Ferry

The official route between southwestern Tanzania and Mozambique is via Malawi on the MV Songea between Mbamba Bay and Nkhata Bay, and then from Nkhata Bay on to Likoma Island (Malawi), Cobue and Metangula (both in Mozambique) on the MV Ilala. Unofficially, there are small boats that sail along the eastern shore of Lake Nyasa between Tanzania and Mozambique. However, Lake Nyasa is notorious for its severe and sudden squalls, and going this way is risky and not recommended. See the Malawi section...

Ol Doinyo Lengai

The northernmost mountain in the Crater Highlands, Ol Doinyo Lengai (2878m) - 'Mountain of God' in the Maasai language - is an almost perfect volcanic cone with steep sides rising to a small flat-topped peak. It's the youngest volcano in the Crater Highlands, and still active, although many aspects of its geological activity remain a mystery. There were major eruptions in 1966 and 1993, with the most recent eruptions and major activity in late 2007. At the peak, you can clearly see hot steam...

LAND

Buses cross the borders between Tanzania and Kenya, Malawi, Uganda and Zambia. Apart from sometimes lengthy waits for passport checks, there are usually no hassles. At the border, you'll need to disembark on each side to take care of visa formalities, then reboard and continue on. Visa fees aren't included in bus ticket prices for trans-border routes. It's also possible to travel to from all of Tanzania's neighbours by minibus. Most main routes go direct otherwise you'll need to walk across the...

Babati

The lively market town of Babati is set in fertile countryside along the edge of the Rift Valley escarpment, about 175km southwest of Arusha. It's the main jumping-off point for Mt Hanang climbs and for travel to Singida and beyond along the southern loop via Nzega and Shinyanga to Mwanza and Lake Victoria. Flanking Babati to the southwest is the tranquil Lake Babati, fringed by tall reeds and home to hippos and water birds. There are internet connections at Rainbow Internet Caf (per hr Tsh2000...

Women In Tanzania

Tanzania's stellar rankings for tourism and safaris fade when it comes to women in government and high profile positions. Although women form the backbone of the economy - with most juggling child-rearing plus work on the family shamba, or in an office - they are near the bottom of the social hierarchy, and are frequently marginalised. This is especially so when it comes to education and politics. Only about 5 of girls complete secondary school, and of these, only a handful goes on to complete...

Border Hassles

At the Namanga border post watch out for touts - often claiming they work for the bus company - who tell you that it's necessary to change money, pay a fee or come over to 'another building' to arrange the necessary payments to enter Tanzania-Kenya. Apart from your visa, there are no border fees, payments or exchange requirements for crossing, and the rates being offered for forex are sub-standard. dents' price (US 10). In Arusha, drop offs are at the bus company offices. In Nairobi, drop offs...

AIR

Mwanza's airport is in the process of being upgraded, so expect changes here. There are daily flights to from Dar es Salaam (Tsh170,000) and to from Bukoba (Tsh120,000) on Air Tanzania ( 028-250 1059, 028-250 0046 Kenyatta Rd) and Precision Air ( 028-250 0819 pwmwz afncaonline.co.tz Kenyatta Rd), with many of the Precision Air flights between Dar es Salaam and Mwanza going via Shinyanga and or Musoma. Precision also flies several times weekly between Kilimanjaro International Airport (KIA) and...

Pare Culture

The Pare (locally, WaPare) hail from the Taita Hills area of southern Kenya, where they were herders, hunters and farmers. It was the Maasai, according to Pare oral traditions, who pursued them into the mountains, capturing and stealing their cattle. Today, many Pare are farmers, cultivating plots of vegetables, maize, bananas, cassava and cardamom. Thanks to significant missionary activity, the Pare also distinguish themselves as being among Tanzania's most educated groups. During the 1940s,...

Outside The Park

There are several good places just outside the park boundaries along the Tungamalenga village road (take the left fork at the junction when coming from Iringa). Chogela Camp (camping per person US 5) A simple place with well-maintained, spacious, shaded grounds, a large, clean cooking-dining area and spotless hot-water showers. Come with your own transport and bring your own tent or hire one through Riverside Campsite in Iringa. Also bring your own food and drink. Book through Iringa Info...

