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The Wa-arusha tribe and their traditional houses

Recently on a cultural tour on the slopes of Mt. Meru, I got the chance to learn about the Wa-arusha tribe and how they live. The tribe were of Pare origins who used to live in the Kilimanjaro area. They first arrived in the now Arusha area in the 1830’s. Most of the people at the time there were Maasais. The Wa-arusha tribe took on a lot of the Maasai traditions but they are still very different.

By |11th May 2016| Last updated on 1st December 2021 | People & Culture, Stories|14 Comments

The Ugly Five of the African bush

The ‘Big Five’ is pretty much a household name for any Africa safari enthusiast. The term signifies the five most dangerous animals respected by hunters when on big game hunting safaris. Today the ‘Big Five’ is merely a term on a checklist when out on safari. There is also a ‘Little Five’, but have you ever heard about the ‘Ugly Five’?

By |4th May 2016| Last updated on 1st December 2021 | Stories|0 Comments

White storks – visitors from Europe

White storks are large birds belonging to the stork family. Adults can grow to be a 110cm in height with a wingspan of 150 to 200cm. Most of their plumage is white and their wings black, the feet and the beak are both red in colour.

By |27th April 2016| Last updated on 10th March 2017 | Animals & Plants, Stories|2 Comments

Vultures – efficient cleaners

For most, vultures are perceived as fierce and barbaric birds. Maybe their affiliation with death has given them that label? It is a shame; these birds play a vital role in keeping wild areas free of disease and rotting carcasses.

By |20th April 2016| Last updated on 10th March 2017 | Animals & Plants, Stories|0 Comments

Mbege- a social beer of the Chagga tribe

The Chagga tribe originates from the foothills of the highest mountain in Africa, Mt. Kilimanjaro. Like many other tribes they have a unique tradition and that is mbege. Mbege is an alcoholic drink made from ripe bananas and sprouted millet powder. Some call it banana beer but it has a more wine-like taste to it. Mbege is traditionally only brewed by women and it is a time-consuming and very hands on process.

By |13th April 2016| Last updated on 1st December 2021 | People & Culture, Stories|5 Comments

Chapatti flat bread – cooking Tanzanian food in your Kitchen

Nothing beats a fresh homemade fluffy chapatti. Eaten as a snack or as a side to a main dish with sauce chapattis are a type of flat bread commonly eaten in East Africa. It originated in the Indian kitchen, but the East African style, however, is a little different.

Mobile Money Transfer at your fingertips

It is now 2016 and mobile phones are widely used in Tanzania, but can remember that in 2004 many parts of the country did not have cellular reception and you were only left with messenger pigeons to be able to keep in touch with people...

Bao – a traditional board game

The word ‘bao’ is the Swahili word for wood, referring to the wooden board on which which the game is played. Bao belongs to the mancala family of games - hundreds of games with many similarities. They are also sometimes known as “count and capture” or “sowing” games. Mancala games are played around the world, but Bao is very common in Tanzania and the Zanzibaris are almost addicted to it.

Tanzanian Beers – A sip of refreshment

Whether you are on safari in Tanzania enjoying a breath-taking sunset or sitting in a hammock on the beach in Zanzibar, it is always nice to replenish your thirst with a cold beer. Beer is important in Tanzania and it is consumed by millions every day. In fact, Tanzania ranks at number 6 in all of Africa in terms of beer consumption.

The Toothbrush Tree

Modern toothbrushes come in all different shapes, sizes and colours, but how did traditional tribes like the Maasai keep their teeth clean before all this technology? Having an in depth knowledge of the bush is a normal thing for the Maasai. Back in the days when medicine was not readily available, people learnt to use what nature provided to treat ailments.

By |10th February 2016| Last updated on 1st December 2021 | Stories|6 Comments