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Travel advice for Tanzania

 

  • Travel Summary
  • Safety and security
  • Local laws and customs
  • Entry requirements
  • Health
  • Natural disasters
  • General

There are continuing problems with the electricity supply on Zanzibar.  People who have booked a holiday on Zanzibar may wish to confirm with their hotel that replacement electricity (generator) will be provided.
There is an underlying threat from terrorism.  Attacks could be indiscriminate, including in places frequented by expatriates and foreign travellers.
Piracy is a significant threat in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean, especially for shipping which does not take appropriate precautions or follow agreed shipping industry best practice guidelines. See the Sea Travel section of this Travel Advice.
You should exercise particular caution if you intend to travel to the area bordering Burundi.  See the Local Travel (Burundi border areas) section of this Travel Advice.
Long distance buses are frequently involved in accidents which can often result in fatalities.  If you have concerns over the safety of the vehicle or the ability of the driver, you should use alternative methods of transport.
Armed robberies, while still rare, are increasing, both at remote sites and in urban centres. Several serious incidents involving British nationals and other expatriates have occurred in the Arusha region.  See the Crime section of this Travel Advice.
Around 50,000 British tourists visit Tanzania every year (Source: Tanzanian Tourist Board).  Most visits are trouble-free.  13 British nationals required consular assistance in Tanzania in the period 01 April 2008 – 31 March 2009 for the following types of incident; deaths (3 cases); hospitalisations (1 case); and arrests, for a variety of offences (1 case). During this period assistance was also requested with regard to lost or stolen passports (57 cases).   You should keep your passport safe and secure at all times, and remember to carry a photocopy.
We recommend that you obtain comprehensive travel and medical insurance before travelling.  See the General (Insurance) Travel Advice.

 

Safety and security Terrorism

There is an underlying threat from terrorism in Tanzania.  Attacks could be indiscriminate, including in places frequented by expatriates and foreign travellers.


There were simultaneous terrorist attacks on the US Embassies in Dar es Salaam and Nairobi (Kenya) in August 1998.  These killed 12 people in Dar es Salaam and 232 in Nairobi. For more general information see our Terrorism Abroad  (http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/travel-and-living-abroad/staying-safe/terrorism ) page.

Dar es Salaam

On 24 September 2009 two children died as a result of the ongoing clearance of unexploded ammunition and ordnance dispersed during the accidental detonation of the Mbagala ammunition storage depot (to the south of Dar es Salaam) on 28 April 2009.  We advise that anyone visiting the area of Mbagala should not pick up any metal or suspicious objects and should report such findings to the local authorities.

Crime

Although most visits to Tanzania are trouble-free, violent and armed crime is increasing, with incidents reported both on the mainland and the islands.  Mugging and robberies, sometimes accompanied by violence or the threat of violence, occur throughout Tanzania.  All visitors, particularly women, should avoid walking alone, especially in isolated areas and on beaches, particularly (but not only) after dark.  Do not make yourself an obvious target for muggers and pickpockets.  Do not carry cameras or large sums of cash in the streets or wear expensive-looking jewellery or watches.  Be alert to the risk of thefts of personal property from cars and taxis stationary in traffic; always drive with your doors locked and windows up.  Since 2006 there have been a number of serious incidents, some including physical attacks, involving British nationals and other expatriates. Several of these attacks were in Arusha Region.

 Specific incidents in popular tourist areas from 2007 to date have included:

  • An attack on a group of tourists, including a British national, by armed robbers near Lake Duluti in Arusha resulting in two tourists and a tour guide being shot. 
  • A party of five tourists being robbed by armed bandits near the Ngorogoro crater.
  • Tourists and residents, including three British nationals, robbed by armed bandits at a private bar in Arusha.
  • A British national was seriously attacked and robbed by an armed group at his private residence in Arusha.
  • Tourists were robbed by armed bandits whilst travelling from Lake Natron to Arusha. 
  • An Australian charity worker was shot dead by armed bandits in northern Arusha.
  • In September 2008 a large group of armed bandits carried out two separate attacks on European tourists staying in tented camps near Tarangire National Park.
  • In January 2009 a group of Western tourists were robbed at gunpoint whilst returning to Moshi after climbing Mt Kilimanjaro.


There are cases of armed crime in Dar es Salaam, including in the peninsula area and Coco beach, which is popular with expatriates.

Travellers should also exercise caution at the Ubungo bus station in Dar es Salaam where muggers and pickpockets have singled out tourists.

In Zanzibar there have been several reports of robberies, some accompanied with violence, occurring on popular tourist beaches.
 For more general information see Victims of Crime Abroad

Political demonstrations are relatively rare although they do occasionally take place in Dar es Salaam, Zanzibar and elsewhere in Tanzania. With Presidential and Parliamentary elections scheduled for 2010 they are likely to occur with higher frequency.  These demonstrations usually pass off peacefully, however you should exercise caution and avoid the area.  You should check local media reports for information on future demonstrations.

Local Travel Information about travel away from areas regularly frequented by foreigners can be patchy.  You are advised to invest in an up-to-date travel guide and use only the services of reliable tour companies.


National Parks

Tanzania's national parks are popular destinations for tourists.  Careful planning is important to get the best out of your safari.  If you choose to camp use official sites only.  Ensure that you are properly equipped and seek local advice when entering isolated areas.  Some of the parks are extremely remote, and emergency access and evacuation can be difficult.   There are risks associated with viewing wildlife, particularly on foot or at close range. You should always follow park regulations and wardens' advice and ensure you have the correct documentation or permit before entering a national park.

For further help information need then please contact us:
The Global Adventure Safaris Ltd
P.O.Box14950, Arusha, Tanzania

E mail : info@globalsafaris.net
Website: www.globalsafaris.net
Tel/Fax; +255 27 254 62 33
Cell: +255 767 707 352

 

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