Tanzania is a place of wonder and discovery, it was the entry point for many early explorers and the same is true today; there is much on offer and there are many places to discover. Not many visitors to Tanzania discover the wonder of this friendly African paradise. They rush by from one high point to the next; like sheep who never lift their head out of the grass and thereby miss the splendor around them; every day the same as the last.
This saddens me as Tanzania can be a place in which to fall in love with Africa. Tanzania is a place that lives inside you; and calls you back again and again. Although, for many it is another destination to merely claim and photograph.
The Udzungwa Mountains National Park is a national park with no roads. This park has wildlife but was created primarily for the protection of flora rather than fauna; this park is unique in Tanzania. It is a must to get out your vehicle and walk in the mountain rain forests.
Like all places it takes time to discover and an afternoon stroll on the peripheries of adventure is simply not enough.It is possible to find many places to walk and discover the delights of this East African country without ever stepping inside a National Park. There are the East and West Usamabara Mountains or the Pare Mountains with a prolific birdlife, these very African mountains are a delight to discover and explore.There are villages around Kilimanjaro, high above Moshi Town where the local people growing coffee and bananas. Some villages such as my favorite, Uru, are close to the tourist circuit, so it is easily accessible in the north without having to taking a special journey and you can spend days here and never see a safari vehicle or another tourist.
Cultural visits can expand your whole experience; add time and experience to your adventure in Tanzania without costing a fortune. It is important to do this with gentleness and respect; remembering that you are the visitor here. All too often this simple truth is forgotten; remember to respect local customs and dress codes.When we talk about cultural tour I am not talking of the organized cultural tours but a genuine encounter with Tanzanian people.
This is best done though a charity that is willing and eager to organize cultural visits. By spending only a day or two working voluntary will enable you to experience Africa in way most people will never know. To volunteer even for a short time will be the experience you will share with friends for the rest of your life.
To move around Tanzania on local transport is something you should do with care. If traveling by road choose your bus company with caution and the cheaper the ticket the less safe the bus. There are good bus companies that travel around Tanzania and I would advise you pay the extra money for both comfort and safety. Trains are not usually an option for tourists, with a few exceptions they are normally unreliable and slow. The few destinations that are usable have first class tickets sold out well in advance; especially at holiday time; to book in advance is essential.You may get hassled as you walk around the cities by taxi drivers or young men selling curios.
Remember, Tanzania is a poor country and these young people are attempting to earn a living to feed a family; and competition is fierce. To know a few words in Swahili, such as si-ombi [I don't need] will come in handy. Remember not to be rude, be firm but friendly. This is all part of the joy of traveling.
To barter, or to try to get rid of a persistent young man selling curios should be done with respect and without anger.The towns and villages are a cultural dream with the warm friendly people welcoming visitors. Tanzania is a country where hospitality is a tradition; the traveler is welcomed and honored.
Is it safe to travel alone; in the big towns such as Dar es Salaam it would be advisable to take the normal precautions any tourist must take. Tanzania is a safe country and its people are peace loving.So, welcome and discover a land unspoiled for the present..
For a more comprehensive guide to discovering the true Tanzania and traveling around Tanzania contact Ian through http://www.betheladventure.co.uk Using responsible tourism to change lives.
By: Ian Williamson