Tanzania has been on my budget list long enough. But I never thought how much time I need until I already had my flight ticket and was stressing myself whether I have enough time. In the end, it worked out for me pretty well. I had my 10 days itinerary for Tanzania and I was more than happy about it. During that time, you can manage to visit both mt. Kilimanjaro or Zanzibar beaches. But it very much depends on what do you want to see.
Ideas for Tanzania 10 days itinerary
Tanzania is a big country and there are so many natural wonders. You can probably spend here more than one month. But if you have only 10 days, you should choose your points of interest and go just for them. It could help to make your bucket list for this country so you can see what is there and then connect the dots.
10 days in Tanzania – Safari, off the beaten path destinations, Zanzibar
1. day Arusha
You have been probably traveling for a long time. Feel free to rest and relax for a day in a local town. Both Arusha is very close to all the national parks and a great starting point safari. Arusha has all the necessary things every traveler needs – from luxury hotels to budget hostels, ATMs, supermarkets, and great restaurants.
2. – 4. day Safari
You can spend a week on safari and still stay entertained or just two days. However, if your budget is low, or you simply have only 10 days in Tanzania, 2 days can give you a great taste of what is it like to go for safari. Tanzania has a lot of national parks in the north of the country and they should be on your itinerary. Consider which parks you want to visit, the price will probably depend on it. Make sure that after your safari you will be transferred to Moshi because everything is closer from there at this point.
5. day Kikuletwa Hotsprings
Especially if you feel like resting after the safari, go for a day trip to Kikuletwa Hotspring. The water is clear blue and it since not that many people know about this place, you can enjoy this little oasis without any disturbance.
6. day Materuni waterfall
Here is another great day trip from Moshi. Materuni waterfall is great for anyone who likes hiking. The hike isn’t too difficult and you can stop by a local village to get to know about their coffee culture. Like Kikuletwa – this is also off the beaten path, so you can be here almost alone.
7. Move to Zanzibar resort
After a week in Tanzania, you should enjoy yourself and see their beautiful beaches. Best resorts with white sand beaches are on Zanzibar, where also most tourists going. However, there are still some places, that are in general not that common among tourists.
8. Day trip to Stone Town
Stone Town is the capital of Zanzibar and it is a place where Freddie Mercury was born. Spend here the whole day and get to know more about local history, have a trip to Prison Island, and try not to get lost in local streets. You can also visit here Old fort and Sultans palace, which are great sight from colonization time.
9. – 10. day Zanzibar beaches
Spend your last days in Zanzibar by enjoying the beach. Resorts here are great and affordable, besides there is a lot to do! You can always go snorkeling, watch wildlife in Jozani Forest, or watch the sunset at one of the beaches. If you feel like trying some sport, try to go to Paje and take a kite surfing lesson.
Itinerary for 10 days in Tanzania – Kilimanjaro and northern hidden gems
1. day – Moshi
Arrive in Moshi and allow yourself some rest. The next 5 days are going to be tough. Moshi is a great starting point for everyone who wishes to climb Kilimanjaro. You can also visit local markets and get some snacks for the next couple of days.
2. – 6. day – Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro
Kilimanjaro is the highest peak of Africa, but you can still climb it within 5 days if you choose to go with the Marangu route, which is also one of the easiest ways to do it. With this route, you will manage to go up to Kilimanjaro in 5 days. You will need a guide, cook, and possibly a porter for your baggage.
7. day – Kikuletwa hot springs
What an adventure right? I guess after all these intensive days of climbing you will need a rest. And there is no better resting place than laying in hot springs and enjoying little oasis around you. Kikuletwa is an amazing place for rest and you can get here a beer to enjoy it even more.
8. day – Visit Materuni waterfall
Very off the beaten path place with a minimum of people. It is a great day trip from Moshi. You will have to hike to the waterfall, but don’t worry, it is nothing comparing to climbing Kilimanjaro. In fact, it is just a very easy hike with a waterfall at the end where you can swim in it.
