Before embarking on a mountain trek, few tourists have heard of the Mount Kilimanjaro Porters Society (MKPS). However, after their hike concludes, every tourist is aware of the vital role a porter fills on a trek or safari tour. MKPS provides the resources for the Kilimanjaro Guide Services. (more…)
Zara Tours is proud to announce that the Highview Hotel in Karatu, Tanzania received a certificate of excellence from TripAdvisor recently. This prestigious award is given to businesses worldwide that consistently earn high ratings from TripAdvisor travelers. It places Highview Hotel in the top-performing 10% of all tourist businesses around the world on TripAdvisor in 2013.
Ms. Leila Ansell, High View Hotel’s general manager said “We are very honoured to receive this recognition. It means a lot to us especially because TripAdvisor is one of the most reputable sources of tourism and hotel information for global travelers. This goes to show that High View Hotel has earned its place among the leading global hotels market. Our clients have always been at the core of our operations as we thrive to ensure that their experiences at Highview are beyond memorable.”
TripAdvisor is the world’s largest online travel site that enables travelers to plan and have perfect trips. It offers trusted advice from real travelers about a variety of travel choices, itineraries, accommodation and travel experiences. TripAdvisor branded sites make up the largest travel community in the world, with more than 200 million unique monthly visitors, and over 100 million reviews and opinions. The site operates worldwide.
Highview Hotel was opened in 2006 and sits on a beautiful hilltop looking down on a small valley and other neighboring hills. Tourists exploring Lake Manyara, Serengeti National Park and the Ngorongoro conservation area usually lodge at Highview.
The Hotel is owned and operated by ZARA Tanzania Adventures, a travel agency and tour operator based in Moshi Tanzania. Mrs. Zainab Ansell, a sustainable tourism advocate from Moshi/Tanzania, founded the business in 1987. They now boast not only a successful tour operation and travel agency but also 5 properties in the Northern circuit including Springland Hotel in Moshi, High View Hotel in Karatu, Serengeti Wild Camp, Ikoma Wild Camp and Ngorongoro Wild Camp.
ZARA Tanzania Adventures has won a couple of awards in recent years including the 2012 global World Trade Market (WTM) Humanitarian Award in London for practicing sustainable tourism under its foundation Zara Charity, and Mrs. Ansell was awarded the business entrepreneur award under Tanzania Women of Achievement in 2011.
Hiking Kilimanjaro is one of the definitive experiences that visitors dream of before they ever tour Africa. It is worth every minute and every hour you spend climbing to reach the summit to enjoy the breadth of what you’ve accomplished.
For many tourists, this is an once-in-a-lifetime moment and you should absorb it and enjoy it, but not before you’ve prepared for it.
The 35 Pound Rule
Preparation is a large part of the tourism experience. People buy guide books, take language courses, get inoculations and put together packing lists. This isn’t a normal tourism experience. Hiking Kilimanjaro requires specific knowledge of how to pack for climate and terrain changes and the restrictive nature of provisions for climbing. While nothing completely prepares you for this trip, Zara Tours has taken the guess work out of how to pack for it.
We’ve put together a packing list that will make some of your preparatory steps easier. The cardinal rule: don’t pack a bag that is heavier than 35 pounds. When you hear the words “day pack,” think large backpack or duffel bag.
Why? Our porters will be hiking Kilimanjaro with you. They will carry the majority of the gear, including yours, from camp to camp as you climb. If your bag weighs more than 35 pounds, we will have to hire another porter to carry it. This is an additional $100.00 charge for the duration of the trip.
Some Practical Advice
Rule number two: dress in layers, but not the ones you’re used to. Yes, you are on the equator, but as the altitude rises, the temperature drops. Hiking Kilimanjaro can get cold. We recommend that you dress in three basic layers:
- Wicking-do not wear cotton
- Breathable top layer
This combination allows you to shed and add layers as needed.
You may have noticed that shorts are on the packing list too. These are meant for your first and last days only, when you’re in the lower elevations of the mountain. Pack some winter gear too.
