tours & services

HIKING-TOURS

1 – 6 days, up the hills and down the valleys, rural daily life and farming, traditional handcrafts and arts, traditional healers and their healing plants, stories about Sambaa culture – from long time ago and today!
Within our packages you can choose different options according to your time ressources & individual demands.
We will provide you with detailed information on your request!

Day-Tours

Irente & Yoghoi Viewpoints (4 – 5 hours)

Enjoy breathtaking views over the Maasai plains !

While walking to the villages of Irente and Yoghoi you will pass different areas: starting from the Tupande Office the hike leads you through the surroundings of Lushoto town and several local villages.
Get an idea about rural life in Tanzania and get into contact with people on the way!
At the Irente Biodiversity Reserve formerly named Irente farm you can get information about nature conservation and as a special highlight enjoy the picnic lunch with self-made cheese, bread, jams etc.
Have a pleasant walk back to Lushoto – enjoying the variety of impressions from the tour.

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Magamba Rainforest (4 – 5 hours)

Learn something about the amazing biodiversity of the Usambara natural Rainforests (Magamba-Shume Nature Reserve)!

The hike starts right from Lushoto town and leads through villages, nice landscapes, farming areas up to the Magamba Rainforest which is host to a huge biodiversity and has been upgraded to a Nature Reserve in the last years.
Experience the wonderful silence of the rainforest and its variety of birds. You can see black and white Columbus monkeys, blue monkeys, a variety of birds, butterflies and other species.
Visit an old cave used as a hide out by the Germans during the First World War. Continue climbing up to the peak of Magamba Rainforest at 1850m above sea level where you will enjoy the picnic lunch before starting our way back to Lushoto Town.

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Combined Tour – Magamba Rainforest & Irente Viewpoint (6 – 8 hours)

Get two of Lushoto’s most famous attractions in one combined Tour –
Cool rainforest climate and a spectacular view over the plain!

The hike starts right from Lushoto town between 8:30am and 9:00am through small villages, nice landscapes, farming areas and the Magamba-Shume Nature Reserve which is host to a huge biodiversity. Experience the natural silence of Usambara’s forests! There is a huge amount of animals like monkeys, birds, butterflies, chameleons.…
Visit an old cave used as a hide out by the Germans during the First World War. Continue climbing up to the peak of Magamba Rainforest at 1850m above sea level and then descend down to the Irente Biodiversity Reserve for the picnic lunch.
Thereafter walk to the famous and spectacular Irente view point, enjoy the breathtaking view over the Maasai plains!
Finally we walk back to town passing several other villages and get in touch with local people on the way.

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Mkuzu Waterfalls (5 – 6 hours)

Romantic small waterfalls within a natural rainforest!

Walk to the Mkuzu waterfalls from the main town of Lushoto leading through the so called “Jaegersthal” – a living and farming area bordering the natural forest- which is a colonial German heritage (translated “hunting valley”). On the way you will get many impressions about rural life and farming in Lushoto while passing through fields and farmland before entering the Nature Reserve of Magamba-Shume. The Magamba Rainforest will provide you with the opportunity to see monkeys, squirrels and other animals. Take the chance to learn more about endemic plants of Usambara as well as medicinal plants and their traditional use!
After reaching the local village of Magamba you will continue walking through some other small villages, through native and re-planted forests until you finally arrive at the waterfalls of Mkuzu.
Situated within the Magamba-Shume-Nature-Reserve as well you will have a wonderful break at the waterfalls – having picnic lunch while listening to the charming noises of nature.
On the way back to Lushoto Town public or private transport can be arranged.

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Magamba & Mkuzu Tour – Magamba Rainforest & Mkuzu Waterfalls (7 – 8 hours)

Experience the amazing biodiversity and beauty of the Magamba-Shume-Nature-Reserve in all its facettes!

The hike starts right from Lushoto town and leads through the historical village of Kwembago to the Magamba Rainforest which is host to a huge biodiversity and has been upgraded to a Nature Reserve in the last years.
You will see squirrels, monkeys, blue monkeys, a variety of birds, butterflies and other species in the forest! Take the chance to learn more about endemic plants of Usambara as well as medicinal plants and their traditional use!
Visit an old cave used as a hide out by the Germans during the First World War. Continue climbing up to the peak of Magamba Rainforest at 1850m and enjoy the view over Lushoto Town.
After reaching the local village of Magamba you will continue walking through some other small villages, through native and re-planted forests until you finally arrive at the waterfalls of Mkuzu.
Have a wonderful break at the waterfalls – enjoy picnic lunch while listening to the charming noises of nature.
On the way back to Lushoto Town public or private transport can be arranged.

