Cultural visits near Arusha

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Jul 5th, 2005, 12:07 PM
  #1
bat
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Cultural visits near Arusha

What cultural visits have people taken and recommend?
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Jul 5th, 2005, 02:22 PM
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There are plenty and I've done at least 6 or 7!

The Ilkiding'a programme stood out for me as one get to walk the slopes of Mt Meru with beautiful views of Arusha and vicinity.

I have a healthy admiration for the Maasai people and on this visit one get an idea of how they are adapting to "near-city" life.

If you like to support Women's groups then Mulala is a good option where Mama Anna will welcome you with open arms and lots of hugs while showing you how to make cheese! It's a bit touristy but who cares!

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Jul 6th, 2005, 11:56 AM
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bat
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Thanks. How do I arrange the visits? We will be staying at Ngare Sero for 3 nights before setting out on our safari. That is when we would like to do this. BTW, I read your earlier reports re various places to stay--did you see Ngare Sero? (and thanks for those reports.)
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Jul 6th, 2005, 12:39 PM
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Hi Bat

When in Arusha, just stop by the Tanzania Tourist Board information center in Boma road. Grab a few brochures and ask someone at Ngare Sero to ring the cultural place you want to visit. Normally they only need a about 2-4 hour's notice!

But you need a car to get to these places.

Mama Anna is 0748378951 and is near Ngare Sero.

Eliakimu at ILKIDING'A is at 0741520264. It will take about 40 minutes by car from Ngare Sero.

Ngare Sero is nice. It has a very impressive entrance over bridge on a lake! A year ago when I was there they were upgrading the facility (it needed a bit of landscaping then). I have not been there since.

The main lodge has a great balcony to view Kilimanjaro!

The rooms were in a separate building in row up against the hill about 40 meters from the main building (but no views to speak of). They were of reasonable size and warmly decorated in earth colors.

Meals were great and served in a pleasant dining room - one could eat with the other guests or they would set up separate tables on the balcony, etc.

The lounge had large leather couches facing a big fire place - enticing conversation with fellow guests!

The mgmt team was very friendly and engaging and offered yoga next to the lake, etc!

If you like a quiet relaxing stay then you will enjoy it.
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Jul 6th, 2005, 01:06 PM
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bat
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Thanks (for dual answers). When you say you need a car--are you suggesting renting one or can we hire a taxi or car with driver?

Thanks for the info on Ngare Sero. I picked it instead of our travel operator's suggestion based on its website which made me a little nervous--although Lonely Planet gave it a positive review (could not get much info here at the time.) I like the fact it has been reincarnated from a hunting lodge to a yoga retreat. It seemed that it would make a good transition from the hectic western world to a safari. We have the rooms on the balcony level in the main lodge that share the upper balcony. I am told that they have not been renovated but I picked them for the view (I hope).
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