Economy

Agriculture, the mainstay of Tanzania's economy, employs about two-thirds of working-age Tanzanians - most of whom are subsistence farmers - and accounts for almost half of the country's gross domestic product. However, tourism is playing an increasingly important role. Over 600,000 visitors arrived in Tanzania in 2006, bringing with them revenues of over US 800 million. The government is hoping to continue this progress by promoting new investment and improving tourism marketing, especially in...

Yohani Kinyala Lauwo

The first Tanzanian to scale Kilimanjaro was Yohani Kinyala Lauwo, whose memory is still revered in his home town of Marangu. Lauwo was only 18 in 1889 when he was appointed by Chief Marealle I to be the guide for Hans Meyer (the first Westerner to reach Uhuru Peak). In those days the route was not defined, climbing equipment was rudimentary and wages were much lower. During his trek, Lauwo earned just Tsh1 per day. Following this successful ascent, Lauwo remained in Marangu, where he spent...

Sukuma Greetings

Central area, you'll be amid crowing roosters, grazing cattle and small farm plots. The main tribe in the surrounding area is the Sukuma, Tanzania's largest ethnic group. In addition to being the best base for visiting Rubondo Island National Park, Mwanza is also a convenient starting or finishing point for safaris through the western Serengeti. Central Mwanza can easily be covered on foot. Within a 10-minute or less walking radius from the clock tower are the passenger ferry docks (just to the...

Children Of The Rainmaker

One of Ukerewe's most famous sons is Aniceti Kitereza (1896-1981), actually born near Mwanza on the mainland, but grandson of a Ukerewe chief. After a career spent as a translator (he read or spoke eight languages, including Greek and Latin), Kitereza set out to write the biography of his grandfather, King Machunda. The two-volume work - currently available only in German as Die Kinder der Regenmacher (Children of the Rain-maker) and Die Schlangentoter (The Snake-killer) -weaves priceless...

Taarab Music

No visit to Zanzibar would be complete without spending an evening listening to the evocative strains of taarab, the archipelago's most famous musical export. Taarab, from the Arabic tariba (roughly, 'to be moved'), fuses African, Arabic and Indian influences, and is considered by many Zanzibaris to be a unifying force among the island's many cultures. A traditional taarab orchestra consists of several dozen musicians using both Western and traditional instruments, including the violin, the...

Sleeping Eating

Full board is included in the prices of both upmarket lodges. For campers, you can get basics in Ghorofani, but it's worth stocking up in Karatu before heading to the lake. Chem Chem Camp Site (camping per person Tsh5000) This village-run camp site - previously located near a spring just outside Ghorofani -recently moved to another not quite as nice site nearby, although there was some discussion of returning to the original site. Ask when you get to the main Ghorofani junction, and follow the...

Getting There Away

The best access to Kitulo is via Mfumbi village, about 90km east of Mbeya along the main highway, from where a small, currently unsignposted and unpaved but good (all-weather) road winds its way 32km up to Matamba village and the park's temporary base. From Matamba, it's about an hour further via 4WD with high clearance (or a couple of hours on foot) along a rough road (sometimes impassable in the rains) up onto the plateau itself and the official park area, marked by a sign board and the...

Camping

There are two public camp sites (per adult child US 30 5) - Campsite 1, close to park headquarters and the park gate, with toilet and shower, and the shaded Campsite 2 ('Riverside' or 'Endabash' camp site), set amid sausage trees and other vegetation near the Endabash river about an hour's drive from the gate, with new toilet and shower facilities, and tank water for cooking (and - if treated - for drinking). There are also three special camp sites (per adult child US 50 10) - Bagayo A & B,...

TOP END

Dhow Palace (Map p113 024-223 3012 dhowpalace zanlink.com s d US 70 90 SJun-Mar S) This is a classic place with old Zanzibari d cor, a fountain in the tastefully restored lobby and comfortable, well-appointed rooms. It's just off Kenyatta Rd, and under the same management as Tembo House Hotel. Beyt al-Chai (Map p113 0777-444111 www.stone towninn.com Kelele Sq s US 70-230, d US 100-260) This converted tea house is a lovely, atmospheric choice with just six rooms, each individually designed, and...

Mt Hanang

The volcanic Mt Hanang (3417m) rises steeply above the surrounding plains about 180km southwest of Arusha. It's Tanzania's fourth-highest mountain, with a satisfying trek to the summit, but few visitors know of its existence. The surrounding area is home to a colourful array of ethnic groups, including the Barabaig, who still follow a traditional seminomadic lifestyle and are recognisable by their goatskin garments. Over the past few decades, they have been displaced from some of their lands by...

Keeping Things Green

Organisations working for environmental conservation include the following Lawyers Environmental Action Team (www.leat.or.tz) An environmental law team working to ensure equitable natural resource management. Sea Sense (www.seasense.org) A local NGO collaborating with local communities to protect dugong (sea cow) and marine turtle populations and their habitats. Wildlife Conservation Society of Tanzania (WCST Map p90 022-211 2518 www.wcstonline .org Garden Ave, Dar es Salaam) The best local...

Lukwikalumesule Msangesi Game Reserves

These tiny game reserves are hidden away in the remote hinterlands southwest and west of Masasi. They're officially off-limits during the July to December hunting season (thanks to local hunting concessions), and unofficially off-limits during much of the rest of the year due to the rains. If you're keen on heading down this way, late June is the best time to come. Lukwika-Lumesule is the more interesting of the two. It's separated from Mozambique's Niassa Reserve by the Ruvuma River, and...

Kasanga Kalambo Falls

Plunging about 212m down the Rift Valley escarpment into Zambia are the Kalambo Falls. In addition to being Africa's second-highest single-drop waterfall, the area is also important archaeologically, as the site of some major Stone Age finds. The main access route to the falls is from Zambia, via Mbala. It's also possible to reach the falls from Kasanga, which is about 120km southwest of Sumbawanga on Lake Tanganyika and the last (or first) stop in Tanzania on the MV Liemba (see p358). From...

Info

The Sultan of Oman sets up court in a grand palace facing the lagoon on Zanzibar and exerts his authority over coastal mainland Tanganyika. The Maji Maji Rebellion of 1905 is so-called because the Africans who rose against German domination believed - at first - that magic would turn German bullets to water (maji). The World of Swahili by John Middleton is an excellent place to start for anyone wanting to learn more about Swahili life and culture. The first Christian missionaries arrive from...

Medical Checklist

It's a very good idea to carry a medical and first-aid kit with you, to help yourself in the case of minor illness or injury. Following is a list of items to consider packing Acetaminophen (paracetamol) or aspirin Acetazolamide (Diamox) for altitude sickness (prescription only) Antibacterial ointment (eg Bactroban) for cuts and abrasions (prescription only) Antibiotics eg ciprofloxacin (Ciproxin) or norfloxacin (Utinor) Antidiarrhoeal drugs (eg loperamide) Antihistamines (for hay fever and...

Kyela

There's no reason to linger in this scruffy, nondescript transit town unless your boat arrives late at Itungi and you need somewhere to spend the night. Photography is prohibited in most areas. The surrounding area - much of which is wetlands dotted with rice paddies -is more appealing, and if you do find yourself here with some extra time, it's possible to organise cultural visits with the enterprising Newton Mwakabambo contact Kyela Envirocare ( 025-254 0280, 0787-630814 kyelaenvirocare yahoo...

Kitulo National Park

Tanzania's newest national park protects the flower-clad Kitulo Plateau, together with sections of the former Livingstone Forest Reserve, which runs south from the plateau paralleling the Lake Nyasa shoreline. The area (see Map p295) - much of which lies between 2600m and 3000m in the highlands northeast of Tukuyu -is stunningly beautiful and a paradise for hikers. The park reaches its prime during the rainy season from about December until April, when it explodes in a profusion of colour, with...

Western Serengeti

Apart from the park camp sites, the western Serengeti is the only area that has options for budget travellers (all outside the park). In addition to seasonal proximity to the migration (which generally passes through the area from around May June), it offers the forest-fringed Grumeti River and relatively reliable year-round wildlife watching. Serengeti Stop-Over Point ( 028-262 2273 www.serengetistopover.com camping per person US 10, s d US 30 60) This enthusiastic place is directly on the...

