” Sauti za busara” is a Swahili term meaning ”Sounds of wisdom”. The Sauti za busara festival is probably one of the biggest music festivals in East Africa, it attracts thousands of tourists and several hundred performers each year. The festival is normally held on February each year. For 2020 the dates will be from 13th to 16th February.
This is unlike your regular music festival. The main highlight of the entire event is to showcase the diversity of African music. Next year 400 artists are expected to perform from all over Africa. Artists such as Juma Nature from Tanzania, Eli Maliki of Uganda, Bebe Baya of Guinea and Mamy Kanoute from Senegal are just a few of the hundred performers that will be showing off on stage.
The festival itself will be held at the old fort building (a historical building in Zanzibar) in Stone town. There will also be other fringe events taking place around the town during this time including a carnival street parade. The island comes alive at this time and its a completely different energy.

Photo source:

This festival also provides a platform for local Swahili artists by giving them the opportunity to showcase their talents to the world.

Mim Suleiman at Sauti za Busara (2015) photo: Peter Bennet


Make sure you make your reservations early because I’m not going to lie, it does get super busy and overbooked towards the beginning of the year. Give us a call or email us and we will give you different varieties of accommodation options together with personalized tours around Stone town and other parts of the island. And who knows we might catch up during the festival. See you there!

If you would like to get a few hints about where you can visit while in Zanzibar you can check the 10 places to visit in Zanzibar

Your Rafiki blogger here,

Signing out!


Tanzanite ” A thousand times rarer than diamonds”

I’m dedicating this short article to all the jewelry and gemstone lovers out there. I love gems just as much as I love travelling, and I’ve been dying to write this article for a while now. I’ve always had an obsession with gemstones, and this goes way back to my childhood where I used to have a huge collection of different rough crystals (still do!), and I don’t think I’m hurting anybody if I write a little about one of Tanzanian’s most priceless treasures, the Tanzanite.
Due to its wide spread popularity I am certain that you’ve heard the name before. Tanzanite is a variety of a mineral group known as Ziosite, which has inclusions of small amounts of vanadium belonging to the epidole group.
Now I know you don’t need a degree in geology to know that this stone is gorgeous.

The gem was officially named Tanzanite by Tiffany&Co, a world famous jewelry brand. The gem was named after its only source country in the world, Tanzania. The stone is in fact found in a very small mining area that is 4km long and 2km wide near the Mererani hills in the northern part of Tanzania.

Tanzanite experience tour

If you are fascinated about this exotic gem and want to learn more then you will love the Tanzanite experience tour. This tour will give you a chance to learn about the history, mystery and rarity of this precious gem.

A replica of a tanzanite mine in the Tanzanite museum.

The tour isn’t long and may take from around 2 to 3 hours or even less depending on your schedule. The tour includes visual exhibitions, interactive tours and even a replica of  a Tanzanite mineshaft. You will learn and discover how Tanzanite is created, mined, polished and graded.
The museum is located in the center of Arusha, it also has a Tanzanite store attached to it so you can buy a certified gem directly from the source. Since the tour is easily accessible you can just add it to your city tour activities.Its definitely an experience you will enjoy

A piece of a rough tanzanite.


Here’s a beautiful poem written by Jodie Williams describing the mystical stone.


I have lay dormant for too long now
slept in the shadows, undiscovered.
Until the all knowing mind and
excited eye of a Maasai shepherd
extracts me from my mountainous shell.
From ultramarine to lilacy violet,
christened the Blue Zoisite
Adopted by Tiffany who cried in despair
‘It sounds too much like suicide’
Renamed Tanzanite, after its origin
a most precious, unique purple gem,
or am I, not purple but yellowy-brown
A lavender hue, some might claim.
A newbie compared to the oldest of rubies
a rebel that will not be mined.
Immaculate elegance, exclusively
the most dazzling of earthly designs.
(27th July 2011)

Since were talking about Arusha, let me share with you My Arusha experience.

For any enquiries please do not hesitate to contact us, we will be more than happy to assist.
Your Rafiki blogger here,

Signing out!



10 things to do on a safari in Tanzania.

So you’re planning to go on a safari and have pretty much no idea what you want to do on your trip. Have no fear! Rafiki blogger is here! I have compiled around ten activities that I’m sure at least one if not all will suit your needs.  Without further blubbering lets dive right into it!


