TanzaniaInvest interviewed Dr. Adelhelm Meru, former Permanent Secretary of the Tanzania Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism (MNRT), to learn about the role of the Tanzanian tourism…
This is expected to rise by 6.6% annually in the next 10 years, according to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC).
Tanzania’s tourism sector generated 12% of the country’s total employment (over 1m jobs) and directly employed 467,000 Tanzanians (4.3% of total employment).
Tanzania Tourist Arrivals
International tourist arrivals in Tanzania rose by 90% during the period 2006–2014, from 622,000 to 1.1m.
Tanzania is the 7th most visited country in Sub-Saharan Africa after South Africa (9.5m), Zimbabwe (1.9m), Mozambique (1.7m), Uganda (1.27m), Kenya (1.26m), and Namibia (1.2m).
81% of the total number of tourist arrivals in Tanzania visited the country for leisure and holiday with most of the visitors coming from Africa (46%) and Europe (32%).
Average expenditure per tourist per night was in the range between USD117 and USD277 in 2014, compared to USD236–328 in 2010.
Tanzania’s tourist attractions fall into 2 main categories: wildlife and beach.
Tanzania Wildlife & Beaches
Tanzania’s wildlife resources are considered among the finest in the world. Tanzania is the only country, which has allocated more than 25% of its total area for wildlife national parks and protected areas.
According to a survey conducted by SafariBookings.com in 2013, Tanzania was voted the best safari destination in Africa, followed by Botswana, Kenya, Zambia, South Africa, Namibia, Uganda, and Zimbabwe.
There are 16 National Parks in Tanzania, 28 Game Reserves, 44 Game controlled areas, 1 conservation area and 2 Marine Parks.
Tanzania boosts many of Africa’s most renewed destinations; in the north the Serengeti plains, the Ngorongoro Crater, Lake Manyara, and Mount Kilimanjaro – and in the south Mikumi and Ruaha National Parks and the Selous Game Reserve.
Mount Kilimanjaro was declared Africa’s leading tourist attraction in 2016 during the World Travel Awards Africa and Indian Ocean Gala Ceremony in Zanzibar.
Other additional natural attractions include the white sandy beaches of the Zanzibar archipelago, of north and south of Dar es Salaam, and excellent deep-sea fishing at Mafia and Pemba Islands.
Tanzania has also been recognized for its superb trophy hunting (sport hunting or safari hunting).
Hunting in Tanzania is presently permitted and regulated by the Wildlife Conservation act of 2009, and its subsidiary regulations.
The hunting industry has grown considerably in the last two decades and Tanzania is among the leading hunting destinations in the world.
Hunting and Forestry jointly contribute 2 to 3 % of the GDP of Tanzania. Given there is such commitment to the conservation and protection of the wildlife, it may be surprising to note that, unlike neighboring Kenya, hunting still occurs in Tanzania.
However, there is in fact no contradiction, as hunting in Tanzania is part of the wildlife conservation process, as it is done in a much-planned manner. Counts of wildlife are taken on a regular basis and hunting licenses are issued accordingly.
Investments in the Tanzanian Tourism Sector
The Tanzanian Government is engaged with developing and promoting sustainable growth on the travel and tourism sector in Tanzania, in order to preserve its natural and cultural resources.
The Government, therefore, is focused in attracting high-income tourists whom are less likely to spoil the culture and the natural environment.
The Tanzanian Government has recently announced that an increase in the tourism sector’s budget will be undertaken in 2016 to create new products and attract up to 3m international visitors by 2018.
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