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Road conditions in central Tanzania have improved greatly. Opening up the chance for circuit itineraries combining northern and central Tanzania. With the southern highlands, the coast, and northeastern Tanzania. Three weeks is the minimum, but there’s enough to do to keep you busy for twice that long. Arusha makes a convenient starting point. Allow up to a week here, perhaps taking in a northern circuit self-drive trip or some cultural tour areas.

Arusha

From Arusha, drive southwest toward Babati, where you can detour for a hike up Mt Hanang. Afterwards, continue on to Dodoma via Singida, which is completely off the beaten track. Take a stroll near Lake Singidani and visit Singida’s small museum. Alternatively, head south from Babati directly to Dodoma, stopping en route at the Kondoa Rock-Art Sites.

Dodoma – Capital city

Dodoma itself, Tanzania’s official capital – is worth a day or two, driving through the wide streets, admiring the religious architecture, and possibly visiting the Bunge (parliament). From Dodoma, continue south on a recently upgraded road to Iringa, which is an enjoyable destination in itself, as well as the gateway to the lovely Southern Highlands to the southwest. From here, you could drive southwest toward Njombe, Mbeya or Tukuyu. Otherwise, head northeast toward Morogoro, stopping en route at Udzungwa Mountains National Park for several days of hiking, and at Mikumi National Park for wildlife watching. Wildlife watching is also easily incorporated into this itinerary in Ruaha National Park, which is readily accessed from Iringa.

Morogoro

In Morogoro, allow a day or two to explore the Ulugurus on a cultural tours program before continuing east to Dar es Salaam or northeast toward Pangani and Tanga. Once on the coast, it’s easy to arrange a detour to the Zanzibar Archipelago, with flights from Dar es Salaam, Pangani, and Tanga and sea connections from Pangani and Dar es Salaam.

After relaxing along the coast, drive to the Usambara Mountains for hiking and exploring in the hills before continuing on to Moshi, the home of the Chagga people and of Mt Kilimanjaro. It’s easy to spend up to a week here exploring the mountain’s lower slopes and enjoying Moshi’s laid-back vibe. From Moshi, it’s an easy drive back to Arusha or to Kilimanjaro airport and your flight home. Book this trip

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