Archive for June, 2016

Now’s the Time to Schedule Your Summer or Autumn Trek Up Mount Kilimanjaro

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TANZANIA, AFRICA–From beginning climbers to skilled adventurers, Mount Kilimanjaro is an awe-inspiring peak to summit in any season for those who love beauty and challenge. The most recommended months to begin on that great adventure are widely thought to be July through October, making now the perfect time to book this year’s trek.

During these months, temperatures, precipitation, and clarity make for an all-around ideal climb, with many groups to join if you’re on your own. Choose from one of seven different routes, and embark on a trek for anywhere from five to nine days. The shorter the trip, the more arduous the journey may be, so select a speed of travel that fits your physical fitness, one that is the perfect blend of comfort and challenge for you. Join a group of 11 or more people, or organize a private climb for a range of different experiences.

The 7-Day Machame Route is perhaps one of the most balanced treks, presenting a challenge while still providing some level of comfort. Take a more measured approach on a 9-day trek up the  Kilimanjaro Londorossi Route  for a proud beginner’s accomplishment.
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Previous climbers have come at every stage of physical preparedness, often running and hiking more frequently to get ready for the mountain. Deciding what to pack  may be the hardest, as you must account for a variety of basic needs and clothing requirements, while ensuring that your bag weighs no more than 15 kg (35 lbs.) for the porter who accompanies each climber up the mountainside. But since meals are provided, designed to fit your nutritional needs throughout the exertion of the climb, a few snacks should be the only items of food you need worry about.
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Is this the summer you will view the world from its highest freestanding mountain? There’s no reason to wait, choose your adventure now.

For more information about Zara Tours and its endeavors, contact: zara@zaratours.com

About ZARA TOURS
ZARA TOURS, founded in 1987, is currently the No. 1 Kilimanjaro outfitter in Tanzania and one of the largest safari operators in the country. Proud to be known as one of the best operators in the region with a reputation for providing an exceptional, unforgettable and safe experience, ZARA TOURS owns and operates two hotels and four tented camps, has 88 safari and climbing expert guides who speak English, German and Spanish, and a fleet of fully-equipped vehicles that take tourists on safari adventures or treks up Mount Kilimanjaro. ZARA TOURS also runs ZARA Charity, which plays a vital role in the local community by supporting vulnerable groups such as orphans, Maasai women’s groups, and more.

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June 28, 2016 at 10:25 am Leave a comment

Who Are The Masaai?

One of the most culturally intensive safaris in Kenya and Tanzania involves a visit with the African tribe known as the Masaai. Even if you’re not familiar with the name, you probably know the look of a Masaai tribesman when you see one. The image of a tall, jumping nomad that cuts an imposing figure on the African landscape is an iconic one that has appeared numerous times in magazines, film and television.

00005But who are the Masaai? If you’re going to meet with them on one of our special Zara Tours, you should learn a little bit more about them to better prepare for the experience.

The Pastoral Life

The Masaai are a part of a group called “Nilotic people.” This is a reference to both region and language, as Nilotic people are generally found in the area ranging from the Nile Valley to North Tanzania. They share a common root language, though of course there are specific variations in dialect from one region to the next.

The Masaai themselves are semi-nomadic, creating shelters to temporarily live in when they settle down with their livestock to let them graze. When it is time to move on to better pastures, they abandon their dwellings and build new ones at the next site. The Masaai story is one of livestock; their entire way of life, the routes they wander, the calendar they follow, the seasons they deem significant are all based around the welfare of their animals.

Despite—or perhaps because—of caring for farm animals, the Masaai are also warriors, with the men of the tribe trained and ready to defend both themselves and their animals. Because of this, the Masaai, during their original migration from the Nile, fought and won against many other tribes as they made their way down to the Kenya/Tanzania region. Some of those tribes were scattered, while others became part of the Masaai culture.

massailodge233Today, the Massai are a symbol of both Africa’s history and its frailty; the Masaai are determined to maintain their traditions, and successfully do so. But it’s become increasingly difficult in the 21st century to maintain a purely isolationist policy. With a Zara tour, you can spend a day and a night with this distinct African tribe and learn more about their unusual and rare cultural practices.

June 14, 2016 at 7:01 pm Leave a comment

Meet The Gorillas In The Mist

There’s something fascinating about the gorilla. It is one of our closest ancestors in the primate family, but these are huge, powerful yet peaceful animals that are now in more danger than ever. Changes to the environment and the never ending expansion of human industry have dramatically reduced the numbers of gorillas in the world for their prime before the industrialization of humans. Today, the mountain gorilla population is fraction of what is once was in centuries past.

Zara tours have always offered wildlife safaris in Uganda and Rwanda  but one of our special offerings is a chance to meet with the mountain gorilla.

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A Trip To The Mountains

The Bwindi National Park is the destination for people that want a glimpse of actual mountain gorillas in their native habitat. Because this is a trip that involves going out to see the wildlife, rather than the other way around, it’s highly recommended that people come prepared for a hike. The unpredictable nature of weather means travelers should be prepared not just for a long walk, but the possibility of rain.

Gorillas build “nests” and thus have a territory, but no permanent dwelling that they reliably stay at. The trip to Bwindi national park puts you squarely in their territory, but you’ll still have to search, with a guide, to find them within that territory. Sadly, while there are over 300 mountain gorillas living in this area, that number comprises over half of the total mountain gorilla population remaining in the world.

When the gorillas are found, it’s important to be quiet, respectful and keep conservation principles in mind. In order to minimize the possibility of interfering with the gorillas, only an hour of time with the animals is allowed once contact has been made. This is important in order to preserve the natural behavior of the gorillas and ensure that they prefer their independence and natural lifestyle, rather than develop a bond with humans, which could create a dependency that would endanger the species further.

There are also birds, butterflies and many other forms of wildlife to appreciate during this tour, but it is our primate cousins that are the real star of the show. When we meet with gorillas, we encounter an aspect of our own humanity, and we are definitely the better for it if we have the opportunity to experience this confrontation.

June 7, 2016 at 7:01 pm Leave a comment


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