Tanzania

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A Week in the West

A Week in the West

7 nights Katavi and Mahale National Parks, Tanzania
Sand Rivers Lagoon

Sand Rivers Lagoon

10 nights Selous National Park & Pemba Island, Tanzania
4 Night Selous Ruaha Special

4 Night Selous Ruaha Special

4 nights Mdonya Old River & Lake Manze Camps

Our lodges in Tanzania

Mkombe's House Lamai

Mkombe's House Lamai

Northern Serengeti
Sand Rivers Selous

Sand Rivers Selous

Selous Game Reserve
Gibb's Farm

Gibb's Farm

Ngorongoro Crater
Fanjove Private Island

Fanjove Private Island

Fanjove, Kilwa
Lamai Serengeti Camp

Lamai Serengeti Camp

Serengeti National Park
Serengeti Safari Camp

Serengeti Safari Camp

Serengeti National Park

Why we recommend Tanzania

  • Witness the unforgettable scene of the Great Wildebeest Migration
  • Explore the lush forests and the vast cauldron of the Ngorongoro Crater
  • Immerse yourself in the wilds of the Selous Game Reserve for a memorable birding experience
Map of Tanzania
About Tanzania

Tanzania is packed with iconic safari areas, as a destination it finds itself as a go to for many travellers embarking on their first safari holiday. It’s easy to combine the bush with the beach and this adds tremendous appeal. For a country blessed with the Serengeti National Park, The Ngorongoro Crater, Mount Kilimanjaro and Zanzibar, it is no wonder that the tourism industry has boomed in recent years.

What we love about Tanzania is the ability to visit these iconic areas but in the blink of an eye to step completely off the beaten track. To access areas where almost no one visits over a year – the Katavi National Park in Western Tanzania for example receives less visitors in a whole season than the Serengeti welcomes on a typical day. That you can easily combine Katavi with hiking in the Mahale Mountains for the best wild chimpanzee encounter on Earth, and complete your safari with a visit to the wild, beautiful and game rich Ruaha National Park is clear demonstration that you can keep coming back to this remarkable country for new and exciting experiences.

That said, the iconic destinations are the big attraction to Tanzania. Perhaps East Africa’s strongest card, the Great Wildebeest Migration, spends all year working its way through the Serengeti ecosystem in search of grazing. There is no time of the year when a visit to the Serengeti National Park can’t put you in a front-row seat for Africa’s most impressive wildlife spectacle. As with much of Africa it is crucially important to consider the season and the type of experience you are looking for. It is easy to get it wrong and find yourself far from the big herds, driving for endless hours through deserted plains, or in the thick of it but surrounded by 50 other vehicles. This is where our specialist with their in depth knowledge come in and can tailor your safari perfectly to you.

Safari season typically runs from June through to November when the short rains arrive. March and April can be wet and the humidity high from December through to March. The longer rains tend to arrive in March and while many areas are closed for the season, this can still be a wonderful time of year to explore as you’ll find the great spaces free of other vehicles and the rates considerably discounted. While this might not be for the first time safari, travelling out of season is one of our top tips for seasoned safari-goers.

Access to Tanzania is straightforward, direct KLM flights from Amsterdam access Kilimanjaro International Airport daily, Kenya Airways routes via Nairobi and there are numerous Middle Eastern options to consider. It is also easy to link South and Southern Africa with Tanzania via a number of low-cost regional airlines and scheduled services. Within the country, flying is the most efficient, and in some cases the only way of getting about, but it is expensive. Alternatively many areas of the north can be accessed by 4x4 and the roads west from Arusha are dominated by land-cruisers heading to or from the Serengeti and Ngorongoro.

This is a very exciting time in Tanzania, we are seeing big investment in conservation tourism and this offers international visitors the opportunity to enjoy a more exclusive and flexible safari experience than has before now been possible. Let us talk you through what is on offer in this amazing safari destination.

Western Tanzania

If you are looking to get off the beaten track then Western Tanzania is a great destination. Rarely a choice for the first time safari, Katavi National Park and the Mahale Mountains National Park receive only a tiny fraction of the visitors to Tanzania’s more famous reserves. Nomad Tanzania are the champions of Western Tanzania, their Chada Katavi Camp is safari at its unadulterated best, a simple but extremely comfortable bush camp with excellent guides and everything you could possibly need to make the most of a Katavi safari. Combined with the unique Greystoke Mahale where you’ll cruise the waters of Lake Tanganyika, Africa’s deepest lake and the longest in the world, swimming in the cool waters and fishing from your dhow for sashimi to be enjoyed later with a sundowner in Big Bird, Greystoke’s famous cocktail bar.

