Getting to know Tanzania
Tanzania is a famous tourist destination because of Tanzania’s proximity to Africa’s highest mountain, Mount Kilimanjaro. To put it another way, Tanzania is a famous tourist destination because of its safaris and wildlife-related activities.
As the gateway to Tanzania’s national parks, Dar es Salaam is a popular destination for tourists. Sunbathers flock to Zanzibar’s magnificent beaches to soak up the rays and unwind in the sand.
Visitors from over the world flock to the islands off Pemba and Mafia to enjoy the coral gardens, colorful fish, and crystal-clear waters of the islands’ waters.
Serengeti National Park
The Serengeti National Park is a wide, treeless plain where millions of animals live or migrate through in search of new grassland to graze on. The Serengeti is most known for its annual migration of wildebeest, but it’s also home to the Big Five and nearly 500 species of birds.
The Serengeti, Tanzania’s second-largest national park, draws tens of thousands of visitors each year. Serengeti National Park’s finest wildlife viewing months are June through September. March to May is the rainy season, and June to October is the coolest month.
Over 1.5 million wildebeest and hundreds of thousands of zebra and gazelle make their annual migration in May or June. This migration is one of nature’s most spectacular spectacles and a major tourist attraction.
Kilimanjaro, Africa's tallest mountain
Tanzania’s most recognizable landmark is the 5,895-meter-high Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest point in Africa. Unlike other parks in northern Tanzania, visitors to Mount Kilimanjaro National Park come to marvel at the majestic snow-capped peak and, for some, to attempt the ascent to its highest point. It is possible to climb Mount Kilimanjaro at any time of year, but the optimum time is from the end of June to the end of October, when the weather is dry.
Over a million years ago, volcanic action in the Rift Valley sculpted Kilimanjaro, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was 750,000 years ago when three volcanic cones, Shira, Kibo, and Mawenzi, formed. Kibo’s Uhuru Peak is the world’s highest peak and one of the Seven Summits.
When you get to the top, you’ll see a bleak lunar landscape that looks like it came straight out of the movies. Buffaloes, leopards, monkeys, elephants, and eland can be found on the rainforest’s slopes. Bird watchers will find a plethora of raptors in the alpine region.
The government has approved a plan to install a cable car on Mt. Kilimanjaro by the end of 2020. If built, guests would ascend 3,700 feet above the Earth’s surface.
The beaches of Zanzibar
Unguja, or the island of Zanzibar, is a popular Tanzanian vacation spot famed for its gorgeous beaches. Beaches on this island, which is part of Zanzibar’s archipelago, are some of the best in the world. Traditional boats line the beachfront together with lovely white sand and clear shallow water, making this an ideal spot for beachgoers.
Stone Town, Zanzibar’s historic capital, is noted for its old Arabian mansions, winding alleyways, and bustling port.
The national park of Lake Manyara
Forest, woodland, grasslands, and wetlands make up Lake Manyara National Park. Manyara Lake hosts thousands of flamingoes during different periods of the year, as well as a wide variety of bird species. One of the best things about Lake Manyara Park is its enormous elephant population, tree-climbing lions, and hippos that are more easily viewed than in other parks. The world’s greatest population of baboons can be found in this park.
Manyara National Park has a wide variety of wildlife drives, paddling (when water levels allow), mountain biking tours, and birdwatching.
The Island of Mafia
Coral gardens, an abundance of fish, and a laid-back diving attitude characterize Mafia Island Marine Park. Over 400 varieties of fish and countless birds can be found in the area. This island is also a breeding ground for the endangered green turtle, which is why it is so important to preserve it.
It is also an excellent place for deep-sea fishing, particularly for big-game tuna, marlin, sailfish, and the like.
Settlement on this idyllic island began as early as the 8th or 9th century, but Mafia grew in prominence from the 12th to 14th centuries due to its strategic location along the East African trade routes.
