FACT ABOUT TANZANIA
The United Republic of Tanzania lies in Eastern Africa, bordering the Indian Ocean on the east. It is bordered by Kenya and Uganda to the north; Burundi, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo to the West; and by Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique to the South. Tanzania is divided into several clearly defined regions with differing geographical features; the coastal plains, the Maasai steppe and miombo woodland and high plateau in the Southern area. Savannah and bush cover half of the country, and semi arid desert in Dodoma region while volcanic highlands can be seen in the north east and the south west. These also include the Great Rift Valley a gigantic fracture in the earth’s crust – and Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest peak. Tanzania also includes the islands of Zanzibar, Pemba and Mafia, as well as other coral and volcanic islands just off the coast of Tanzania. Like the 800 km coastline, these islands are lush with palm-fringed white beaches washed by the turquoise water on the Indian Ocean. Tanzania and its neighbors share the waters of the Great African Lakes Victoria, Tanganyika and Nyasa.
Tanzania is considered the cradle of man“ kind for it was here in the Olduvai Gorge that the remains of the 1.75 miliion years old Homo habilis (Zinjanthropus) was discovered.
There had been infiuences on the local population as far back as 2,000 years ago when Arab/Persian merchants visited some parts of the country along the coastline. During the 8th Century, settlements by Arab merchants were established in Zanzibar, Kilwa Masoko, Mikindani and Pangani. The Portuguese, established temporary settlements along some areas in the 16th century and were supplanted by the Omans (in the late 17th century) who developed the slave trade and made Zanzibar their capitai. The first Europeans to arrive were explorers and missionaries in the mid-19th century, and news of East Africa subsequently attracted colonial ambitions. By the late 19th century, Germany had occupied the mainland (then known as ”Deutsche Ost Africa”). Zanzibar became a British protectorate. At the end of the First World War, the administration of the mainland was also taken over by the British, and was renamed Tanganyika. This administration continued as a League of Nations mandate until the end of the Second World War when Tanganyika became UN trust territory aithough still under British administration. The country achieved independence in 1961 under Mwalimu Julius Kambarage Nyerere as hrst President. Two years later Zanzibar followed suit and joined with Tanganyika to form the United Republic of Tanzania on April 26, 1964. Tanzania is a multi party democratic country with its administration based on President, Parliament and Judiciary. Elections are held each 5 years and elected President can hold office for ten years only. Tanzania is a member of East African Community, SADC, African Union, World Tourism Organization. Uniteg Nations and Commonwealth.
Facts and fl ures
Dodoma (population 85,000), a seat for the Union Parliament, Prime Minister’s office and the Ministry for Regional and Local Government.
Dar es Salaam, the main harbor and major trading center
(population 2.5 million)
945,087 sq km, comprising Tanzania mainland and the islands of Zanzibar and Pemba.
Tanzania. now has a population approaching 55,000,000 with the mainland accounting for over 54,000,000 and Zanzibar almost 1,000,000. The annual population growth rate in Tanzania mainland is 2.9 percent and Zanzibar 3.1 percent. Dar es Salaam population is 5,500,000.
Local time GMT + 3
The climate is warm and humid in coastal regions but regulated by sea breezes. Temperatures range between 24-28 “C. October to mid-March is the hottest period and June to September, the coolest. However, the range of temperature is always limited: between 25 and 30°C on the coast and between 22 and 27°C in the highlands. The rain season is from mid-March to the end of June.
Kiswahili and English are the official
General Information Health
Visitors are advised to take anti~ma|aria tablets before and when on safari. Personal insurance is also advised. Hospitals provide good medical care in the cities, and in the bush or on safari ’Flying Doctor’ facilities are .also available. For detailed advice on ’medical kits’ to bring with you .should consult your local doctor or health department.
Visas are required except for citizens of some countries of the Commonwealth. Travelers can obtain visas from the Tanzanian Embassies & consulates as well as major entry points in the country such as Dar es Salaam, Kilimanjaro and Zanzibar International Airports, Namanga, Tunduma, Sirari Horohoro and Taveta.
