Most people have heard of the Serengeti, but not everyone knows that it is in Tanzania. This remarkable wildlife reserve is, however, just one of the reasons to come to this great African country. Wildlife is certainly one of the main attractions for visitors to Tanzania, but there are also the Indian Ocean islands of Zanzibar, Mount Kilimanjaro, unique cultures and stunning scenery. Here is our top 12 list of things to do.
July is right in the middle of the dry season, meaning it is the perfect time to enjoy a safari. The landscape is parched, the skies are blue, and the temperature is cool in the mornings and warm in the afternoon – you can expect a daily high of 26°C and a low of 14°C.
While the lack of rain means clear skies, it also means that there is a higher likelihood of dust being kicked up, particularly since July is peak season and there are more safari vehicles than usual on the roads. And while the daytime weather is temperate, the temperatures at night can be cold, so dress warmly!
Like June and August, July is prime time to go on safari. Not only that, but it coincides with most school summer holidays in the northern hemisphere, so lots of overseas tourists will be making the trip south to Tanzania for a tour of the national parks and their incredible natural sights.
Accommodations, therefore, are likely to fill up quickly. Though Tanzania is a country that thrives off tourism and has many places to stay during a trip, if you leave booking to the last minute, you could find that your choices will be limited. Contact us to help you with your safari booking!
While the Great Migration doesn’t stick to a set schedule that we can predict day-by-day, during the dry season we know that the great herd is on the move and is likely to make some river crossings. When the land gets dry and food becomes scarce in the wet season feeding grounds, the wildebeest go on the move.
Because their herd is so gargantuan, water sources to sustain them must be equally massive – a tough task in the dry season. The migration is likely to visit and ford the Mara River, a river winding through the Serengeti to its drainage in Lake Victoria. But beware – crocodiles will snap at every step!
July is one of the more popular months to climb Mount Kilimanjaro – the dry weather and the clear skies offer easier climbing and spectacular views once you reach the top. There is almost no chance of rain on the mountain and June’s cloud cover has given way to clear blue skies!
However, the ideal weather conditions also attract the largest number of potential mountaineers to Kili’s slopes. In July, the mountain certainly feels more crowded than March or April, and because of the cool, dry weather, temperatures on top of the mountain can get frigid – so remember to pack warm clothes!
July’s dry weather makes game viewing the best it will be all year. Those who go on safari during Tanzania’s long dry season are treated to much better opportunities to see animals while out on game drives – the lack of water and food lead wildlife populations to assemble at watering holes and rivers.
The lack of water also means that vegetation thins and the skies are clear, meaning everything is aligned to make for spectacular sightings of the wildlife. The caveat, as ever during the dry season, is that this is also peak season for tourists, meaning parks feel more crowded and more dust is kicked up.
If you’re looking for the absolute best time to visit Zanzibar, July might just be it. Set right in the middle of Zanzibar’s long dry season, July is noted for its clear skies and bright, sandy beaches. Rain in July is all but unheard of, and the daily temperature is a perfect 28°C.
July is also when two of Zanzibar’s most famous and unique cultural holidays happen. The Festival of the Dhow Countries, a film festival, is one of the biggest arts and culture events in East Africa, while the Mwaka Kogwa celebrates one of Zanzibar’s old colonial influences, the Persian New Year.
July is the perfect time to head to Mafia Island! With the rainy season well and truly gone, Mafia’s calm azure waters and sandy white beaches make for a relaxing getaway. July is also the perfect time to take a boat tour around the island, go snorkelling, or catch some fish!
Imagine incredibly soft, sandy beaches stretching off as far as the eye can see. Imagine calm, vividly blue waters warmed by the ever-present sunshine. Imagine laying out in this setting, letting all of your cares drift away. You have just imagined Pemba Island in July.
Wildlife and safaris are at their best in July. Right in the middle of the long, dry season in Tanzania, the southern parks in Tanzania offer something of a hidden treasure. While the northern circuit’s big-name parks like Serengeti and Ngorongoro are packed with tourists, the southern circuit is often quieter.
While you may not tick the big names off your list, you can experience the best of both worlds in the south: fewer visitors and less crowds with beautiful wildlife sightings. Ruaha National Park is a particularly great place to visit in July – you may even catch a glimpse of wild dog puppies!
One of our favourite times to visit Ruaha National Park is in July. This is fully in the middle of the long dry season, meaning that temperatures are cooler, animals are easier to find, and there is almost no threat of rain. While the vehicles can kick up some dust from the dry land, Ruaha is less frequented by large crowds so this is less likely to be an issue than in the larger parks.
As July is in the middle of the long dry season, it is an excellent time to visit the park, particularly if you are interested in seeing wild animals. Because the foliage has dried out or fallen away, animals are easier to spot and will be clustered around the watering holes in Nyerere.
July may just be the best time to visit Mahale National Park. Still at the beginning of the dry season, July is an excellent time to track the world’s largest chimpanzee population living in Mahale. Not only that, the dry season means fewer pesky mosquitos buzzing around the jung
Katavi National Park is best experienced in the middle months of the year, like July. While the forest is green and thick in the wet season, the dry season increases visibility and decreases humidity. Rain and clouds become very rare, meaning sight-seeing and daytime warmth is a guarantee.
Gombe Stream National Park is an absolute wonder to behold in July. With the dry season in full effect, the air is cool and refreshing, the light plentiful, and the long grasses of the plains dried out – allowing for optimal viewing. Chimpanzees are easier to spot and track in July than almost any other month!