Snapshot of Tanzania

Capital city: Dodama
Flight time: 10hrs from UK
Language: Swahili, English
Population: 49 million
Religions: Christianity, Islam
Sun hours / day: 8
Max. temperature: 24
Min. temperature: 23

Seasons in Tanzania

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Peak Mid Low
Where to go

Kilimanjaro

Mount Kilimanjaro, with its three volcanic cones, "Kibo", "Mawenzi", and "Shira", is a dormant volcano in Tanzania. It is the highest mountain in Africa, rising to approximately 5,895 metres above sea level. Mount Kilimanjaro national park has become one of Tanzania's most visited parks, not necessarily for its wildlife although it is there, but rather for for the breathtaking views of a mountain on the equator, capped with snow, which can be climbed to stand on the top of Africa.

It is one of the continent's most magnificent sights, rising from cultivated farmlands on the lower levels, through lush rainforest to alpine meadows, and finally across a barren lunar landscape to the twin summits of Kibo and Mawenzi.

A trek up Kili lures around 25,000 trekkers each year, but is no easy task and needs serious consideration. The rewards, however, are endless throughout the expedition.

Ngorongoro Crater

Tanzania’s most famous safari destinations, vast areas of open savannah and dramatic natural phenomena; teeming with wildlife and dominated by big African skies. This is such a huge tract of land with a wide offering of accommodation types and safari styles. There truly is something for everyone across the northern safari destinations, matching the expectations you have for your safari with the best lodges and guides on the ground is where the team of specialist at True Luxury Travel come in.

2016 is a particularly exciting year in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, True Luxury Travel’s favorite safari operators are launching new camps in time for the safari season. With the high visitor numbers to the Ngorongoro the challenge is to provide visitors with the high quality experience they expect rather than the crowded wildlife sightings, which have unfortunately been the norm in recent years. Watch this space!

Ruaha National Park

Ruaha National Park is the largest national park in Tanzania and one of its most famous. The park is rich in its flora and fauna, making for an exceptional game viewing experience. The park boasts of her almost untouched and unexplored ecosystem, making visitors’ safari experience very unique. The park is also home to Tanzania's largest elephant population, with about 12,000 elephants. In addition to this, large herds of buffaloes, as well as greater and lesser kudus, Grant’s gazelles, wild dogs, ostriches, cheetahs, roan and sable antelopes, and more than 400 different types of birds can be seen in Ruaha National Park. Ruaha is very special in comparison to the northern parks, as large parts of it are unexplored, and for much of the year, you’re likely to have things to yourself.

Selous Game Reserve

The Selous Game Reserve is an UNESCO World Heritage Site and at 55,000 sq. km is twice the size of Switzerland and just 200 km south west by air of Dar es Salaam. It is the largest protected wildlife sanctuary in Africa and is widely accredited as being the most pristine wilderness. This area is certainly one of True Luxury Travel's favourite game viewing areas as it attracts both east and Southern African Wildlife, both resident and migratory, making it a real hidden gem! It is unearthed African wilderness at its finest, yet still easily accessibly from Dar and Zanzibar.

Serengeti National Park

Tanzania’s most famous safari destinations, vast areas of open savannah and dramatic natural phenomena; teeming with wildlife and dominated by big African skies. This is such a huge tract of land with a wide offering of accommodation types and safari styles. There truly is something for everyone across the northern safari destinations, matching the expectations you have for your safari with the best lodges and guides on the ground is where the team of specialist at True Luxury Travel come in.

The Serengeti National Park is most famous for the Great Migration. This annual cycle of two million animals covers vast distances in search of fresh grazing, although unpredictable in its very nature, the cycle does follow a pattern and at any time of the year it is possible to enjoy an unparalleled migration safari. As the herds move on the resident wildlife stays behind, this is where the depth of the Serengeti comes into its own, blessed by wonderful wildlife throughout the year, we often recommend visitors experience a quieter corner, away from the big herds, take the opportunity to slow down on safari and soak in the atmosphere of this very special part of Africa.