Mwanza To Bukoba

Travelling by road from Mwanza westwards along the southern part of Lake Victoria entails crossing the Mwanza Gulf between Mwanza and Sengerema. There are two ferries. The northernmost (Kamanga) ferry docks just south of the passenger ferry terminal at Mwanza North Port, and is the more reliable of the two, departing Mwanza at 8.30am, 10.30am, 12.30pm, 2.30pm (except Sunday), 4.30pm and 6.30pm (per person vehicle Tsh200 3500, 30 minutes). Departures from Kamanga are every two hours from 8am...

Sleeping

There are several public camp sites in the park, including the well-situated Chada Campsite near Lake Chada Ikuu Campsite at Ikuu ranger post northwest of Lake Chada and Lake Katavi Campsite near Lake Katavi, just west of the Sumbawanga-Mpanda road. About 2km from park headquarters there is also a public camp site, as well as double-bedded bandas (per person US 30). For camp sites and bandas, bring all food and drink with you. Katavi Hippo Garden Hotel ( 025-282 0393, 023262 0461, 0784-120498...

Responsible Trekking

Carry out all your rubbish, including sanitary napkins, tampons, condoms and toilet paper (these burn and decompose poorly). Take minimal packaging and reusable containers or stuff sacks. Use toilets where available. Otherwise, bury your waste in a small hole 15cm (6in) deep and at least 100m (320ft) from any watercourse, and cover the waste with soil and a rock. Don't use detergents or toothpaste in or near watercourses, even if they are biodegradable. For washing, use biodegradable soap and...

Pugu Hills

Minaki High School Kisarawe

Pugu Hills, which begins about 15km southwest of Dar es Salaam and extends past Kisarawe, is lightly wooded, with several small forest reserves, and offers a change of pace from the urban scene. Despite its proximity to the city, the Pugu area is not urbanised at all, and many communities have remained quite traditional and conservative. Pugu is also interesting from a historical perspective several mission stations were established here, and it's the site of Pugu Secondary School, where Julius...

Sights

It doesn't take too much imagination to step back in time on Mafia's coconut plantations, with village life here going on much as it did during the island's Shirazi-era heyday. Chole island (day visitors per person US 5) is a good place to start exploring, especially around its crumbling but atmospheric ruins, which date from the 19th century. Also on Chole, thanks to the efforts of a local women's group who bought the area where an important nesting tree is located, is what is probably East...

Community Tourism Spotlight Kahawa Shamba

Kahawa Shamba ( 027-275 0464, 027-275 2785, 0784-517995 www.kirurumu.net kahawa index.htm per person full board US 110 196) is a laudable community-owned and community-run venture that offers insights into the lives of the Chagga coffee farmers who live on Kilimanjaro's lower slopes. It consists of a handful of Chagga huts near Lyamungo village, southeast of Machame and about 27km from Moshi near Umbwe village. While the huts are authentically constructed, they are outfitted with modern...

Pare Mountains

The seldom-visited Pare Mountains - divided into northern and southern ranges -lie southeast of Kilimanjaro and northwest of the Usambara range. Like the Usambaras, they form part of the ancient Eastern Arc chain, and their steep cliffs and forested slopes host an impressive number of unique birds and plants. Also like the Usambaras, the Pares are densely populated, with many small villages linked by a network of paths and tracks. The main ethnic group here is the Pare (also called the Asu)....

Community Tourism Spotlight Chole Mjini

If your idea of the ultimate getaway is sleeping in the treetops in a rustic but comfortable ambience, while at the same time supporting local community development initiatives, Chole Mjini ( 0787-712427 2chole bushmail.net Chole Island s d full board US 282 420 SJul-Easter S), on Chole Island, is the place to stay. Accommodation is in six beautifully designed tree houses (a couple of which are actually lower stilt houses), each nestled away amidst the surrounding vegetation, and with views...

Dar es Salaam

With a population of almost three million and East Africa's second-largest port, Dar es Salaam is Tanzania's major centre and capital in everything but name (Dodoma is the parliamentary capital). Yet under its veneer of urban bustle, the city remains a down-to-earth, manageable place, with a picturesque seaport, a fascinating mixture of African, Arabic and Indian influences and close ties to its Swahili roots. While there aren't many 'sights' as such, there are craft markets, shops and...

