12 AWESOME WATERFALLS IN TANZANIA

Tanzania is known for its trekking and incredible mountain ranges as well as being one of the premier safari destinations in the world. However, if you are a waterfall chaser like me, Tanzania has some incredible spots to discover. I spent two and a half months exploring Tanzania and came across some incredible waterfalls. In this blog post, I am going to share with you seven of the top waterfalls in Tanzania I visited and five more that should be on your bucket list.

For the mountain lovers: TANZANIA HIKING GUIDE: 14 BEST HIKES IN THE MOUNTAINS OF TANZANIA

What to do in Tanzania: 25 AWESOME THINGS TO DO IN TANZANIA

Table Of Contents

WHICH COMPANY DID I DO ALL OF MY TREKS, SAFARI AND TOURS WITH?

I did almost every single one of my treks, tours, safaris, and transfers with Altezza Travel. The guides and drivers were always on time, the guides were well trained, they had high-quality gear and offer a wide range of tours, treks, and activities. If you book any safari, tour, or trek with Altezza Travel and use my code JACKSON5, they will give you a 5% discount on the entire tour price. That offer is even for Mount Kilimanjaro so you could save a couple hundred on your tour if you book with Altezza Travel using the code JACKSON5.

12 BEST WATERFALLS IN TANZANIA

MOUNT MERU WATERFALL HIKE

Mount Meru is home to many incredible waterfalls, which pour down from the volcanic slopes. After a night of heavy rain, I made a day trip to explore one of the largest waterfalls at the base of Mount Meru, aptly named Mount Meru Waterfall. This adventure involves a steep motorbike drive up a rocky road followed by a jungle stairway that leads you down into a gorge. Once inside, you wade through the river, clambering over rocks until you meet the intense falls that spray with incredible force at its base. A remarkable sight and only a few kilometers from the town, the Mount Meru waterfall is one of the top things to do in Arusha.

MOUNT MERU WATERFALL HIKE DETAILS

Hike Distance: The total distance of the hike is roughly 4-5km out and back (return trip)

Hike Duration: Heading from the ticket office down to the waterfall and directly back should take about 1.5-2 hours.

Hike Difficulty: This trail is moderately difficult due to slippery conditions and wading through the river. Most people with average fitness and a sense of adventure will be okay as it is nothing technical. Be prepared to get wet.

Hike Incline: 200 meters.

READ MY FULL BLOG POST: MOUNT MERU WATERFALL HIKE

NGARE SERO WATERFALLS HIKE

Lake Natron is a popular area to stay at the lake-side lodging and observe the massive flocks of flamingos and other wildlife near the expansive salt lake. The ‘Mountain of God’ Ol Doinyo Lengai also looms in the background and is the third most popular mountain to climb in Tanzania. However, hidden in the depths of the Ngare Sero Gorge is the hidden gem of the region with a series of stunning waterfalls. It might be hard to believe in the heat of the plains but this refreshing micro-adventure was one of my favorite activities in the Lake Natron region. This one was probably my favorite waterfall in Tanzania as it was just so unexpected!

The trek is short but very interesting from the first moment as you spend the entire route inside the gorge. Wading through hip-high water at times is quite a fun adventure although still very moderate and easy for most to handle. The waterfalls at the end of the gorge are the perfect spot to cool down after your Ol Doinyo Lengai hike.

NGARE SERO WATERFALLS HIKE DETAILS

Hike Distance: The total distance of the hike is 5km out and back (return trip)

Hike Duration: The hike can be completed in about two hours depending on how long you enjoy the waterfall.

Hike Difficulty: This trail is quite basic as it is only five kilometers in distance. However, the trail crosses the river a number of times. I highly suggest water shoes or even using hiking boots and getting them wet. My friend went in flip-flops and regretted it due to how much of the trail was on slippery rocks.

Hike Incline: 333 meters.

My Strava Map Upload: Ngare Sero Waterfall Hike

READ MY FULL BLOG POST: NGARE SERO WATERFALLS HIKE

KIDHEGE FALLS HIKE

The Kidhege Waterfall is impressive but the hike to reach the falls is the highlight of this adventure amidst the incredibly diverse nature of the Shagayu Forest in Usambara, Tanzania. Hidden deep in the forest, determined hikers can find the peaceful oasis of the Kidhege Waterfall. The Shagayu Forest Reserve is one of 34 biodiversity hotspots in the world with a wide array of endemic plants. The trail is pretty wild and requires a guide for most hikers although I managed to find this waterfall on a solo adventure.