Tanzania Shillings (Tshs.)
Money may be changed at commercial banks or at bureau de change.
Visa and Master Card and Other credit cards cardholders can have access to local currency 24 hours a day through Bank’s (ATM).
Banking hours 08.30 15.00 Monday to Friday 08.30 12.00 on Saturday
Most of the population is either Christians or Muslims with minority as Hindus, while a small minority observe local forms of worship. Religious harmony is a key element of Tanzanian culture and harmonious living.
Tanzanians are a warm, friendly and hospitable people. The population is mostly Bantu, the largest being the Su kuma and the Nyamwezi. There are 125 recognized tribes whose diverse Bantu Nilotic and Haminic Vernacular Ianguages, traditions and customs have great cultural appeal. This diversity also manifests itself in the unique ways of dressing including hair styles, local dances, paintings (tingatinga), hand crafts, sculptures and gastronomy. The population also includes the popular and traditionalist Maasai (pastoralists and the Barbaigs around Lake Eyasi.
Clothing and Baggage Safari Tips
Dress in natural colours like browns. beiges and khaki. Shorts or trousers and short-sleeved shirts/blouses or Tshirts, in cotton. are generally preferable. Light woollens may be required in the evenings or early mornings. especially in the northern circuit.
Comfortable walking shoes are ideal in the bush, especially for walking safaris.
Sunglasses, hat. suntan lotion. freshen-up towels and mosquito repellant cream are a must.
Carry a camera. plenty of film. replacement batteries and binoculars.
Baggage should be kept to a minimum. Soft bags are best
In the highlands
Warm fleeces or polar gear, stun footwear, rainproof outer clothing. F mountain-climbing, bring your own specialist mountain gear or you hire it from mountain outfitters.
In the city
Light and comfortable clothes a shoes, as well as the ubiquitous sun hut.
Tanzamans find scruffiness or over ex posure offensive, so it is recommended not to wear thongs, bikinis or tank tops unless on beaches or In sunbathing areas.
Getting there and traveling within
Tanzania has three international airports: Dar es Salaam International Airport, Kilimanjaro International Airport and Zanzibar International Airport. Main airlines provide direct international flights to Dar es Salaam, where connections to other cities are widely available with local airlines, local air charters, train or by road and sea. .Several air travel companies operate small fleets of turbo-prop aircraft and fly daily to Game Parks as well as to Zanzibar, Maha and Kigoma.
Ferries operate regularly between Zanzibar and main East African ports;these craft range from sailing dhows to tourist-class twin-hull fastboats. Bookings can be made easily at the ports in Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar, and through most travel agents.
There are passenger train services on Tanzania-Zambia Railway (Tazara) from Dar es Salaam to Zambia, along the central line (TRC) linking Dar es Salaam with Kigoma on Lake Tanganyika and on the rail link to Mwanza on Lake Victoria.
A Tarmac road connects Tanzania to Zambia from Dar es Salaam, and the road north gets you to Moshi and Arusha. Road links to game parks and reserves are usually surface roads. inexpensive public buses connecting most towns are available everyday and are reliable. Licensed taxis have fixed rates within town areas but fares are negotiable for longer trips.
Tanzania offers a variety of dining experiences. You will find international cuisine in the tourist hotels, restaurants and wildlife lodges. Good local dishes include ugali, a maize flour dish served with either meat,fish or bean sauce. On .the coast, go for the Swahili seafood dishes cooked with coconut milk, or local dishes such as biryani and meat or fish curries lobsters and prawns. Specialties include ”halua”, a sweet desert. with almonds served with spiced coffee or tea. in most places you will find varieties of tropical fruits including mangoes, pineapples, bananas, avocados, oranges, tangerines and water melons.
in Tanzania, protecting nature is everyone’s concern. On safari, travelers should not collect or buy wildlife bones, skins, horns, teeth, feathers or shells. On the coast, coral or starfish which play an important role in the fragile ecosystem should not be removed.
