Tanzania Cultural Safari & Zanzibar
Duration: 14 Days
- Destinations: Arusha, Lake Manyara, Serengeti, Ngorongoro, Monduli and Zanzibar.
Price: $3960 per person
Accommodation Type: Mid-Range Lodges & Tented Camps
Not many countries in Africa can offer the variety of wildlife, nature and cultures found in Tanzania. Explore some of the fascinating cultures in this safari mecca – from Bushmen to the famous Maasai Warriors. Get a glimpse into the culture and lifestyles of these local tribes. Escape to the exotic Island of Zanzibar to relax after your exhilarating Safari. This Cultural Safari is a beautiful blend of Tanzania’s culture, wildlife and beautiful tropical beach life.
Day 1: Arrival – Arusha
Upon arrival at Kilimanjaro airport, you will be met by your driver and transferred to Ambureni Coffee Lodge in Arusha for dinner and overnight. Settle into your accommodation, ready to start your safari proper in the morning.
Day 2: Arusha National Park
After breakfast you drive to Arusha National Park for morning game drive with picnic lunch. This is one of the smaller national parks in Tanzania, but it has a rich variety of wildlife and landscapes. From the swampy Ngurdoto Crater and alkaline lakes to dense jungle and the towering peaks of Mount Meru and Kilimanjaro. In the afternoon you go on a 2-hours forest hike on the base of Mount Meru to the Tululusia waterfall. Apart from the amazing view of this mountain from the park, it is also the best place to view the highest mountain in Africa, Mount Kilimanjaro. In the late afternoon return to Ambureni coffee lodge for dinner and overnight. Read more about Arusha National Park.
Day 3: Lake Manyara National Park
After breakfast you will drive to Mtowambu town on the floor of the great rift valley, for a guided village tour. In small but very busy town where people belonging to all 120 tribes in Tanzania live together you will have opportunity to see typical daily life of Tanzanians. Your walking guide who comes from that area will take you to rice and banana plantations where you will interact with the people working in their farms, you will visit a traditional beer bar/factory, you will visit a school and carvings factory where the famous “makonde” use ebony black wood to carve different statues. You will then continue to Lake Manyara national park for a game drive with picnic lunch. This beautiful park with its lush vegetation and tropical forests of giant fig and mahogany trees, takes its name from the Maasai word for “euphorbia tirucalli”, a bush which is used to make a thorny hedge to protect their cattle. Elephant, giraffe, buffalo, zebra and a variety of antelope inhabit the park as well as a variety of monkeys and a large population of hippo’s. If you are lucky you may see the Manyara lions, well known for their tree climbing habits, lazily resting on the branches of an “Acacia tortilis” tree. The birdlife is also abundant, with flamingoes, pelicans, hornbills and plenty of forest species. In the late afternoon continue you drive to Rift valley lodge for dinner. After dinner you return to lake Manyara national park for a night game drive. Discover nocturnal animals like porcupines, pangolin, aardvark and others, then return to your lodge for overnight. Read more about Lake Manyara National Park.
Day 4: Serengeti National Park
Today you go on a morning and afternoon game drive in the famous Serengeti National Park. If you want to spot the Big Five – lion, elephant, leopard, rhino and buffalo- all in one park, the Serengeti is one of the best places to do so. The abundance of wildlife in this park is unmatched anywhere else in Africa. Depending which time of the year you visit this park, you can also witness the Great Migration. It’s an impressive experience to see all those hoofed mammals, followed by iconic predators, migrate in a clockwise circle every year. Late in the afternoon you return to Serengeti Osinon camp for dinner and overnight. Read more about Serengeti National Park.
Day 5: Serengeti
Another day of morning and afternoon game viewing in the Serengeti. With so many wildebeest, gazelles and zebras present it is no wonder the Serengeti is also home to 4,000 lions and 1,000 leopards. Apart from the Big Five the Serengeti boasts the cheetah, jackal, hyena, serval, aardvark, pangolin, porcupine, crocodiles, giraffe, python, black mamba, spitting cobra, ostrich, martial eagle, lovebirds and vultures, just to name a few. Enjoy this supreme game viewing and return to Serengeti Osinon camp in the evening. After taking a hot shower you will meet your guide at the fire place for a cold Serengeti beer or a glass of wine as he gives you a short history of Tanzania. Dinner and overnight will be at Osinon camp.
Day 6: Ngorongoro Crater
After early breakfast you will collect picnic lunch and drive to the Olduvai gorge. This is the place where Dr. Leakey and his wife Mary Leakey found a fossil of a hominid. You will then visit the shifting sand (a dune of magnetic volcanic sand that changes its location every year). Later you will continue to Ngorongoro crater rim for a hiking on the rim of the Ngorongoro crater with an armed ranger/guide. This hiking is a great opportunity for you to enjoy seeing the wildlife in the distance while out of the car, see different plants with their medicinal uses and animal tracks. It feels nice also stretching yourselves after several days of seating in the vehicle. In the late afternoon you will continue to Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge for dinner and overnight. This lodge is located at the highest point on the Ngorongoro Crater’s rim and offers great views across the enormous crater. Read more about the Ngorongoro Crater.
