WHAT TO PACK
Just south of the equator, Tanzania is huge and its sheer size means that the climate varies considerably within it. However, generally the main rainy season, or the 'long rains', lasts during about March, April and May. Afternoon tropical downpours are the norm – which are heavier and more predictable beside the coast and on the islands. The humidity is high and daily temperatures reach the low-mid 30°s.
The long dry season lasts throughout June, July, August, September and October is when rainfall is unusual, even on the islands. Temperatures vary hugely with altitude and location, but it's usually a fine, clear sky and sunny weather – it's a great time to visit Tanzania. During November and December there's another rainy season: the 'short rains'. These are much lighter than the main rains and less reliable.
If it has rained during the short rains, then it normally dries up for a few months, January and February, which is Tanzania's 'short dry season', before starting to rain again in earnest in March.
Modest clothing is advisable in the bigger towns and cities in Tanzania, however in the lodges and camps and on the beaches at the coast, it is perfectly fine to wear shorts and shirts or beach wear. Please be aware that Zanzibar is a predominantly Islamic island, so dress appropriately when you are in the towns and villages. Generally speaking, light layers of clothing in neutral safari colours of green, khaki and beige are the best items to bring with you, as well as a warmer jacket or fleece for the colder evenings. A hat is also a must have! Dark colours such as navy or black can attract tstese fllies and are best avoided, as are bright colours like yellow, red and purple if you are going on safari.
What to pack
Layers - long and short sleeve shirts and trousers
A warm fleece or jumper
A lightweight waterproof jacket
Comfortable but sturdy shoes
A hat or baseball cap
Sunscreen – a must!
Toiletries – most camps will provide shampoo, shower gel and soap
A small torch
Spare batteries, plug adaptors and charging equipment
A good pair of Binoculars
Books or a fully loaded Kindle / iPad for siesta time
PLEASE NOTE: Plastic bags are banned and carry a fine if brought into the country. Make sure you leave your bags on the aeroplane upon arrival.
Many international airlines have a baggage allowance of 20 kgs or more per person, but please check this with your individual airline. Please be advised that on domestic flights, luggage is limited to one soft sided bag per person with a maximum weight of 15kg. No hardshell bags are permitted.
Tanzania's currency is the Tanzanian shilling (TZS). Most camps and lodges charge in US Dollars; very few now accept travellers' cheques, although most accept credit cards (Visa or MasterCard) but may charge a fee to do so. Buying Tanzania's currency in Europe or America can be difficult; many visitors will wait until they arrive in Tanzania to buy local currency.
We must stress that tipping is not compulsory or expected; rather it is an extra reward for excellent service. If you are pleased with the service you receive you are more than welcome to tip your guide or the staff in the various lodges and camps. As a guideline for tipping your guide and the staff , you can leave between USD 10 to 15 per traveller per day. Tipping is usually done at the end of your safari and most lodges and camps have a tip box in the main area. You may tip the staff individually, place a tip for all the staff in the box or do both. Tips can be made in Tanzanian Shillings or US Dollars.