Your points will be added to your account once your order is shipped. Click on the cover image above to read some pages of this book! Wildlife, beaches, ruins, Mt Kilimanjaro, friendly people, fascinating cultures — Tanzania has all these and more wrapped up in one adventurous, welcoming package. Lonely Planet will get you to the heart of Tanzania, with amazing travel experiences and the best planning advice. Get to the heart of Tanzania and begin your journey now!
Help Centre. Track My Order. To call for help in Tanzania, dial the following numbers: Ambulance and fire brigade: Police: Airport police: In Tanzania it is customary to add five to ten percent to the bill in restaurants and to give the porter a small amount per suitcase.
Tour guides on safaris are given a substantially greater amount. When it is in the UK summertime , it is in Tanzania. When it is in the UK wintertime , it is in Tanzania. The following weights and measures are used in Tanzania: Length: metres Weight: kilos The old Imperial units of measure - yards, pounds and gallons - are still used in some places. If you want to take picture of the locals you should always ask in advance to prevent insulting the Masai or other tribe peoples.
On a safari the best time to take pictures is either early in the morning or in the late afternoon with a good long lens. Water from the tap should not be consumed unless it has been boiled and filtered. Bottled water can be bought in most shops and in hotels. On the coast and on Zanzibar most people are Muslim. Therefore visitors should always dress properly in clothing that covers shoulders and knees. It is unacceptable to be topless or to swim naked.
- Guide to Tanzania;
- Tanzania has been voted the top safari destination in the World.
- Find your travel arrangement to Tanzania here.
Shops are open form to Monday - Friday and from to Saturday. Some shops are closed during lunch. Banks are open from to Monday - Friday and from to Saturday. Most hotels serve local food while the big chain hotels also have Western food on the menu. Usually there is a big selection of seafood such as prawns and lobster. Tropical fruit is another item which is usually included in the meals in the shape of coconuts, Paw-Paw fruit, mango, pineapple and bananas.
The conditions for disabled travellers are not very good in Tanzania. Before you decide you should check with your travel agent if there are hotels with facilities. There are many camping sites in Tanzania. Some have standard facilities with sinks, toilets, bivouacs and fire wood while others are more simple. Law enforcement often likes to get a cut of the business and will often solicit backpackers for bribes as well.
Even the odd taxi driver may attempt to screw over a backpacker and hold him hostage for a bribe. We suggest to everyone to study our guide about being a safe backpacker. In this article, we cover a lot of scams and how to avoid them. We also cover a lot of practicalities like avoiding the display of expensive items, traveling in groups, and using the proper safety garments.
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We mentioned before that cops like to pick on tourists by soliciting bribes. The cop will get annoyed and most likely walk away. Tanzania is deep in malaria territory so you will need to consider your antimalarial options. Consult a doctor beforehand to see if malaria medication is right for you. Also be very cautious around the wildlife. Most of the animals that you encounter on a safari will be skittish. Do not wander into areas that marked off or labeled as dangerous.
For a proper briefing on safety on safaris, read this guide here. The article discusses Kenya specifically but is still applicable to Tanzania. We use it on our own adventures to purify often nasty looking water and it does a beautiful job — we have yet to get sick!
Lonely Planet Tanzania Country Guide
People tend to unwind by drinking a beer at the campground with a nice bonfire rather than getting pissed drunk at a bar. That being said, there are definitely ways to party in Tanzania! The best parties in Tanzania will be on the coast in either Zanzibar or Dar es Salaam. Zanzibar generally has more casual beach bars while Dar can be a little posher.
Zanzibar has more beach bars and the scene here is more intimate than Dar es Salaam. Most of the bars are pretty small but you do get the occasional big one in Stone Town or on the north of the island. There will be bonfires, DJs, and lots of drunk Zanzibarbarians. Please be aware that both Dar and Zanzibar are Muslim communities. Most of the locals look the other way at drinking, some even partake themselves, but they will not appreciate dealing with wasted tourists. Please be respectful of them.
Get insurance! Even if you are only going on a short trip, you should always travel with insurance. Security Belt with Hidden Pocket : I never hit the road without my security belt.
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This is a regular looking belt with a concealed pocket on the inside — you can hide up to twenty notes inside and wear it through airport scanners without it setting them off. This is hands down the best way to hide your cash. AR bottle are tough, lightweight and maintain the temperature of your beverage — so you can enjoy a cold red bull, or a hot coffee, no matter where you are.
Hostel towels are scummy and take forever to dry. Microfibre towels dry quickly, are compact, lightweight and can be used as a blanket or yoga mat if need be. Headtorch : I would never travel without a headtorch. Even if you only end up using it once, a decent head torch could save your life. If you want to explore caves, unlit temples or simply find your way to the bathroom during a blackout, a headtorch is a must.
Well worth having, whether you are hanging it from a tree whilst camping, or a hook in a wall, it helps to have quick access to all your stuff. Due to its size and geographic location, Tanzania has a unique climate that can be hard to characterize or predict. The long rainy season is characterized by large tropical deluges that occur in the afternoons. Humidity is very high during this time and, for much of the country, the temperatures are still quite high. Washouts are common during this season and the vegetation is overgrown; both of these factors allow for very poor safari conditions.
