Sprawling wildlife and other natural gems are what awaits in Tanzania!
1. Tanzania has two capitals with Dodoma being the official capital and Dar Es Salaam acting as the de facto seat of the government.
2. It is home to Africa’s highest peak, Mt. Kilimanjaro! While you probably already knew this, did you know that the 19,341 ft. high mountain is actually a dormant volcano? It has 3 volcanic cones called Kibo, Shera and Mawenzi. It is also the highest single free-standing mountain in the world!
3. Beyond being the tallest in the neighbourhood, it is also incredibly beautiful. Renowned journalist and writer Ernest Hemingway even wrote a short story about it titled “The Snows of Mount Kilimanjaro” about a writer named Harry who is dying and leaves with his wife to stare out at the snow in his last days, amongst other things.
4. One of the oldest human skulls was discovered in Tanzania’s Olduvai Gorge. It is about 2 million years old.
5. “Bohemian Rhapsody”, “Somebody to Love”, “I want to break free”, etc. etc. straight up take your mind to Freddie Mercury crooning at the top of his lungs. The Rockstar set one too many trends and he was born in Tanzania!
6. The shortest war in history was fought here, lasting for just about 38 – 45 minutes! But before you write it off as a non-consequential war you should know that Zanzibar actually had about 500 casualties even in such a short period while the British troops had just 1. The pro-British Sultan Hamad bin Thuwaini died and was immediately succeeded by Sultan Khalid bin Barghash which didn’t serve well for English interests. The British viewed this as a breach of their treaty and asked for Sultan Khalid to leave the palace but he moved to barricade himself with the Royal Guard. The swiftness however saw Sultan Khalid seeking refuge in German East Africa and the end of the sovereign Zanzibar state with the British takeover. “Chotta packet, bada dhamaka?!”
7. Ol Doniyo Lengai is the only volcano in the world to actively erupt natrocarbonatite lava. With an elevation of 2,890 m the restless volcano is also known because its name signifies the belief of the Maassai locals that it is home to God.
8. The majestic Zanzibar Leopard was endemic to the country but is today believed to be nearly extinct unfortunately.
9. But the wildlife rich country is still believed to be one of the few places in the world where new species may still be discovered. For instance, the kipunji monkey was discovered in just 2003.
10. In fact, 30% of Tanzania is made up of national parks alone! The Sergenti National Park is proud of being one of the best and it is also one of the oldest ecosystems on Earth. It is also home to lions, impalas, leopards, gazelles, etc. And Sergenti is so huge that it is said to actually be larger than Northern Ireland!
11. The Great Migration occurs here in Sergenti with approximately 1.5 million zebras, gazelle and wildebeest crossing across plains for fresh grasslands. During this migration, there is a Mara River crossing wherein these creatures have to cross a river full of dangerous crocodiles!
12. Ah, it’s summer time. A nice cool drink, maybe some chilled coconut water or fresh coconut water would be great. Even ice cream, right? Well, guess who else loves coconuts? The coconut crabs found in Tanzania which are up to 3 ft long! This species makes for the largest land-dwelling crabs in the world!
13. The primatologist and anthropologist Jane Goodall is considered the world’s foremost expert on chimpanzees and she has Tanzania to thank for that! How? Well, she conducted the world’s longest running study on free living chimpanzees in the country’s very own Gombe National Park.
14. Beyond the wildlife, Tanzania is also rich in tribes. After all, it has 162 of them living here!
15. Locals narrate that the moon in their country shines so brightly in some places that you won’t need a flashlight or anything to see your path. Now this I want to see!
Trip Leader Niyati’s Recommendations:
1. The Serengeti National Park which we discussed above is quite an experience. Beyond the wildlife safaris you can even witness game drives wherein the movement of the animal kingdom can be seen with your own eyes. The park is credited for some of the best sightings with wildlife lovers from around the world talking about this one. In fact, I’d urge you to actually plan your trip around the Great Migration because that is unlike anything else you will witness at other wildlife reserves. For avid wildlife lovers a visit to the Gombe Stream National Park would be great too.
2. The Ngorongoro Crater is the result of a volcanic explosion but has an ecosystem of its own and blessed with some of the best game, it is regarded as one of the wonders of Africa. This is again a pretty solid pick for witnessing game drives.
3. How about climbing Kilimanjaro? Don’t write it off as an easy climb simply because its height is lesser than our Himalayas. The peak makes for a steep climb but it is definitely worth it for the spectacular views its offers. Are you ready to test yourself?!
Click here to read about Mount Kilimanjaro Trek!
4. Zanzibar is an archipelago with a semi-autonomous state within Tanzania. And Zanzibar will take you heart with its turquoise waters and pristine beaches. There are world class water sports to try, some rich cuisine to taste and of course, the tropical beaches. Take a couple of days, take your favourite book, your playlist and immerse yourself in these beaches. These are sights that will make your jaw drop!
5. You can explore the limestone caverns of Amborni Caves too.
6. Mafia Island makes for a slice of the Indian Ocean heaven and an ideal escape too. And guess what? It is an ideal location for diving too!
How to Reach:
Flights to Tanzania from India have one layover but from selective cities such as Mumbai there are direct flights too.
For Zanzibar there are direct flights from UK, so, you’ll have to fly from here and then catch a flight for your destination.
For visa kindly refer to the following page on our website: