Arusha city also known as A-Town is located in the northern highlands of Tanzania. Beneath the two peaks of Mount Meru and Mount Kilimanjaro. Arusha is the safari capital of the country. Guests embarking on the popular northern safari circuit all stop in the ‘Geneva of Africa’. To prepare for their journeys into the African bush.
Besides, Arusha serves as the primary tourist destination for Tanzania’s northern circuit. And, dare we say, the entire country.
Most safari excursions start from Arusha. Since it serves as the entry point to several national parks. Including Kilimanjaro National Park. Tarangire National Park. Lake Manyara National Park, Ngorongoro Crater, Serengeti, and our own Arusha National Park.
Here are our top 15 suggestions for activities while in Arusha.
Arusha is the gateway for wildlife tourism in Tanzania. While in Arusha is possible to organize a safari to nearby national parks. Including Tarangire, Ngorongoro crater, and Serengeti. Wildlife safaris can be day trips or multiday safaris. Whether for a budget camping safari or a luxury lodging safari. While visiting these parks is very easy to see all the big five of Africa.
Climb Mt. Meru
The Mount Meru trek is a brilliant pre-climb expedition. For those preparing to tackle Mount Kilimanjaro. It is a fantastic method to prepare for a climb up Africa’s highest peak.
Mount Meru is the perfect outdoor activity for those with only a few days left on vacation. But still want to climb mountains.
Mount Meru can be hiked on a day trip, three days, or four days. The trails make for a peaceful trek with breathtaking views of rivers and waterfalls.
Safari in Arusha National Park
Arusha National Park is only a few kilometers from the center of Arusha. So there’s no need to travel far in search of thrilling wildlife.
Our national park is surrounded by all kinds of different animals and plant species. And a whole day can be spent exploring the park.
This park boasts some of the uncommon animals that can be found only in Arusha National Park. Such as the colobus monkeys. On a game drive, you can expect to see many zebras, giraffes, elephants, and bushbucks.
Be sure to visit the stunning Ngurdoto Crater. whose expansive marshy bottom is populated with herds of buffalo and warthog. It is located in the middle of the forest and is surrounded by towering, rocky cliffs.
Tanzanite Experience Museum
Tanzanite Experience boasts the world’s only Tanzanite Museum located in Arusha. If you are interested in learning more about the heart of Tanzania, the Tanzanite, this is the place to visit.
Here you can dive into history and take in one of Arusha’s top attractions. Where you will be taken on a thrilling journey that takes you to the center of this priceless gemstone.
Through an interactive tour of the mine museum. Visitors can learn why Tanzanite is so rare and valuable. The difficulties of mining it, and the skills required for cutting and polishing. And the tales and myths associated with the gemstone.
Our museum has a shop attached to it and is situated in the busy central town of Arusha. The Tanzanite Experience store sells a magnificent Tanzanite jewelry collection. Ranging from ready-made jewelry to a variety of loose stones. You can visit various store locations as well.
Momella Lake Canoeing
This great outdoor activity. You can immerse yourself in the beautiful surroundings of Momella Lake. You can go canoeing with friends and family.
The Momella Lakes region is located in Arusha National Park. The northeastern section and seven lakes are hidden. The valleys are bordered by lush hills. The lake becomes alkaline due to the sodium-rich contents and algae growth. As a result, flamingos use these bodies of water all year round for feeding and resting.
The best times to go on canoe journeys are in the mornings or the afternoons; they last around three hours. You can expect to see buffalo. bushbuck, giraffes, hippos, and other water birds that live in and around the water on a canoe journey.
Lunch in the Wild
The bush lunch is a unique service that only enhances the value of your trip to the bush. It is the ideal option for lunch because of traditionally packed lunches. Are less environmentally friendly as there is more food and packaging waste.
This adventurous activity allows you to have longer and more relaxed game drives. Knowing you do not have to rush back for a hot meal. There are various options to choose from the menu to ensure a delicious lunch experience!
Meserani Snake Park
Meserani Snake Park is a must-see if you’re seeking a thrilling adventure. The park is 25 kilometers from Arusha town. Provides a variety of activities. The guided tours on some of the world’s rare and most poisonous snakes.
You can hold a real live snake and capture a memorable moment for adventurous guests. The park also has some exotic bird and reptile species. Crocodiles, and other wild animals that you can see.
You can also have a beautiful tour of the Maasai Cultural Museum. At the end of your tour with your Maasai guide, where you can dress in authentic Maasai attire. and take pictures to preserve your experience.
Lake Duluti is situated in lush, green woodlands and offers a wide range of activities. You can see Mt. Meru and, on occasion, Mt. Kilimanjaro from this location. There are claims that the lake is about 700 meters deep, although this has never been verified.
For birds and reptiles, this location is a haven. Many birds have settled here, and monitor lizards can be seen lazing on the lake’s edge. On the edge of the lake, monkeys occasionally swing from the treetops.
This activity is ideal for a day of pure enjoyment, fun, and relaxation. Additionally, you can canoe and take a guided hike around the lake. During the trip, you will discover the lake and learn about its fascinating history. A wide range of species, and their ecology and wildlife.