You’ll need a good jacket, some gloves, a neck gator, and chemical warming packs for your hands and feet. It’s important that what you wear stays close to your body and allows you to move. You don’t want to bring anything that can get easily tangled up or blown away.
Ladies, wear sports bras and all hikers need to break-in their shoes before the trek starts; preferably at home a couple of weeks before you leave for the trip. Bring a solid, waterproof pair for hiking Kilimanjaro during the day, and comfortable tennis shoes for the camping areas at night. It’s important to rest your feet as well as your body.
This is very practical packing advice, but it works. Please review our complete list on our website: www.zaratours.com. It includes documents, first aid supplies, and gift ideas; all the things that make your trip complete. If you have any questions, please contact us. We’re committed to making your once-in-a-lifetime hike successful.
“We are delighted to learn that your outstanding efforts have been recognized by your peers in Highview Hotel. Your willingness to go above and beyond is well-known to all of us in our unit, and clearly the word has spread!
Congratulations on this very well-deserved recognition, and please know how proud Zara Tours colleagues are of your achievement. We’re all fortunate to benefit from your contributions on a daily basis.”
TripAdvisor is delighted to recognise Highview Hotel with a 2013 Certificate of Excellence.
Zara Tours is proud to announce that we just took part in INDABA. The four-day event focuses on promoting tourism in Africa. It is the largest of three such events in the calendar year. We want to get the word out, not only about our Tanzania safari tours, but about the impact of sustainable tourism.
Making an Impact
This impact is felt by the communities we serve just as much as the travelers who come to trek in the wilds of the continent. Zara offers a unique experience through Tanzania safari tours. You have access to a lot of what tourists would consider “classic” safari sights. This includes close encounters with herds of elephants and rhinos outside of the camp sites, camping under the stars, and various sites along the different camping routes.
We offer both rustic and luxury packages to fit the ideal camping experience for every tourist. If you are interested in a luxury site, please book well in advance. Check with us for a complete list of upcoming Tanzania safari tours. Due to weather conditions and the time of year, not all of the activities listed are accessible. If you have your heart set on doing something specific during your trip, please contact us to see when you should book your adventure.
As for us, we can honestly say that we offer one of the most unique opportunities in Africa. We not only offer competitive travel rates for our Tanzania safari tours; we ask our visitors to see those rates be put to good use. A portion of the proceeds from every tour we provide goes to supporting charities and organizations throughout the region.
Bringing it Full Circle
Zara helps support a local orphanage, the Porter Society, and business opportunities for women (to name a few of the areas we help sustain). We agree that tourism needs to have a positive environmental impact, not a negative one. We also agree that trips like our Tanzania safari tours should be around for future generations to enjoy and that tourism capital should be used go back into the community it serves.
By offering our visitors the chance to see their dollars at work through charity climbs, volunteer opportunities, or simply in the lives our porters live every day, we believe it becomes a truly unique chance to bring tourism full circle. It allows you to visit, experience, and positively impact the world around you. That’s a taste of tourism that you will carry your whole life. It’s also what brings people back to the wonderful place we call home.
So, whether you heard about us through this year’s INDABA event, or you’re simply looking for safari tours that offer something a little different, you’ve come to the right place. Get in touch with us and plan your first or your next trip. We look forward to helping you discover a new way to trek the wilds of Africa.
Dear All Partners,
Thank you for taking the time to collaborate with Zara Charity/Zara Tours and other representatives on the Ngorongoro Marathon: The Race Against Malaria. We continue to bring awareness to the challenges facing our nation as far as Malaria is concerned; it kills one person each minute on a daily basis, especially in local communities like Ngorongoro and Karatu in particular. We enjoyed meeting with you and are thankful for your contributions. We’re glad we had the opportunity to discuss and collaborate on issues that affect so many people in our community. We especially appreciate your commitment to raise awareness and campaign against the spread of Malaria. (more…)