Starting our Tanzania safari!
08.01.2008 - 08.01.2008 95 °F
Moshi and Arusha may not be big cities, but this is where you find business services that you won't find once you are off on safari: ATM, currency exchange, food markets, and Internet cafes. If you haven't done it already, the morning you head off on safari is the time to "take care of business".
It's about 3-4 hours driving from Moshi to Lake Manyara depending on traffic. We stopped at the Snake Park en route, which was a highlight for the 6-year-old boy! For $10/adult and $5/child, they have lots of poisonous snakes and pythons to enjoy. Additionally, they have crocodiles -- babies, mid-sized, and really big -- and turtles. There is even a rufus snake you can hold.
Included in the fee is entrance to the Maasai Cultural Museum next door. A guide takes you through and talks about the Maasai culture. It's a nice introduction without feeling the intense pressure to buy, buy, buy.
On to the village of Mto Wa Mbo (Mosquito River), which also has a few business services, but everything seems to get more expensive the farther you get from Arusha/Moshi.
Some people are not crazy about Lake Manyara, but I have been there 4 times now and loved every visit. I think it is a great first park and well worth at least half a day. The conditions vary from season to season and year to year, but there always seem to be elephants, giraffes, gazelles, dik diks, hippos, baboons, and amazing bird life. If the water is high enough, you can even go canoing.