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Lushoto-Town-Tour (4 – 5 hours)

Get to know the history of former “Wilhelmsthal” (Lushoto Town), discover Lushoto’s hidden corners, be part of busy-town-life and learn about the differences of everyday life of local people!

Take a tour around Lushoto town and get the chance to learn a something about the history of Lushoto Town and the Usambara Mountains. Visit old historical buildings like the old German middle school, the hospital or the railway station.
Taste fruits and spices at the local market which might be unknown for you (special market days are on Thursday & Sunday). Take advantage of the chance to get an insight into the daily life of people with their various businesses or lifestyles in busy Lushoto Town and hear from them what they have to tell you! There are many hidden corners to discover.

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A-Day-in-Usambaras-Kitchen (5 – 6 hours)

Be guest in a local kitchen and get a taste of a Sambaa family’s life in the village!

Take a nice walk to the village called Milemileni which is situated a few kilometers outside of Lushoto Town. There you will meet a local family in their homestay.
Learn from them how to prepare local traditional dishes, hear the history and the background of specific food and cooking traditions in daily Sambaa life.
See how traditional food is grown at the field and how it is harvested. Get an impression what daily life in the village is like and share your ideas & experiences while enjoying together the lunch you have prepared.
Before leaving again to Town you will plant a tree together with the family at their homestead as to repay Mother Earth for the firewood you have used that day.

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Local-Coffee-Tour (5 – 6 hours)

Learn everything about your beloved morning-coffee and the coffee-culture in Tanzania and Usambara Mountains.
From the coffee cherry to the cup!!

Your Local-coffee-tour will start with a one hour walk from Lushoto Town to the Royal Village of Kwembago. This way leads through a colourful landscape of green hills and a big variety of plants and flowers…Of course you will pass through through the coffee farmers’ fields where you can see how the coffee tree grows.
At the home of a member from the coffee-farmers-initiative you will get to know more about the history of coffee in Usambara & the experiences, hardships and the specific knowledge of local coffee-farmers. See and try yourself to prepare coffee – from the harvesting, the roasting, the grinding to the brewing of your own coffee!
Afterwards enjoy a traditional meal at the local family’s home in the village and finally taste the freshly brewed Usambara coffee sharing it with its local producer – right next to the field where it was grown! The tour ends with a pleasant walk back to Lushoto-Town.
This tour needs to be booked in advance in order to meet all arrangements! (book at least one day before!)

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Sunset & Drumming (4 – 5 hours)

Enjoy Lushoto’s romantic side to the fullest- a colourful sunset at the Irente view point, a traditional dinner and moving rythms of the drums at the bonfire in the village!

You will start your walk to Irente View point from the center of Town and pass different villages and sites on your way. You will get various impressions about rural life up in the mountains – from the busy busstand in the center to the settlements in the close surroundings of the small town Lushoto, the villages and their hundreds of shortcuts, people on the way with their different tasks, farmland and finally the great view of Irente!
Take your time at the View point and enjoy a breathtaking scenery – the colourful sunset and the amazing view over the Masai plains!
Walk back to a family’s homestay in the village where the village drumming & dancing group will perform traditional dances & drumming specials for you. You will have the chance to get detailes information about the history of drumming and dancing and its traditional use in community life. After the performance you will get a local dinner in a nice atmosphere at the local family’s home. At around eight o’clock in the evening you will return to Lushoto town (or to your hotel) with private transport.
(Please note that the drumming & dancing group is charging a fixed minimum amount for their performance which is included into our package. Therefore the costs for one person is relatively high compared to a larger group of people.)

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Traditional Healing & Drumming (4 – 5 hours)

Pay a visit to a traditional healer and listen to the stories about Sambaa culture – from long time ago & today!

A pleasant walk through villages will lead you to the tradional healer’s home where you will get detailed information about traditional healing plants, their use in shamanic sessions and the way to prepare the local medicine!
Go for a walk with the healer in the close sourrounding of his house and touch, see and smell the healing plants!
A performance by a drumming and dancing group will show you how drums and dances are used during the healing sessions.
Find out how traditional healers implement their tasks within changing living conditions and transforming societies. Listen to their stories and exchange experiences with them!

