Unique Places to Visit & Things to do in Tanzania
Tanzania is a major tourist destination with a great number of tourist attractions. Tanzania is home to several national parks, game reserves and also home to Mountain Kilimanjaro, the highest free-standing mountain in the world.
Most of the wildlife attractions with a variety of animal life including ‘The Big five’ are located in the northern part of the country. Some of these include; Serengeti National Park, the most popular park in the country, Lake Manyara National Park, Tarangire National Park. The northern side also has the Ngorongoro conservation area and Olduvai Gorge.
The western part of Tanzania is home to Mahale National Park, Katavi National Park, and so many other attractions.
Serengeti National Park
Serengeti National Park is located in the Mara and Simiyu regions of Tanzania. It has an area of 14,763 square kilometers. Serengeti national park is prominently known worldwide for the park that hosts the massive wildebeest migration annually.
Tourists come to Serengeti National Park to witness millions of migrating wildebeests, gazelles, and zebras as this can’t be watched anywhere else. These animals move in search of fresh water and pasture. The best time to visit and get a glimpse of the migration is between May to June and December to March.
Serengeti National Park has the largest lion population in Africa and is therefore considered a Lion Conservation Unit. A pride of lions can be spotted at the Moru Kopjes rocks stretching while on a game drive and this is one sight that cannot be missed. Leopards, cheetahs, hyenas, and wild dogs can also be seen while visiting Serengeti National Park.
Ngorongoro conservation area was initially part of the Serengeti National Park. Found in Arusha northern Tanzania and near the Kenyan border with an area cover of 8,292 square kilometers. In 1959 it was separated from the national park and made a conservation area. The main feature to look out for is the Ngorongoro crater, the world’s largest inactive caldera which is also a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Most tourists combine a safari to Serengeti National park with a tour to the Ngorongoro conservation area.
Some of the activities to do on a safari in Ngorongoro.
An interesting fact about the reserve is it allows human habitation where the indigenous Masaai people are allowed to graze at the crater especially during the dry season. Therefore, on the remarkable safari tourists come across the local Masaai people.
Ngorongoro conservation area is a habitat for a variety of wildlife species like the big five and other animals including; warthogs, zebras, cheetahs, gazelles, and wildebeests. A wide range of birdlife; yellow wagtails, saddle bill storks, flamingos, crowned cranes, white storks can be spotted on a game drive or on a guided nature walk. The best wildlife viewing time recommended is during the dry season from December to March and June to September.
A photographic safari to capture beautiful sights of animals, birds, the Masaai tribesmen, and also the irresistible scenic savannah vegetation.
Ngorongoro hosts Olduvai Gorge an archaeological site with a museum that showcases fossils of extinct animals and it is also well known as a discovery site for the first human remains.
Hot air ballooning is an adventurous means to tour the crater and other areas within the conservation. It gives a magnificent view of the crater and the migration of the wildebeest.
A visit to the bushmen in the remote areas of the park. Unlike some of the Masaai people who have taken up the western ways, the bushmen remain ancient and live off hunting and gathering. A visit to their homes allows the visitor to learn and discover their culture and ways of living.
Picnics in the wilderness next to grazing wild game.
Lake Manyara National Park
Lake Manyara National Park is located in the regions of Arusha and Manyara in Tanzania. Lake Manyara National Park is positioned in the Great Rift Valley. The area was utilized for sports hunting before a Game Reserve was established in 1957. In 1960 it was designated as a national park and it covers 325 kilometers. The biggest part of the park is occupied by Lake Manyara.
Lake Manyara National Park has a wide range of attractions including the occasional tree-climbing lions, large herds of elephants, giraffes, leopards, impalas, bushbuck, hippos, warthogs, spotted hyenas, zebras, wildebeests. Primates include; vervet monkeys, blue monkeys.
Lake Manyara is known for thousands of Flamingos but also Lake Manyara National Park has a variety of bird species and these include; Great White Pelican, Yellow-billed stock, Marabou stork, Ayer’s hawk-eagle, egrets, Sacred ibis, Saddle-billed stork, stilts herons, spoonbills.
Mountain Kilimanjaro is situated near Moshi town, south of the Kenyan border with magnificent natural phenomena and unmatched natural beauty.
The significant meaning of the word “Kilimanjaro” is described in different theories. It’s claimed that Kilimanjaro has been understood as a mountain (Kilima) of greatness (Njaro). It was also suggested that it could possibly mean ‘The white mountain’ from a Kichagga word ‘Njaro’ to mean whiteness.
Kilimanjaro Mountain is the tallest mountain in Africa and the highest free-standing mountain in the world. The mountain possesses three cones: Kibo being the highest, dormant, and could erupt again. Mawenzi and Shira are extinct.
Mount Kilimanjaro is well known for its exceptional mountain climbing experiences. So many tourists from all over the world travel to Tanzania to hike the summit of the tallest free-standing mountain. Different routes/trails provide a possibility for tourists to conquer this hike to the summit.
Western routes: Lemosho, Shira, and Northern Circuit
The Lemosho route is considered one of the best since it has registered high victories to the peak.
Northern route: Rongai
Southern route: Marangu, Machame, and Umbwe
The Marangu Route is the oldest route to use while hiking. It is also convenient since it has sleeping huts and dormitories for hikers.
The Machame route is the longest route but it is also considered a better alternative by hikers.
The Umbwe route and Rongai route are considered among the hardest routes.
The areas around the mountain experience both dry and wet seasons. It is risky during the wet season because of the slippery trails and mud. The best time to visit and hike Mount Kilimanjaro is during the dry season in the months of December to March and June through September and October. The clear sky bestows a beautiful view.
Having the right clothing is necessary for preparation to hike Mount Kilimanjaro due to the weather changes. Waterproof jackets and trousers, down jacket/thick fleece, good quality trekking trousers preferably made of quick-dry material, insulated gloves, and mitts, walking boots, scarf, sunglasses for eye protection
Zanzibar Island Tours
Zanzibar is a region in Tanzania and a perfect holiday destination with many beaches and islands. The main islands are Pemba and Unguja. There are several attractions in Zanzibar and some of these include; stone town, coastal tours, and spice tours.
Stone town: This is a UNESCO world heritage site with several cultural and historical sites to be visited. Some of these sites include; the sultan’s palace, slave markets, tip’s house, cathedrals.
Coastal tourism: With a good number of beaches, one can participate in activities like diving and snorkeling. Cruise to the different islands and enjoy a sundowner.
Spice tour: Zanzibar is famous for the spice tours and gets to see a variety of spices used to prepare food and some of these spices include; cloves, black pepper, coriander, and many others.
Tanzania is truly a great safari destination with very many other destinations that tourists can visit for unique places to visit and things to do. Jewel safaris also offer great wildlife viewing experiences including Kenya safaris, Uganda wildlife safaris, or Rwanda wildlife tours. For the great gorilla trekking experiences, tourists can undertake Uganda gorilla safaris or Rwanda gorilla tours and have a lifetime experience trekking the jungle.