9. day – Arusha national park
From all the national parks, like Ngorongoro and Serengeti, this is also one of the places, where you can go for safari. Unlike other places that are relatively fine, you can get to see all of Arusha national park in just one day. And you will manage to see here a lot of animals. Possibly not all of the big 5 but certainly lions, giraffes, and some more wildlife.
10. day – Moshi and homecoming
So after all these amazing places, it is time to go home. You can chill out in Moshi until your plane is up. The airport isn’t too far from the town. So you can spend a day visiting a Maasai village or buying souvenirs.
10 days in Tanzania – itinerary for Kilimanjaro and Safari
1. – 5. day – Climbing Kilimanjaro with Marangu route
This itinerary is the easiest one when it comes to organization. On your first day, you will ask the company with whom you are climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro, to pick you up at the airport. And you can start climbing from there. That is the easiest way to do it, especially if your flight is landing in Moshi in the morning.
Marangu Route is the easiest and the shortest route to get on the top of Kilimanjaro mountain. It is also the most popular option to do. During these 5 days, you will get up on the roof of Africa and back. You cannot do it alone so consider which company do you want to go with. Either way, you should have a guide, cook, and maybe a porter if you don’t want to hold your baggage all the time.
At the end of this adventure, make sure you will get a transfer to Arusha, where will your safari adventure start.
6. – 10. day – Safari in northern Tanzania
Spend a couple of days on safari in Northern Tanzania. Local national parks are world-famous. You can visit here the famous Serengeti with all the big cats and possibly rhinos. And generally, 4 days should be enough to see the big 5. So prepare your binoculars and enjoy the ride. Sure you will be going places whole days but all you need to do is just to look around. Which can be relaxing after all the hiking on Kilimanjaro.
10 days itinerary for Tanzania – safari and off the beaten path gems
1. day – Arusha
Once you come to Tanzania, go directly to Arusha and get prepared for your next adventure. Arusha is one of the biggest towns in Tanzania and it is a great place to start your adventure if you are planning to visit some of the local national parks. Before you go there, you can explore this city and see local markets and the vibe of the African city.
2. – 6. day – Safari
There are 5 national parks around Arusha. Serengeti, Ngorongoro, Lake Manyara, Tarangire, and Arusha national park. All of them have a lot of animals running around and you can certainly see the big 5. So get your binoculars and prepare yourself for an unforgettable couple of days. However, keep in mind, that even if you have 5 days on safari, you probably won’t be able to visit them all. But you can visit most of them. So ask the company you are going with, which safari parks can you visit.
When your safari is finished, make sure you will be transferred to Arusha.
7. day – Lake Natron
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It is a long way from Arusha, but it is worth it. Lake Natron is the most alkaline lake in the world. It is colored red and it is set in beautiful nature around. This lake is because of its chemistry dangerous to animals around. But you can walk around safe and sound without any issues. It is a place closer to Ngorongoro so maybe it would pay off to ask your safari company if they can help you to get there as well, instead of you going there from Arusha. There is a lot of tour operators that would do this for you.
At the end of this trip, make sure you will go to Moshi. It is closer to the next trips and the airport as well.
8. day – Kikuletwa
I have mentioned these hot springs several times, but they should be visited. It is a great place to just chill and have a nice day while bathing in a magical oasis. And you won’t have this opportunity in every country. Kikuletwa is closer to Moshi and even from there, you will need an hour to get there, but it is certainly worth it.
9. day – Lake Chala
Another nice lake to see in northern Tanzania. It is a crater lake and it is set in amazing nature around. You might not see big mammals around or colorful birds like at lake Natron, but it is still a good place for birdwatching. there is a lot of them all around. Besides that, you can enjoy a nice nature on the bike around.
10. day – Homecoming
At this point, you are probably located in Moshi. It is a cozy town with interesting markets. You definitely shouldn’t forget to visit local markets and buy here some souvenirs. Moshi is also very close to a local airport, basically only half an hour’s drive, so it is a comfortable location to spend your day at.
