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4 things to do in Tanzania

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What is Tanzania known for?

The name ‘Tanzania’ comes from the names Tanganyika and Zanzibar. Popular for the landmark Mt. Kilimanjaro which is the tallest mountain in Africa and the Great Migration at the Serengeti National Park, it is also known as the roof of Africa. It is popular with tourists as a hiking destination and has a rich Swahili heritage.

See Also: 10 little known gems in Tanzania

Tanzania is gifted with lots of activities to do. Some are physically exhausting while some are easy. These activities include;

Hiking

This activity is always associated with Mt. Kilimanjaro. Many people put hiking on Mt Kilimanjaro as their number 1 must-do activity in their tour of Tanzania. The hike is not an easy one thus needs proper preparation:

  • Pre-train for your hike to prevent muscle aches.
  • Prepare yourself mentally. Nature will be your greatest enemy, but a positive mindset will help you succeed. The cold will especially wear you out.
  • Ask a doctor for altitude sickness medication because lots of people get altitude sickness which manifests itself in the form of nausea, headaches, difficulty breathing, and loss of coordination.
  • Pack a small first aid kit that will help when you scrape your knee or other minor injuries although your travel guide will most likely have a bigger and better first aid kit available for you.
  • Choose the best quality tour guide that means looking for reputable travel agencies that will connect you to such a guide that will ensure your trip is enjoyable and as comfortable as possible.
  • Pick a route that is best for you. Online research before hiking is best.

There are six routes you can hike on, namely;

  1. Umbwe route which takes 5 to 6 days and is 33 km long. It is both the quietest and hardest route you will trek on. The views, however, are to die for.
  2. The Marangu route takes 5 to 6 days and is 70 km long. It is one of the shortest ways to reach the top and referred to as an easy route. However, due to a lack of proper preparation, most people do not succeed. The accommodation on this route is a hut and dormitory.
  3. The Machame route takes 6 to 7 days and is 62 km long. It is the most preoccupied route and its success rate is above 80%. You will climb from the southwestern side of the mountain. An extra day is for you to get accustomed to the environment and weather there.
  4. The Rongai route takes 6 to 7 days and is 80 km long. Previously called little used is gaining much traction with hikers. You will climb from the north side and from Kenya’s border. On this route, you will see the wildlife too.
  5. Lemosho and Shira routes take 7 to 8 days and are 70 km long. Lemosho is the longest route to use however the most beautiful one too. You will see the Shira plateau and forest vegetation. The shira route is used by emergency vehicles that are 4 wheeled.

Shop for kangas

Tanzania is known for its Kangas and kitenge fabrics that are used to make colourful African apparel. You can buy beautiful kangas and vitenges at Uhuru street in Dar es Salaam and Chavda in Stone town, as well as Kanga street in Zanzibar.

Diving on the Zanzibar Islands

The Zanzibar islands have the best places to enjoy water activities like scuba diving and snorkeling. Mafia Marine park is best for beginners because of the calm waters while Pemba Island most especially the Swahili divers in Kervan Saray beach.

Swimming with the Mafia Island Whale Shark

People come here to swim with the Mafia whale sharks which are the largest fish in the world. The name Mafia is a Swahili phrase meaning a healthy dwelling place. The best time to swim with the Mafia whale shark is between October and February since that is the time the fish migrate to Mafia.