Best Time to Visit Tanzania

IMG_1552 (ninara)  [flickr.com]  CC BY 
License Information available under 'Proof of Image Sources'
On this page, you will find information about the climate and the best time to visit Tanzania. We created climate tables and charts for the locations of Dar es Salaam, Mwanza und Kilimanjaro Airport (Arusha). These contain details about temperatures, precipitation and more.

Furthermore, we analyzed all climate data and provide a recommendation about which months are best to visit Tanzania for your holiday.

Climate Overview

Thermometer Symbol 14 °C to 33 °C
Waves Symbol 25 °C to 30 °C
Rainy Cloud Symbol 0.3915.79 in (1 – 18 Days of Rain)
Average Annual Temperature is between 21.4 °C (Seronera) and 25.8 °C (Dar es Salaam)
Show temperatures in degree

Geographical location

Tanzania is located in East Africa and is a direct neighbour of Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, Zambia and Mozambique, among others.

The coastline runs along the Indian Ocean, creating beautiful beaches and paradisiacal islands such as Zanzibar, Pemba and Mafia Island.

Tanzania has a population of around 50 million, and its many cultural influences make it a multi-ethnic country.

Even today, 125 languages and dialects are counted, but due to the long British colonial rule until 1961, English is still the official language today. This usually makes communication very easy for travellers.

Tanzania is regularly named the best safari destination in the world. The government is located in the largest city, Dar es Salaam, on the coast, but the official capital is Dodoma in the centre of the country.

Climate in Tanzania

Tanzania (Serengeti National Park) Baby elaphants follow their mum (Güldem Üstün)  [flickr.com]  CC BY 
License Information available under 'Proof of Image Sources' Tanzania is mainly dominated by savannahs and semi-deserts, the flat coastal region with tropical conditions differs from the more temperate mountain regions in the rest of the country. The climate in Tanzania is thus largely similar to neighbouring Kenya, where warm to hot temperatures and comparatively high humidity also prevail all year round along the coast.

The high plateaus, especially the central plateau, are characterised by high day temperatures and quite low night temperatures. Activities such as hiking or safaris in the early morning or late evening hours can therefore sometimes be very cold.

For the most popular safari areas like the Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti, the two rainy seasons in Tanzania are particularly noteworthy. In general, from mid-March to the beginning of June we speak of the great rainy season, which can also result in restrictions in the passability of roads and paths, depending on the intensity. The so-called “small rainy season” in the months of October and November is usually less pronounced.

Best Time to Visit Tanzania: Overview

JanuaryJan
Best time to traveltime
PerfectPerf. climate in
Tanzania
FebruaryFeb
Best time to traveltime
PerfectPerf. climate in
Tanzania
MarchMar
Beginning of Rainy SeasonRainy Season
very wet starting Mid-Marchvery wet starting Mid-March
AprilApr
Rainy SeasonRainy Season
up to 10.67 in of rainof rain
MayMay
Rainy SeasonRainy Season
up to 6.93 in of rainof rain
JuneJun
Beginning of Dry SeasonDry Season
good weather, but still dense vegetationgood weather but dense vegetation
JulyJul
Best time to traveltime
PerfectPerf. climate in
Tanzania
AugustAug
Best time to traveltime
PerfectPerf. climate in
Tanzania
SeptemberSep
Best time to traveltime
PerfectPerf. climate in
Tanzania
OctoberOct
Small Rainy SeasonRainy Season
wet but still okaywet but still okay
NovemberNov
Small Rainy SeasonRainy Season
wet but still okaywet but still okay
DecemberDec
Good time to traveltime
almost perfect starting Mid-Decemberalmost perfect starting Mid-December

When to go to Tanzania?


Tanzania can be described as a year-round destination without hesitation. In view of the rainy seasons, we recommend mid-June to late September and mid-December to early March as the best travel season for safaris. A big advantage for wildlife observation in the dry season is the fact that there are only a few waterholes left in the reserves and that the animals gather very concentrated in these areas. Especially the months of April and May are rather unsuitable for safaris, some lodges and camps in the parks are now even closed.

To climb Mount Kilimanjaro, you usually start in Moshi, of course the temperatures drop steadily up to the summit as the altitude rises. The proximity to the equator ensures little variation throughout the year, but trekking is also subject to certain restrictions due to the rainy seasons. The best time for active holidaymakers is therefore August, September and October with very good visibility. In April, May and November, however, the paths are often slippery and therefore not safe to use.