Southern Tanzania

True Luxury Travel loves Tanzania’s southern safari areas. The Selous Game Reserve and Ruaha National Park are a world away from the big stars of the north. These are enormous expanses of wild bush offering visitors a wide variety of safari experiences. From boat safaris on the might Rufiji River to walking safaris in the Ruaha. Luxury riverbank lodges to remote mobile bush camps. A combination of these wildlife rich and habitat diverse reserves complement each other beautifully and with the white-sand beaches of Zanzibar just a short flight away

Swahili Coast

The Swahili coast of Tanzania incorporates sweeping sand beaches, sleepy swahili towns and coastal fishing villages. This quiet stretch of coastline is often overlooked by those travelling to Zanzibar, but it is well worth visiting, especially for those discerning visitors looking to escape the crowds.

Tarangire and Lake Manyara National Parks

Tarangire National Park is the sixth largest in Tanzania, with excellent density of game and in particular, the Reserve is famed for it's large elephant herds. Birdlife is prolific with plenty of colour including yellow-billed and saddle-billed stalks. You will also find orange-bellied parrots and barbets in the Tarangire river throughout the year.

A short drive from Arusha, we find that Tarangire is a lovely place to stay for a couple of nights safari at the beginning or end of your northern circuit.

Lake Manyara National Park is also a good choice as a soft introduction to a safari, for a 1 or 2 night stay option following a stay in the Serengeti or Ngorongoro Crater. The park is famous for its tree climbing lions, good elephants, flamingos and baboons, although the scenic beauty of the park itself certainly makes it worth a visit. The lake itself takes up much of the park, leaving a strip of land running along its shores where game concentrates.

Western Tanzania

If you are looking to get off the beaten track then Western Tanzania is a great destination. Rarely a choice for the first time safari, Katavi National Park and the Mahale Mountains National Park receive only a tiny fraction of the visitors to Tanzania’s more famous reserves. Nomad Tanzania are the champions of Western Tanzania, their Chada Katavi Camp is safari at its unadulterated best, a simple but extremely comfortable bush camp with excellent guides and everything you could possibly need to make the most of a Katavi safari. Combined with the unique Greystoke Mahale where you’ll cruise the waters of Lake Tanganyika, Africa’s deepest lake and the longest in the world, swimming in the cool waters and fishing from your dhow for sashimi to be enjoyed later with a sundowner in Big Bird, Greystoke’s famous cocktail bar.

Practical info

Currency

Tanzanian Shilling (TZS), however US dollars are the widely used currency within the tourism industry.
Credit and Debit cards: Credit and debit cards are accepted at all lodges that you are staying in. MasterCard and Visa are widely accepted throughout Tanzania. American Express and Diners Card are not widely accepted. Debit cards featuring the Maestro and Electron signs are widely accepted. We recommend only travelling with a credit card as a backup due to high surcharges and theft.

Travelling with Children

Lodge specific

Passports and Visas

Passports: Required and must be valid for a minimum period of 6 months from the date of entry into Tanzania. You must at least have 2 blank pages facing each other are required for Tanzanian immigration use.

Visas: A valid Visa is required for nationals whose country requires a Visa (including the United Kingdom and the United States). Visas can be obtained from the Tanzanian High Commission or at any designated entry points. We advise you get your visa prior to travelling to Tanzania to avoid airport queues. If you wish to buy your visa at the airport then you will need $50 – make sure you have the right amount as they will not give you change.

Vaccinations

We recommend that you consult with your doctor 6-8 weeks in advance of travel.

Make sure that your routine vaccinations are up to date including, measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), chicken pox (varicella), diphtheria-pertussis-tetanus (DPT), influenza and Polio vaccinations.

We advise Hepatitis A and Typhoid vaccinations.

Consider Hepatitis B, cholera and Rabies vaccinations.

Yellow Fever: The Tanzanian Government requires everybody over the age of 1 to have a valid vaccination certificate if you are arriving from a country (even in transit) with a Yellow Fever risk.

Malaria: Prevention is recommended for all areas under altitudes of 1800m. If this is where you will travel, you are recommended to take precautions year round. Speak to your doctor about suitable antimalarial tablets such as Malarone or Doxycycline and avoid mosquito bites by covering up and using insect repellent.

Insurance

Comprehensive travel insurance is essential, including medical cover. We also highly recommend trip cancellation cover.

