Tanzania  Travel Guide : Food, hotel, Cost, Weather & geography, History, language, culture, things to see and do and how to reach

You can find about travel advice such as public places & services, best restaurants, activities, sightseen and other key facts of the Tanzania.

Tanzania is a country in East Africa within the African Great Lakes region. It borders Uganda to the north; Kenya to the northeast; Comoro Islands and the Indian Ocean to the east; Mozambique and Malawi to the south; Zambia to the southwest; and Rwanda, Burundi, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the west. Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa's highest mountain, is in northeastern Tanzania.

Many important hominid fossils have been found in Tanzania, such as 6-million-year-old Pliocene hominid fossils. The genus Australopithecus ranged all over Africa 4 to 2 million years ago; and the oldest remains of the genus Homo are found near Lake Olduvai. Following the rise of Homo erectus 1.8 million years ago, humanity spread all over the Old World, and later in the New World and Australia under the species Homo sapiens. H. sapiens also overtook Africa and absorbed the older archaic species and subspecies of humanity.

Later in the Stone and Bronze Age, prehistoric migrations into Tanzania included Southern Cushitic speakers who moved south from present-day Ethiopia; Eastern Cushitic people who moved into Tanzania from north of Lake Turkana about 2,000 and 4,000 years ago; and the Southern Nilotes, including the Datoog, who originated from the present-day South Sudan–Ethiopia border region between 2,900 and 2,400 years ago. These movements took place at about the same time as the settlement of the Mashariki Bantu from West Africa in the Lake Victoria and Lake Tanganyika areas. They subsequently migrated across the rest of Tanzania between 2,300 and 1,700 years ago.

German rule began in mainland Tanzania during the late 19th century when Germany formed German East Africa. This was followed by British rule after World War I. The mainland was governed as Tanganyika, with the Zanzibar Archipelago remaining a separate colonial jurisdiction. Following their respective independence in 1961 and 1963, the two entities merged in 1964 to form the United Republic of Tanzania. The countries had joined the British Commonwealth in 1961 and Tanzania is still a member of the Commonwealth as one republic.

The United Nations estimated Tanzania's population at 56.31 million, which is slightly smaller than South Africa making it the second most populous country located entirely south of the Equator. The population is composed of about 120 ethnic, linguistic, and religious groups. The sovereign state of Tanzania is a presidential constitutional republic and since 1996 its official capital city has been Dodoma where the president's office, the National Assembly, and all government ministries are located.[20] Dar es Salaam, the former capital, retains most government offices and is the country's largest city, principal port, and leading commercial centre. Tanzania is a de facto one-party state with the democratic socialist Chama Cha Mapinduzi party in power.

Tanzania is mountainous and densely forested in the north-east, where Mount Kilimanjaro is located. Three of Africa's Great Lakes are partly within Tanzania. To the north and west lie Lake Victoria, Africa's largest lake, and Lake Tanganyika, the continent's deepest lake, known for its unique species of fish. To the south lies Lake Malawi. The eastern shore is hot and humid, with the Zanzibar Archipelago just offshore. The Menai Bay Conservation Area is Zanzibar's largest marine protected area. The Kalambo Falls, located on the Kalambo River at the Zambian border, is the second highest uninterrupted waterfall in Africa.

Christianity is the largest religion in Tanzania, but there are also substantial Muslim and Animist minorities. Over 100 different languages are spoken in Tanzania, making it the most linguistically diverse country in East Africa. The country does not have a de jure official language, although the national language is Swahili. Swahili is used in parliamentary debate, in the lower courts, and as a medium of instruction in primary school. English is used in foreign trade, in diplomacy, in higher courts, and as a medium of instruction in secondary and higher education; although the Tanzanian government is planning to discontinue English as the primary language of instruction, it will be available as an optional course. Approximately 10 per cent of Tanzanians speak Swahili as a first language, and up to 90 per cent speak it as a second.

Foods in Tanzania :
(1) Ugali : 

While not exclusive to Tanzania, ugali is ubiquitous throughout the country. It is starchy food made out of cornmeal, similar to polenta. It accompanies many Tanzanian meals, especially ones involving meat or vegetable stews. It can also be served with greens or sourced milk. Tanzanians usually eat with their hands, but ugali functions as a sort of utensil. Tanzanians use three fingers to scoop out some of the ugali and create a sort of mini bowl that is used to scoop the rest of the food on the plate. It is commonly served with meals in rural Tanzania.

(2) Maandazi : 

Mandazi is a fried bread that is prominent in the cuisine of Swahili-speaking people. It can be eaten as a side dish or as a snack. Mandazi can also be used as a dipping bread. They are also commonly served with tea. Mandazi has a similar triangular shape as samosas, but can also be oval or circular shaped. They tend to have a fluffy texture as well. Common ingredients include water, sugar, flour, yeast, and milk. It is available everywhere in Tanzania including on the street or hotels. They are similar to a donut, but not as sweet and are never covered in frosting.

(3) Vitumbua : 

Vitumbua is a deep-fried dish commonly served during breakfast, especially with tea. They are sort of an East African breakfast pancake. However, it has a heavier texture than a typical western pancake. It also has a coconut taste to them. Vitumbua is made from rice flour, coconut, and yeast. It is also commonly found in street food. It is sweet tasting and melts in your mouth. Vitumbua is especially common in Ramadan because of how filling it is.

