The sprawling Tanzanian city of Dar es Salaam is a popular transit destination for those wishing to explore the safari circuit to the north. The city has its own charm including historic sites, a huge seaport and diverse cultural roots that encompass Indian, Arabic and Swahili traditions. Long established as the commercial and economic centre of Tanzania, 'Dar'is the country's largest city and it provides the base for much of the government. The city was once a sleepy village and its Arabic name translates to 'haven of peace'. Today it is everything you would expect from a huge East African city and one of the region's busiest seaports.
Peak time is June to September when the rainy season is over and temperatures are mild. Although flights are cheaper between March and May heavy rains tend to fall in springtime. The city is extremely hot between December and February.
Julius Nyerere International Airport is eight miles from the city centre. Taxis can be taken from outside the terminal building and cost around 20'000 TSh (Tanzanian Shillings). Many hotels provide private transport for their guests.
Flight time from London to Dar es Salaam is around ten and a half hours and cheap flights to Dar es Salaam are most common during the winter months.
Getting around the key attractions is easy on foot - why not start at the Askari Monument?
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You'll likely be organising safari tours and day trips from the city, but there are several things to do within the centre if you have a couple of days to explore.
The National Museum and Botanic Gardens is the most popular attraction in Dar es Salaam. The museum houses the famous fossils discovered by the Leakeys in the 1950s - including a 1.7 million year old hominid skull.
The seaport is one of the city's key attractions due to its immense size and the diversity of vessels that can be seen there - traditional sailing ships known as dhows are dwarfed by tankers and huge transporter ships.
Visit the Swahili neighbourhood for a taste of traditional culture and head to the market to buy souvenirs for friends and family.
The city sits right on the Indian Ocean
The traditional fishing Dhows head out at dawn
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