Flying Doctor:
As you know, many safari camps operate in extremely remote areas and it is imperative that in the unfortunate cases of medical emergency, clients reach a well-‐equipped hospital fast and with expert care en-route. As previously stated, we insist that you take out travel insurance before allowing you to travel and while most good policies will include medical evacuation cover (which incurs huge costs for anyone not covered), inevitably emergencies arise out of hours, and delays whilst seeking authority from clients’ international medical insurers (or even Flying Doctors themselves when they are dealing with patients who do not carry their cover) can mean the difference between life and death. Therefore flying doctor cover is automatically included in our costed itineraries. We feel Flying Doctors offer the best in-flight care and equipment, the fastest response times and in our experience consistently prove to be the most reliable. The Flying Doctor Service is part of AMREF, a well-respected foundation that offers the premier evacuation service and all profits are ploughed back into their charitable work.

There are two levels of Flying Doctors tourist membership, dependent on the duration of stay and distance from Nairobi Hospital:

1. Tourist Membership up to 500 Km from Wilson Airport (valid for travel on all Northern Circuit itineraries including Arusha, Tarangire, Lake Manyara, Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti)
Up to 14 days $15pp
2 months $25pp

2. Tourist Membership up to 1,000 Km from Wilson Airport (must be used for any itineraries that include southern Tanzania, Katavi, Mahale and Zanzibar)
Up to 14 days $30pp
2 months $50pp

The cover itself is as follows:

“AMREF Flying Doctors Service operates a 24 hours, 365 days a year operation. Full time medical staff and aircrew are on standby to respond to emergencies. In case of a medical emergency that requires an evacuation from a remote area, the Flying Doctor service will send in a medical team and an aircraft which can be converted into an airborne intensive care unit to evacuate you to Nairobi Wilson Airport where you will be transported by an ambulance to a hospital in Nairobi (the Flying Doctors do not cover the cost of hospitalization).

In addition the service operates one of Africa’s largest radio networks. So if you are in a remote area without any other form of communication it may be possible that you will be near an HF radio station that would be linked to AMREF's base at Wilson Airport in Nairobi.

As a member of the Flying Doctor Society of Africa you are entitled to one free evacuation per year in case of a life threatening emergency that would necessitate the use of the flying doctors to transport you to a medical facility in Nairobi. The evacuation can be undertaken up to 500 or 1,000 kilometres radius of Nairobi depending on the type of membership you have taken.”
Please also visit their website: http://www.amref.org/flying-doctors/

You are 100% financially protected through our membership of the Travel Trust Association.

Weather

J F M A M J J A S O N D
A 29 29 28 28 28 27 26 27 29 31 31 31
B 18 18 18 18 18 16 14 13 15 17 18 18
C 152 109 137 48 5 0 0 0 0 5 23 91

A - Maximum Average Temperature (C)
B - Minimum Average Temperature (C)
C - Average Rainfall (mm)

The rainy season is usually during March, April, May and then again in November and December. The dry season lasts throughout June, July, August and September. In October rainfall is unusual. January and February is Tanzania's 'short dry season'. If you want to see the wildebeest migration, you just need to know where to go at what time as the migration happens all year.

Weather

Tanzania JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC
min. temperature ( ℃ ) 18 18 18 18 18 16 14 13 15 17 18 18
Max. temperature ( ℃ ) 29 29 28 28 28 27 26 27 29 31 31 31
Rainfall ( mm ) 152 109 137 48 5 0 0 0 0 5 23 91

What Our Clients Say

Our philosophy

Actual Expert Knowledge

Every one of our team has a huge passion for travel and spend at least six weeks each year visiting our lodges, meeting new managers and guides, ensuring our high standards are met and maintained.

Transparent Pricing

Unlike other tour operators, we do not charge you a premium for our services and as such, our prices are often better than booking direct because we can negotiate deals with our long standing relationships.

TOTAL Support

Our operations team are on call 24 hours a day to support you while you are travelling and to ensure that if something does go wrong, you are never left in the lurch. We are here to help so you can relax throughout your holiday. 

Blank Paper Bespoke

We do not have any 'off the shelf itineraries'. Instead, we begin your booking with a blank piece of paper, to ensure that we only propose lodges that will fit your specific requirements and guides who will suit your personality.

Unrivalled Guide Network

We are proud of our unrivalled network of guides on the ground who will turn your trips from a memorable one into a spectacular experience.

Hand Picked Lodges

Every single lodge that we propose to you has been recently visited by one of our team and meets the high standards that we set. Surprisingly, this is a rarity within the industry.

100% Financial Protection

We are a certified member of the Travel Trust Association (Q1588a), guaranteeing you 100% financial protection for every aspect of your trip.

Safety First

We have a team dedicated to producing safety intelligence in every country that we represent as a destination, so that you can travel with total peace of mind.

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