It is true that Tanzania, measured in terms of pro-capita income, is one of the world's poorest countries. However, it is a fact that the country can feed itself and, what is of greater significance, is that since independence Tanzania has been among the most stable African countries politically. In regard to safety, both for its own citizens and for tourists, it is well ahead of its more economically advanced neighbors. And what counts the most after you have visited a country, it is the people of that given country, a fact that can surpass any tourist attraction you have been on.
The people of Tanzania are in general friendly and welcoming without being servile and they range from Maasai pastoralists armed with spears to cosmopolitan city dwellers. Their history begins with man's first footsteps, printed in volcanic ash millions of years ago, and extends to the present day through the remarkable Swahili civilization, the slave trade, the Zanzibari sultanate and the great age of exploration, when men such as Livingstone and Stanley strode the land. For those who can rise above its various challenges, Tanzania, the 'real Africa', awaits with an extended arm and a ready Karibu!
Tanzania is the largest country in East Africa. It borders Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique.
The capital of Tanzania is Dodoma and the largest city is Dar Es Salaam.There are two major airports in Tanzania. Julius Nyerere International Airport in Dar Es Salaam - formerly known as Mwalimu Julius K. Nyerere International Airport and Kilimanjaro International Airport (KIA) which is between Arusha and Moshi.
Tanzania has over 130 tribes one of the popular tribe here is Maasai a very good and wonderful tribe over all tribe in Tanzania and about half of the population is Christian. Islam has the 2nd largest following and the rest of the population follows traditional religions.
The official languages in Tanzania are Swahili and English. Swahili is widely preferred and spoken by almost everyone. Others speak local dialects.
How is the weather in Tanzania ?
Tanzania weather varies from place to place. It is humid and hot in Dar Es Salaam, hot during the day and cool at night in Arusha. The long rainy season is from March to May and the short rains are from late October to late December.
During July to August the weather is cool and dry and again in December to January when it is hotter but bearable.
Lightweight clothing and rain gear are recommended. If you plan to travel during the colder months, remember to carry warm clothing for the evenings. A mosquito net is also required.
Which airport should I fly into?
Our volunteers are adviced to fly into Kilimanjaro Airport or Arusha Airport. It is much closer to our Orphanage in Karatu than Dar.
Will I be picked from the Airport?
There will be someone waiting for you holding a placard bearing your name at the arrival lounge of the airport and you will be taken to your host.
Please send us your arrival information (date, time and flight details, ) well in advance so as to facilitate your airport pickup.
Do I need visa to enter Tanzania?
Visitors from most countries including Europeans, Americans and nationals from Commonwealth countries such as New Zealand, Canada, Australia, and the UK require a visa in order to enter Tanzania.
You can get a visa before you travel from Tanzania diplomatic missions overseas or at the port of entry. You should apply well in advance, especially if you are doing it by mail.
Entry requirements: First of all a valid passport can get you a long way. Besides, an entry visa is also needed for most visitors. You will be able to achieve a three-month single entry tourist visa from Tanzanian embassies around the world, price subject to nationality. Contact your nearest embassy or visit www.tanzaniantouristboard.com
Health requirements: Before you travel, it is advised that you contact your doctor or insurance company for more information about vaccinations. It is very important that you have your vaccinations up to date. Intending visitors should seek medical advice on anti-malarial medication and on other potential tropical diseases well in advance of the actual trip. However, most visitors do not experience serious problems, but better be on the safe side.
Getting there: There are many international airlines flying directly to Kilimanjaro (Moshi/Arusha) and Julius Nyerere (Dar es Salaam). You will also be able to connect a flight directly to Zanzibar. It is also possible to ride on a bus from Kenya or Zambia and Malawi, but it is advised that you book your trip on a luxury bus, as the roads can be bumpy from time to time. By rail is not advised unless you do not mind discomfort and the often abysmal toilet facilities. Whether you want to go for a safari or maountain trekking, the hot spots are with no doubt Arusha or Moshi, where it is advised that you plan your flight to a nearby airport so that you can be easily accommodated close to your main attractions.
What to pack: Travelling light always makes a lot of things much easier and especially if you are planning on getting around in the country, it is advised that you bring only the most necessary things. Lightweight clothing in neutral colors is best for safari tours in the bush. Long sleeved shirts and trousers should also be brought to prevent mosquito bites, and hats, sunglasses and comfortable shoes will make it much easier and healthier for you when walking or camping. For those who are planning on climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro or Mt. Meru, will need layers of warm waterproof clothing and strong comfortable footwear for the higher altitudes. Tanzania is not your everyday tourist destination, so you would want most of your memories either photographed or filmed. Therefore you should consider an extra pack of battery and/or memory card for your camera, as there can be days with limited access to a charger or laptop (if you bring one). For the safari tour it is also very handy to bring binoculars along with you for a better game viewing and oversight of the humongous endless plains in the savannah, where you might spot a rhino or even a leopard in action far away from your safari vehicle.
