Tanzania is a traveler’s dream.
Known for its wilderness areas, this East African country is where you can find the Serengeti National Park, a safari mecca where the “big five” (elephant, lion, leopard, buffalo and rhino) can be found and Kilimanjaro National Park, the home of Africa’s highest mountain.
If wilderness isn’t your thing, then go offshore and spend some time on the tropical islands of Zanzibar and Mafia Marine Park exploring various coral reefs and taking a dip with some whale sharks.
This Tanzania travel guide will help you plan your next vacation.
Budget: You can find a variety of hostels and budget hotels in the range of 12,000-70,000 TZS per night. Stay in dorms or private rooms and enjoy free Wi-Fi, hot showers, complimentary breakfast, and good locations to city centers or tourist destinations.
Mid-Range: For mid-range, expect to pay around 110,000-300,000 TZS per night. These hotels come with private rooms with TVs and free Wi-Fi, room service, complimentary breakfast, an outdoor pool, a gym, and a hotel restaurant and bar.
High-End: For five-star hotels, you will pay around 370,000-977,000 TZS per night. Take in the best with top-of-the-line hospitality, 24/7 room service, fine dining, refined rooms and suites with balconies and living rooms, a gym, massage services, butler service, and a pool.
Beef, fish, rice, maize, and plantains are common foods in Tanzanian cuisine, though it can vary by region. Ugali (maize porridge) is a popular meal and is usually served with a meat, fish, or bean sauce. Mandazi (East African donuts) or Mahindi ya Kuchoma (grilled corn) are some treats you may find when out and about.
You can also look for a sit-down restaurant to sample more of the cuisine. For more inexpensive restaurants, you can find a meal for 6,450 TZS, though more expensive places will cost around 50,000 TZS.
GETTING TO TANZANIA
Flights: Tanzania has 29 airports, but the main airport to fly into is Julius Nyerere International Airport, located 7.5 miles from the center of Dar es Salaam. If you’re climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, then Kilimanjaro International Airport is a popular airport that takes direct flights from the US. You can check for the best flights to Tanzania on Skyscanner.
GETTING AROUND TANZANIA
Buses: Buses are a cheap way to get around, with a typical fare being about 400 TZS. Buses come in the form of minibuses or sedans. If you don’t like crowds, avoid peak hours, as buses can get jam packed with passengers. It is also best to avoid traveling at night.
Taxis: Taxis are another way to get around. However, use only licensed taxis. They are not metered, so make sure to agree on a price before getting in. A shorter taxi ride will start at 2,000 TZS (5,000 TZS in Dar es Salaam). It helps to ask around about what is a fair price so you know if you are being overcharged or not.
Car Rental: To rent a car, you need to be at least 21 years old and have a U.S. driver’s license. Prices average at 165,525 TZS per day for drivers 25 and older. Avoid driving at night and always look out for livestock on the roads.
Uber: Uber is available in Dar es Salaam.
Tanzania has a tropical climate.
Temperatures in the highlands range between 50 and 68°F (10 and 20°C) during summer and winter months while the rest of the country has temperatures that rarely fall lower than 68°F (20°C).
The hottest period is between November and February while the coldest period occurs between May and August.
Tanzania has two major rainfall regions.
One is December–April in the southern, south-west, central and western parts of the country, while the other occurs October–December and March-May in the north and northern coast.
- Waterproof bag – the bag has two functions, protecting your stuff from the rain and also from the dust, especially if you’re traveling to drier regions.
- Footwear – especially important if going you are heading on a safari! Pack a pair of lightweight, durable, waterproof and comfortable shoes and also a pair of flip-flops or sandals that you can change into after a long day of sightseeing.
- Protection from the elements – pack sunscreen, sunglasses, a hat and bug-spray to prevent getting bitten by a mosquito (that might have malaria!)
- Layers – pack the basic tropical clothes and make sure to include long pants, long-sleeve tops and some warm clothes for those chilly nights.
- Avoid packing dark colored clothes – tsetse flies are drawn to dark colors, like blue and black clothing, and their bite can give you African Sleeping Sickness. Stick to light, neutral colors but avoid packing white clothes as they will get dirty and dusty pretty quickly.
- Binoculars – these are extremely handy for game drives. There is no off-roading permitted in the national parks so make sure you have an extra pair of binoculars or a camera with an epic zoom.
Enjoy your trip in Tanzania and share you experience with us!