Sights Activities

Other than diving, snorkelling and relaxing on the beach, you can watch the dhow builders, or visit the Mnarani Aquarium (admission Tsh2500 S 9am-6pm), home to hawksbill and green turtles that are being nurtured as part of a local conservation initiative. It's near the lighthouse at the northernmost tip of Ras Nungwi. The lighthouse, which dates to 1886, is still in use and not open to the public. The best diving in the north is around Mnemba, which can be readily arranged from Nungwi, though...

Inside The Park

There are two ordinary camp sites about 9km northwest of park headquarters, and about 1.5km apart. Neither has water the only facilities are pit toilets. There are also about five special camp sites, all well away from the Msembe area. Near the river and close to park headquarters are several park bandas, including some doubles and two larger family bandas, accommodating four to five people each. Water is available for showers and the park sells soft drinks and a few basics, but otherwise...

Mafia Island Marine Park

Mafia Island Marine Park - at c. 822 sq km the largest marine protected area in the Indian Ocean -shelters a unique complex of estuarine, mangrove, coral reef and marine channel ecosystems. These include the only natural forest on the island and almost 400 fish species. There are also about 10 villages within the park's boundaries with an estimated 15,000 to 17,000 inhabitants -all of whom depend on its natural resources for their livelihoods. Accordingly, the park has been classified as a...

Kishamapanda Guesthouse Price

It's sometimes possible to arrange camping on the grounds of the Mwanza Yacht Club, next to Hotel Tilapia on Capri Point. Camping is also possible at Maganga Beach (camping per person Tsh3000), on a pretty stretch of lake shore in Nyegezi, about 8km from town. There are no facilities, and no food or drink available, and you'll need a vehicle to get there. The road is sometimes inaccessible during the heavy rains. Otherwise, the closest places for camping are Bujora Cultural Centre (p250), or...

Hiking In The Uluguru Mountains

The Uluguru Mountains rise up from the plains just southeast of Morogoro, dominating vistas from town. Part of the Eastern Arc chain, the mountains contain some of Africa's oldest original forest plus a wealth of birds, plants and insects. These include many unique species, such as the Uluguru bush shrike. The only comparable mountain-forest area in East Africa, as far as age and endemism are concerned, is the Usambara Mountains (p168). The main tribal group in the Ulugurus are the matrilineal...

This Open Sore Of The World

David Livingstone - one of Africa's most famous explorers and missionaries - was born in 1813 in Blantyre, Scotland, the second of seven children in a poor family. After a childhood spent working at a local cotton gin, followed by medical studies and ordination, he set off for Africa, arriving in Cape Town South Africa in 1841. Over the next two decades, Livingstone penetrated into some of the most inaccessible corners of the continent on a series of expeditions - making his way north into the...

Kilimanjaro Area

Kilimanjaro Area

, Muty 1 3950m l gt v n I f f i Kilimanjaro International B Airport KIA Kilimanjaro International B Airport KIA A Kilimanjaro National Park Headquarters amp Marangu Gate 1980m is primarily a base for horse-riding safaris, but its guest cottages make a good break for nonriding partners who want to stay behind to relax. Meals are made with farm produce and served family-style together with the owners and an assorted menagerie of pets in the main farmhouse. Animal-lovers and nature enthusiasts...

Nzega

This small junction town is where the roads to Kahama and on to the Rwanda and Burundi borders and Singida branch off from the Mwanza-Tabora road, which from Nzega southward turns from good tarmac into rough dirt or mud, depending on the season . It's not a bad place to stop for the night, with a surprisingly decent guesthouse and a bustling market where you'll hear almost exclusively Nyamwezi and other local languages spoken, rather than Swahili. Note that if you're driving from Shinyanga,...

BUDGET

In addition to the following listings, there are several basic guesthouses in the centre of town, all of about the same standard and all with no-frills rooms for about Tsh3000. A modest selection of supplies is available in Karatu, but if you're on a tight budget, it's cheaper to stock up in Arusha. ELCT Karatu Lutheran Hostel 027-253 4230 s d tr Tsh22,000 30,000 40,000 The Lutheran Hostel has simple, clean rooms with hot water, and good meals Tsh6000 . It's on the main road at the western end...