Money matters: The currency in Tanzania is Tanzanian shillings (TZS). Notes are in denominations of 500, 1,000, 2,000, 5,000 and 10,000. It might not be easy to exchange into this currency in your own respective country. But there are a lot of bureau de changes or larger hotels in Tanzania, where you will be able to have foreign currency, cash as well as travelers checks exchanged into local currency. The most common currency beside Tanzanian shillings is American dollars. Money changers do accept major convertible currencies including EURO and Japanese yen. There is an increasing number of ATM's in the main urban areas, which has made it much easier to get access to your money through your credit card. The use of credit cards is also more accepted now than it was years ago, but you will experience that it is far from everywhere you will be able to pay with a credit card. Tipping for good service (approx 10 %) is always appreciated. A service charge might be included in the bill, but whether it always reaches the appropriate pockets is questionable.
Safety and travel advice
Safety: Petty thieving, thefts of cars and more serious robberies occur like elsewhere in the world. Care should always be taken of personal belongings. It is both unnecessary and dangerous to advertise with your relative wealth on the streets, though it is rarely experienced with bad holiday memories of those tourists who have visited Tanzania. Anyhow, care should be taken under any circumstances and it is advised that you have travel insurance before commencing on your journey.
As a tourist you mostly want to experience the highlighted main features in Tanzania, but we recommend you to take a day or two in between to give yourself some time to relax and enjoy what the city life of Tanzania has to offer. Here we give you a brief overview of the largest city, Dar es Salaam, and the tourist hotspot, which you can hardly avoid when travelling to Tanzania.
Dar es Salaam
'House of peace' as it means in Arabic, Dar es Salaam lies on the coastal area of Tanzania, making the city a very important economic centre. The waves of the Indian Ocean and this big city's richness make it a good experience to visit Dar es Salaam. Though it might not be as charming as other areas of Tanzania, as the infrastructure is much better in this city, than in the rest of the country, it is still worth a visit. There is a ferry connection from Dar es Salaam to Zanzibar, which is easily accessible. With a population of nearly 3 million people, the inner city offers you everything from the best of Tanzanian cuisine to sizzling nightlife. We highly recommend you to try some of the richest seafood around the coast and visit some of the bars and cafés with live music in the evening or even take a nice walk on the beaches of Dar es Salaam.
Though it is not a big city, this northern Tanzanian city is a hot spot for tourists. Whether you want to go on safari, mountain trekking or just enjoy some of Tanzania's famous landscapes, it is inevitable to visit Arusha. Surrounded by most of the famous national parks, only one hour drive from Mount Kilimanjaro and a constant view from the inner city of Mount Meru, makes this city a must see. Along with the fast growing tourism to this area, Arusha is also a major international diplomatic hub. The UN is represented in the city along with the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. It is also a highly multicultural city with red clad Maasai tribes to people from African, Asian and European descent dwelling in the city.
Arusha has a location in northern Tanzania and is the capital of the Arusha region with a population of approximately 1.5 million people. The region consists of many surrounding villages and districts, where most of the volunteer projects are offered. Karibu Tanzania's head office is also based in Arusha, making it easier for us to coordinate with volunteers who stay in Arusha. As for visitors of Tanzania, this is the hot spot where most of your journeys will begin, but we also recommend you to check this city out for its multicultural cuisines and vibrant nightlife, it is worth spending a day or two on.
5 Days Magical Zanzibar (from: US$ 1,322 p/p)
6 Days Discover Zanzibar (from: US$ 1,659 p/p)
6 Days Dik-Dik Safari (from: US$ 1,869 p/p)
7 Days Gazelle Safari (from: US$ 2,233 p/p)
8 Days Gerenuk Safari (from: US$ 2,977 p/p)
5 Days Eland Safari (from: US$ 1,813 p/p)
7 Days Topi Safari (from: US$ 2,505 p/p)
6 Days Romantic Safari (from: US$ 2,924 p/p)
8 Days Bushbuck Safari (from: US $ 2,550 p/p)
Lake Manyara Park Day Trip (from: US$ 189 p/p)
4 Days Buffalo Safari (from: US$ 900 p/p)
6 Days Oryx Safari (from: US$ 1,250 p/p)
7 Days Warthog Safari (from: US$1,400 p/p)
6 Days Exotic Zanzibar (from: US$ 2,159 p/p)
Ngorongoro Crater Day Trip (from: US$ 243 p/p)
Tarangire Day Trip (from: US$ 189 p/p)
Arusha Park Day Trip (from: US$ 175 p/p)
Lake Chala Day Trip (from: US$ 55 p/p)
Materuni Waterfalls Day Trip (from: US$ 55 p/p)
Kikuletwa Hotsprings Day trip (from: US$ 60 p/p)
Mount Kilimanjaro Day Hike (from: US$ 231 p/p)
5 Days Marangu Route (from: US$ 1,540 p/p)
6 Days Marangu Route (from: US$ 1,714 p/p)
6 Days Machame Route (from: US$ 1,705 p/p)
7 Days Machame Route (from: US$1,939 p/p)
7 Days Lemosho Route (from: US$ 2,007 p/p)
8 Days Lemosho Route (from: US$ 2,241 p/p)
6 Days Rongai Route (from: US$ 1,752 p/p)
7 Days Rongai Route (from: US$ 1,986 p/p)
8 Days Northern Circuit Route (from: US$ 2,241 p/p)