Day 7: Ngorongoro Crater
Today you set off towards the Ngorongoro Crater for your last game drive. It shelters close to 30.000 animals including the Big Five. The crater teems with zebras, buffaloes, lions, wildebeest, warthogs, baboons, elephants, flamingos, ostriches, hippos, cheetahs and a small population of the rare black rhino. The beautiful colours and dancing clouds make the crater almost surreal. Because of its natural beauty the Ngorongoro Crater is chosen as one of Africa’s Seven Natural Wonders. In the late afternoon you drive to Lake Eyasi safari lodge for dinner and overnight.
Day 8: Monduli
This day will be full of culture, with interesting encounters with a local tribe. After breakfast, you drive to the Hadzabe Bushmen. This tribe hunt on wild animals with bow and arrows, eating roots, honey and wild fruits. You can join the Bushman on a hunting and gathering trip. Walk behind them and see how they shoot their animals by using bows and arrows, then see how they skin them, roast them and eat. After this fascinating experience and a lunch at the lodge, you drive to Monduli Juu. A Maasai guide welcomes you and leads you around a Maasai village where he introduces you to family members. You can communicate with them, see how they cook and dance and get a real insight into the way of life of the Maasai. After dinner the chief of the village will explain their culture and traditions and you can also share your stories with him. You can spend here the night (we will provide some bedding for you if you sleep in the Maasai hut). It’s also possible to sleep at the nearby A1 hotel for overnight.
Day 9: Monduli – Arusha
Early wake up today to milk the cows with the Maasai ladies. After breakfast you go fetch water with the ladies and learn how they carry the water buckets on their heads. Later you visit a traditional Maasai doctor and experience how he uses plants to cure different diseases, then drive to Tulia hotel for lunch and a short siesta. In the afternoon you will visit mama Chris home and join her to prepare your dinner. Today you will participate in preparing your dinner (great opportunity to learn about African cuisine). After your dinner with this Tanzanian modern family you will be transferred to Tulia hotel for diner and overnight. After lunch you drive to a local market in Arusha to buy some food that you can eat today. The owners of a Home Stay welcome you later this day. There is time for a shower and a little rest. During dinner time you can interact with this family and prepare dinner together. This is a great opportunity to learn about cooking African dishes. Dinner and overnight will be at a Home Stay. We choose a safe and clean home stay for you.
Day 10: Zanzibar
This is the last morning you spend with the family. After lunch you head off to Arusha Airport for your flight to Zanzibar. Upon arrival at Zanzibar Airport, you will be met by your driver and transferred to Next Paradise Boutique Resort for dinner and overnight in a beachfront bungalow. Read more about Zanzibar.
Day 11: Stone Town
Explore the lively Stone Town today – the cultural and historical heart of Zanzibar. It is a fascinating labyrinth of narrow streets and alleyways that are a joy to explore. Discover the architectural gems, tasteful restaurants, churches, markets and gardens. There are plenty of interesting places to visit on a cultural tour, like the House of Wonders, Darajani market place, Sultan’s Palace and the Slave Market. The mix of Arab, Persian, Indian and European influences makes Stone Town absolutely unique. In the afternoon you go on a boat trip to visit Prison Island. This island was once used as a place where slaves were detained and later it functioned as a camp where people with deadly diseases were sent. Today the island is a nature reserve for giant tortoises and a place to see the ruins that once functioned as the prison. Dinner and overnight will be at Next Paradise resort.
Day 12 and 13: Zanzibar beach
These 2 days will be at leisure to relax or explore as you like. All meals and overnight will be at Next Paradise Boutique Resort. This resort is protected by a coral reef and set along a white sand, palm-fringed beach offering views of the Indian Ocean.
Day 14. Departure
After breakfast you will be transferred to Zanzibar airport for your departure (this will depend on your departure time).
- All meals and accommodations during the entire safari
- A very high quality safari land cruiser with pop up roof
- A highly experienced English speaking safari guide
- Unlimited mineral water during the entire safari
- All park fees for all the national parks
- Unlimited game drives
- All activities as mentioned in the itinerary
- All transfers in the mainland and Zanzibar
- Flight from Arusha to Zanzibar
- Meals and accommodations in Zanzibar are on half board basis
- AMREF flying doctors rescue cover
- International flights
- Drinks at the lodges
- Any other things not mentioned above
Qn1: How many holidaymakers in one group?
