Usambara Mountain – Tanzania

The Usambara Mountains, situated in the north eastern part of Tanzania, are known for their pleasant climate, beautiful view points and fertile slopes. Favoured by the Germans and English during colonial times, the area is rich in historical buildings from the period. Excursions, which take half day or less, will include hiking and visits to Wasambaa villages, where visitors may have a glimpse of daily life of the local people.

Usambara Mountains is consist of two mountain blocks; the smaller is East Usambara lying closer to the coast with slightly higher rainfall. This block is less populated and its primary attraction is the Amani Nature Reserves,with its botanical garden, butterfly farming, tea & spice plantations. This is for far from the town of Muheza. The West Usambara are separated from its eastern counterparts by a valley and are approached via the district centre of Lushoto.

The mountains boast of over 3000 plant species in total and over 600 tree species. The Usambaras are part of the Eastern Arc Mountains which run parallel to the Tanzanian coast extending into Taita Hills in Kenya, and recognized as one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots. This exceptional diversity attracts naturalists and nature lovers from all over the world who come to watch birds, study trees and flowers or butterflies.

Irente Viewpoint: Hike up the Irente Viewpoint to get a panoramic view of Mazinde village almost 1000 below and the vast Maasai plains beyond. On the way back, visit the Irente Farm cheese factory and the royal village of Kwembago.

Usambara flora and fauna: Walk through the fertile farmlands of Jaegertal to a fruit tree nursery and learn about different varieties of fruit trees and their propagation. Continue uphill to the village of Vuli to see projects on soil conservation, irrigation and farming methods.

Magamba Forest: Walk uphill from Lushoto to the royal village of Kwembago, where you learn about the cultural history of the Kilindi ruling clan. From Kwembago you have a beautiful view of Lushoto and the Maasai plains. Proceed to the Magamba rainforests, home to black and white colobus monkeys. Return via an old German Middle School, a German trench dug during the First World War and the village of Magamba.

Growing Rock: The “Growing Rock” tour starts from Soni. Walk to the top of the Kwamongo Mountain, famous for its butterflies, enjoy views of Soni, Lushoto and the Handeni plains from the peak. Visit the villages of Shashui and Kwemula on the way. Descend to the village of Magila at the foot of the “Growing Rock” to visit a soil conservation project and learn the mystery about the rock.

Day 1: Lushoto town to Rangwi

Durations: 5 to 6 Hours

The tour begins in Lushoto with an uphill walk to Kwembago, the ancient village of the Daffa family, a sub clan of the royal Kilindi lineage. Typical of most Shambaa villages, Kwembago is situated along a mountain ridge with panoramic view over the Lushoto Valley, the Maasai Plains and the surrounding Eest Usambara Mountains. From Kwembago, the walking tour continues through the Magamba Rain Forest where rare plant and animal life can be seen. After one hour and a half walking through the forest you have a picnic lunch in Magamba. you take a transport to Rangwi Sisters Convert Hostel for dinner and overnight.

 

Day 2: Rangwi to Mambo Cliff Inn

Durations: 5 to 6 Hours

After breakfast the walk start from Rangwi Sisters Convert Hostel through the villages with nice views to small part of Shagayu Forest and proceed to Sunga village where you having a picnic lunch then you proceed walking to the women who are made pottery and learn how the pot is made and you walk all the way to Mambo Cliff Inn or similar hotel for dinner and overnight. You will get the chance to sit for sunset and see spectacular view of Mkomazi National Park, Tsavo West Kenya National Park, Pare Mountain and possibly see Mt. Kilimanjaro if is the clear day.

Day 3: Mtae – Lushoto

Durations: 5 to 6 Hours

After breakfast you checkout from Mambo Cliff Inn and transfer by private vehicle to Lushoto for drop off. You can overnight in Lushoto or you can transfer by private to Mombo the same day and take the bus to Arusha or Dar es Salaam.

Day 1: Lushoto to Lukozi

Durations: 5 to 6 Hours

You start walking from Lushoto through the villages, Agricultural land with nice views to Magamba Rain Forest. After the forest you having a picnic lunch in the forest then proceed walking and late in the evening you take the transport to Lukozi Papaa Moze Guest House or similar guest house for dinner and overnight

Day 2: Lukozi and Rangwi

Durations: 5 to 6 Hours 

From Lukozi after breakfast we walk through along the valleys and sloping  hillsides of the inner Usambara Mountains, vegetable farms lined with eucalyptus and banana trees. You pass through the villages of Makose and Kagulio until you reach to Rangwi Sisters Convert Hostel or similar hostel for dinner and overnight.

 Day 3: Rangwi to Mambo Cliff Inn

Durations: 5 to 6 Hours

After breakfast you start walk from Rangwi Sisters Convert Hostel through different villages, nice view point to Sunga village for lunch, then you proceed to pottery women where you will learn how to make pot from the Shambaa local people around in the village. After the pottery women you walk to Mambo Cliff Inn or similar lodge for diner and overnight.

 Day 4: Mambo-Lushoto

After breakfast you checkout from Mambo Cliff Inn and transfer by private vehicle to Lushoto for drop off.

 

 

 

 

5 DAYS/ 4 NIGHTS TO MAZUMBAI  NATURE RESERVE

Mazumbai, part of the Usambara Mountain Range, depicted as East Africa’s finest Biodiversity Hotspot.

DAY 1: SONI TO BUMBULI

 

The first day start walking from Soni through the farming land, villages, nice landscape, coffee plantation and tea plantation, on the way sit for lunch before reaching to Bumbuli Old German Mission or to the home stay for overnight or camping site near the home stay.

DAY 2 (6-7hrs)
You begin walk from either Bumbuli Old German Mission or the home stay to Mazumbai Nature Reserve where on the way pass through the village of Maduda, where you can see nice landscape then to Mazumbai Forest, home to black and white columbus monkey and some other animals, then overnight at the Mazumbai Old Swiss Rest House.

DAY 3 (4-5hrs)
After breakfast you take a walk around the Mazumbai Natural Forest where you can enjoy nature, medicinal plants, some animals such as chamelion, black and white columbus monkey, squeal and others. Then after forest, walk back to the rest house for lunch, then after lunch you can have an evening walk.

DAY 4 (6-7hrs)
After breakfast you take a walk to the forest, villages, agricultural land, nice landscape to either Bumbuli Old German Mission or the home stay/camping site at Kwalei for overnight.

DAY 5 (4-5 hours)
Take transport after breakfast from Bumbuli Old German Mission or the home stay either to Lushoto, the capital town of Usambara Mountains, walk around food and fruit market of Shambaa farmers or walk to the popular Irente View Point or chose to go Mkuzi Waterfall.  Afterwards drive to the lodge.

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