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Birdwatching-Tour (4 – 5 hours)

Learn something about the variety of birds from the Usambaras and listen to their message!

This tour will lead you to different spots where you have the chance to observe and listen to a variety of birds.
You will walk from the center of town towards the natural rain forest and stop over whereever you hear the voice of Usambara’s birds. There are some specific stopovers where you will rest and stay for a while – enjoying the silence of nature amplyfied by melodies of the birds!
Get detailed information about the characteristics of the birds and the diversity of Usambara’s nature in general.

Multiple-day-tours

Option 1 / Mtae-Tour

Lushoto-Kwekanga-Malindi-Mtae/Mambo (2 – 6 days)

Reach up to the Usambara Mountains’ “end” and enjoy breathtaking views up to Mombasa and Kilimanjaro – the village of Mtae is a charming highlight at the end of your trip. Climb the Mtumbi peak on your way and enjoy wonderful sceneries passing through various different areas and landscapes …

According to the length of your trip you will pass through different villages and have your overnight stays at different local guesthouses. Going for the 2-days-hike you will pass Rangwi before reaching Mtae, if you go for the 3-days-hike you will go via Malindi – Rangwi to Mtae.
Choosing four days (or more) you will start from Lushoto Town passing the Mkuzu waterfalls which are situated in a small natural rainforest. The tour continues with the walk through villages, fields and small local market centers where you have many chances to get in touch with the local people on the way.
In Kwekanga you will stay in comfortable local home stays and you will have the option to do a village tour, see the tradional healer and the devil huts (traditional healing sessions), learn more about the people’s way of life in the rural Usambara!
Climb Mtumbi peak which is one of the highest spots in the Usambara mountains and go on to Malindi village. From there you can continue your trip to Rangwi, a farmers village with hills and peaks nearby – Mzogoti peak is worth climbing if you have time and power left. For your overnight stay you will be warmly welccomed by the Rangwi Sisters in their Convent.
The last day will lead you to Mtae- where the Usambara mountains find their end surrounded by wonderful views and sceneries. Kilimanjaro, Mkomazi National Park and Tsavo west Hills in Kenya can be seen on a clear day. Enjoy the widest view of 240 degrees at Mtae-Mtii.

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Option 2/ Mazumbai-Tour

Lushoto-Bumbuli-Mazumbai-Kwalei (2 – 5 days)

Special highlights are the tea farms, the visit to the tea factory on the way and the wonderful, natural Mazumbai rainforest!

This is a special highlight-trekking route in Usambara Mountains because you mostly walk on small trails only through the villages & farming areas with spectacular views and natural forests. Visit the tea factory and see tea processing in the village of Mponde.
The walk continues to the old Bumbuli mission Hospital built by Germans and leads through the Mazumbai Forest reserve – an untouched forest with a great diversity of birds, colobus monkeys, squirrels, tree hyrax, snakes and abbot’s duikers.
Visit the pottery-group in the village of Malomboi and see how Tupande cooperates with different village initiatives in order to improve the living conditions and especially the environmental situation in the village. Learn more about traditional healing and the local history of Malomboi.
On the last day enjoy your stay at one of the local homestays in Kwalei village where you can experience a breeze of daily life of the Sambaa people.

Option 3 / Grewal – Jiwe la Mungu-Tour

Lushoto-Grewal-Jiwe la Mungu-Manolo-Mtae ( 2 – 3 days)

Special highlights are the great variety of birds, two days “pure nature” in the Forest Reserve and camping on wonderful views and peaks!
The walk starts from Lushoto through Kwembago historical village where the Traditional Chief’s Family used to lived and still is to be found. Enter the Magamba-Shume Nature Reserve and enjoy plenty of time within “pure nature”.
The walk continues to the place called Grewal – a homestay of a former colonial settler – which is famous for being a Bird’s paradise and where you will stay for the first night.
Enjoy the spectacular view at the viewpoint of Jiwe la Mungu (“God’s rock”) which is definitely worth its name!
Camp in the village of Shume-Jiwe la Mungu and exchange your experiences and ideas with people from the local family where you will have a traditional local dish for dinner.
Please note that this tour will provide for all your needs but is a very basic hiking&camping tour with no solid infrastructure. The costs for the tour include a porter for every person.

