| From the snows of
Mount Kilimanjaro, the vast plains of the Serengeti and
the unique Ngorongoro Crater, to the barefoot luxury of
its Indian Ocean islands, Tanzania offers some of the most
wonderful locations in Africa.
the main attractions in Tanzania?
Tanzania is home to one of Africa's most magnificent game
reserves; the seemingly endless plains of the Serengeti,
where one of the world's greatest natural spectacles,
the annual migration of some two million wildebeest followed
by their predators can be observed. The Serengeti holds
some of the largest concentrations of lion, cheetah and
leopard in Africa, and is probably the best game reserve
on the continent to see these predators. Take a balloon
trip across the Serengeti to get a birds eye view of the
Close to the Serengeti is the Ngorongoro
Crater, a microcosm of East African game and landscapes
and, therefore, a photographer's paradise. It is the largest
unbroken caldera in the world and, together with its 25,000
large mammals and 100 species of birds, many have described
it as one of the wonders of the world.
The nearby Tarangire and Manyara
National Parks hold a diverse range of flora and fauna.
Manyara is famous for its tree climbing lions, its vast
array of bird life (an estimated 350 species) and its
widely contrasting landscapes. Tarangire is renowned for
its dense wildlife population which is at its most spectacular
between June and October, the dry period, when animals
congregate at the river.
in Southern Tanzania?
In the south of Tanzania lies an untouched and relatively
unknown game reserve. Selous, is roughly the size of Switzerland
and is an excellent park in which to see elephant. The
Rufiji River flows through the reserve and during the
rainy season it floods the park. This, and its remote
location explain its isolation from human contact and
the vast concentrations of game. The most popular way
of viewing game is on guided walks and by boat.
Tanzania's parks can be explored
from the privacy of your own Land Rover with driver/guide.
Accommodation is in private mobile camps or permanent
camps and lodges. Both Zanzibar and the Tanzanian coast
boast magnificent tropical palm fringed beaches. South
of Dar es Salaam is one such location - Ras Kutani - a
secluded paradise on its own private beach overlooking
a peaceful lagoon, another luxury island lodge being Mnemba
is Zanzibar in Tanzania?
Zanzibar is a short flight from Dar es Salaam and is the
perfect island on which to relax after a safari. Lapped
by the crystal clear waters of the Indian Ocean, Zanzibar
offers superb diving and snorkeling and the chance to
swim with dolphins. The unspoilt beaches and rustic chalets
are the perfect cure to the stress of modern life - wake
to fresh mangoes and other fruits, sunbathe, swim and
relax during the day, and feast on fresh lobster at night.
Zanzibar's stone town, with its maze of alleys and tucked
away craftsmen is a fascinating place to explore. The
history and cultures of this unique island have left their
mark for all to experience. Of course no visit to Zanzibar
would be complete without a spice tour of the island and
a trip to the forests of the interior. Tanzania and Zanzibar
make an ideal 2 week destination, spend a week on safari,
and then wind down on one of the most relaxing places
on earth. Here are a few tips you should know;
the local language in Tanzania?
While the national language of Tanzania is Kiswahili,
English is the official language and is widely spoken
and understood across East Africa.
a safe safari holiday destination?
cities, adhere to the following:
> Don't walk alone in apparently deserted areas, especially
in and around the cities. It is preferable and usually
more enjoyable to walk with company or in groups.
> Don't carry large sums of cash in your purse or pocket
or display expensive jewelry.
> Be aware of the possibility of pick-pockets and bag
snatchers in crowded areas.
> Make photocopies of the first few pages of your passport,
air ticket and other important travel documents.
> Keep this separate from the originals.
> Don't leave money or valuables in a hotel room. Most
hotels offer safety deposit box service, and ensure that
you have adequate insurance coverage before leaving home.
wildlife areas adhere to the following:
Always remember that while some animals have become accustomed
to the presence of people they are still wild animals.
Keep your distance. It is illegal to feed any animal,
make excessive noise to attract their attention, or deviate
from designated roads for that closer photograph.
Never get out of your vehicle except at designated points.
Close all windows and zippers when you leave your room
or tent and spray it with insect repellant.
The best way to get the most out
of your safari is to take an active interest in everything
going on around you, not just the number of species you
can see in the shortest possible time. Ask all the questions
you can think of and take reference books on not only
wildlife but birds, insects and trees and read up about
everything you see.
Precautions when planning a visit to Tanzania
It is advisable to take out emergency medical insurance
prior to entering Tanzania.
Bilharzia: The bilharzia parasite is found in many
lakes, streams and rivers on the continent. Avoid swimming
Vaccinations for cholera, tetanus and yellow fever are
Malaria is virulent in Tanzania. Take prophylactics
two weeks before arrival and continue two weeks after
leaving. Your chemist or doctor can advise you of the
most suitable drug available as certain drugs lose their
Tap water in the major towns is purified and perfectly
safe to drink. In the more remote areas always boil it
first, except if youre staying at a lodge or hotel
where drinking water is perfectly safe. Bottled water
is readily available in the bigger towns.
It is advisable to buy travel insurance covering
accidents, illness or hospitalization for the period of
your stay. Temporary membership in East African Flying
Doctors' Service is also recommended for safari goers.
Members who require emergency medical attention on safari
are flown to Nairobi in Kenya for the best medical attention
available in the East Africa.
What about Drinking Water?
Drink only bottled water or from flasks of filtered and
boiled water provided by most hotels and lodges.
Chemists / Pharmacies?
Travellers should carry an adequate supply of medicines
and first aid accessories with them as supplies are limited
in Tanzania. Most chemists in the major towns are open
from 08h30 to 12h30 and 14h00 to 17h00. Monday to Friday
and 08h00 to 13h00 on Saturdays. There are no emergency
chemists open after office hours or Sundays.