Making the most of your visit
Tanzania can truly claim to be the authentic home to ’safari’. There is no better place to enjoy the wildlife experience, the country’s game being regarded as the best in Africa. Tanzania also boasts beautiful beaches ~ hundreds of miles of palm fringed white sands; its lakes are huge and bountiful with fish; its cities are relaxed and friendly; its islands live up to their exotic‘images.
With its mountains, game parks, Great Lakes and Indian Ocean coastline, there’s plenty for the activity enthusiast to do in Tanzania.
Balloon safaris over the Serengeti plains provide an exciting vantage point for viewing the wildlife.
An amazing and unique way of exploring the bush and villages.
The Amboni Caves, north of Tanga, ten caves with chambers up to 13 metres high. Others at Karatu on the road to Ngorongoro Crater.
Deep sea fishing
Zanzibar, Pemba and Mafia islands as well as Mnazi bay in Mikindani are places where you find the most record breaking prizes in history. To be caught are king fish, marlin, horse-mackerel and sailfish. Pemba channel is very famous for sea sports including deep sea fishing.
The waters of the Indian Ocean provide superb opportunities for scuba divers The coral reef can be explored by both beginners and experts.
Within the urban centers, such as Dar es Salaam Mbeya and Arusha, visitors will find golf courses close to international hotels.
Mountain climbing ‘
The major draw is the 5,895 metre Mount Kilimanjaro. However, Mount Meru, another volcanic peak is also a popular climb, because of the beautiful and varied flora and fauna which can be observed on the way to the top. To the south try Mount Livingstone or Usambara and Uluguru mountains in the east, Udzungwa mountain national park .
The coast, the islands and lakes provide a wide variety of watersports including sailing, scuba diving, snorkelling, surfboarding and water skiing
Dhow cruising Festival has become very popular in Zanzibar while cruising by dhow or boat along the east coast from Mtwara to Kilwa up to Tanga and cruising around the small islands on a dhow is a fantastic experience.
Tanzania is a paradise for birdwatchers, with over 1,000 species to be observed in their varying habitats. Flamingos, pelicans and storks are in abundance on lakes. Birds of prey are also to be seen, including eagles amongst them the Tawny and the African Fish Eagle.
Cultural activities and places to visit On the Islands ”Zanzibar”
The Ziff festival
The annual festival of the Dhow countries, featuring Film, video, music, dance and photography, takes place in Zanzibar every June/July. The festival is designed to show the best artistic talents from Africa, the Arab world, the Indian subcontinent and the islands of the Indian Ocean.
The Stone town
A tour takes place around the historically, culturally and architecturally important capital town of Zanzibar island.
Shop for locally produced textiles, carved wood chests, perfumes, natural lotions and spices
Visitors can see various plantations out in the country flowers, fruits, coconuts, cardamon and other interesting flora.
On the Tanzania Mainland
Dar es Salaam has a number of interesting museums including the National
Museum, the Village Museum, the
Botanical Gardens and the Karimjee
Hail which used to house the Nationa|
assembly Also of interest are public buildings such as the State House, the City Hall, the Old German Prison, Mwalimu J.K. Nyerere house at Magomeni, the Central Railway Station, the Ocean Road Hospital and the Askari monument.
Tingatinga paintings, Makonde wood carvings (cutlery, bracelets, man and animal sculptures, furniture), basketware, beaded Maasai necklaces, precious jewels (gold, diamond, tanzanites and other stones). Most towns also have colourful markets where one can pick up souvenirs including colourful khanga, vitenge, T-shirts and hand woven fabrics and crafts.
Prolific wildlife, dramatic scenery and the thrills of the bush-Tanzania is the epitome of the ultimate African safari.The big five lion. leopard, elephant rhino and buffalo, and several other species of animals and birds may all be viewed in their natural habitat
Tanzania’s safaris are divided into three circuits. Northern Tanzania comprises of the Serengeti National Park, Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Lake Manyara National Park, Tarangire National Park, Arusha National Park and Mt. Kilimanjaro. Selous Game Reserve, Ruaha National Park and Mikumi National Park make up the southern circuit, while Gombe Stream National Park and Mahale Mountains National Park make up the western circuit.