What to know about first time safari in Tanzania
What to know about first time safari in Tanzania : Tanzania is a country which is gifted with nature and beautiful landscapes and a variety of cultures.
When visiting Tanzania for the first time there are a number of things to put in mind so as to ensure a successful and memorable stay in the different destinations of the country and these facts include the following;
- Numerous national parks and reserves
A safari to Tanzania is not complete without visiting any of the national parks or reserves in the country. A number of wildlife species can be spotted across various destinations including the big 5 such as elephants, lions, leopards, rhinos and buffalos.
National parks and reserves around Tanzania are found in the north, west, south and central part of the country and these include Serengeti national park, Ngorongoro conservation area, Lake Manyara national park, Tarangire national park, Selous game reserve, Katavi national park, Ruaha national park, Mahale mountains national park among others.
Some of the wildlife species which can be seen during a safari around these parks include giraffes, zebras, gazelles, antelopes, impalas, kudu, wildebeests, waterbucks, hippos, cheetahs, hartebeests, hyenas, warthogs among others.
- Beautiful beaches
Zanzibar is an island which is part of Tanzania that is another destination to visit during Tanzania safaris. The island has beautiful white sand beaches and is a tropical destination with a number of activities carried out during holidays such as surfing, scuba diving, snorkeling, swimming with the dolphins, boat rides on the Indian ocean, nature walks, visiting the prison island, visiting the spice plantations, a stone town tour among others.
- Various cultures
A safari to Tanzania is a culturally diverse country with different cultures such as the Maasai people, Hadza bushmen, the Chagga, the Datoga and many others. During safaris in Tanzania, the tourists interact with these locals; enjoy traditional dance performances as they are entertained during their visits to the traditional homesteads and also get to know more about the culture and way of life of these people.
- Currency used in Tanzania
During your first time safari in Tanzania, it is also important to know the form of currency used in the county. Tanzania shillings (TSH) are the currency used in Tanzania and US dollars are also accepted as a mode of payment while on a safari. Some of the safari excursions are also charged in USD.
- Religion in Tanzania
A big part of the population Tanzania is made up of Muslims however there are other religions in the country like Christianity. During a safari around Tanzania, you will notice that most of the locals dress in a way that their bodies are covered from head to toe especially among the women. It is therefore also advised that during a safari, you dress decently as a sign of respecting the culture of the locals.
- Highest mountain in Africa in Tanzania
The highest mountain in Africa is also found in the northern part of Tanzania. Mount Kilimanjaro which is at an attitude of 5895 meters is a hiking destination in Tanzania which is visited during safaris in the country.
- East African country
Tanzania is part of East Africa and is neighbored by Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda and Burundi. Tanzania Safaris can also be combined with tours to other destinations across East Africa such as Uganda and Rwanda for gorilla trekking and Kenya for more game viewing excursions.
Another aspect to note during a safari to Tanzania is that it is a peaceful country.
- Dry season and rainy season
There are two seasons in Tanzania and they include the rainy season and the dry season. The dry season is from June to October and is also considered the best time for safaris in Tanzania while the rainy season is from mid-March to May and also from November to January.
- Different transport means
The different ways to get around the destinations of Tanzania while on safari include flight and vehicle, rail transport as well as ferry.
Road transfers during safaris in Tanzania involve use of safari jeeps that vary in nature and the capacity of passengers. There are also different airports and airstrips around Tanzania and they include Kilimanjaro international airport, Arusha airport in northern Tanzania, Julius Nyerere international airport, Zanzibar Abeid Amani Karume airport, Mwanza airport among others.
Swahili is a commonly spoken language in Tanzania and is also the national language spoken in Tanzania. It will be an added advantage and you will be able to easily communicate with the locals during your safari which will also be more interesting when you have learnt some Swahili phrases which are commonly used by the natives such as greetings like “habari”, “jambo”, words like “asante” meaning thank you, “karibu” meaning you are welcome.
Safaris are part of the experience during a visit to Tanzania which comprises of mostly national parks and other wildlife viewing destinations. The different activities which are carried out during the safaris in Tanzania include morning, afternoon and night game drives, hot air balloon safaris over the plains, bird watching, canoeing, fishing, community tours, biking, hiking, craft shopping, walking safaris among others.
The different types of safaris which are carried out during safaris around Tanzania include group safaris and individual safari. Tour operators also help to organize these safaris for tourists ahead of their safaris to Tanzania. The number of days spent on safari depends on the budget for the safari and the type of safari one wishes to engage in during their stay in Tanzania.
The different lodges and tented camps around destinations in Tanzania provide comfort for tourists during their safaris and these accommodations include budget lodges, midrange lodges and luxury lodges which are found inside the parks or outside the parks. Another form of accommodation which is used during safaris in Tanzania is camping which is done in public campsites or private campsites.
Tanzania also prides itself in being home to one of the largest animal migrations in the world which is the wildebeest migration. The great wildebeest migration takes place annually in Serengeti national park where over 2 million wildebeests can be seen as they move in their herds around the savannah plains. This is a major tourist attraction in Tanzania as the visitors get to follow the movement of the herds of wildebeests which also migrate to the Masai Mara national reserve in Kenya.
The wildebeest migration also involves river crossings which take place across the Grumeti river and also the Mara river (June and July). Another happening to look forward to during the wildebeest migration in Tanzania is the calving season which takes place from December to early March when the young calves are born and there is plenty of predator action to see during a safari as lions, leopards and cheetahs prey on the wildebeests in the savannah plains.
Visit Tanzania today and enjoy an unforgettable Tanzania safari experience in the wilderness across different destinations.