- Apart from yourself and the people you decide to travel within your tour, there will be no one else. With the fact that our vehicles take a maximum of 7 travellers, more vehicles will be used in case of any added travellers in a group.
Qn2: What is the minimum age permitted?
- If you have kids of less than 4 years old, you may need to wait a bit before bringing them to the safari.
- Also, We strongly recommend children of 4-12 are with parents/guardians and the responsibility for each child should remain with you as a parent in the course of the safari
Qn3: Where will I stay during the night?
- You’ll have your accommodation in safari lodges and permanent tented camps inside the parks. The rooms are with en-suite bathrooms.
Qn4: How will I travel?
- On your safari, you’ll use our comfortable and safe 4WD Toyota Land Cruisers which have a lot of leg space and pop up roof for ideal wildlife viewing.
- Again our vehicles are fully equipped with first aid kits, fridges, binoculars and bean bags for camera support. With well-maintained and fitted HF long-range radios, the communication is made easy in safari.
- We appreciate that on the last day of your safari you might be a bit tired, on this regard light aircraft will take you back to where safari started. *For luxury safari*
Qn5: Where Should I get my meal? And what kind of meal is provided?
- We will provide you with meals as well as mineral water during the safari. However, we would kindly ask you to settle soft drinks and alcoholic beverages on your own. Our safari guide who will drive you in a safari will take you to the beverages shops if it’s your things.
- On safari, all meals are usually taken at your lodge or camp, and standards range from adequate to excellent.
- The good thing is, most lodges offer the option of a packed breakfast and/or lunch box, which are variable in standard, but does allow you to eat on the trot rather than having to base game viewing hours around meal times.
- I would advise you to specify in advance if you are vegetarian or have other specific dietary requirements and we will do our very best to cater for them.
Qn6: what should I pack?
- While upon booking we will provide you with a detailed packing list that will be helpful for you to decide what to bring,
- Shorts and a T-shirt, long trousers and warmer clothing will be required, I would advise women not to wear too short clothes (above their knees, too tight clothes or clothes that will not cover part of their bodies) as well as avoiding clothes with too bright colours (especially blue) as they can attract some insects.
- Binoculars and a good field guide, possibly a pair of sunglasses, cash, credit cards, passport and other necessary documents are important, not to mention other useful items including a torch, compact alarm clock and strong insects repellent.
Qn7: Any luggage restrictions in safari?
- Well, to make your safari as comfortable as possible, luggage is restricted with a maximum size of 25 cm x 30 cm x 62 cm (10″ x 12″ x 24″). I would highly recommend the luggage be packed in bag or rucksack which cannot exceed 15kg including hand luggage. Do not bring suitcases in safari.
- Flights won’t take heavy luggage too kind. The luggage limit for most local flight is 15 kg ($ 3 per extra kilo will be charged) and 25 kg for the international flights.
Qn8: Should I take some cash with me?
- Absolutely, extras like soft and alcoholic beverages, souvenirs snacks and tips should be settled with your cash.
- The most important thing I must remind you is to ensure that your USD bills must be printed not before 2004. It is unfortunate that earlier than 2004 printed bills won’t be accepted.
- You can use your credit card (visa and master card only) to make payments in some places but a 4%-5% fee will be charged while paying by credit card (most small hotels, shops and restaurants accept cash only but the big ones accept credit cards). You can also use your credit cards to get money from the ATMs (located in all the big towns), but they will only give you local currency.
Qn8: You mentioned about tips, how much should I give?
- Well, Tanzania has also a tipping tradition and tipping is usually given at the end of service. While we strongly advise that you do tipping (especially to the safari guides who play the most important role into the success of the entire tour), tipping is not mandatory and you should only give if you’re happy with the service you have received.
- Tipping guideline for your safari guide is $ 40 to $ 50 per car per day while in the hotels it is $ 15 to $ 20 per group per day put in a tip box. Porters are usually tipped separately and it is $ 1 per bag
Qn9: I am Curious to Know Visa Requirements
- Great, a valid visa is necessary.
- Depending on your nationality, you can get your visa ahead of time or buy it at the airport upon arrival.
- Some nationalities require their visa bought ahead of time so I would recommend you contact your respective embassy to get the latest visa regulations
Qn10: Are there any things I need to Know about Vaccinations for Tanzania Safaris?
- Absolutely, while you can read them herein details, (We can put a link for our post on vaccinations) the main concern is malaria. I strongly recommend that you take prophylactic drugs.
- If you are from a yellow fever endemic country or have stayed there for more than 6 hours, you will need to get a yellow fever vaccine.
- We will provide you with detailed travel tips that will also have more information on vaccinations including yellow fever countries list.
Qn11: I am afraid I won’t find proper ablution facilities at the campsites
I would like to ask that you cast that fear aside. There are fairly standard ablution facilities on all campsites so this should never worry you.