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Option 4 / Ndekai Viewpoint

Lushoto-Irente-Ndekai Viewpoint (1 – 2 days)

“Go to where the clouds meet the sky…”
… the fabelous view point of Ndekai is famous for being used for hangliding and parachuting!

You will start the first day with walking up to the Magamba Rainforest and then stop over at the Irente Biodiversity Reserve (Irente farm) for a nice picnic lunch before you head to the spectacular Irente view point.
From there you will continue walking through villages up to the Yogoi view from where you continue your hike to Ndekai viewpoint (also called Carter’s place)!
Stay over night there and enjoy a wonderful view – which is famous for adventurers choosing it to parachute down to the plains from there!
If you wish we can organize a traditional drumming session for you and you can meet with the members of the drumming group to learn more about village life and traditions in Usambara mountains, especially in the village of Ndekai!
The next day you will walk back to Lushoto town. This tour can also be arranged with the option of direct departure from Mombo to your next destination (Arusha, Moshi, Dar es Salaam, Tanga)!

Option 5
Vuga-Tour (2 – 4 days)

Get Usambara’s historical and traditional highlights combined with various impressions about rural daily life and natural Rainforests!

2-days-trip: With public transport you will go up to Vuga Road from where you will start your hike through fields and farm land passing small villages and a number of local homesteads. Pass via the village of Shashui and visit the burial site of “Mbega”- the first legendary local chief from Usambara. Follow the path of the traditional chiefs which they have used since decades when coming from Lushoto going back home to the “royal headquater” Vuga.
Reaching the historical site – the homestay of the traditional chief and his family – you will get comprehensive information about the history of the last traditional chief “Kimweri – Simba Mwenye” (Kimweri – the Lion himself”) and all his ancestors and former chiefs. At the site you will see the traditional roundhouse, the memorial burial site of the Chiefs and several items used for rituals and traditional ceremonies.
On the first day you have the option to climb the mountain “Kwemongo” and enjoy the sunset at the peak. You can also decide for a traditional drumming & dancing performance in the village of Vuga. For overnight you will camp at the historic site – the traditional chief’s home (or you choose to stay at the local Mission)!
On the second day we will arrange a cultural-village-programme for you before you leave again to Lushoto via a number of shortcuts: a village tour through Vuga village and traditional cooking at a local family’s home. Enjoy going back to Lushoto Town with a number of impressions from Vuga!

4-days-trip: With public transport you will go up to Vuga Road from where you will start your hike through fields and farm land, passing a number of villlages and following the path of the traditional chiefs from former days.
Reaching the historical site – the homestay of the traditional chief and his family – you will get comprehensive information about the last chief “Kimweri – Simba Mwenye” (Kimweri – the Lion himself”) and all his ancestors. In the evening we arrange a traditional drumming & dancing performance in the village of Vuga for you. For overnight you will camp at the historic site – the traditional chief’s home (or you choose to stay at the local Mission)!
On the second day the tour will lead you to Bumbuli. On the way you will pay a visit to a teafactory and get a lot of impressions on teafarming!
On the third day you will enter the natural rainforest of Mazumbai and visit the local village of Malomboi where you will get information about our cooperation with local village initiatives. Exchange with local people about environmental issues and share your ideas with us!
You have two options for the overnight stay: Camp at the school site of Malomboi and wake up with impressions from a local village in the Usambaras or stay at the Mazumbai Forest Reserve Guesthouse for overnight. On the 4th day you will hike up to the village of Kwalei where you stay at a local family’s homestay and get a breeze of daily family life in a rural village. (If you chose to sleep at Mazumbai you can go back to Lushoto by bus on the very same day.)

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Special multiple day tours

Individual study tours

According to your specific study interest, your time and financial ressources, your wishes and demands we will design and organize your individual study tour within the Usambara mountains. Please book at least one month in advance!

Prepare-for-Kili-Package

If you are heading for Kilimanjaro we offer you a challenging hiking package which will perfectly prepare you to reach Kili’s peak! We are sure you won’t regret!
This is tour which has to be individually arranged so please contact us at least two weeks in advance!

Bookings and requests

Please contact us for your request:
tupande.usambara@gmail.com
info@tupande-usambara.org

MONEY Services in Lushoto

PLEASE NOTE: There are NO international ATMs in Lushoto. We have (so far) only a bank NMB which has unreliable foreign Exchange Services.

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