The rainy season on the coast is characterised by mugginess and usually oppressive heat, the conditions are therefore not optimal. The months December to March and June to the beginning of October are also recommended for the coastal region and a bathing holiday on Pemba or Zanzibar.

Best Time to Visit the Regions

Find the best time to visit the regions (Tanzania) in the following overview.

LocationBest Time to Travel
Dar es SalaamJanuary, February, June, July, August, and September
MwanzaJanuary, June, July, August, and September
Kilimanjaro Airport (Arusha)January, February, July, August, September, and October
Stone TownJanuary, February, June, July, August, September, and October
SeroneraJanuary, February, June, July, August, and September

Climate Charts Tanzania

In the following, you will find climate charts for the regions.

Furthermore, there are some charts you can use for quick comparison of climate between the regions.

Show Climate Chart for    

Dar es Salaam

Climate Chart Dar es Salaam
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Mwanza

Climate Chart Mwanza
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Kilimanjaro Airport (Arusha)

Climate Chart Kilimanjaro Airport (Arusha)
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Day Temperatures

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Night Temperatures

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Average Temperatures

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Precipitation

Hours of Sunshine per Day

Source of Data: German Weather Service (Offenbach) and Wikipedia

Climate Tables Tanzania

In the following, you will find some climate tables for Tanzania, containing information about Temperatures, Precipitation, Water Temperatures, and Hours of Sunshine.
Show climate table for    

Temperatures, Precipitation, Sunshine in Dar es Salaam (Tanzania)

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Day Temperature31°32°32°31°30°29°29°29°30°30°31°31°
Night Temperature24°24°23°23°21°19°19°18°19°20°22°23°
Water Temperature28°28°28°28°27°26°25°25°25°26°27°28°
Precipitation (inch)3.072.055.1610.596.931.651.221.061.12.65.24.57
Rainy days7412181355456810
Hours of Sunshine887577798988
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Temperatures
The annual average temperature in Dar es Salaam is 25.8 °C.

For comparison: London 11 °C, NYC 12 °C, LA 17.9 °C

Warmest month: February (27.7 °C)
Coldest month: July (23.5 °C)

The maximum water temperature in Dar es Salaam is 28 °C. You can take a bath at these temperatures.

Months with water temperature of at least 21 °C (adequate for beach vacation):
all months

Precipitation
Overall annual precipitation: 45.2 inch on 97 rainy days

For comparison: London 24.06 in, NYC 41.57 in, LA 12.01 in

Rainy season (months with more than 6.9 in of precipitation): April, and May
Overall precipitation in the rainy season: 17.52 in

You cannot expect snow in any month in Dar es Salaam.

Sunshine
As our climate table shows, October is the sunniest month with an average of 8.9 hours of sunshine per day. Over the year, there are 7.6 hours of sunshine per day on average. For comparison: London has 4.1, NYC has 7 and LA has 8.9 hours of sunshine per day on average.

Temperatures, Precipitation, Sunshine in Mwanza (Tanzania)

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Day Temperature29°29°29°28°29°29°29°29°30°30°29°28°
Night Temperature18°18°18°18°18°17°16°17°18°19°19°18°
Precipitation (inch)3.664.025.985.873.540.670.510.711.612.44.765.63
Rainy days10811148212291210
Hours of Sunshine788889998877
Show temperatures in degree
Temperatures
The annual average temperature in Mwanza is 23.4 °C.

Warmest month: October (24.3 °C)
Coldest month: July (22.4 °C)

Precipitation
Overall annual precipitation: 39.37 inch on 89 rainy days

There is no rainy season (months with more than 6.9 in of precipitation).

You cannot expect snow in any month in Mwanza.

Sunshine
As our climate table shows, June is the sunniest month with an average of 9.4 hours of sunshine per day. Over the year, there are 8 hours of sunshine per day on average.

Temperatures, Precipitation, Sunshine in Kilimanjaro Airport (Arusha) (Tanzania)

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Day Temperature33°33°33°29°27°26°26°27°29°32°32°32°
Night Temperature18°18°19°20°18°15°15°15°15°17°18°18°
Precipitation (inch)1.892.094.3710.674.410.910.590.390.471.223.432.56
Rainy days43101694112397
Hours of Sunshine998755567888
Show temperatures in degree
Temperatures
The annual average temperature in Kilimanjaro Airport (Arusha) is 23.3 °C.