Ngorongoro Conservation Area
The Ngorongoro Conservation Area, which is located between the Serengeti and Lake Manyara, is one of Tanzania’s most popular wildlife viewing destinations. Thousands of animals flock to this volcanic crater because it has a constant source of water, preventing them from traveling.
Large animals and bird gazing are the primary draws for visitors to this park. More than half of the animals living in the Ngorongoro Crater are either wildebeest or zebra. The crater floor is home to tens of thousands of these two species of animals.
The flamingos swarm to the shallows of Lake Migadi, which is a great place for birdwatching. Hippos spend the day in the water and the evenings grazing in the adjacent grass.
Ancient calderas like this one, which are more than 3.5 million years old, are rare to find. Before the Ngorongoro volcano erupted and fell, it was one of the highest mountains in the world
Tarangire National Park
One of the best places to see animals is Tarangire National Park, founded in 1970. From July through September, the animals congregate near the river, making it a great place to see them in their natural habitats.
Tarangire National Park is one of the best places in Tanzania to see migratory wildlife during the dry season. The lagoons are teeming with animals like wildebeest, zebra, buffalo, impala, gazelle, hartebeest, and eland. Elephants and baobab trees dot the grassy environment, making this a popular destination.
Over 300 species of birds have been spotted at Tarangire National Park, making it an excellent place to go bird watching. Some of these birds include buzzards, vultures and storks, as well as kites, falcons, and eagles
Island of Pemba
Pemba Island is the last island in the Zanzibar archipelago to be inhabited by humans. You can find some of the best Indian Ocean scuba diving around Pemba, with visibility that is unmatched by any other location in the world. Coral reefs, brightly colored sponges, and sea fans can all be found in the underwater paradise. Scuba divers flock to Pemba’s capital, Chake Chake, which is also the island’s primary population center.
Pemba has a more easygoing vibe than Zanzibar, which is why it’s less popular. Mountain bikers are lured to the 1,000-meter peaks on the island’s mountainous terrain and deep valleys. Misali Island Beach, just off the coast, is a must-see stop for anyone visiting the area. An undeveloped tropical island has this stunning white-sand beach.
Cloves are grown in Pemba, which is also famed for its juju traditions of medicine and magic, making it one of the world’s leading clove producers. Voodoo practitioners and traditional healers from all across East Africa travel here to impart their knowledge or provide a cure.
Selous National Park
The Selous Game Reserve is Africa’s largest. It was established in 1922 and encompasses 5% of Tanzania’s total land area. Because it is underdeveloped, heavily forested, and full of treacherous cliffs, the southern region is beyond limits. Northern Tanzania is off-limits for tourists. Wide open grasslands, wooded gorges and rivers, hills and plains abound in this part of the Selous Game Reserve. From July through October is the finest time of year to come.
With a watershed area larger than any other river in East Africa’s Selous Game Reserve, the Rufiji River bisects Selous. The river runs through the reserve, and it’s a great place to see all the aquatic creatures. Wildlife ranging from elephants to hippos to rhinos can be found in abundance, including buffalo, giraffe, warthog; warthog; lion; leopard; and cheetah. More than 350 different species of birds have been spotted in Selous.
Few things have changed in Zanzibar’s Stone Town in the previous 200 years. The city’s narrow streets and meandering alleyways are adorned with majestic old Arabian mansions. As a prominent Swahili trading center, Zanzibar’s Stone Town was a popular destination for tourists in its heyday in the 19th century. Intricately carved wooden doors decorated with bras may be found on several of the homes.
As the world’s oldest Swahili city, Stone Town’s landmarks have been meticulously preserved. There are museums and tourist attractions in several of the historic structures. A handful of the town’s historic churches are also worth a visit.
Creek Road leads visitors to the historic Stone Town district, which includes the Darajani Market, Beit el-Amani, City Hall, and the Anglican Cathedral. Many of Stone Town’s most notable landmarks are within a short distance of each other: Forodhani Gardens, the Old Dispensary with its intricately carved wooden balconies, Beit el-Sahel (the People’s Palace), Hamamni Persian Baths, and the Old Fort.