always sleep beneath a treated net, wear long slacks and closed-toed shoes, and apply an efficient insect repellent. Many big hotels do not automatically put mosquito nets in their rooms, which is incredible. A call to reception seeking one, on the other hand, is seldom disregarded. The nets may have many big holes, but covering the holes with adhesive tape or tying a tiny knot should suffice.

You should also contact a physician before going for Tanzania about taking anti-malarial medicine before, during, and after your trip. If you do acquire malaria despite your best efforts, it is generally treatable with medicine that is widely accessible across the nation. If you’re going to be in a remote area, you may want to stop by a clinic and buy a batch. It’s important to keep in mind that malaria symptoms may take up to two weeks to appear. Any fever lasting longer than a day should be reason for worry and require a trip to the clinic for a malaria test, according to the rule of thumb for ex-pats residing in Tanzania. If you exhibit symptoms of a potential malaria infection after returning home, tell your doctor that you visited a malaria-infected nation.

Typhoid and cholera are two more important diseases to avoid. Typhoid may be prevented in principle by carefully choosing foods and beverages and avoiding the ingestion of anything filthy. Typhoid infection is characterized by ‘persistent, high fevers…headache, malaise, anorexia, splenomegaly, and relative bradycardia,’ according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Cholera is characterized by vomiting and uncontrolled bowel motions, which may cause dehydration and death in as little as 48 hours. It is critical to get medical help as soon as possible. Cholera outbreaks are more or less a seasonal occurrence in Zanzibar, with epidemics occurring most often during the rainy season. For both typhoid and cholera, vaccines and/or oral prophylaxis are available.

Yellow fever is a serious viral infection spread by the bite of a certain mosquito. Although it is not as prevalent as malaria, it is still a dangerous illness, and visitors visiting Africa should speak with their doctor about being vaccinated. If you intend to travel to other countries following your stay in Tanzania, keep in mind that certain countries, such as South Africa, may demand evidence of Yellow Fever vaccination before allowing you to enter. You will be given two choices if you aren’t or can’t prove it: 1) Get vaccinated for Yellow Fever at the airport, and 2) leave the country right away. Because the Yellow Fever vaccination (like any other cavvine) may have adverse effects in certain individuals, you may choose to receive it in your own country under under supervision. Most doctors will not provide the Yellow Fever vaccination to children under the age of one year, and a letter from a doctor stating this will guarantee that your baby does not get it at the airport. – Individuals traveling to Tanzania from INDIA Because the yellow fever vaccine is in limited supply in India, please be vaccinated as soon as you arrive at Dar-ES-airport. Salaam’s

Traveler’s diarrhea, often known as gastrointestinal distress, is caused by one, many, or all of the following factors: Changes in diet, tiredness, dehydration, and excessive alcohol use are all linked to unsanitary food preparation and storage. The best defense is prevention. Eat only raw, peelable vegetables and fruits that have been washed in clean water. Avoid food that seems to have been left out in the open for a long period of time on the street or at a restaurant. Only eat food that has been freshly fried or steamed. Only consume bottled water, which is widely accessible throughout the nation. You should even use it to clean your teeth. If you must drink tap or well water, boil it for at least 10 minutes or filter it well.

Rift Valley Fever (RFV) was discovered in the Kilimanjaro region in January 2007. A number of people died in the region after consuming unpasteurized milk and poorly prepared meat from sick animals. Despite the infection’s limited spread, beef sales fell significantly throughout the nation after the fatalities. Meat served at expensive restaurants is often of higher grade. When consuming street food or in isolated locations, however, caution should be used.

Insects and Animals

Tanzania is home to a variety of poisonous and lethal insects and animals, including Black and Green Mambas, scorpions, spiders, stinging ants, lions, sharks, and other dangerous creatures. Unless you know what you’re doing, you should avoid strolling through tall grass, visiting national parks, or putting your hand under rocks or into dark crevices. In reality, the chances of coming across these or other comparable threats are little to none.

The mosquito is the bug or animal that most inhabitants are afraid of.

Medical Facilities

Tanzania’s hospitals and clinics do not match Western standards. You will have to be transported to Kenya, South Africa, or Europe if you need surgery or any other major medical treatment. You should double-check that your medical insurance covers such costs. Outside of Dar es Salaam, and particularly outside of the major cities and towns, getting even basic medical care will be difficult, since many physicians are undertrained and/or have inadequate equipment and medicines. You should keep your own medical kit on hand to tide you over in the event of an emergency. Even common illnesses like malaria have a high rate of misdiagnosis, with up to 70% of cases being misdiagnosed.

A few clinics in Dar es Salaam are manned by western-trained doctors. Some surgical operations, however, still need evacuation from Tanzania.

  • IST Medical Clinic: Just off Haile Selassie Road past the Chole Road intersection, behind the International School of Tanganyika, Msasani Pinensula, Tel: +255 22 260 1307, Emergency: +255 754 783 393.
  • Premier Care Clinic Limited: 259 Ali Hassan Mwinyi Road, Namanga, Kinondoni, P.O. Box 220, Dar es Salaam, Tel: +255 22 266 8385, Mobile: +255 748 254 642.
  • Aga Khan Hospital: Corner of Ocean Road & Sea View Road, Tel: +255 22 211 5151.

Government Hospitals

  • Bugando Hospital, Mwanza, Tanzania Tel: +255 68 40610. The University College of Health Sciences at Bugando Medical Center is established as a Catholic college having four schools: Medical, Nursing, Pharmacotherapy and Dental.
  • Mbeya Referral Hospital, PO Box 419, Mbeya, Tanzania Tel: +255 65 3576.
  • Mnazi Mmoja Hospital, PO Box 338, Zanzibar, Tanzania Tel: +255 54 31071.

Other Government run hospitals used for electives:

  • Hindu Mandal Hospital, PO Box 581, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania Tel: +255 51 110237/110428.
  • Agha Khan Hospital, PO Box 2289, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania Tel: +255 51 114096.
  • Nachingwea District General Hospital, Nachingwea, Lindi, South Tanzania
  • Teule District Designated Hospital, Muheza, Tanga Region, Tanzania.

Mission Hospitals

  • Berega Mission Hospital, Berega, Morogoro, Tanzania.
  • St Anne’s Hospital, PO Box 2, Liuli (via Songea), Tanzania (connected via USPG charity).
  • St Francis Hospital, Kwo Mkono, Handeni District, Tanzania.
  • A flying doctor service is based in Arusha, Tel: +255 2548578.

For any medical issues please don’t hesitate to contact: Ministry of Health, PO Box 9083, Dar es Salaam Tel: +255 51 20261 Fax: 51 39951

Asia

Africa

South America

Europe

North America

Read Next

Dodoma

Dodoma, Tanzania’s national capital and the seat of the Dodoma Region, has a population of 410,956 people. Dodoma was selected as Tanzania’s new political capital...