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Extend your stay around your safari or beach break and book a stay in a hotel in Dar es Salaam...
It's all about the atmosphere in this buzzing destination: an atmosphere built on the foundations of African, Indian and Arabic influences, which swirl around smiling faces, genial hospitality and the sort of scenes you'd expect to find in rural Africa – not Tanzania's richest city.
The goats and chickens that wander freely around backstreets and busy markets add to the charm of Dar es Salaam, which is often simply referred to as “Dar”.
Located in East Africa, Tanzania is home to the continent's highest mountain, Kilimanjaro, and is neighbours with nations such as Kenya, Malawi and Mozambique. The country's beaches – never far from Dar – are washed by the Indian Ocean.
Find a great-value Dar es Salaam hotel by using the search tool on TravelSupermarket to compare the best deals available – booking early to secure cheap rates.
Whether you are after cheap hotels in Dar es Salaam or an ocean-side palace, we’ve got the lowdown on where to stay…
Many visitors to the city are on a stopover, en route or returning from an exotic beach break in Zanzibar or a safari in the Tanzanian interior. This means that many hotels in Dar es Salaam can be found around the airport. Good-value hotels with decent facilities are common in this area.
Those same whistle-stop visitors also incorporate a whirlwind tour of Dar into their holiday, and many are surprised to find that they love this port city, with its hectic markets, high-rise buildings, swathes of parkland, beautiful gardens, colonial-style architecture, and nearby beaches.
Safari-style lodges, city-centre skyscrapers, hotels with pools in the gardens, ocean-side hotels and budget hotels with down-to-earth charm – Dar es Salaam hotels come in all shapes and sizes and many offer highly competitive rates. Some of the hotels on offer are from the large brands such as Doubletree, Hyatt, Best Western, Protea, Southern Sun and Holiday Inn.
For the authentic city experience in Dar, stay in the Downtown district. For beach-side bliss, consider hotels in Oyster Bay or on the Msasani Peninsula, both a little way north of the city.
There’s not much to see and do, but what there is really allows visitors to taste the deliciously authentic flavours of Dar es Salaam...
Top five attractions
Starting life as a boatyard, the Slipway is a shopping and leisure complex on the Msasani Peninsula, and the perfect place to pick up local arts and crafts minus the city-centre hustle and bustle.
Peacocks strut about these magnificent gardens, which house a variety of species of trees, plants and flowers. It's a lovely place to seek respite from the heat of the city.
The history of Tanzania, including periods of German and British rule (which are still evident around Dar), is under the microscope at this museum, next to the Botanical Gardens.
Take a stroll into Asian-flavoured Upanga, where stall-holders will sell you saris and sweet Indian treats in the shadows of colonial architecture.
Hire a guide to show you the amazing ruins, which lie north of Dar. A 15th-century mosque, 18th-century Arabic tombs and ornate graves dot the site.
From traditional music and dance to goat racing, the list of annual events in Dar es Salaam is certainly diverse!
Wanyambo Festival; January: Tanzania's rich cultural heritage is showcased using music, dance, costumes and delicious samples of food at the event in the Makumbusho district of the city.
Goat Races; May: These unlikely racing animals do so in the name of charity and the event has become hugely popular in Dar.
Mzalendo Halisi Music Festival; June: Traditional music and dance is kept alive at this cultural event.