Warmest month: February (25.9 °C)
Coldest month: July (19.9 °C)

Precipitation
Overall annual precipitation: 32.99 inch on 69 rainy days

Rainy season (months with more than 6.9 in of precipitation): April
Overall precipitation in the rainy season: 10.67 in

You cannot expect snow in any month in Kilimanjaro Airport (Arusha).

Sunshine
As our climate table shows, February is the sunniest month with an average of 9.3 hours of sunshine per day. Over the year, there are 7.2 hours of sunshine per day on average.

Herd migration: Great Migration Serengeti


Besides the mountain regions of Kilimanjaro and Mount Meru, the safari regions are among the most popular destinations in Tanzania. The Selous Game Reserve in the south is less known by name (as is the neighbouring Ruaha), but it is Africa’s largest game reserve. Besides Lake Manyara, Tarangire and Arusha National Park, the Ngorongoro Crater is unique worldwide.

However, the highlight of every trip to Tanzania is a visit to the Serengeti, which is marked by the great herd hike all year round. The Great Migration of hundreds of thousands of wildebeests and zebras is considered one of the greatest wonders on earth.

It runs from December to February in the southeast of the Serengeti, the animals contract at the beginning of the rainy season from March to April in the Ndutu area in the south. The spectacular river crossings on the Grumeti River, where hungry crocodiles await their prey, start around mid-July. From September onwards, large parts of the herds move on to the neighbouring Masai Mara in Kenya.

More information about the best things to do: Zanzibar | Tanzania

Popular Activities

Current Weather and Forecast

Current Weather in Dar es Salaam (Station Mabibe)
scattered clouds     scattered clouds, 33 °C
Clouds: 40 %       Wind: 11 mph NNO
Air Pressure: 1010 hPa       Humidity: 63 %
Last updated: 20th Mar 2019, 10:00 am
The next days …
20th Mar 201921st Mar 201922nd Mar 201923rd Mar 201924th Mar 201925th Mar 2019
light rain26 °C to 32 °Csky is clear25 °C to 33 °Clight rain25 °C to 33 °Clight rain26 °C to 36 °Cmoderate rain25 °C to 30 °Cmoderate rain24 °C to 33 °C
26 °C to 32 °C25 °C to 33 °C25 °C to 33 °C26 °C to 36 °C25 °C to 30 °C24 °C to 33 °C
Clouds: 76 %Clouds: 0 %Clouds: 12 %Clouds: 32 %Clouds: 8 %Clouds: 67 %
No PrecipitationNo PrecipitationNo Precipitation0.02 in of rain0.33 in of rain0.27 in of rain
Weather information provided by OpenWeatherMap. (CC BY-SA)
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Important Regions and Cities

We have extended climate information for the following regions:

Tanzania: Experiences of our Visitors

There are 2 reviews for Tanzania holiday already. Average rating is 2.5 of 5 stars.
  1. Avatar Preview
    Stephanie, 27 years old was there in May

    Travel time: 5. to 28.05.2017
    Sunny days: about 4. the rest of the time it rained, sometimes there was heavy rain. Roads were washed away, we were stuck in different lodges several times because the roads were no longer passable. When the sun was shining, it was immediately hot and humid.

    Weather Rating: 0 stars – Catastrophic

  2. Avatar Preview
    Alexander, 30 years old was there in March

    We went on a safari in Tanzania for the Great Herd Hike in mid-March and had the best travel weather at all stations. During the day it became quite hot with many hours of sunshine, in the evening it cooled down to a pleasant 19 to 20 degrees. Another rating from me to Zanzibar can be found on the subpage Best Travel Time Zanzibar here on TravelKlima!

    Weather Rating: 5 stars – Excellent

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Lion Cub with Mother in the Serengeti (David Dennis)  [flickr.com]  CC BY-SA 
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Kilimanjaro from Day 2 (michael 7601)  [flickr.com]  CC BY-ND 
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Tanzania (Serengeti National Park) Safari vehicle (Güldem Üstün)  [flickr.com]  CC BY 
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