KIDHEGE FALLS HIKE DETAILS

Hike Distance: The total distance of the hike is about 15km out and back (return trip) if you begin and end at Mambo View Point Eco Lodge. I started at Mambo and finished at Mtae and my entire trek was 13km. There is a way to get close to the entrance and hike in and out for less than an 8-km hike.

Hike Duration: The hike to and from Mambo should take about 4-5 hours in total although the forest section is thick and will slow many down as they avoid trying to slip.

Hike Difficulty: This trail is quite difficult within the forest due to the narrow tracks, dense forestation, and slippery surface. However, there is nothing dangerous on the hike other than getting lost or slipping and your guide should mitigate those risks.

Hike Incline: 800 meters (return trip)

READ MY FULL BLOG POST: KIDHEGE WATERFALL HIKE IN SHAGAYU FOREST

MARANGU WATERFALLS HIKE

You may have heard of the Marangu Route, which takes hikers up to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro. However, I doubt you have heard of the Marangu Waterfalls, which are a great attraction in the area before or after your Mount Kilimanjaro trek. Combine the short waterfall hike with a coffee tour or an exploration of the local Chagga cave system and you are set for a full day of adventures before your more serious trekking. The two waterfalls I visited on my hike were Ndoro and Monjo, and these are the most popular two although there are others to explore in the area also. For a day trip from Moshi these Tanzania waterfalls will definitely be a refreshing adventure.

MARANGU WATERFALL HIKE DETAILS

Hike Distance: The total distance of the hike is 5.5km out and back (return trip).

Hike Duration: The hike to and from the waterfall should take about 1.5 -2 hours.

Hike Difficulty: This trail is quite manageable. Even in the rain, it was okay when we walked slowly. It’s a muddy road, which converts into a single-track trail and towards the end of the hike. The hardest part of the hike is the 100m or so of incline up the stairs when returning from the waterfall.

Hike Incline: 212 meters (return trip).

My Strava Map Upload: Marangu Waterfall Hike

READ MY FULL BLOG POST: MARANGU WATERFALLS HIKE

KISASA WATERFALL HIKE

The Kisasa Waterfall, also known as Izasa or Kizasa (depending on who you ask), is an epic spot in amongst the Usambara Mountain Range. While it is possible to drive to the entrance and do a short walk down to the base of the falls, I suggest combining the falls with a hike throughout the village region. I walked from Irente Farm Lodge, passing through the village of Yogoi and was able to observe lots of local scenes on the route to the waterfall.

KISASA WATERFALL HIKE DETAILS

Hike Distance: The total distance of the hike is 7km one-way from Irente Farm Lodge although you can start from wherever you are staying.

Hike Duration: The hike can be completed in about 2 hours or 4-5 hours if you make the return trip like I did.

Hike Difficulty: This trail is quite basic as it follows the village roads all the way until you reach the falls and then you must do a sort descent on the dirt path.

Hike Incline: This really depends on where you begin. I did a massive loop from Irente, through Yogoi and returned so my incline for the day was almost 1000m but it really doesn’t have to be that dramatic. I explain this in the full blog post linked above.

My Strava Map Upload: Kisasa Waterall Hike

READ MY FULL BLOG POST: KISASA WATERFALL HIKE IN USAMBARA

MATERUNI WATERFALL HIKE

Materuni Waterfall is a booming waterfall just 15-kilometers from Moshi Town. When combined with a coffee tour in the village, it makes for a perfect day trip before or after your Mount Kilimanjaro climb. With about eight kilometers of walking throughout the day and 300 meters of incline, this adventure is a great warm-up for the legs while also getting to immerse yourself in the local culture. The tour begins by observing the entire process of making a cup of coffee, from seed to mug. After a locally produced lunch, you head off to explore the massive Materuni Waterfall.

BOOK YOUR MATERUNI WATERFALL HIKE: I did my Materuni Waterfall Hike & Coffee Tour with Altezza Travel and can’t recommend it enough. If you want to book with Altezza, they offer a 5% discount to my readers when you use the code JACKSON5 to book your waterfall hike.

MATERUNI WATERFALL HIKE DETAILS

Hike Distance: The total distance of the hike is 8km out and back (return trip) including the walk up to the coffee farm.

Hike Duration: The hike to and from the waterfall should take about 1.5 -2 hours but including the coffee farm tour, you can expect the entire activity to last for 3-4 hours.