Practical information about 10 days itinerary for Tanzania
Everyone who comes to Tanzania will need Visa. You can either get one upon your arrival or you can ask for them online. For a visa that will allow you to enter the country once you will pay 50 USD. If you are planning to volunteer here, you will need a special visa that is more expensive.
One entry visa lasts 3 months. If you have some sort a big plan on an African road trip, you can ask for a re-entry visa, that costs 100 USD.
This is an absolute must in Tanzania. In fact, upon your arrival, local authorities will ask you if you can prove that you are vaccinated against yellow fewer.
Yellow fever is one of the necessary vaccination if you are going to Tanzania. You should also consider vaccination against typhus, hepatitis. In northern Tanzania, it is also recommended to use anti-malaria pills. But you should speak to your doctor about this. If you tell him your exact itinerary, he should know which vaccinations you should get.
How to get around?
So you got a ticket and now there is this everlasting question of how to get around. Tanzania is quite a big country, and there are several options for getting around.
Bus – you can go by bus, but it will take a lot of time. Especially if you choose to travel long distances like from Dar es Salaam to Moshi or Arusha. If you choose a bus, invest in the tourist once, since they are more comfortable and there is insurance that nobody will take your bag. By bus, you might want to travel up to 15 hours.
Local buses – If you want to go by short distances, like from Moshi to Materuni waterfall or something similar, you can go for local buses called Dalla-dalla. They are usually crowded, but it is the cheapest way to get around Tanzania. They are also safe to travel with.
Taxies/ drivers – In my Tanzania itinerary, I was always mentioning where you should be transferred. That is because a lot of tour companies would offer you a transfer as well. And it is really easy to organize trips with them and then ask to get to another city. Only thing is that if you have started for example in Moshi and want to go to Arusha afterward, chances are, you might pay a little bit more, but usually not too much.
Airplanes – If you feel like it is not worth to spend a lot of time on a bus, it is fine, Tanzania has also a lot of convenient airports. You can fly internationally to Arusha, Moshi, Dar es Saalam or Zanzibar. Prices are not so friendly, but if you reserve tickets in good time, there is a chance that you will find something cheap. There are a lot of local plane companies that would help you out.
When is a good time to visit?
Like a lot of Subsaharan countries, Tanzania doesn’t have spring, summer, autumn, and winter. Tanzania has either dry season or rainy season. For Kilimanjaro climbing and safari it is probably better to come in the dry season when it is easy to get around all of the hiking paths and watch all of the animals as they gather by rest of the water sources. The dry season lasts from June to October. November starts the shoulder season that lasts till January. And lastly in January starts the rainy season. This season is better for bird watching.
Essential things to pack
Here are a couple of things that you shouldn’t forget. First of all, if you want to go for a safari, pack something light or khaki color, otherwise the flies will think you are dinner. Whether you are going for safari or Kilimanjaro, bear in mind that it can be cold and you should probably have some warm clothes with you. Also, don’t forget to take sunscreen and bug repellent.
The next thing you should have with you would be binoculars. Especially if you are planning to visit safari. Here is a thing that not everybody tells you. Animals don’t always just walk around you freely. So you should count on bringing something to see them better.
If you are going on a camping safari, you will also need a headlamp to get to a toilet and generally just walk around.
Tanzania is a safe country, but there are some places where it is better to be careful. One of them is Dar Es Saalam. Around this area, it is common that tourists are getting kidnap by “taxi drivers”, petty crime, and mugging is quite normal. Therefore make sure that you always have a hotel taxi and don’t carry all the cash or cards with you.
In Stone Town in Zanzibar locals sometimes use the fact that tourists are getting lost in streets and will try to sell you their services for money. Some will try to get you even more lost while “showing you interesting spot”. Pickpocketing is not uncommon especially during the night, so make sure you have all of the important documents at the hotel.
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