With its multitude of uncrowded locations that are home to a staggering variety of animals, Tanzania offers what most people hope to see on a visit to the African continent: the drama of the wildebeest migration unfolding along an infinite savannah; the gleaming snows of Mount Kilimanjaro; the proud Masai warriors stalking the plains; or the exotic palm-fringed beaches on the spice island of Zanzibar.
Tanzania is serious about protecting its natural heritage and almost a quarter (23%) of its landscape has been allocated to game reserves and national parks. Most visitors go on safari (which means ‘journey’ in Kiswahili) and the principal draw card is the Big Five (lion, leopard, elephant, rhino and buffalo) but there are other fascinating species too.
The town of Arusha is the safari capital of East Africa and the starting point for trips to the Northern Circuit parks: the vast plains of the Serengeti where the annual wildebeest migration is staged, the natural beauty of Lake Manyara and the animal-stuffed Ngorongoro Crater, to name but a few. In the south, less visited but equally impressive are the Selous Game Reserve and Ruaha National Park, which are wild, remote and virtually untouched.
Tanzania’s other main attraction is a mountain that needs no introduction – snow-capped Kilimanjaro. Every year thousands of people fulfil their lifetime ambition of climbing to the ‘roof of Africa’ to watch the sun rise over Uhuru Peak.
In the west of Tanzania are the great lakes: Lake Victoria is Africa’s largest freshwater lake and Lake Tanganyika is its deepest; here the highlight is visiting chimpanzees at Gombe or Mahale.
The country has a long coastline steeped in Swahili culture that has been alive since the first dhows arrived on the trade winds from Asia. Tanzania’s coastal attractions include palm-fringed, pearly white-sand beaches, and the coral reefs surrounding the offshore islands teem with life and colour. A walk through the narrow, twisting passageways of Zanzibar’s capital, Stone Town, reveals beautiful Arabian architecture, while the Indian Ocean offers excellent opportunities for diving, snorkelling, fishing, sailing, even swimming with dolphins. Here, on some of the best beaches in the world, it is impossible not to relax in the dazzling sun and warm azure waters.
Places of interest in Tanzania
In The Snows of Kilimanjaro, Ernest Hemmingway described the mountains: “as wide as all the world, great,...
On the way to Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti, Lake Manyara is well worth a stop in its own right. Set in the...