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When to visit Tanzania

Tanzania has a tropical climate that varies by region and altitude. The coast is generally hot and humid, while the low-lying parks are dryer and cooler. The best time to visit Tanzania is during the dry season from July to October, coinciding with the Great Wildebeest Migration.

The best season to visit Tanzania is during the long dry season, which falls from July to September. These are considered the best months for safaris, the Great Migration, trekking, and beach holidays in Zanzibar.

Of course, these months are peak travel season. They will be busier, and some lodges, hotels, and parks will apply higher rates.

If you prefer a more secluded experience, consider visiting during the short rainy season from the end of October to December. The wildebeest migration in the Serengeti is usually during June and July and the time to see the wildebeest calving is late January to February

If possible, you’ll want to avoid visiting during the long rainy season from March to May. The rains are often heavy and sudden, which can result in activities being cancelled last minute. 

Tanzania is located in the southern hemisphere. That’s why when it’s summer in England or in the USA, its winter in Tanzania! The different seasons in Tanzania are : the dry season, the short rainy season, a new dry and hot season and finally, a long rainy season.

The dry season.

From June to October, its winter in Tanzania, we call it the dry season. It hardly ever rains and the temperatures are pleasant. The weather is warm but you don’t suffer from the heat.

The short rainy season

Often takes place in November and early December. It’s summer in Tanzania and it’s getting very hot. It rains especially at the end of the day but it does not rain as hard as during the long rainy season from March to May. The advantage of going to a safari in Tanzania during the short rainy season? Less tourists and amazing colors.

The hot and dry season

Runs from December to February. It can be hot, very hot, especially towards the coast. It hardly rains. Not advised if you generally suffer from the heat.

The long rainy season

Runs from March to May. It rains often and it is a bit less warm, but this to my opinion, not a reason not to visit Tanzania at that time of the year. Indeed, you are almost alone on the roads as most tourists do not come during this time of the year! Another very important reason to visit Tanzania during the rainy season is that you also have more chances to see zebra and wildebeest in the Serengeti National Park. Some parks are difficult to access because of the rains, but our guides know where to go! If you love adventure and authenticity: Tanzanian nature is beautiful during the rainy season.

Best Time to visit Tanzania – By activity

To observe birds

You can observe birds the whole year, but you will probably see more birds during the rainy season.

Tanzania safari Best Time – animals and nature

Going on a Tanzania safari is possible all year round. You will just not see the same animals and the landscapes will look different.

We often hear that the rainy season is not the best time to visit Tanzania, but it is not true. On the contrary, the rainy season is when nature is the most beautiful, green and flourishing. Many travelers prefer to go to the northern and central parks (Serengeti among others) in the dry season, between June and October, and from December to February. The weather is nice, but you should know that it is also the peak tourist season: prices and occupancy rates of hotels, lodges and camps are high.

What about diving and snorkeling?

You can dive and snorkel in Tanzania all year! To go swimming, we often recommend to go in January and February, or during the Tanzanian winter, in July and August. The rainy season is also raging on the coast and storms happen regularly, that’s why the rainy season is not the most popular time for diving.

Best time to visit Zanzibar

The best time to visit Tanzania Zanzibar, Pemba and Mafia, is during the Tanzanian winter, between June and September. On the Tanzanian islands, the climate is hot and humid, exceeding 30 degrees during the Tanzanian summer (from December to February). We recommend visiting Zanzibar between June and September, during the dry season. It’s a bit cooler, unless you really enjoy the heat.

What is the best time of the year to climb Mount Kilimanjaro?

All year round! Admittedly, it is less easy at certain times of the year than at others (we think in particular of the rainy season). Note that there are strong temperature differences between the foot and the top of the mountain. Even if it’s hot a the foot of Mount Kilimanjaro, it can freeze at the top. February is often considered to be the best time to climb Mount Kilimanjaro. This is one of the hottest months and the temperature at the top is not too cold. If you cannot go there in February, know that the whole period from December to February is good to climb on the roof of Africa!

Temperatures in Tanzania are consistent throughout the year. The main factor that determines the temperature is the altitude. Sunny days in the lowlands sit between 25-30°C, with highland regions averaging 15-20°C. Early mornings, evenings, and nights in the highlands can get quite cold, and since you’re close to the equator, you have to be ready for showers no matter when you’re traveling. 


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