Tanzania Weather in October 2024: Travel Tips for First-Timers

Tanzania Weather in October 2024: Travel Tips for First-Timers

By Edward | Updated Feb. 21, 2024

October is Tanzania's sunniest month and one of the driest months at the end of the dry season. It's optimal for outdoor activities such as safaris, mountain climbing, and beach going in the first half of the month.

Read on for our travel advice and weather information including average temperatures, rainfall, and travel tips…

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Weather in October: Overview

Averages:

  • Temperature range: 17–29°C (62–85°F)
  • Rainfall: 7 cm (3 in)
  • Rainy days: 5
  • Sunshine hours/day: 9 hours

Climate Comparison (Averages) for Tanzania's Top Tourism Areas

Tanzania City/Area Temp. Rainfall
Dar Es Salaam (Largest city, travel hub) Hot Low
Arusha (Kilimanjaro, Ngorongoro Crater) Warm Semi-arid
Serengeti (Wildlife safaris, Maasai culture) Hot Low
Zanzibar (Beaches, island resorts) Hot Moderate
Tanzania City/Area Daily High Daily Low
Dar Es Salaam (Largest city, travel hub) 31ºC (88ºF) 20ºC (68ºF)
Arusha (Kilimanjaro, Ngorongoro Crater) 26ºC (79ºF) 10ºC (50ºF)
Serengeti (Wildlife safaris, Maasai culture) 28ºC (82ºF) 16ºC (61ºF)
Zanzibar (Beaches, island resorts) 32ºC (90ºF) 21ºC (70ºF)
Tanzania City/Area Rain (cm) Rain (in)
Dar Es Salaam (Largest city, travel hub) 7 3
Arusha (Kilimanjaro, Ngorongoro Crater) 3 1
Serengeti (Wildlife safaris, Maasai culture) 7 3
Zanzibar (Beaches, island resorts) 9 4

In October, most of Tanzania except the high elevations has temperatures ranging from warm to hot, and it is the sunniest month of the year with 9 hours of sunshine on average across the country. Rainfall ranges from semi-arid to moderate rainfall with most falling in the latter half of October.

Northern Tanzania: October has comfortable weather for safaris. Temperatures are warm or hot, the humidity is lower, and there are fewer bothersome mosquitoes. It is semi-arid. The conditions are great for seeing the great animal migration and for beach going.

Southern Tanzania: Ruaha, Nyerere and other southern national parks are hotter than the northern ones, and it is usually hot and dry. This is suitable weather for safaris, hiking, boating, and riding sightseeing balloons in these otherworldly and wild areas where few tourists venture amid animals in jungles, rugged arid scrublands, and rivers.

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Best Places to Visit in Tanzania in October

Top things to do in October include hiking and spending time in the wildernesses, seeing wildlife, and going to the beaches. You could also tour urban tourist places.

1) Dar Es Salaam — Tour the Highlights

The capital, Dar Es Salaam, has both natural and urban attractions. Many tourists visit it because it has the busiest airport in Tanzania. Some tourists use it to fly to Zanzibar, and many use it to access the central and southern wilderness preserves. In October, the weather hot and semi-arid, and it is very sunny.

Urban attractions: To buy some souvenirs and products, the street markets offer a variety of locally produced and imported goods. The National Museum is a place to learn about history and culture. South Beach is crowded and has hotels.

Natural highlights that are within driving distance of Dar Es Salaam: Pugu Hills Forest Reserve is an hour's drive, and Mikumi National Park is about a 4½ hours' drive away. Nyerere National Park is about 5 to 6 hours away. Bongoyo Island is a natural preserve offshore that has fine beaches.

2) The Far Northern Serengeti — Safari along the Maasai Mara Border

By October, most of the herd animals have crossed the Kenyan border to graze in Maasai Mara, but some are still in Tanzania near the border. The Great Migration of millions of animals from the Serengeti to the Maasai Mara continues and is exciting to see.

The first half of October is peak tourist season near the Kenyan border and in the Maasai Mara, so the lodges and hotels have peak-season prices. The spectacle is world famous, and people safari in droves too. Expect hot dry weather, cool nights, and low humidity.

Getting there: There are direct flights from Arusha airport and other airports. It is a 9-hour drive from Arusha airport and a 7-hour drive from Nairobi. Driving to and from the Maasai Mara takes about 3½ hours plus additional time at the border. The adult ticket price for the Serengeti is about 71 USD.