Hike Difficulty: This trail is quite manageable. Even in the rain, it was okay when we walked slowly. It’s a muddy road, which converts into a single-track trail towards the end of the hike. As long as you are comfortable with uneven surfaces and some slight incline, this will be a walk in the park.

Hike Incline: 321 meters (return trip) including the coffee farm.

My Strava Map Upload: Materuni Waterfalls Hike

READ MY FULL BLOG POST: MATERUNI WATERFALL HIKE

TULULUSIA WATERFALL

On the descent from our Mount Meru climb, we stopped off at Tululusia Waterfall, which is at the base of Mount Meru. Hidden away by a secret path, this waterfall is tucked between the rock wall and is a reward for hikers coming down from the summit of Mount Meru. In the rainy season, it pours ferociously and can be heard from outside of the ravine. In the drier months, you can go and dip your feet at the base of the falls. It is possible to reach this waterfall on a day trip but most visitors to this waterfall are on the descent from Mount Meru as it is quite far from Arusha just for a day trip to see the waterfall.

* MORE WATERFALLS TO EXPLORE *

The next few on this list of the top Tanzania Waterfalls are spots I didn’t quite make it to but had on my own bucket list. I thought it would be valuable to share those with you in case you are able to explore them on your own. I’ll definitely try and visit these waterfalls in Tanzania if I make a return trip.

SANJE FALLS

Sanje Falls is one of the most popular waterfalls in Tanzania. Hidden in the forest of Udzungwa, a steep cirucit hike takes about four hours to complete from Sanje village. At 170m, Sanje Falls is an incredible sight and one of many amazing natural formations in the Udzungwa area.

Sanje falls
S5003233  Udzungwa Mountains N.P.: Sanje Falls

KALAMBO FALLS

This one is a bit interesting as it is literally on the border between Tanzania and Zambia. Kalambo Falls are the tallest uninterrupted falls in Africa at 235 meters. This means the water doesn’t cascade down it just free falls the entire way for 235m. Downstream of the falls you will find the Kalambo Gorge, which is 1-km wide and a depth of up to 300 m, running for about 5-km before opening up into the Lake Tanganyika rift valley.

Kalombo Falls

KINUKAMORI WATERFALL

Kinukamori Waterfall is actually very close to the Marangu Waterfalls tour I did, which I showed above. Kinukamori is found in Chagga Land amidst the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro. The crystal clear of the waterfall originates in the natural springs of volcanic rocks on Kilimanjaro. On the tour, you will visit Kinukamori on top and bottom. This picturesque spot is great for swimming or just relaxing and enjoying the refreshing breeze from the waterfall. The trek itself to the waterfall is just 20 minutes so it is a short adventure.

Kinukamori Falls
Marangu Falls Kinukamori

KAKOMBE WATERFALL

Kakombe Waterfall is a secluded treasure in the heart of Gombe, a popular place for trekking and sighting chimpanzees. Within the national park the waterfall is often part of trek itineraries where tourists are walking in hope of coming across chimpanzees in the wild.

Kakombe waterfall
Kakombe Waterfall

I hope you enjoyed this guide about the top waterfalls in Tanzania and found some inspiration for your next trip.

MORE OF MY TOP TANZANIA BLOG POSTS

For the mountain lovers: TANZANIA HIKING GUIDE: 14 BEST HIKES IN THE MOUNTAINS OF TANZANIA

The top waterfalls: 12 AWESOME WATERFALLS IN TANZANIA

Trekking Kili the adventurous way: CLIMBING MOUNT KILIMANJARO: THE WESTERN BREACH ROUTE

Tanzania’s second highest peak: MOUNT MERU CLIMB IN TANZANIA

Best place to base in Tanzania: WHERE TO STAY IN ARUSHA: 15 BEST HOTELS & LODGES

What to do in Tanzania: 25 AWESOME THINGS TO DO IN TANZANIA

My favorite solo adventure: USAMBARA MOUNTAINS: HIKING ALONE FROM LUSHOTO TO MTAE

WHERE TO STAY IN ARUSHA

Most Luxurious and best overall: Gran Melia Arusha – incredible view of Mount Meru and premium 5-star luxury.

Where I stayed on a budget: Wakawaka Hostel– cheap, great location and chill vibes

Best value place to stay: Tulia Boutique Hotel & Spa – very cheap price but has pool and high quality facilities and rooms.

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