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Ideas for a 15 days trip in Tanzania

Dublin, Ireland
6 posts
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Ideas for a 15 days trip in Tanzania

Hi,

I’m looking for some advices on how to better plan our first trip to Tanzania. It’s 2 of us and we are going to spend 15 days in total.

We will land in Dar Es Salaam and were thinking to head straight to Arusha to start a tour of 4-5 days. We would like to visit Ngorongoro Cater, Serengeti NP, Tarangire. Is there any opportunity to visit the Kilimanjaro for daily tours?

We want to end our trip spending 3-4 days in Zanzibar and were wondering where else we could spend the rest of the time. Somewhere in between I presume.

Looking for some suggestion here on where to go. Can we just travel on our own or should we continue with some organized tour?

Thanks for your help

Marco

Ottawa, Canada
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1. Re: Ideas for a 15 days trip in Tanzania

The Serengeti alone is the size of Ireland. 4-5 days to see the 3 parks are a little unrealistic. If you haven't purchased your tickets yet, you might want to revisit the flight plan. Fly into JRO (Kilimanjaro international airport) which is near Arusha and the start of the Northern Circuit parks that you list. Dar is either an all day busride or a flight away. Add in the cost of an overnight hotel, flights that are often hundreds of dollars each and the convenience might have you rethink any possible rise in cost for the ' in one and out another' flight plan.

You don't mention the time of year you want to go either. It might well dictate the best area of the Serengeti to be in and may add additional days to a safari. Most people recommend a safari of 10 days to do the Northern Circuit as it includes a lot of driving between parks and you generally want to get the most out of your visit.

Tanzania has few local organized tours provided. Typically, a private safari for 2 costs less than an overseas tour company safari.

If you only want to safari 4 or 5 days, then I suggest you stay in the Dar area and arrange safari of the southern circuit - Ruaha, Selous or Mikumi parks.

This is the time to do some reading and familiarize yourself with the areas. You can consider Fodor's Complete Safari Guide to read about the different countries that offer safari and how they are typically 'done' in each country. Or the Bradt Guides to Tanzania (or Northern Tanzania) are good mid and budget options and info for getting around Tanz.

Dublin, Ireland
6 posts
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2. Re: Ideas for a 15 days trip in Tanzania

Hi Quiltingmamma,

thanks for your answer. We haven't booked flights yet, we are still in that phase of reading and getting as many info as we can. We'll be there last week in October and first week November. I mentioned 5 days safari because I read many comments of people who have done this but we are open to do a bit more if needed.

I'll check flights for JRO but I got the impressions they were way more expensive than flying into Dar and then catch a new internal flight for Arusha.

Would you suggest booking a safari prior to departure or organizing once on site in Arusha? I've travelled all South America and Asia but never been in Africa so I really don't done if it fits for a 100% backpacker experience.

Cheers

Isle of Man, United...
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38,035 posts
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3. Re: Ideas for a 15 days trip in Tanzania

Well on the ticket from I suggest you look closely at KLM from Dublin to Amsterdam and then non stop direct to JRO. It may be €150 more but as QM you save that in getting to Arusha quicker. Turkish do the same route via IST as does Qatar via DOH. check them out. KLM have the advantage of letting you get back on the plane in DAR after your visit to ZNZ.

But as before. Do some research, there ARE tours but you can also arrange your own car & guide quite easily and everything then is as you wish. Try some of the Top ten Qs on the right of the main page.

October/November is ideal for Tarangire as well as northern Serengeti.

Ottawa, Canada
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4. Re: Ideas for a 15 days trip in Tanzania

Everyone has their own ideas of how long to spend on things. Some like to saver a moment, others like to say 'been there, done that'. You will have to decide what works for you. I like 4-5 days in the Serengeti alone, so I might not be the best to recommend....and many here feel the same. You might also want to sign up for the Lonely Planet Thorntree forum. TA and LP often have different demographics providing answers. We tend to be the ones to book ahead, take time and pay a little more to get a safari we can depend on. LP tends to be a more nomadic and intrepid group that take their chances to save on the budget and take what opportunities they can get on the ground. They tend to have a higher tolerance to risk. For the backpacker experienced, that might suit you better. We get those who ask on here, but few report back on their backpacking experiences.

We have heard some horror stories on here of folks who waited to to organize until they got to Arusha and those sweet talking fly boys sold them a plan and then they spent most of the time driving around picking up and dropping off travellers and little to know time in the parks. Occasionally some are satisfied with the results.

Every year and every traveller has different experiences of flights, so some will find big savings arriving in Dar and others won't. It also depends on the airlines. I know my pricing from Canada is much higher than my southern neighbours in the US. Realize that KLM lets off in JRO before it arrives in DAR so costing shouldn't be that much. You can also look at Nairobi airport where you can bus to Arusha in 6 hours, or fly to JRO. Consider all options.

Munich
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5. Re: Ideas for a 15 days trip in Tanzania

For KLM: a few things have changed here:

On the way back from Kilimandscharo Airport they don't fly to DAR but to Kigali.

We booked this fly for november and a few days ago we got the information about this change.

Isle of Man, United...
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6. Re: Ideas for a 15 days trip in Tanzania

Not every day. Some days via KIG and others via DAR.

7. Re: Ideas for a 15 days trip in Tanzania

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8. Re: Ideas for a 15 days trip in Tanzania

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Chicago
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9. Re: Ideas for a 15 days trip in Tanzania

Look at the list on number 4 topics on the right side of the Tanzania forum and they will give you some names of recommended travel agents that are local to the area. Send your requests to a few and see what they can do for you. I strongly suggest you put all of your days into safari to visit Tarangire, Ngorongoro, and Serengeti at the minimum. 7-8 days will do it, but more is even better to allow you to relax, visit some cultural experiences, and get a taste for the real Tanzania. It is spectacular.

Dublin, Ireland
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10. Re: Ideas for a 15 days trip in Tanzania

Thank you all for your tips - Loads of ideas here.

I'm now thinking to dedicate more days to the safari, possibly 8-9 days. However we don't want to do a Luxury-Type Safari, we are more keen to do a camp, adventure, low budget safari.

Would you recommend any particular private tour? And money-wise, any idea on how much these Safaris could cost? Would it be more convenient to book in advance of our departure or upon arrival?

Thanks again

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