The long dry season that follows the long rains June-October is generally seen as the best time to go backpacking in Tanzania. Rains become erratic, temperatures fall to a comfortable level, and the skies are the clearest all year. That being said, the Long Dry is still not the best time of year for safaris as the rivers and watering holes are still full, which makes animals less inclined to go out in open.
This time of year is best for activities like island hopping or climbing Kilimanjaro. Following the Long Dry, Tanzania enters another short rainy season in November and December that is much less dramatic. Following this is another short dry season from January to February before the whole cycle starts again.
Together, the short seasons are another excellent time to visit Tanzania. Game will be out in the open, the Migration will have returned to the Serengeti, and the weather will be reliable. Note that temperatures will be very hot at this time. It is a great help while calculating expenses. This particular VPN allows for up to five connections which is handy for keeping all your devices connected without having to purchase multiple VPN packages. There are lots of international airlines that provide service to Tanzania.
There is one luxury train that connects Tanzania and Zambia, which is called the Tazara.
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Riding it is an awesome way to experience the African countryside. Many ride this train as far as Mbeya and then catch a local bus to start backpacking in Malawi. For for information on the Tazara, refer to this informative website here. Adventurous backpackers can catch a cargo freighter from Dar es Salaam or Zanzibar to the tiny island nations of Comoros and Mayotte , halfway to Madagascar.
There are no online resources for these islands, so interested parties will have to go to the local docks to start their journeys to these islands. For more information on traveling to and from Tanzania by road, refer to the Onward Travel section. Nearly every foreign country can receive a visa-upon-arrival in Tanzania. Most African nationalities require no visa to enter Tanzania and so only a passport is required to visit. The Tanzanian government, as well as many foreign governments, advise that you arrange a visa beforehand.
For more information, refer to the official visa website for Tanzania here. The best way to get around Tanzania is by the local bus system. Between the large intercity buses and the ubiquitous minibusses referred to as dala-dalas in Tanzania , you can get just about anywhere in Tanzania. Getting around the urban centers of Tanzania can be a somewhat harrowing experience depending on your constitution.
Roads are in poor condition, sidewalks disappear without warning, and motorists are generally reckless. The most common form of public transit is the dala-dala , which costs next to nothing to ride and is usually jam-packed. There are lots of taxis and rickshaws that ply the streets of Tanzania as well. Driving between cities is a matter of catching another dala-dala , one that travels longer distances, or a larger mainliner. Hitchhiking in Tanzania should be a relatively straightforward task since many African people use it as a common mode of transport.
Just be sure to follow all of the usual rules of hitchhiking and to be aware of your surroundings. A special note on hitchhiking in Tanzania: instead of using your thumb, wave your hand with the palm up to indicate that you need a ride; having your palm face down means you want to pay.
Tanzania shares a border with 7 other nations and all of the borders are open to tourist crossings. Buses ply these routes very often and, regardless of the usual border town craziness, will get you safely to your onwards destination. You can be backpacking in Kenya, Zambia, Burundi, or whichever you please in no time! Most Tanzanian buses bound for a bordering country will start in Dar es Salaam, so you should have no trouble finding the right one.
Note that the border between Mozambique and Tanzania is a bit rough since it requires crossing of the mighty Zambezi River. Below is a graph outlining all of the major border crossings in Tanzania. Like the rest of Africa, Tanzania can be both very cheap and very expensive at the same time. Whereas the costs of living can be very low, going on a safari or a multi-day hike can turn out to be exorbitant. You can travel on a budget in Tanzania though! You just need to have the right practices, my eager broke backpackers. With this, you should have no problem finding a dorm bed, groceries, beer money, and cash for transport.
This does not include safaris. Conventional Western lodging can be expensive in Tanzania and the costs add up quick. Note that Zanzibar is more expensive then mainland Tanzania. The best way to go backpacking in Africa on a budget is to bring a tent with you! Carrying around your own shelter while traveling in Tanzania allows you to take advantage of campsites and skip on renting tents for safaris. The other budget-friendly option is couchsurfing, which we are big fans of! Food, drink, and transport can all be cheap if you stick to the local methods.
Stick to the crowded minibusses where even long hauls cost a matter dollars. Domestic flights will not be cheap; ferries and buses will save you hundreds of dollars, but will take hours or possibly days of travel. Stick to these local habits and you save lots of money while backpacking in Tanzania. This way you can splurge on the big ticket items, like a diving trip or safari. The official currency of Tanzania is the Tanzanian shilling. For small transactions in Tanzania, the kind you accrue at local markets, bars, cafes, street carts, etc, shillings will be requested.
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Most vendors will only accept smaller bills and may look at you irritatingly if you whip out a large bill. Who could blame them for breaking a 10, note when something like a beer costs shillings? Try to save small notes as much as possible for situations like these. You can buy shillings at one of the many currency exchange businesses, which are primarily located in the more popular tourist areas. These currencies are the most commonly accepted form of payment when it comes to larger, more tourist-related activities — entry into National Parks is a good example of when you need to pay with USD.