National Natural History Museum: Old Boma Museum
If you’re curious to discover more about the history of Arusha, this is the place to go. The museum presents the history, nature, culture, and human evolution of the city. As well as discoveries from the well-known Olduvai Gorge and the Laetoli sites.
One can expect to learn about human evolution. Arusha’s past as a German colony. And experience an exhibition of images of wildlife. And mountains of Arusha over the years.
Art enthusiasts can enroll in lessons in painting and drum-making. among other arts and crafts. The museum also has a section dedicated to studying insects. a mini-zoo, a mini-botanical garden, and a snake exhibition
The Cultural Heritage Center
The Cultural Heritage Center is a must-have on your itinerary. It is a center devoted to exploring the many treasures drawn from African culture.
The center boasts Africa’s most extensive art gallery. Known for its exquisite exterior design a drum. Shield, and spear, for local artists to display their artwork. The center is also home to the first-ever Jane Goodall Museum to showcase her life’s work.
Here you can do all kinds of shopping. From curios, traditional beads, and clothing to all types of jewelry, including Tanzanite. The restaurant and cafes in the center also serve up wholesome meals. The restaurant offers various meals, including African cuisine, as a buffet or a la carte.
Maji Moto Hot springs
The Maji Moto (hot water in Swahili) spring or oasis is located outside of the city in the middle of a dry Maasai region.
Due to its exceptional surroundings. Which feature clear, warm waters surrounded by magnificent palms. And fig trees, the oasis stands out as one of the top attractions.
To get to Maji Moto, you would have to travel for an hour and a half outside Arusha. Here, you can go swimming, enjoy a great picnic, and enjoy the stunning surroundings.
Using recycled materials, the company Shanga. (Swahili for “Beads”). Employs people with disabilities to make one-of-a-kind. fine-crafted jewelry, glassware, and home goods.
The proceeds from selling these items. Go toward expanding the possibilities to hire more individuals with disabilities. They are sold in Tanzania at the Shanga shop and throughout the rest of the world.
Shopping here will support a local business while benefiting Arusha’s underprivileged community. Over 60 people with disabilities are now employed by Shanga. As a result of the company’s current exponential growth.
Street shoppers will find paradise at the Maasai Market. Visitors are in for a treat with more than 100 stalls selling everything. From regional arts and crafts to trinket jewelry close to the Arusha Clock Tower.
This vibrant market is a must-see and perfects for people who enjoy bargaining. Visit the markets and buy locally-made trinkets. To bring home to support the local Maasai community.
Mount Meru Waterfall
One of the most visited sights in Arusha is Mount Meru. You can hire a knowledgeable guide to go with you on a trip to Mount Meru’s waterfalls. And they will provide background information on the region’s wildlife and history.
On your walk to the waterfall, you will encounter a lot of lovely flowers and other plants. Because the soils on the hills are highly fertile. The guide will discuss the customs of the local community of people that live near Mount Meru.
The stunning waterfall is situated on Mount Meru’s slopes. And after a 45-minute journey through the mountain’s untamed wilderness. You will reach the magical falls.
Climb Mount Kilimanjaro
Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro is regarded as one of Tanzania’s most alluring pastimes. Shira, Kibo, and Mawenzi are the three cones that makeup Mount Kilimanjaro. a dormant volcano.
With a height of 5,895 meters, it is the highest mountain in Africa. One needs to be in top physical condition. And have the right mindset to deal with the effects of altitude to reach the summit.
The Moshi or Arusha side of the mountain can be the starting point for the hike. Umbwe, Machame, and Marangu are the routes that are frequently taken. These are the most rated activities while in Arusha.
Our Final Remarks
Since you are in preparation for your epic Africa safari. We would like to recommend the following resources. This will further your understanding of East Africa tours and safari.
How much does it cost to visit Tanzania? Knowing the cost of the destination you wish to visit is the best question that comes to mind. As you plan to visit Tanzania for a safari. We have compiled the best information about safari costs in Tanzania. Here is the link. How much does it cost to visit Tanzania?
8 Best Places to Stay in Serengeti: If you’re planning to customize your Serengeti Safari. Then this article will give you a highlight of where you can stay and at which price. Here is the link for 8 best places to stay in Serengeti
Ultimate Guide to Serengeti. If you’re looking for a deep understanding of Serengeti. Then this article will offer you a deep dive into the Serengeti wilderness. Here is the link to Ultimate Guide to a Serengeti Safari
Choosing a reliable tour company. Knowing where you want to visit is one thing but knowing who could take you there safely is the other thing. We have written extensively on How to select a reliable safari company. Here is the link on How to select a reliable Tour Operator in Tanzania
East Africa Safari Extension: You might have the plan to do both Maasai Mara & Serengeti. Why not? We also have our open review for these two magical destinations. Here is the link: Serengeti or Maasai Mara which is better?
Solo or Private Safari: The idea of traveling in a group may not be your choice. You love exploring your world alone. To bring your ideas to life here is the best safari tip: Why would you want a private Tanzania safari?
In case you need any help with planning for your epic East Africa safari. Our team will be happy to assist in designing the bespoke safari experience for you. Feel free to contact us now.