The Udzungwa Mountains

The Udzungwas' high degree of endemism and biodiversity is due, in large part, to the area's constant climate over millions of years, which has given species a chance to evolve. Another factor is the Udzungwas' altitudinal range. From the low-lying Kilombero Valley south of the park at approximately 200m to Luhombero Peak the park's highest point at 2579m , there is continuous forest, making this one of the few places in Africa with continuous rainforest over such a great span. Mwanihana Peak...

North Of Pangani

Peponi Holiday Resort 0784-202962, 0713-540139 www.peponiresort.com camping per person US 4, s amp d bandas US 50, extra adult beds in family bandas US 20 This relaxing, traveller-friendly place is set in expansive bougainvillea-dotted grounds on a long, good beach about 19km north of Pangani. In addition to simple, breezy double bandas, there are several larger five-person chalets - all bandas and chalets have been recently refurbished - plus a shady camp site, clean ablution blocks and a...

Musoma

Pretty Musoma - capital of the Mara region -sits serenely on the eastern shore of Lake Victoria, in a lovely setting on a peninsula with both sunrise and sunset views over the water. With its bustling market, colourful fishing port and small-town pace, the town makes an agreeable stop for anyone travelling this way. Its streets, set out in a grid pattern, are lined by small shops and old single-storey Indian trading houses. The surrounding countryside, marked by low, green hills dotted with...

Quick Eats

Forodhani Gardens Map p113 meals from Tsh1000 S dinner These waterside gardens p117 have great-value street food, with piles of grilled fish and meat, chips, snacks and more, all served on a paper plate or rolled into a piece of newspaper and eaten while sitting on benches or on the lawn. Locals advise against eating fish and meat during the height of the low season when food turnover is slower , but we've never heard of any problems. For inexpensive meals, try Passing Show Map p113 Malawi Rd...

BUS

The 'new' Tabora bus stand is along the extension of Market St, past NBC bank. Mohammed Trans Lumumba St has its own office and departure point, opposite the library. Mohammed Trans runs between Tabora and Mwanza, departing from Tabora daily at 6am and 10am Tsh10,000, hours . If you're heading east, you can disembark at Nzega which is also serviced daily by 4WDs , and then catch a bus on to Singida, though this means an overnight in Nzega. It's possible to drive between Tabora and Mbeya 4WD...

Midrange

Lawn's Hotel 027-264 0005, 0784-420252 lawnstony yahoo.com camping per person with hot shower US 6, s d US 40 45 This Lushoto institution is full of charm, with vine-covered buildings surrounded by extensive green lawns and gardens, spacious, musty rooms with dark-wood floors, a fireplace, a small library and a bar. If the rooms could be given an airing out and staff given an injection of energy, it would be thoroughly recommendable. As it is though, it's one of the better bets for camping on...

Community Tourism Spotlight St Marys Mazinde

Tucked away in the Usambara Mountains near Lushoto, in the tiny village of Mazinde Juu, is St Mary's Secondary School, an impressive educational success story. The school was founded in 1989 by a Benedictine missionary, based on the idea that Tanzania's long-term development can only be achieved through the education and empowerment of the country's women. The area around Mazinde Juu - long neglected and lagging behind much of the rest of the region economically -was an ideal place to put this...

Shopping

Stone Town has wonderfully atmospheric craft shopping, and - if you can sort your way through some of the kitsch - there are some excellent buys to be found. Items to watch for include finely crafted Zanzibari chests, kanga cotton wraps worn by women all over Tanzania , kikoi the thicker striped or plaid equivalent worn by men on Zanzibar and in other coastal areas , spices and handcrafted silver jewellery. A good place to start is Gizenga St, which is lined with small shops and craft dealers....

The Abushiri Revolt

Although the Abushiri revolt, one of East Africa's major colonial rebellions, is usually associated with Bagamoyo, Pangani was its birthplace. The catalyst came in 1884, when a young German, Carl Peters, founded the German East Africa Company Deutsch-Ostafrikanische Gesellschaft or DOAG . Over the next few years, in an effort to tap into the lucrative inland caravan trade, Peters managed to extract agreement from the Sultan of Zanzibar that the DOAG could take over the administration of customs...

