Serengeti, Ngorongoro, Kilimanjaro, Zanzibar, The names roll off the tongue like a roster call of Africa’s most alluring destinations, all packed into one country. Resonating with hints of the wild and exotic, these four alone are reason enough to justify packing your bag and heading off to Tanzania. But the list isn’t finished. Bagamoyo, Tabora, Ujiji – stops on the 19th-century caravan routes into the heart of what was then an unknown continent.
Mafia and Pangani – once famed ports of call for merchant ships from the Orient. Kilwa – linchpin of a far-flung Indian Ocean trading network. Kigoma, Kalema, Kipili, Kasanga – bustling outposts along the remote Lake Tanganyika shoreline. Selous – Africa’s largest protected area. Ruaha and Katavi – insider tips for serious safari-goers. Mahale and Gombe – prime destinations for seeing chimpanzees in the wild.
Throughout, Tanzania offers travelers an array of options, set against the backdrop of a cultural mosaic in which over 100 ethnic groups amicably rub shoulders.
While most visitors head straight for the famed northern wildlife-watching circuit, followed by time relaxing on Zanzibar’s beaches, Tanzania has much more to offer anyone with the time and inclination to head off the beaten path.
Follow the coastline south into a Swahili culture whose rhythms have remained in many ways unchanged over the centuries. Journey through rolling hill country along the Tanzania highway, detouring to Ruaha National Park. Admire ancient rock paintings around Kolo village.
Explore the Lake Victoria shoreline, with its small fishing villages and tranquil islands. Experience the seldom-visited wilderness of Katavi, teeming with buffaloes and hippos.