13 Best Things to Do in Moshi, Tanzania

Tristan Balme best things to do in Moshi tanzania

As someone who has spent a significant amount of time traveling in Tanzania, I can attest to the fact that Moshi has quickly become one of my favorite destinations in the country.

Nestled at the base of Mount Kilimanjaro, Moshi offers visitors a wide range of activities and experiences that are truly unique. Whether you’re interested in exploring the great outdoors, immersing yourself in the local culture, or simply relaxing and unwinding, Moshi has something for everyone. In this post, I’ll share my top 13 favorite things to do in Moshi, Tanzania.

13 Best Things to do in Moshi

  1. Climb Kilimanjaro (Of Course!)
  2. Swim at Kikuletwa Hot Springs
  3. Meet rescued apes
  4. Go on Safari at Tarangire National Park
  5. Dance the night away
  6. Take a Bike Tour
  7. Visit Lake Chala
  8. Take a Coffee and Materuni Waterfall Tour
  9. Go Shopping at the Local Markets
  10. Take a Cookery Class
  11. Learn Swahili
  12. Pampered at the Lala Salama Spa
  13. Head up mount maru
ActivityPriceDuration
Climb KilimanjaroVaries5-9 days
Swim at Kikuletwa Hot Springs$102-3 hours
Meet Rescued Apes$402-3 hours
Safari at Tarangire National Park$150-200Full day
Dance the Night AwayFree (drinks extra)Evening
Take a Bike Tour$30-502-4 hours
Visit Lake Chala$20Half day
Take a Coffee and Materuni Waterfall Tour$30-50Half day
Go Shopping at the Local MarketsFree (shopping extra)1-2 hours
Take a Cookery Class$30-50Half day
Learn Swahili$100-2001-2 weeks
Get Pampered at the Lala Salama Spa$50-1001-2 hours
Head up Mount MaruFreeHalf day

1. Climb Kilimanjaro

No trip to Moshi would be complete without attempting to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa. While the trek up the mountain is certainly challenging, it’s also incredibly rewarding. Not only will you get to enjoy stunning views of the surrounding landscape, but you’ll also have the opportunity to push yourself physically and mentally in ways that you never thought possible.

Tristan Balme Climbing kilimanajro

2. Swim at Kikuletwa Hot Springs

Located just a short drive from Moshi, Kikuletwa Hot Springs is a beautiful oasis in the middle of the desert. Here, you can take a refreshing swim in the crystal-clear waters, surrounded by lush greenery and towering palm trees. It’s the perfect spot to cool off after a long day of hiking or sightseeing.

Tristan Balme swimming at kiluletwa hot springs near moshi tanzania

3. Meet Rescued Apes

Moshi is home to a number of wildlife sanctuaries that are dedicated to rescuing and rehabilitating animals that have been orphaned, injured, or abused. One such sanctuary is the Jane Goodall Institute’s Tchimpounga Chimpanzee Rehabilitation Center, where visitors can meet some of the rescued apes and learn about the important work being done to protect these incredible animals.

4. Go on Safari at Tarangire National Park

Located just a few hours from Moshi, Tarangire National Park is one of Tanzania’s most beautiful and underrated safari destinations. Here, you can spot a wide range of wildlife, including elephants, lions, zebras, and giraffes, as well as hundreds of species of birds.

Tristan Balme safari in tanzania

5. Dance the Night Away

If you’re in the mood for a night out, Moshi has a number of fun and lively bars and clubs where you can dance the night away. Some of the most popular spots include Roots Bar, Club 333, and Saluti.

6. Take a Bike Tour

For a more active way to explore Moshi and its surroundings, consider taking a bike tour. There are a number of companies that offer guided bike tours of the town and the surrounding countryside, allowing you to see the sights and get some exercise at the same time.

Tristan Balme Taking a bike tour of moshi

7. Visit Lake Chala

Located on the border between Tanzania and Kenya, Lake Chala is a stunning crater lake that is surrounded by lush forest and towering cliffs. Here, you can take a swim in the crystal-clear waters or simply relax and take in the breathtaking scenery.

8. Take a Coffee and Materuni Waterfall Tour

Tanzania is known for its delicious coffee, and Moshi is a great place to learn more about the coffee-making process. Consider taking a coffee tour to see how the beans are grown, harvested, and roasted. Afterward, you can visit nearby Materuni Waterfall, a beautiful waterfall that is surrounded by lush forest.

Tristan Balme Materuni waterfall moshi tanzania

9. Go Shopping at the Local Markets

Moshi is home to a number of colorful and vibrant local markets, where you can find everything from souvenirs and handicrafts to fresh produce and spices. Some of the most popular markets include the Moshi Central Market and the Masai Market.

10. Take a Cookery Class

If you’re interested in learning more about Tanzanian cuisine, consider taking a cookery class. There are a number of cooking schools in Moshi that offer classes on everything from traditional stews and soups to delicious snacks and desserts.

11. Learn Swahili

Swahili is the national language of Tanzania, and learning a few basic phrases can go a long way in helping you connect with the local people. There are a number of language schools in Moshi that offer Swahili classes for visitors.

