Best Time to Visit Tanzania
The best wildlife viewing months in Tanzania are during the dry season from late June to October. The best chance of seeing the wildebeest migration in the Serengeti is during June and July and the time to see the wildebeest calving is late January to February. The Southern and Western Circuit Parks are best visited during the dry-season (June to October), unlike the more popular Northern Circuit Parks that can be visited year-round. Tarangire is the only exception, since its wildlife viewing is considerably better in the dry-season as well.
June to October – Dry Season
- June and July are the best months to see the wildebeest migration.
- Animals are easier to spot since they concentrate around waterholes and rivers and there is less vegetation.
- There are fewer mosquitoes because there is little to no rain. Skies are clear and most days are sunny.
- Even though most tourists visit during the dry season, the parks still don’t feel crowded, except for the Seronera area in the Serengeti and the Ngorongoro Crater.
- Mornings and nights get cold. It’s recommended to bring warm clothing for morning game drives in open vehicles during the months of June, July and August.
November to May – Wet Season
- Late January to February is the time to see the calving in the southern Serengeti. This is an excellent time to see predator action.
- The scenery is green and beautiful. It’s low season, meaning lower rates and less crowded parks.
- Although wildlife is easier to spot in the dry season, you’ll still see plenty and most northern circuit parks offer good year-round game viewing.
- Migratory birds are present and birdwatching is at its best.
- Except for March, April and May, rains are mostly short afternoon showers and seldom have a negative impact on your trip.
- March to May is the peak of the wet season.
- Most big wildlife has migrated out of Tarangire NP and game viewing in Katavi, Selous and Ruaha is clearly better during the dry season.
Best time to go to Tanzania by major park
The Serengeti and the Ngorongoro Crater offer good wildlife viewing throughout the year. June and July are the best months for seeing the migration and February is the best month for the wildebeest calving. The dry months offer good game viewing throughout Tanzania. Tarangire and the southern and western circuit parks (including Katavi, Selous and Ruaha) are best visited in the dry season, from June to October.
Do I require a visa?
Visas are required to enter Tanzania as of other East African Countries – Kenya and Uganda. They can either be obtained in advance through the various Embassies/High Commissions abroad, Consulates or at the airports or other ports/borders of entry.
The process is fast and easy and all one requires to have is a valid passport (at least six months).
Where and how can I apply?
Airport and Arrival Information; Three International Airports, Dar-es-Salaam, now know as “Julias Nyerere International Airport – JKIA” and “Kilimanjaro International Airport – KIA” and Zanzibar International Airport. See flights coming to Tanzania and Zanzibar
To begin safaris in Northern Tanzania, most visitors are advised to book with Airlines whose Arrivals & Departures are at KILIMANJARO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (KIA) which is 45 minutes drive from Arusha town. See International Airlines such as AIR TANZANIA, KLM Royal Dutch with daily Flights out of Amsterdam into Kilimanjaro and Dar es Salaam, GULF AIR, KENYA AIRWAYS, ETHIOPIAN AIRLINES and Emirates. It is also possible to get flights arriving to Nairobi (Kenya) from where you can make arrangements to transfer to near city of Arusha.
Ferries: Boat and Ferries to Zanzibar and Mafia
Immunizations / Vaccination:
What medical precautions should we take?
Vaccination requirements change from time to time. We suggest you consult your local doctor or health department for information on the latest health precautions. Currently, shots against Yellow fever and cholera are recommended but not mandatory. As a precaution we usually advise anti-malarial drugs to be taken before, during and after your visit to East Africa. Also, if you are on prescription medication, please ensure you have an adequate supply to last the duration of your stay and a copy of your prescription(s).
Malaria: your risk of malaria may be high in all countries in East Africa, including cities. See your health care provider for a prescription ant-malarial drug for details concerning risk and preventive medications.
What I should know for Safari? Everyone agrees that there is substantial planning required by those considering a safari in Africa.
How far in advance should I book my safari?
It is better to book as far in advance as possible to ensure availability at the time you wish to travel, especially during the high/peak seasons – June to Oct and Christmas/New Year season.