Standards and services range from up-market to tourist.
Deluxe and first class hotels are found in the main cities
and the resorts on the coastline of the country. Luxurious
lodges are set in exotic locations, while comfortable
tented camps are found in the main game parks.
Power supply is 220/240 volt 50 cycle. Plugs are usually
13-amp 3 pin square (British type)
There are numerous banks in the major towns as well as
many bureau de change. Hours of business vary from bank
to bank, but most are open from 9h00 to 14h30, Mondays
to Fridays, and 9h00 - 11h30 on Saturdays. Hotels and
lodges change money outside these hours.
the Currency in Tanzania?
Currency unit is the shilling, comprising 100 cents. Coins
are in denominations of 5c, 10c, 50c and 1 and 5 shillings.
Bank notes are in denominations of 5, 10, 20, 50, 100,
200, 500,1,000 and 10,000 shillings. Importation of foreign
currency is unlimited and has to be declared on arrival.
The importation and exportation of Tanzania currency is
illegal. Please note that visitors to Zanzibar are required
to pay for their services in foreign currency. It's best
to come into the country with either Travellers checks
or dollars or pounds which can be exchanged at any of
the many Bureau de Change in the main Towns. If you are
offered an exchange on the black market at the borders,
exercise extreme caution as they are notorious for cheating
you without you even realizing it.
Credit Cards, Cash and Traveler's
International credit cards are accepted by most restaurants,
stores, hotels, lodges, camps, car rental firms, etc.
However, many small shops in rural areas will not accept
them. American Express, Thomas Cook, Visa and MasterCard
Traveler's Checks are widely accepted.
A tip of 10% for good service is adequate. Service charges
are frequently added and it is usual to tip a tour driver
or guide at least US $5 a day.
Postal services are fairly well organized in Tanzania
and you should have no problem sending or receiving letters.
Telegrams are less certain. Public telephones are in a
bad state of repair and you could wait hours for a line.
Rather make international calls from your hotel. All major
hotels have fax machines at the disposal of their guests
as well as telex services. Telephone directories will
list all the international dialing codes. Both local and
long-distance calls are metered on a time basis. (Note
the surcharge at hotels is quite high, but it will cost
less in frustration).
Between December and mid-March, the days are sunny, hot
and dry and the nights are cool. Best time for deep sea
fishing and scuba diving is between August and March when
the ocean is calm and water is clear. Rains fall mainly
from April to June.
Although Tanzania is considered to fall in the tropics,
climate and temperature varies depending on altitude and
proximity to the ocean. Coastal regions are hot and humid
while the central plateaus are warm and dry, with cool
Dressing Code in Tanzania
Lightweight casual clothes can be worn all year round,
with a jacket or sweater for early winter mornings and
evenings. On safari keep clothes to a minimum and mostly
of neutral coloring - khakis, browns and greens. A sunhat,
sunglasses, sunscreen and insect repellant are a must.
Bring a hat, good walking shoes and sun screen. Don't
forget swim wear and binoculars. Some city restaurants
and clubs have dress codes - casual jacket and tie for
men, informal dresses for women.
Services in Tanzania
Most hotels and lodges will offer a laundry service. For
low budget travelers there are no coin operated laundromats
at all so consider drip dry clothing and be prepared for
hand washing. In most places one could hire someone to
do your washing.
Tanzania is considered to be a photographers dream destination.
From panoramic scenery, wildlife and birds to people and
vibrant ceremonies. Rich color and good low lighting conditions
abound. It is considered rude to take pictures of people
without asking them first. Members of local tribes will
expect payment for posing. Always bring plenty of film
and video cassettes if you're bringing a camcorder as
well as batteries - as these items are difficult to get
in Tanzania. Keep your cameras in a dust resistant, padded
case and out of the midday sun. A 200mm (or longer) telephoto
lens will prove very useful on safari, and an ultra violet
filter and lens cap are strongly recommended. Please note
that taking pictures of government and military personnel
and installations is prohibited!
and Road Conditions
Driving is done on the left side of the road. Drivers
require a valid license that must include a picture of
the holder. Road conditions are bad though slowly improving.
If youre doing a vehicle trip through Tanzania it
is a good idea to carry a range of tools and essential
spares with you. Two spare wheels and a couple of spare
tubes are a must due to the condition of the roads. Spare
jerry cans of fuel and water, a tow rope, compressor,
winch and a spotlight are useful items to have. Many of
the villages along the main routes offer tire mending
services at a very reasonable fee. Be very careful in
towns and villages not to leave your vehicle open and
unattended. People with no money are easily tempted. You
should have no problem sleeping outdoors in designated
camping areas or remote places along the way, but get
into the habit of locking things away before you go to
Car rental companies are represented at the major airports
and in the cities, as are taxis. More
Transportation by Air in Tanzania
Kilimanjaro International Airport, Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar
are the main points of entry. Scheduled services link
these cities to Arusha, the gateway to Tanzania's game
parks, Mount Kilimanjaro, and other centers. Alliance,
South African Airways' associate airline, links Johannesburg
and Dar es Salaam with regularly scheduled air services.
Air Tanzania is the national airline.
An airport departure tax of U.S. $20 is levied when leaving
the country. Please confirm with your travel agent if
this tax is included in your air ticket fare.
All visitors must have a valid passport and are subject
to clearance through customs. In addition, all non-Commonwealth
citizens require a visa, to be obtained from Tanzanian
Missions abroad or at the post of entry. Personal effects,
including cameras, binoculars and film are allowed into
the country duty free.
Throughout the year, Standard Time in Tanzania is three
hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time, two hours ahead of
Central European Winter Time, and eight hours ahead of
Eastern Standard Winter Time in the U.S.