(4) Wali wa nazi (rice in coconut milk) : 

A popular Swahili dish, wali wa nazi is meant to accompany a meal containing either red meat, chicken, fish, or curry. It can also be eaten as a meal by itself. Wali wa nazi consists of rice boiled with coconut milk, that is then garnished with vegetable leaves. Even after the inclusion of other ingredients, it maintains a distinct coconut flavor. It is primarily eaten by Tanzanians who live on the coast of the Indian Ocean. This contrasts with Tanzanians who live inland who eat beans, cornmeal, millet, and sorghum. Wali wa nazi can also be found in other East African countries such as Kenya.

(5) Supu ya ndizi : 

Supu ya ndizi is a plantain soup that is made by crushing up plantains into a paste, then cooked with chicken stock. The plantains used are usually unripened green. It is seasoned with salt and pepper. Supu ya ndizi is usually served for breakfast with chapatti on the side. It is a commonly found soup, as plantains are ubiquitous in Tanzania.

(6) Ndizi Kaanga (fried bananas) : 

A popular Tanzanian snack, Ndizi Kaanga are fried plantains that are usually unsweetened. This dish can be seasoned with sugar to give it a sweet taste. Ndizi Kaanga can be served as either a side dish or a snack. They are sometimes grilled, then seasoned with salt.

Weather & geography in  Tanzania  :
Tanzania has a generally comfortable climate year-round, although there are significant regional variations. The tropical coast stays quite hot and humid with heavy and reliable rainfall, especially during the rainy season. The dry season, with cooler temperatures, lasts from May to October. Tanzania comprises many lakes, national parks, and Africa's highest point, Mount Kilimanjaro (5,895 m or 19,341 ft). Northeast Tanzania is mountainous, while the central area is part of a large plateau covered in grasslands. The country also contains the southern portion of Lake Victoria on its northern border with Uganda and Kenya.Administratively, Tanzania is divided into 30 regions, with twenty-five on the mainland, three on Unguja (known informally as Zanzibar Island), and two on Pemba Island.

Per day Cost in Tanzania  :
You should plan to spend around TZS199,298 ($86) per day on your vacation in Tanzania, which is the average daily price based on the expenses of other visitors. Past travelers have spent, on average, TZS49,183 ($21) on meals for one day and TZS30,666 ($13) on local transportation.

History of Tanzania  :

The African Great Lakes nation of Tanzania dates formally from 1964, when it was formed out of the union of the much larger mainland territory of Tanganyika and the coastal archipelago of Zanzibar. The former was a colony and part of German East Africa from the 1880s to 1919’s when, under the League of Nations, it became a British mandate. It served as a British military outpost during World War II, providing financial help, munitions, and soldiers. In 1947, Tanganyika became a United Nations Trust Territory under British administration, a status it kept until its independence in 1961. The island of Zanzibar thrived as a trading hub, successively controlled by the Portuguese, the Sultanate of Oman, and then as a British protectorate by the end of the nineteenth century.Julius Nyerere, independence leader and "baba wa taifa" for Tanganyika (father of the Tanganyika nation), ruled the country for decades, while Abeid Amaan Karume, governed Zanzibar as its president and Vice President of the United Republic of Tanzania. Following Nyerere's retirement in 1985, various political and economic reforms began. He was succeeded in office by President Ali Hassan Mwinyi.

Language in Tanzania  :

Tanzania is a multilingual country. There are many languages spoken in the country, but no one language is spoken natively by a majority or a large plurality of the population. Swahili and English, the latter of which was inherited from colonial rule (see Tanganyika Territory), are widely spoken as lingua francas. They serve as working languages in the country, with Swahili being the official national language. There are more speakers of Swahili than of English in Tanzania.

Culture of  Tanzania  :

Following Tanganyika's independence (1961) and unification with Zanzibar (1964), leading to the formation of the state of Tanzania, President Julius Nyerere emphasised a need to construct a national identity for the citizens of the new country. To achieve this, Nyerere provided what has been regarded by some commentators as one of the most successful cases of ethnic repression and identity transformation in Africa.With over 130 ethnic groups and local languages spoken, Tanzania is one of the most ethnically diverse countries in Africa. Despite this, ethnic divisions have remained rare in Tanzania, especially when compared to the rest of the continent.

Place to visit in Tanzania  :
(1) Mount Meru

(2) Mikumi National Park

(3) Lake Natron

(4) Arusha National Park

(5) Lake Manyara National Park

(6) Ruaha National Park

(7) Stone Town

Hotel in Tanzania  :
(1) The Secret Garden Hotel

(2) Four Seasons Safari Lodge Serengeti

(3) Mikadi Beach Camp

(4) Seronera Wildlife Lodge

How to reach in Tanzania  :

The gateways to Tanzania are Dar es Salaam and Nairobi in Kenya. (Limited international scheduled flights also fly directly to Kilimanjaro.) Daily scheduled domestic flights link these gateways with Tanzania's wildlife areas. 

Travel Guide for Tanzania  : Food, hotel, Cost, Weather & geography, History, language, culture, things to see and do and how to reach. – Published by The Beyond News (Travelling).