How To Travel By Bus From Arusha To Dar Es Salaam

How To Travel By Bus From Arusha To Dar Es Salaam

The quickest and easiest way to​ travel from Arusha to​ Dar es Salaam is​ by air,​ though it​ is​ expensive and your time in​ Tanzania should not be ruled by time. Traveling by bus you​ are experiencing Tanzania,​ both its people and its landscape. the​ local transport is​ a​ cheaper alternative to​ flying but the​ cheapest of​ all is​ to​ travel by bus. This is​ never advised nor recommended by tour operators. it​ is​ said that local transport is​ too dangerous. This is​ true if​ you​ hop onto any old bus. However,​ your traveling need not be dangerous nor frightening,​ as​ there are some good and safe bus companies operating in​ Tanzania.

The most well known bus company is​ the​ Scandinavia Express. They operate probably the​ best,​ safest and most comfortable transport between the​ two cities. it​ is,​ of​ course,​ the​ most expensive private bus option – at​ about US$25 per person - and to​ book in​ advance is​ essential – your safari tour operator can do this for you. in​ Arusha,​ the​ ticket office and starting point for Scandinavia is​ at​ Kilembero Market,​ which is​ close to​ the​ Shoprite supermarket. Scandinavia has recently been in​ huge debt and has had some of​ their buses seized by the​ police which made the​ headlines in​ the​ East African newspapers. it​ has also made booking in​ advance essential,​ as​ the​ fleet has been depleted.

The ‘Dar Express’ bus service comes a​ close second to​ Scandinavia or​ maybe an​ equal first place. They have different classes of​ bus either budget or​ luxury; only the​ luxury is​ recommended. the​ booking Office – is​ situated close to​ the​ Kimahama Bookshop [about 500m up hill from the​ Arusha Stadium]. it​ is​ essential to​ state that you​ want the​ first class bus,​ which should cost about US$20 per person. Dar Express is,​ without any doubt,​ my favorite company and I recommend this company above all others. However,​ some of​ the​ coaches do not have a​ toilet,​ although this may prove a​ blessing,​ as​ traveling in​ the​ African heat,​ especially if​ you​ are sitting toward the​ rear of​ the​ bus,​ isn’t so much of​ a​ luxury after most passengers have taken advantage of​ such a​ service. Remember that the​ journey is​ a​ long one – about ten hours.

If you​ opt for the​ cheaper end of​ the​ market,​ most buses leave Arusha from the​ Bus Station close to​ the​ ‘Stadium’. Buffalo seem to​ be a​ favorite for tourists looking for a​ cheaper way to​ get to​ Dar es Salaam,​ as​ the​ traveling time is​ less on​ this service. Speed is​ not a​ good thing as​ most of​ the​ road you​ will travel is​ single carriageway. it​ is​ a​ winding,​ hilly road,​ and therefore slowly,​ slowly is​ the​ safe way to​ ensure a​ safe arrival in​ Dar es Salaam from Arusha.

If I were to​ recommend the​ cheaper coaches,​ I would say either Fresh Coach or​ Amazon Coach. I have used both and they travel at​ a​ less manic speed between the​ two cities. the​ ticket price must be negotiated and do not pay more than US$15 per person. the​ last of​ each of​ these coaches leaves Arusha Bus Station at​ 8 am sharp.

Tickets are usually sold by freelance workers in​ and around the​ bus terminal and as​ the​ commission is​ good – the​ more they charge the​ more pay they take home – competition is​ fierce. if​ you​ are a​ tourist,​ you​ will be targeted and you​ will be surrounded by enthusiastic ticket touts. This experience is​ not for the​ faint hearted. Hang onto your luggage,​ keep money,​ mobile phones and cameras safely tucked away [as you​ would as​ a​ tourist anywhere in​ the​ world] for pickpockets are rife.

Why the​ rush? Usually this is​ because as​ a​ safari finishes in​ the​ North of​ Tanzania the​ relaxation on​ the​ islands of​ Zanzibar is​ the​ next stage of​ the​ safari. the​ cheapest way to​ get there is​ by bus to​ Dar es Salaam and then the​ high speed ferry to​ the​ Spice Islands. a​ bus leaving Arusha may arrive in​ Dar between 2 pm and 4 pm. the​ dilemma is​ to​ get from the​ bus station to​ the​ ferry port for the​ last ferry to​ Zanzibar; which leaves the​ port at​ about 4.30pm.

If you​ want to​ leave Arusha and travel by bus to​ make the​ ferry crossing to​ Zanzibar in​ a​ single day,​ I would suggest you’re leaving Arusha about 6am to​ ensure you​ are in​ Dar es Salaam by 2pm. This gives you​ a​ good couple of​ hours to​ get from the​ Bus Station into town and to​ the​ ferry to​ buy your ticket.

The alternative is​ a​ stop over in​ Dar es Salaam. Dar is​ a​ great African city so why not spend the​ night and enjoy an​ experience that most people miss? There are some great beach hotels on​ the​ north coast. the​ south coast is​ more remote,​ wild and much less developed,​ this area has some fantastic hotels that cater for the​ budget market.

How To Travel By Bus From Arusha To Dar Es Salaam

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