3) Ngorongoro Crater — Safaris, Hikes, and Lodge Stays

Adjacent to the Serengeti on the southeast side is the largest unfilled volcanic caldera in the world. It is a big bowl at the high altitude of 1,700 meters (5,577 feet) that measures 260 square kilometers (100 square miles. Tourists see wild animals up close on safari. It is a big contrast to the Serengeti and has a lake and some woodlands.

The Ngorongoro is a natural wonder, and the first half of October is an optimal time to go, though the weather is suitable for doing a safari almost the whole year around because the high, 2,300 meters (8,530 feet), volcano rim shelters the floor to make a drier microclimate. Daily highs are about 19°C (66°F).

The rim at an elevation of 2,300 meters (8,530 feet) is much colder. Expect freezing weather at night, more precipitation, and occasional snow. You could hike along the rim through forests and woods. You will see fantastic scenery from the posh rim hotels. It takes about 6 hours to drive from the northern Serengeti and about 3 hours from Arusha.

4) Mount Kilimanjaro — Hike a Super Tall Mountain with Less Crowds

October, especially the first two weeks of it, is one of the best times to hike around on or to the top of Kilimanjaro because the weather is comparably dry, and it is quieter. The tourist crowds are less on the popular Marangu and Machame routes on the southern side near Moshi.

Kilimanjaro is Africa's highest peak at 5,895 meters (19,341 feet). If you want a chance to climb to one of the world's highest mountains but you are relatively untrained or unfit, Kilimanjaro will be suitable because the slope up is relatively shallow and easier to hike, and the hiking tours are designed to help people succeed.

The half-day hikes are done over a period of 4 or more days to help hikers acclimate. The routes are carefully crafted and planned, and there are camps and huts and good porters and expert guides. If you want to hike without crowds of others around, October is a good time.

5) Moshi — Enjoy Moshi for Your Tour near Kilimanjaro

The city of Arusha to the west is used as a base for exploring the Serengeti, Ngorongoro and Arusha National Park area, and the city of Moshi near Kilimanjaro is an excellent base for hiking on Kilimanjaro and enjoying the attractions in the area such as Kilasiya and Materuni waterfalls, Kitkuletwa Hot Springs, and Mkomazi further east.

About half of all the summit hikers use the Machame entrance gate, and driving to it from Moshi takes about an hour. It is only a 22 minute drive back from the Mweka exit gate. It is conveniently close to Kilimanjaro Airport (JRO), only about a 40-minute drive. Luxury hotel rooms prices start at 100 USD.

It is warm in October. The highs average about 29°C (85°F), and the nightly lows are about 16°C (62°F). It is semi-arid. If you are buying tanzanite gemstones, there is a government authorized market. Driving there from Arusha takes about 110 minutes.

Tips for Visiting Tanzania in October

October is a high tourism month and has dry season weather, but tourism decreases at the end of the month because the short rainy season starts. You will generally enjoy dry weather along with less crowding and lower prices than earlier in the dry season.

It is peak tourism season around the northern Serengeti when tourists crowd in to see Great Migration, and there is relatively high tourism in the rest of the country.

Lodges and hotels around the wilderness preserves and the beaches will be fully open in October and have high-season prices, so book your tours and reservations early. To avoid the biggest crowds and higher prices, October is a good month to see Ruaha and Nyerere and watch animals in different kinds of habitats.

Public holidays in October: October 10, 2024, and October 14 2025 are Nyerere Day. It is a national public holiday to commemorate President Nyerere.

What to Wear in October

It is sunny across Tanzania in October, so to avoid sunburn, cover up by wearing a hat, a long-sleeved shirt, and light trousers or a long dress. You can also avoid mosquito and tsetse fly bites this way. Daubing with oils of citronella, lemon grass, eucalyptus, and other herbs wards them both off and other insects too.

Bring warm clothing if you are going to northern areas such as the Serengeti and Arusha or to higher elevations because mornings and nights might get chilly. Bring raingear for high mountain areas and the Serengeti.

Clothes for wildlife parks: It is important to wear neutral-colored clothes to avoid alarming the animals. Dark colors attract tsetse flies.

Monthly Weather in Tanzania

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