Tanzania is a land of contrasts. From the snow capped peak of Kilimanjaro to the endless plains of the Serengeti, from the sun – kissed island of the Zanzibar Archipelago to the gentle shores of Lake Victoria, the country contains immense cultural and natural wealth.
It was here, on the dusty floor of Olduvai Gorge, that early man left his first footprints. It was here, on palm fringed Zanzibar, that Swahili traders welcomed dhows and trading boats across the Indian Ocean.
WHY VISIT TANZANIA?
For Millennia, Tanzania played an essential part in the life of the African continent. The great wilderness migration alone comprises of the largest movement of land animals on the planet. With over 25% of the country’s total land mass dedicated to the preservation of Africa’s great wilderness and credible range of animal species.
The Republic of Tanzania is one of Africa’s most peaceful countries. Home to a flourishing democracy and prospering economy, the country is known for its peace and security. A well- maintained infrastructure and three international airports connect its bustling commercial centers and ensure easy transportation, whether by air or by road.
Tanzania’s people are a diverse mix of traditional tribes, village farmers and cosmopolitan professionals united by a common language, Swahili and a strong sense of national community.
Famous National Parks
Serengeti National Park is undoubtedly the most famous of the country’s national parks, the annual wildebeest migration attracting thousands of visitors each year. For sheer African magic, the Ngorongoro Crater – often called the 8th Natural wonder of the world – is a must see. Tarangire and Lake Manyara National Parks also reward the discerning traveler.
The magic of the safari isn’t all this great country has to offer, Tropical beaches, coral reefs and Swahili culture along the Indian ocean coast are also a main attraction for visitors who want to end their experience of the African bush with some well – earned relaxation, Zanzibar style.
For the more intrepid adventures, a climb to the rooftop of Africa, Mt. Kilimanjaro, is the highlight of a safari itinerary. Longer treks through the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, through the magical Gol mountains or up the active volcano or Ol Donyo Lengai, are a fantastic way to experience little-visited parts of the country in a new way.
Administrative : Dodoma
Commercial capital: Dar es Salaam
The climate is tropical. The coastal areas are hot and humid with an average day temperature of 30 degrees centigrade. The central plateau is dry and arid with hot days and cool nights. In the northwest highlands around Arusha and Ngorongoro, the climate is temperate and cooler between June and September. The long rains are from March to May and the short rains fall between October and December. The hottest months are between October and February.
All visitors to Tanzania require a return or onward ticket and a valid passport with an entry or re-entry visa, duly endorsed. Visas are not required for visitors from some Commonwealth countries and other specified countries. For Vyas x4 Visas will be obtained at Namanga gate in Kenya / Tanzania border. Visa cost to Tanzania is USD 50. Requirements for obtaining a visa are: a passport, valid for six months beyond the intended length of stay, two passport photographs, two application forms and a detailed itinerary stating reason for visit.
Departure tax from mainland Tanzania is included in the price of your ticket, however in the Zanzibar there is a departure tax of USD 25 payable at the airport. There is a TSH 5,000 (approx USD 5) tax levied on passengers within Tanzania.
Kiswahili and English
The Tanzanian shilling (Tsh or TZS), divided into 100 cents is the national currency.
Banks and bureau de change are available at airports and in all major towns. Banking hours are from Monday – Friday 8.30 am - 3.00 pm , Saturday 8.30 am – 1.30 pm. A few branches in the major towns are open until 4.00 pm. Please note that banks are closed on Sunday.
Credit cards and travelers cheques
Credit cards (Access, MasterCard, Visa, American-Express, and Eurocard) are accepted only at major lodges and hotels. ATM and 24 – hour cash machines are available in branches of major banks. Traveler’s cheques in pounds sterling or US dollars are recommended, though it may be difficult to exchange them outside the main cities.
Tanzania has only one time zone. Local time is GMT + 3 and Daylight Savings Time is not used.
215 - 230 Volts, 50 Cycles AC
Tanzania has a tropical climate and different bacteria, flora and fauna than most visitors are accustomed to, so it is advisable to take a few health precautions when travelling to make sure that your trip goes as comfortably and smoothly as possible.
Malaria is usually top on the list of visitor’s worries and prevention goes a long way toward keeping you protected. Make sure to visit your doctor to get a prescription for anti-malarial drugs that best suits you. The yellow fever vaccination, is no longer officially required when entering Tanzania, however, this is still a requirement if you wish to visit Zanzibar. Other vaccinations should be considered. For more information, contact your doctor well in advance of your visit.
Tanzania is a safe country to travel in. Tanzania are warm-hearted and generous people and are eager to help visitors get the most out of their stay. Tanzania is a politically stable, multi – democratic country. As in all countries, a little common sense goes a long way and reasonable precautions should still be taken, such as locking valuables in the hotel safe and not walking alone at night.
Unless otherwise advised, the public holidays in Tanzania remain the same every year. If any of the public holidays listed below falls on a Saturday or Sunday, the holiday is moved to the following Monday.
1 Jan New Year's Day.
12 Jan Zanzibar Revolution Day.
26 Feb Birth of the Prophet.
2 Apr Good Friday.
5 Apr Easter Monday.
26 Apr Union Day.
1 May International Labour Day.
7 Jul Saba Saba (Industry's Day).
8 Aug Nane Nane (Farmer's Day).
11 Aug Eid al-Fitr (Ramadan).
14 Oct Nyerere Day.
16 Nov - 17 Nov Eid al-Adha.
9 Dec Independence and Republic Day.
25 Dec Christmas Day.
26 Dec Boxing Day.
Islamic holidays change from year and may vary by 1-2 days depending on the sightings of the new moon.
Best times to visit
Northern Tanzania – July to March
Southern Tanzania – June to March
Western Tanzania – May – March
Zanzibar and the coast – June to March
Tanzania has three international airports. Dar es Salaam international Airport (which handles most international flights). Kilimanjaro International Airport and Zanzibar International Airport
From the north, paved roads connect the Kenyan capital of Nairobi with Arusha and crosss the border at the Namanga post. A number of shuttle buses, leaving twice daily between the two cities, also follow this route. The trip takes approx 4 – 6 hours.