The United Republic of Tanzania is a nation in central East Africa bordered by Kenya and Uganda to the north, Rwanda, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the west, and Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique to the south. The country's eastern borders lie on the Indian Ocean. The official capital of Tanzania is Dodoma, where parliament and some government offices are located. Between independence and 1996 the major coastal city of Dar es Salaam had been the country's political capital. Today Dar es Salaam remains the principal commercial city of Tanzania and the de-facto seat of most government institutions. It is the major seaport for the country and its landlocked neighbours.
The name Tanzania is a portmanteau of Tanganyika and Zanzibar. The two states united in 1964 to form the United Republic of Tanganyika and Zanzibar, which later the same year was, renamed the United Republic of Tanzania.
At 945,087 km², Tanzania is the 31st largest country in the world and is comparable in size to Nigeria.
Tanzania is mountainous in the northeast where Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa's highest peak, is situated. To the north and west are the Great Lakes of Lake Victoria (Africa's largest lake) and Lake Tanganyika (Africa's deepest lake, known for its unique species of fish). Central Tanzania comprises a large plateau, with plains and arable land. The eastern shore is hot and humid, with the island of Zanzibar lying just offshore.
Tanzania contains many large and ecologically significant wildlife parks, some of which we run safaris to, including the famous Ngorongoro Crater, Serengeti National Park in the north, and Selous Game Reserve and Mikumi National Park in the south.
Tanzania has a tropical climate. In the highlands, temperatures range between 10ËšC and 20ËšC during cold and hot seasons respectively. The rest of the country has temperatures rarely falling lower than 20ËšC. The hottest period extends between November and February (25ËšC - 31ËšC) while the coldest period occurs between May and August (15ËšC - 20ËšC).
The March - May rains are referred to as the long rains or Masika, whereas the October - December rains are generally known as short rains or Vuli. These rains are no longer set in stone due to global warming and a changing of the weather systems and it is possible to climb Kilimanjaro all year round.
Tanzania has more than 126 ethnic groups and each ethnic group has its own language. No language is official, but Swahili is the de facto national language, used for inter-ethnic communication and for official matters. After gaining independence, English was still used for some official issues but nowadays it is no longer used in the administration, in the parliament or in the government. Hence Tanzania is one of the few African states in which a local language has gained importance to the disadvantage of the ex-colonial language.
What Is the Time Difference in Tanzania?
Tanaznia time is GMT/UTC plus 3 hours. Check out the current time in Tanzania here. The Tanzania Country Code is +255. For making calls back home, international rates can be quite expensive, be sure to check with your local carrier prior to visiting Tanzania. Wifi is available in most hotels in major cities. Connection speeds are not what you are used to in the west. Some places require you to pay for WiFi. In more rural areas, WiFi is not as readily available.
Cellular service is reliable in most areas of Tanzania. You may even have service in the national parks. However, since you will be traveling in remote areas, we cannot guarantee cellular services or internet. Expect to be un-plugged for the majority of the journey.
How Do I Charge My Electronics While in Tanzania?
Tanzania uses a British type BS-1363 plug type. The voltage is 220-240. Electricity is widely available in larger cities and urban areas throughout Tanzania. However, along trekking routes and in game reserves and national parks, there is limited to no access to electricity.
We advise that you bring a battery pack or solar charger should you think you will need to charge any electronics. To save batteries, turn off phones at night, and keep them close to your body when temperatures drop. This will help conserve battery power.
What Language is Spoken in Tanzania?
Tanzania is a multi-lingual nation with several different languages. The most widely spoken languages are Bantu Swahili and English. English has been around since colonial rule. However don’t be fooled, most Tanzanians speak Swahili instead of English. In major tourist areas, English is widely spoken. All of our guides speak English and you will be able to communicate. However, whenever you visit a foreign country it’s important to know a little of the local language. Check out some helpful Swahili phrases.
What is the Climate in Tanzania?
Tanzania is a large nation, and therefore has a varied climate. Overall the climate is tropical, with hot and humid coastal areas while the northwestern highlands are cool and temperate. Tanzania also has two rainy seasons: the short and long rains. The short rains happen from October to December, while the long rains are from March until June.
The best times to visit Tanzania is outside of the rainy seasons from June to October. For climbing Kilimanjaro, we also suggest going during either January-March or June to October. During the spring season, there will likely be snow along the way and temps will be cooler.
Additional Weather Resources: