Moshi sits at an altitude of 700 (south) to 950 (north) meters above sea level. With a borough population of less than 250,000 people. Moshi is the smallest municipality in Tanzania covering an area less than 23 square miles (59 square kilometers).
Originally home to the ethnic people, Chagga, the German Army setup a base camp here in 1893. Later, German colonialist occupiers also setup coffee plantations, developed farm houses and other dwellings.
After World War 2, the British came to Tanzania as part of the League of Nations mandate and took over the properties and later returned their ownership to the local people at the time of independence.
Thus, Moshi has a strong colonial background that is apparent in the architecture of the old buildings that still stand today. Some of these have been restored to their original charm and converted into tourist lodges and hotels.
Moshi sees a lot of guests owing to its proximity to Kilimanjaro, and many trekkers on climbing expeditions to Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania use the town as their basecamp either en-route to or coming from the many parks and wildlife sanctuaries that Tanzania is known for.
Considered to be the cleanest township in all of Tanzania, Moshi has a serene, tranquil ambience with Mount Kilimanjaro dominating its skyline.
Moshi takes its name from the Kiswahili word for “smoke”, possibly because Mount Kilimanjaro which is a dormant volcano today, has been spewing gas in the past and present too, and because of the fact that it is often covered with clouds and mist too.
Owing to its volcanic soil and fed by the natural springs that run from the mountain glaciers, Moshi has lush vegetation and is the natural environ of numerous varieties of birds and butterflies.
What To Do in Moshi
There is so much to sightsee and distinct things to do around Moshi that you could spend much of your Tanzania excursion vacation here. For starters, it is hiking the foothills of Kilimanjaro during the day or even multi-day treks to the summit - Uhuru.
You could take long walks in the coffee and banana plantations or just spend time bird watching on the outskirts of the town area. Moshi town also has a bucolic bazaar where you can buy some pretty curios and mementos.
The rural “Coffee Shop” has covered tables in its garden, ideal for independent backpackers for an afternoon of hot coffee and conversation. There are also golf courses around where you can spend a morning playing a round.
The Nyumba Ya Mungu Reservoir is a good place for sighting birds, and there are also fishing spots to interest you. Visit some of the most beautiful falls such as the Makoa and Uru Waterfalls.
Also stop by at the Kikuletwa Hot Springs and enjoy a fun Tarzan-like dip in its crystal clear waters, perfect also to relax those sore muscles if you have just returned from an arduous climbing expedition. If you want take a picnic with a packed lunch, visit one of the lakes like the Chala and Duluti.
At Lake Chala, you might chance to spot some crocodiles. If you visit the Njoro Rau Forest, you can sight the black and white colobus monkeys and stately Mvule trees.
For an insight into the colonial culture of Moshi, you must go visit the Lutheran and Catholic cathedrals in Kibosho, around 9 miles (15 kilometers) away from town. Kibosho is also the site of the Kidia, the oldest church in Tanzania built by the German occupiers.
Also, take the time to go on the Mamba Marangu and Machame Cultural Tours for a glimpse into the traditional way of living of the Chagga people.
While you are there as a curious tourist, you might see a blacksmith creating a piece of spear art and other traditional iron tools like his ancestors have done centuries before him. The above are only a sample of some of the best tourism places of interest to visit and experience around Moshi.
When is the Best Time to Visit Moshi, Tanzania
Today, nature lovers from all over the world visit Moshi for pure relaxation holidays at the foothills of Kili, and its climate is such that they enjoy spending time here at any time all around the year.
Because of its altitude, Moshi has a cooler climate as compared to other metropolises in Tanzania. During the months of March through May and November to December, it experiences the long and short rains respectively like the rest of northern Tanzania.
You could consider choosing the warm and dry months of the year for your visit to Moshi and especially if you are climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. Best climate months to travel to Moshi are January and February, and also from June to October.
These months see clear cloudless skies during the mornings and evenings, and are an ideal time to attempt your ascent. This is also the time when you are likely to find a lot of people in Moshi and on the trails though dependent on which route you take.
The weather months of June to October are cooler while January and February are more humid with sporadic showers. The cost of accommodations in Moshi does not change and is the same throughout the year regardless of your month of travel.
During the wet season of March through May, the town of Moshi, the mountain and its surrounding highland areas see a lot rain which makes the climb demanding, and the cold and mud tax the stamina of the most hardiest of climbers.
Thus, in these months you will not see a lot of traffic on the mountain and international visitors in Moshi. Whatever time you choose to go climb Kilimanjaro on the outskirts of Moshi, you must prepare yourself physically and mentally.
You do not need specialized gear or special training for your uphill trek to the summit of Kilimanjaro, but the ramble is exhausting and tests your mettle. With proper guidance of our experienced mountaineer guides and its crew, you are sure to be successful if you adopt its appropriate ascent strategies.
Trip out to the countryside of Moshi for the ultimate memorable experience of scaling the highest freestanding mountain in the world and to revel in the incredible beauty of its surroundings.
|Languages spoken||English, Kiswahili, Chagga|
|Currency used||Tanzania Shillings (TSh)|