More often than naught, you will be expected to pay with foreign currency, which can be frustrating since you probably bought a shit ton of shillings in the first place! If you are planning on going on a safari, or have any unpaid bookings for that matter, bring USD, Euro, or Pounds to settle these up. If you only have shillings, most tourist businesses will still accept them with a little convincing. Camp : With plenty of gorgeous places, Tanzania can be a great place to camp. Check out this post for a breakdown of the best tents to take backpacking.
Cook your own food: If you are on a tight budget, you can save money by cooking your own food. I recommend bringing a portable backpacking stove. Book your transportation early: Both plane and bus tickets are much cheaper if you purchase them in advance. Check out Couchsurfing to make some real friendships and see this country from the perspective of locals. Pack a travel water bottle : S ave money and the planet every day!
Long term travel is awesome. Giving back is awesome too. Backpackers can spend long periods of time volunteering in an awesome place without spending any money. Meaningful life and travel experiences are rooted in stepping out of your comfort zone and into the world of a purposeful project. Worldpackers opens the doors for work opportunities in hostels, homestays, NGOs, and eco-projects around the world. Are you a native English speaker looking to earn cash whilst traveling the world? Teaching English online is a great way to earn a consistent income from anywhere in the world with a good internet connection.
Check out this detailed article for everything you need to know to start teaching English online. In addition to giving you the qualifications to teach English online, TEFL courses open up a huge range of opportunities and you can find teaching work all over the world. To find out more about TEFL courses and how you can teach English around the world, read my in-depth report on teaching English abroad. Whether you are keen to teach English online or looking to take your teaching game a step further by finding a job teaching English in a foreign country, getting your TEFL certificate is absolutely a step in the right direction.
Internet access and connections are more commonly found in the major urban areas of Tanzania, like Dar es Salaam and Arusha, and are fairly reliable. You can often find internet connection at your lodge or at a local cafe that will give you the password if you buy something. Internet becomes dodgy out in the African wilderness.
You can expect to find little to no internet while on safari or while staying on a remote island. Probably a good thing, as unplugging sometimes can be hugely refreshing. In my experience, when there was internet in remote places it was extremely slow, and only efficient for simple tasks like texting, not for loading web pages, streaming or downloading. Those who need to stay connected more regularly while backpacking through Tanzania should consider buying a local SIM card and getting a data plan. Like WiFi, data will be strongest in the more developed parts of the country.
Several local telecommunications companies offer special tourist packages that have a lot of data for a low price. There are over ethnic groups currently inhabiting this country and each has their own social dynamics. Throw in some European customs, which were introduced during colonization, and you have a very complex system of civics. To say that all Tanzanians fall into a neat little category would be an injustice. Generally speaking, the coastline is dominated by Swahili culture, which is predominantly Muslim.
Swahili people are often religious or not semi-practicing, so you should be aware of all the proper behaviors when it comes to Islam. The deeper you travel into Tanzania, the more varied and traditional the cultures become. The Maasai are one of the most well-known tribal groups and Africa. They are a very fascinating people, as refined and enlightened as they are raw. They practice several traditions that are meant to enrich the mind, soul, and body and are accomplished healers. There are so many different people in Tanzania that it could require a whole post to explain their cultures and traditions.
I could talk more about some general traits of each, like how the Meru are accomplished agriculturists or how the Baraig are excellent metallurgists, but these would be great understatements. The origin stories of Tanzanian cooking are as rich as the ingredients themselves! Arab traders had a huge influence on Tanzanian cooking, thanks to the many exotic ingredients that they brought with them.
The spicy meat and rice dishes that prevail in contemporary Tanzanian cooking are thanks to these traders. The various colonial powers left their mark as well. The Portuguese introduced cashews and cassava, the British popularized tea and boiled vegetables, and the Germans cultivated coffee plantations.
The result of all of these mingling culinary styles is a form of cooking that will certainly make you smack your lips. Below is a list of the best Tanzanian foods to try. Tanzania has some of the craziest and most unique festivals in East Africa! Watch men lash each other civily to settle beefs from last year! Participate in a marathon at the base of Mt.
All of these and more are really happening in Tanzania! Wanyambo Festival January — Traditional festival that features song, dance, performances, and food. Held in Makumbusho, slightly north of Dar es Salaam. Sauti za Busara February — A big musical festival featuring jazz, pop, afrobeat, and more. Held on Zanzibar. KiliMan Challenge February — Perhaps the greatest triathlon ever. Includes a climb up Kilimanjaro, a mountain bike race around it, and, finally, a marathon at the base.
Lots of nationalistic ceremonies and flag waving. A ceremonial straw hut is set on fire too. Bagamoyo Arts Festival September — Display of both traditional and contemporary song and dance. Held in Bagamoyo near Dar es Salaam. Eid al-Fitr dates changes on account of the Muslim calendar — The celebration of the end of Ramadan. There is feasting, gift-giving, praying, and dancing involved. There are a lot of places to go on a safari in Tanzania; a lot. Choosing which one can be a daunting task.