One language school in Moshi that offers Swahili classes for visitors is the Kilimanjaro Language Institute. They offer a variety of programs and classes for all levels of Swahili learners.

12. Get Pampered at the Lala Salama Spa

After a long day of hiking or sightseeing, there’s nothing better than a relaxing massage or spa treatment. Lala Salama Spa is one of the best spas in Moshi, offering a wide range of treatments and services to help you unwind and recharge.

13. Head up Mount Maru

While Mount Kilimanjaro is certainly the most famous mountain in Moshi, there are plenty of other peaks to explore as well. Mount Maru is a great alternative for those who want to experience the thrill of hiking up a mountain without the crowds and expense of Kilimanjaro. From the summit, you’ll be treated to stunning views of Kilimanjaro, the town of Moshi, and the surrounding landscape.

Tristan Balme a view of mount maru from kili

Summary

In conclusion, Moshi, Tanzania is a truly special destination that offers visitors a wide range of experiences and activities. Whether you’re looking to climb a mountain, go on safari, or simply relax and unwind, Moshi has something for everyone. So why not start planning your trip today?

Kilimanjaro Travel Planning Cheatsheet

 

🚑 Should I buy travel insurance for Tanzania?

100% YES! — Tanzania has now introduceed “free” healthcare but it’s only for citizens! Tourists need travel insurance in case anything happens on your visit. Also be aware many policies won't cover high altitude hiking as it's a high risk activity!

(that's right, check the t&c's on your complimentary credit card insurance

I highly recommend World Nomads as you can get specific add-ons for high altitude hiking UP TO 6000m (Which most travel insurance companies don't offer!)

🎫 Do I need a visa for Tanzania?

Probably not — Tanzania now provide a visa on arrival (VoA) for most western countires which allows you stay for up to 90 days. However, some other countries do need a pre-approved eVisa (check here!). VoAs cost $50 USD for a single entry - Note, US Citizens are required to get a Multi-Entry visa which costs $100 USD. (View visa prices here)

If transiting through Kenya (a lot of people fly via Nairobi), you'll need a Kenyan visa too. Visa's cost $20 for a 3 day transit visa and $50 for a toursit visa

(By the way, on both my interactions with the imigration officers in kenya they tried to scam me, so know what your obliged to pay and BRING THE EXACT CASH for the visa!)

💉Do I need any vaccinations for Tanzania?

YES! Make sure you are up-to-date with all your vaccines. Common travel vaccines include Hep A/B + Typhoid, and Diphtheria + Tetanus.

A yellow fever vaccination isn't a requirment to visit Kilimanjaro but is for neighbouring areas in East Africa. In reality, you will might not be allowed back into your home country on your return (I was asked for proof of vaccination upon returning to Australia) so getting this jab prior made for good peace of mind. 

Rabies is an issue in Tanzania but the vaccine is expensive and ineffective as a preventative measure (it only lasts a few years and you'll need to get them again if you require treatment). If bitten by a stray dog seek immediate medical attention!

As always, talk to your GP or specialised travel doctor a few weeks BEFORE you leave.

🏩 What’s the best Kilimanjaro Tour operators?

Your only realy two options here are Kumano Travel and Booking.com. Its a complicated process so I wrote this guide here on the best kumano kodo accomodation options

If you don't want to figure it all out (it's meant to be a holiday after all) you can book a package tour. Here are my recommendations for both guided and self-guided.

🚌 What's the public transport like in Tanzania?

There is a good basic network of local and inter-city busses in Tanzania and travel this way is very cheap. Domestic flight are also very affordable and a far more comfortable option. Checkout Busbora for booking bus tickets online.

📲 How do I get internet/data/wifi in Tanzania and on the mountain?

This one needs a whole nother article, but the short version is prepaid SIM cards are cheap and availible to tourists and locals alike (You don't need a pricey tourst SIM!)

Your cheapest option is buying a physical sim card on the street corner once landed and getting the shop assistant to help you set it up. I went with Vodacom and had generally good coverage, even up on Kili!

Another option if you're visiting other African countries is the Nomad eSIM. This is a little more expensive but gives you connectivity across 14 neighbouring African Countries!

✈️ What’s the best site to buy flights to Tanzania?

For finding cheap flights, I recommend Skyscanner. Once you find the flight you're looking for, I'd then suggest booking directly with the carrier (even if it costs a few $$ more than with one of the agreggators/agencies).

💧Can you drink the water in Tanzania?

Safest not to — tap water in Tanzania may be OK (the locals drink it) but is generally untreated and not reccommended for tourists. Purchase bottled water for drinking and teeth brushing.

🏔️💧Can you drink the water on Mount Kilimanjaro?

Yes — Your tour company with ensure the water provided to you is safe to drink by either carrying in bottled water, or by treating stream water with purification tablets or by boiling it. If you want to drink water from the rivers and streams you generally can but should do so at your own risk. ALWAYS follow best practice and drink from fast flowing water as far up stream as possible. I'd also recommend a Brita Water Bottle for rehydrating on the trail safely. 

 

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