Tanzania is the largest country in East Africa, and it is also the oldest continuously inhabited region in the world. Scientists believe that it used to be home for hunter-gatherer communities. However, that is not what makes this country appealing to tourists. Its flora and fauna are. Plus, as you may already know, Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest peak, is located in Tanzania. People from all around the world go there to accept the challenge of climbing it.
But before we get into what to see and do in Tanzania, we would like to discuss visa policy. After all, this is the first thing you need to get off your hands. However, keep in mind that Tanzania’s visa policy is pretty lenient. Many nationalities are visa-exempt for visits of up to 90 days. If your visa is not waived, then chances are that you are eligible for a visa on arrival or an electronic visa. You can opt for whichever is more convenient for you. Although the online application process implies less effort and time on your part. For one thing, you do not have to stand in line at the visa on arrival counter when you land.
The electronic visa can be obtained with Fast Track Visa’s help. You can acquire it in as little as 5 business days. You can opt for the 1-year visa or the one with 90 days of validity. The latter is single-entry. No matter which one you choose, you can stay in Tanzania for up to 90 days per entry.
All the other nationalities that are neither eligible for a visa on arrival nor an electronic visa have no other choice than going to the nearest diplomatic mission of Tanzania and apply for a visa there.
As for what you can do and see in Tanzania, the options are many. You can take your pick. One of the most popular activities is going on safari. As you can imagine, Tanzania offers a vast variety of choices when it comes to wildlife. In case you did not know, you can organize a tour of the Serengeti National Park. Perhaps you have heard before of the Great Migration. Hundreds of thousands of animals migrate, and the even is a try spectacle of nature. If there is one reason to visit Tanzania, Serengeti is definitely the most compelling. The phenomenon will change your life entirely. You will see cheetahs, lions, leopards, hippos, elephants, zebras, buffalo, gazelle, and the list goes on and on. But if you do want to see all that, we suggest that you hire a tour guide. It can be dangerous if you do not know anything about the place.
Apart from safari, you have the option of going on cultural tours. Tanzania is the home of over 150 ethnic groups. That comes with a lot of traditions and a rich culture. You can go hunting with bushmen, learn some traditional medicine, or even learn the tricks of beekeeping. Moreover, cultural tours are cheap, but they will enrich you. You get to meet a lot of new people, different customs, and you get to see how they live. The experience is unforgettable, and it will help you put your life into perspective. Tanzania also houses numerous national parks. Wildlife can be spotted there as well.
Furthermore, let’s not forget that there are beaches in Tanzania as well. After all, it has the Indian Ocean in the east. And what you may not know is that some of the most beautiful unspoiled beaches can be found in Tanzania. The white sand and the palm trees will charm you and make you forget all about home. If you are interested in scuba diving, the best places to go is to Pemba and Zanzibar.
Finally, let’s not overlook the fact that Mount Kilimanjaro is one of the most attractive challenges in Tanzania. It is the highest mountain in Tanzania, and thousands of mountaineers accept the challenge every year. However, if you plan on doing that, we do not have to tell you that you have to train rigorously for it. It is not an easy challenge to accept.
The official language in Tanzania is Swahili. It is spoken by about 90% of the population. However, if you plan to visit only popular tourist spots and large cities, you can find people who speak English. But if you go on a cultural tour to remote locations and interact with people, you need to learn some Swahili to be able to get around.
As for food and drink, you need to be cautious. You will have no issues in restaurants, but if you go to smaller villages, make sure that your meat is cooked thoroughly, and the drinking water is boiled. Produce is pretty rare. At least the fresh one is. If you want to try some local food, we suggest that you try Mtori, which is a meal cooked with beef and bananas. However, the most ‘local’ dish, so to speak, is Ugali. It is made with corn flour, accompanies cooked meat and stews. You eat it with your hand. The recipes are not the same in every village, but it is pretty tasty. Just do not expect too much from it.
If you decide to visit Zanzibar, you should know that the locals are Muslim, which is why you need to dress conservatively and pay proper respect. As a woman, you should not wear anything revealing, but you have the option of purchasing some beautiful Kangas. They are brightly colored wrap-around pieces of cloth that you can use for covering up. They look fantastic. Speaking of that, you will see a lot of people who wear colorful clothing, and you may be tempted to take pictures. However, do not do that before you ask for permission. Some people will even ask for money.
When it comes to safety, common sense prevails. Tourist attractions are known to be frequented by petty thieves as well, and we advise against walking alone at night in the cities. Before you go to Tanzania, you should contact your primary care physician about shots against malaria and yellow fever. But just in case, always have a net with you. Especially when you visit villages. Other than that, stick to bottled water and be careful where you eat.
The bottom line is that Tanzania is one of the most beautiful countries in East Africa. The sights are amazing, especially if you go to the Serengeti National Park. You get to experience many amazing things that not all African countries can offer. The people are friendly and make you feel welcome, and you should have a wonderful vacation.