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Hidden Pearls of Tanzania

The awe-inspiring Kwaraha Mountain and the Tururu Waterfall in Babati, and the spectacular Glau Waterfall in Dareda

Just under 70 kilometers south of the main entrance of Tarangire National Park, you can find a number of Tanzania’s hidden pearls. Babati and its idyllic eponymous lake form an ideal starting point for a walking safari at Mlima Kwaraa or Kwaraha Mountain and its Tururu Waterfall. A visit to the Glau Waterfall in nearby Dareda can also easily be arranged from Babati area.

Kwaraha Mountain

Babati is a small town in a rapidly developing rural area, located beneath the forested slopes of Mlima Kwaraa, along the main road from Arusha to Dodoma. It’s the administrative capital of Manyara Region.

Perhaps less well-known, but highly attractive for nature lovers and hikers alike, is Lake Babati. The lake, which is an important place for local people to fish and is only a short walk from the town, measures 18 square kilometers and is the home of a variety of water birds and of an estimated 150 hippos. A tour with one of the local fishermen can be arranged.

Mlima Kwaraa is over 2,100 meters high and is located around five kilometers East of Babati town in the Ufiome Forest Reserve. A so-called granite inselberg and the source of various springs, the mountain offers fantastic hiking opportunities for both experienced and inexperienced hikers. Indeed, very soon after starting your walking safari you’re rewarded with a magnificent view over Lake Babati.

And the higher you get, the more spectacular the view – both over Lake Babati as well as over the forests of Mlima Kwaraa, where a wide variety of trees and (medicinal) plants can be found.

A small forested path, just outside of Babati, leads visitors to Tururu Waterfall, which also originates from Mlima Kwaraa.

Another hidden pearl can be found 25 Kilometers West of Babati: Glau waterfall. This area is part of Dareda, also known as Ndareda, and the river originates from the Great Rift, south of Lake Manyara. Accompanied by a local guide, experienced hikers can walk all the way to the foot of the waterfall.

FA Babati - Tururu Waterfall 3

Tururu Waterfall

From Babati or Dareda it’s also easy to visit Tanzania’s fourth-highest mountain after Kilimanjaro, Meru and Lolomalasin: Mlima Hanang. This mountain of over 3,400 meters is volcanic in origin and located within the Great Rift. It’s a free-standing mountain, which can be climbed during a two- or three-day climbing trip.

An authentic Iraqw cultural tour

For many visitors, the Nilotic-speaking Maasai are the most familiar inhabitants of Tanzania, even though they were not the country’s earliest residents. Tanzania has a population of over 45 million people and at least 120 different tribes who live together in a harmonious way, sharing their different values, traits and skills. This rich cultural and ethnic diversity can be experienced across the country.

From the safari junction in Karatu, located along the road between Lake Manyara and Ngorongoro Crater, an authentic cultural tour to the highland districts of Mbulu and Karatu gives visitors the opportunity to not only visit this beautiful part of Tanzania, but also experience the tribal home area of the Iraqw. This Cushitic-speaking tribe of farmers and herdsmen, numbers nearly one million people and is known for their strong spirit of communal work. Helping a relative, friend or neighbor is an existential part of their way of life and they are famous for being hard-working people and expert walkers.

If you are interested in learning more about one of the largest tribes in Tanzania, Felidae Adventures is happy to provide a tailored cultural half-day through the villages of Endamarariek, Getamock and Mahhahhaa, where you can experience the community spirit, see village life and meet the local people, off the beaten track. Locals are happy to host visitors, enabling you to get acquainted with their unique way of life and culture, such as traditional dances.

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