1) Plan a Serengeti Balloon safari

A balloon safari in Serengeti is a once in a lifetime experience. This activity may not appeal to the non early birds since the earliest pick up to the grounds may start from around 5 AM. The trick is to view the sunrise while you’re already in the sky. This experience will give you a whole different perspective of a game safari viewing. Its even more breath taking during the Great migration between May and June where you can observe the large flock of wildebeests and Zebras running across the Savannah. This is definitely something you do not want to miss.

2) Do a Sundowner

If you’ve never been on a safari then you probably don’t know what a sundowner is. The term simply means an African happy hour where you lay back after a long day with a cocktail in hand and watch the sun slip below the horizon. After a game drive your guide may take you to a secluded bush location or a viewing cliff, or wherever location that is best for a sunset viewing. You may find yourself on a hill top overlooking the Savannah or on a water hole watching the wildlife taking their last sip of the day.

3) Do a Night game drive

Tanzania is not very popular with night game drives, but there are still few locations that do this activity. For instance Lake Manyara national park is popular for this. This is perhaps contributed because of the park’s many ecosystems. It is said to have approximately 11 ecosystems. The game drive depending on the company may begin at 8pm to 1030pm. The night time is mostly when the big cats are active so you if you’re lucky you might get to see some kitties in action.

4) Enjoy a bush breakfast

I forgot to mention that after a balloon safari you will probably get the opportunity to enjoy an English breakfast in a secluded bush area, although this depends on the company you booked with. Here at Karibu we make sure that you get the best out of your safari, and this itinerary will definitely be included. The breakfast served is normally a traditional English breakfast cooked in a local charcoal stove, because hello you’re in a bush! There you might mingle with other tourists and enjoy a soft and pleasant morning ready for your game drive and other activities for the rest of the day.

5) Do a walking Safari

It doesn’t get more intimate than this. This is the purest form of safari. Normally when your doing a game drive the animals ignore you, but when you are walking along their habitats the animals will automatically see you as another type of animal. You also get a chance to see smaller wildlife that is harder to spot when you are on a vehicle. Just remember to follow all the safety precautions presented to you by your guide and you will be fine.

6) Have a picnic near the hippo water hole.

While you are in Ngorongoro please do not miss the opportunity to have lunch at the picnic grounds. The scenic view is breath taking, you can see the hippos popping out like rocks in a lake, the greenery is fantastic and the whole atmosphere is just breath taking. It is definitely a must see place.

7) Stand on top of the crater

One of my best experiences was standing on the viewing site of the great Ngorongoro crater. Just for a minute don’t take pictures, don’t hold your phone, just stand and look, breathe in the cold air, appreciate the marvel of the crater, capture the moment, then take your pictures. Automatically if you visit Ngorongoro , viewing the crater is probably one of the most important activities you can’t and should not miss.

8) Dance with the Maasai

If you really want to get in touch with the local culture a Maasai village visit should be a must. They will welcome you with a traditional dance and music. Don’t hold back those Mick Jagger moves and join in! it’s okay if you think you don’t have the rhythm, the Maasai dance is quite unique and I think anyone can do it after they get a hang of it. This tour will also brush you up on the native history of the Maasai people and get a glimpse of their daily lives. It is definitely something you will enjoy, I guarantee!

9) Stare into the eyes of a long tusked African elephant

Sometimes it all just comes down to the basics, one of the most fascinating things I experienced during my game drive in Tarangire national park was several close encounters with the Elephants, Tarangire is famous for having one of the largest concentration of elephants in any national park. Once you catch the animal’s attention it will stare right into your soul with its piercing yet soft brown eyes for as long as you stay on the spot, and I have to say its one of the coolest things ever! Do not be frightened, most elephants are super curious so its normal for them to peep near the vehicles, but please make sure you have your windows up and that the vehicle is locked. Accidents do happen.


10) Tree walking

In Tanzania the only tree walking activity is found at the Lake Manyara national park. If you click on the highlighted word, you can read more about my trip and the  tree walk experience. It is a  frightening activity I cant lie, especially if you are afraid of heights, but if you are adventurous and enjoy taking risks then this is  something you will enjoy.

This is just a tip of the ice block, I mean rock (we dont have ice in Tanzania). There are so many other activities you can do on your safari. Here at Karibu we provide customized services, this means you tell us what YOU want to do and the rest leave it to us. Please do not hesitate to contact us, we will be more than happy to assist you!
Your Rafiki blogger here,

Signing out!