What should I take on safari? (Should be used as a guide only)
As you will want to capture as much as possible of this amazing tour, don’t forget a camera, camcorder with lots of films, tapes, and replacement batteries for all these. A torch light would come in very handy.
Sunglasses, hat, sun lotion, lip-balm, insect repellents and your own toiletry requirements, small first-aid kit, a spare pair of glasses or lenses if you are using one.
Don’t forget a swimming costume and you might want to include a good book for the relaxing hours. Sleeping-bags and towels if you are planning for camping safaris must be included.
What should I take for mountain climbing? (Should be used as a guide only)
Sunglasses/Snow goggles, Rucksack & day pack, 3-4 season sleeping-bag, Insulation pad, Balaclava or woolen hat, Long sleeved shirt, Several pairs of socks, Gloves, Waterproof trousers & jacket, Warm sweaters, Anorak/raincoat, Gaiters, Water-bottle, Wooden walking stick, Hiking boots, Pair of light walking shoes, Warm scarf, Toiletry requirements, Flashlight with batteries, Sun protection cream, Small first aid kit, Lip salve, A whistle and some plastic bags.
Baggage Limit: 1 bag 15kgs maximum. It is advisable to have your own insurance covering, travel, medical, baggage and personal injury.
Persons undergoing medical treatment should obtain approval from their doctor prior to booking the trek. The trek is taken at the clients own risk.
What kind of food do I expect during the trip?
The quality and variety of food available on safari will be a pleasant surprise for our clients. Most lodges serve meals in buffet-style. The food is prepared according to the western-tastes, and includes some local cuisine too. If a camping safari is chosen, fresh meat and produce is prepared by the expert chefs accompanying the clients to the highest standards.
Special dietary requirements such as vegetarian or diabetic meals can be easily arranged with prior notice. A vegetarian or vegan may wish to bring along some alternative protein sources. Persons with multiple food allergies, it is advisable to bring along supplemental snacks. Please notify us of any possible dietary restrictions along with booking confirmation
Is drinking water safe?
In some places tap water is safe, but generally, it is not advisable to drink or brush your teeth with tap water. Bottled water is available everywhere and in almost all Lodges and Hotels and all super markets. On treks and safaris, it is better to carry sufficient bottled water.
What Type of Clothes to take? :
For safaris, especially in Northern Tanzania (Serengeti, Ngorongoro, Lake Manyara, Tarangire and Arusha), during the day, light clothing is recommended with sturdy shoes and canvas hats. During the night in areas like Arusha and the Ngorongoro Highlands; where the altitude is between 1500 – 2500 Metres; a cardigan or pullover may be essential. In the same pack, remember your sun cream, lotions, sun glasses, a pair of binoculars, and a camera with rolls of film.
What would be the accommodations like?
Wide range of accommodations is available to suit your budget, lodges, hotels, tented camps, permanent camps to name a few. Most hotels are a nice blend of luxury, ambience, offering picturesque views. Once an inquiry is submitted, we provide you with a detailed list of accommodations available to suit your requirements.
Advise regarding photography?
For wildlife photography, a 200 mm zoom lens is the smallest that you should use, A 300-400 zoom is preferable. For bird-watchers, a 500mm or larger is necessary, and a wide-angle lens would be ideal for scenic shots. Bring extra camera and flash batteries and plenty of film – you may find these quite expensive and difficult to obtain locally.
Shopping Around: Locally made products are widely sold at reasonable prices. Ask your local Guide for the best offer to buy yourself or your friend items like; Batiks and Tingatinga paintings, Ebony carvings such as cutlery, bracelets, furniture and sculptures. Others include Maasai belts, rings and necklaces made of colourful beads, Khanga for women’s wrap around and Jewels to include Tanzania’s special Mineral – Tanzanite.
Do I require Travel Insurance?
We strongly recommend that you take out all of the necessary Travel Insurance before commencing on your journey.
What is the best time to visit Tanzania?
Climate in Tanzania is always wonderful, though you might have to avoid rains from Mid April to end of May to climb Kilimanjaro; however the following prediction is based on the movement of animals. It is the best time for game viewing.
all year round except April and May.
June through October
Zanzibar, Pemba and Mafia
June through October; December through March