Get a list of the top things to see and do in Tanzania
Tanzania can be divided into three areas: North-central Tanzania is home to famous wildlife parks and Mount Kilimanjaro. Western Tanzania is home to Jane Goodall’s beloved chimpanzees along Lake Tanganyika. South-eastern Tanzania is home to the commercial city of Dar es Salaam, the white-sand beaches of exotic Zanzibar Island, and Tanzania’s southern wildlife parks. Most travelers visit north-central Tanzania and Zanzibar Island for a seven to 10-day trip.
North Central Tanzania
Enjoy jeep, walking, or biking safaris and hot air balloon rides on the endless savannah of north-central Tanzania. Climb up Africa’s highest mountain Mount Kilimanjaro, and meet the tribes who continue to live as they have for thousands of years.
The top thing to see in north-central Tanzania is the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Ngorongoro Conservation Area. Ngorongoro Conservation Area is the world’s largest inactive, unflooded and unbroken caldera. Covering 260 square kilometers, it is among the best places to see lions, leopards, elephants, rhinoceros, and buffalos along with cheetahs, wildebeest, zebras, eland, gazelles, reedbuck, hyenas, jackals, African wild dogs, and 500 species of birds. The ancestral homeland of the Maasai people, Ngorongoro Conservation Area is also a great place to learn about their ancient culture.
Home of Jane Goodall’s beloved chimpanzees, Western Tanzania is perfect for rainforest walks to see chimpanzees and other monkeys and leisurely tours on Lake Tanganyika.
The top highlight is Gombe Stream National Park where Jane Goodall spent many years in the forest studying the behavior of chimpanzees. Besides chimpanzees, you will also see Vervet and colobus monkeys, baboons, forest pigs, and small antelopes, in addition to 200 species of tropical birds such as giant kingfishers, crowned eagles, and trumpeter hornbills.
South-eastern Tanzania is where you can dig your feet in the warm white sand of Zanzibar Island, explore its UNESCO World Heritage Site of Stone Town and enjoy swimming with dolphins. Tanzania’s largest wildlife park of Ruaha National Park is also located here as is its commercial capital of Dar es Salaam.
The top thing to see in south-eastern Tanzania is Zanzibar Island and its capital Stone Town. Stone Town is the old city and cultural heart of Zanzibar Island. A great example of a Swahili coastal trading town, it is a place of winding alleys, bustling bazaars, mosques, and grand Arab houses with imposing wooden, carved, and brass-studded doors. The Old Dispensary, now known as the Stone Town Cultural Centre, is a grand four-story building with a set of decorative balconies. It served as a dispensary during colonial times.
Useful Links for traveling to Tanzania
See everything to see and do in Tanzania.
Find out if you need a visa for Tanzania and review safety, health, and vaccine advisories.
Get up to speed on the history, economy, and culture of Tanzania with TravelMyHeart’s Tanzania cheat sheet.
Get the definitive guide to climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. Yes, it includes toileting arrangements.
Read the Covid 19 advisory and restrictions about traveling to Tanzania before planning a trip.