Serengeti National Park

The Serengeti is where Africa's mystery, rawness and power surround you, and where the beauty and synchrony of nature can be experienced as in few other places. On its vast, treeless plains, one of earth's most impressive natural cycles plays itself out again and again, as tens of thousands of hoofed animals, driven by primeval rhythms of survival, move constantly in search of fresh grasslands. The most famous, and the most numerous, are the wildebeests - of which there are more than one...

Kolokondoa Rock Art Sites

The district of Kondoa, especially around the tiny village of Kolo, lies at the centre of one of the most impressive - and most overlooked -collections of ancient rock paintings on the African continent. For anyone with a bent for the offbeat and tolerance for a bit of rugged travel, the rock art sites make an intriguing and worthwhile detour. The history of most of the paintings remains shrouded in mystery, with little known about either their artists or their age. While some of the paintings...

The Gourmet Trail

Staying at upmarket safari camps and hotels, you'll dine well. But for independent travellers or those on a limited budget, a diet of ugali a staple made from maize or cassava flour, or both and sauce quickly gets tiresome. Following are places to break your trip if you're craving something Lushoto - Homemade jam, wholegrain bread and cheese from Irente Farm p171 and the Montessori sisters at St Eugene's Hostel p173 Njombe - Delicious homemade cheeses at the Duka la Maziwa p290 Iringa to...

Iringa To Makambako

From Iringa, the Tanzam highway continues southwest, winding its way gradually up, past dense stands of pine, before reaching the junction town of Makambako. Kisolanza - The Old Farm House www.kisolanza.com camping per person with hot showers US 4, tw stables chalets USS20 25, d f cottages US 45 55, luxury cottage per person with half board US 75 is a gracious 1930s farm homestead fringed by stands of pine and rolling hill country about 50km southwest of Iringa and just off the highway. It...

Around Mwanza

If you're interested in learning about Sukuma culture, the Sukuma Museum amp Bujora Cultural Centre http photo.net sukuma admission Tsh3000 S 8am-6pm Mon-Sat, 1-6pm Sun makes a worthwhile day trip from Mwanza. The centrepiece is an open-air museum where, among other things, you'll see traditional Sukuma dwellings, the house of a traditional healer, a wooden trough used for rainmaking potions and a blacksmith's house and tools. There is also a large map showing the old Sukuma kingdoms, and...

The Haya

Bukoba is the heartland of the Haya people, and if you spend much time here, you'll undoubtedly make their acquaintance. The Haya, which today is one of Tanzania's largest tribes, also played a prominent role throughout the country's history. It had one of the most highly developed early societies on the continent, and by the 18th or 19th century was organised into eight different states or kingdoms. Each of these was headed by a powerful and often despotic mukama who ruled in part by divine...

The Zaramo World View

The original inhabitants of the area around Dar es Salaam are the Zaramo, known for their skilled woodworking and for their creation beliefs. In the beginning, according to the Zaramo, was Nyalutanga, the common mother from whom springs forth all life and knowledge. Nyalutanga herself had no creator and no husband, but rather emerged from the female earth, later bringing forth a line of daughters, from whom all Zaramo are descended. Men fit into the picture as nourishers of the female creative...

Trekking Areas

The following are pocket summaries of Tanzania's main trekking and hiking areas. For more on each, see the destination chapters. For more information on treks, see Lonely Planet's Trekking in East Africa. This is Africa's highest mountain 5869m and Tanzania's most famous trek, with a choice of routes, all making their way from the forested lower slopes to moorland and alpine zones to the snow- and glacier-covered summit. There are also many walks on Kilimanjaro's lower slopes, of interest for...

Mexons Cliff Hotel Njombe

Lutheran Centre Guest House 026-278 2118 r without bathroom Tsh3000, s Tsh5000 No-frills rooms in a small compound one block off the main street and diagonally behind and south of the Lutheran church. It's about a 10-minute walk from the bus stand. Meals can be arranged with advance order. Milimani Hotel Songea Rd s d Tsh6000 8000 Bare and drab, but things are reasonably clean and the price isn't bad. It's at the southern end of town, near the Lutheran church. Chani Motel 026-278 2357,...

Operators

A good operator is the single most important variable for your safari, and it's worth spending time thoroughly researching those you're considering. The following are recommended companies, although the lists are by no means exclusive. Many northern circuit operators also organise trekking, and vice versa see p54 for trekking operators. An increasing number of private ie non-chain lodges also have in-house operators and if you'll be combining several parks in the same area, this is a good...

Around Lushoto Mtae

Tiny Mtae is perched on a cliff about 55km northwest of Lushoto, with fantastic 270-degree views over the Tsavo Plains and down to Mkomazi Game Reserve. It makes a good destination if you only have time to visit one village from Lushoto. Just to the southeast of Mtae is Shagayu Peak 2220m , one of the highest peaks in the Usambara Mountains. In addition to its many hiking paths, the area is also known for its traditional healers. Staff at the Lutheran church will usually allow you to camp on...

Lake Tanganyika

Lake Tanganyika is the world's longest 670km and second-deepest over 1400m fresh-water lake. At somewhere between nine and 12 million years old, it is also one of the oldest lakes on the planet and, thanks to its age and ecological isolation, is home to an exceptional variety of fish. Most notable are its colourful cichlids, many of which are found nowhere else, and which make for some wonderful snorkelling in the lake's clear waters. During the late 18th and early 19th centuries the lake was a...

St Pauls Church

If you happen to be in the Majengo area of Mtwara, it's worth stopping in at St Paul's church to view its remarkable artwork. The entire front and side walls are covered with richly coloured biblical scenes painted by a German Benedictine priest, Polycarp Uehlein. The paintings, which took about two years to complete, are part of a series by the same artist decorating churches throughout southern Tanzania and in a few other areas of the country, including churches in Nyangao, Lindi, Malolo,...

BOAT

The unsteady Mudasi - primarily a cargo ship that also takes passengers - sails three times weekly between Wete and Tanga, departing from Wete at 8am on Friday, Saturday and Sunday three to five hours , and Tanga at 3pm on Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Wete is also the best place on Pemba to look for a dhow to the mainland, although captains are often unwilling to take foreigners. Inquire at the Wete port passage costs about Tsh5000 between Wete and Tanga. There are also sporadic dhows between...

Sleeping Budget

Mohammed's Restaurant amp Bungalows 0777431881 r per person without bathroom US 15 This establishment has four very basic en suite bungalows, each with two large beds, just back from the beach. Grilled fish and other local meals can be arranged. Matemwe Minazini per person US 20 At the far southern end of the beach, this very chilled place has a handful of very basic rooms and meals. The setup is nothing special, but the price is about as good as it gets on Matemwe. Sele's 0777-413449 d US 40...

Travel Agencies

All of the following can help with flight bookings, organising trips to Rubondo Island and Serengeti National Parks, and car hire. Prices for 4WD rental start at about US 120 per day plus petrol. For a two-day, one-night return trip to Seronera in Serengeti National Park, transport only, expect to pay from US 350 per vehicle four to six persons including petrol. It's not that easy to meet other travellers in Mwanza, so organising a Serengeti safari from here works best if you're already in a...

Toilets

Toilets vary from standard long-drops to full-flush luxury conveniences that spring up in the most unlikely places. Almost all midrange and top-end hotels sport flushable sit-down types, although at the lower end of the price range, toilet seats are a rare commodity. Budget guesthouses often have squat-style toilets -sometimes equipped with a flush mechanism, otherwise with a scoop and a bucket of water for flushing things down. Toilets with running water are a rarity outside major hotels. If...

Great Cups Of Coffee

Despite Tanzania's many coffee plantations, it can be difficult to find a cup of the real stuff. Here are our picks for some of the best cups of locally produced kahawa, or coffee let us know of others. Jambo's Coffee House, Arusha p201 Stone Town Caf , Zanzibar Town p125 Msumbi, Zanzibar Town p125 branches at Seacliff Village in Dar es Salaam and at the TFA Shoprite Centre in Arusha Utengule Country Hotel, Mbeya p293 Zanzibar Coffee House, Zanzibar Town p125 Tanzania Coffee Lounge, Moshi p186...

Tanzania Coffee

Together with Bukoba, Moshi is one of Tanzania's coffee-growing centres, and it's this aromatic bean that has together with trekking, in more recent years kept the town's economy alive for much of the past century. Coffee, which is said to have originated in southwestern Ethiopia, came to Tanzania around the turn of the 19th century, after being introduced by Jesuit missionaries from R union. During the British colonial era, the industry flourished, with the formation of successful...