Babati Cultural Tour

Babati district is located along the Arusha-Dodoma road in the Rift Valley, south of Lake Manyara National Park and west from Tarangire. The town boasts Lake Babati where floating hippos can be seen and which is rich in fish, both tilapia and Nile perch. Here commercial and farming tribes coexist with conservative cattle herding tribes to provide a distinguished cultural contrast. In Hanang District close by the beautiful Mount Hanang (3,418 meters), live the Barbaig people whose traditional culture is still unchanged and unspoiled. The women wear traditional goatskin dresses and the men walk around with spears. Visitors can mix freely with the Barbaig, commonly known as the Mangati living in the Mangati plains. If you are interested in bird watching, 400 bird species will welcome you on your walks in the area. Half day tour: You visit Managhat village, original home of the Gorowa tribe but now also a home for migrants. You will see dairy farming activities, farming with ox ploughs, biogas system, local Gorowa huts and a Killer Beekeeping Project at the bottom of Mount Kwaraa (2,415 meters).

Babati Cultural Tour

Detailed itinerary

One Day Tour:
You walk to Managhat village (see above) and climb Bambaay Hill from where you see the beautiful Rift Valley landscape with Lake Babati and Lake Manyara. The Rift Valley Escarpment in the background and the Masaai Steppe at the east. Later you visit a respected Gorowa tribesman, Mzee Kwaraa, at his home. He will tell you about Gorowa culture, marriage, rain prayers, burial, religious and circumcision rituals. Optionally one can row, fish and view hippos on Lake Babati, using local canoes.
Three Days Special Barbaig Tour: Day 1:
This tour begins with a 70 kilometer bus ride from Babati to Katesh. Lunch in a local hotel. From here you start a 16 kilometer bush walk towards the Mangati plains. In Dirma, a Barbaig nomad village, you will be warmly welcomed at Mzee Gavachu’s boma. In no time you will see Barbaig women and men coming to see their new guests. Our Barbaig guide will help to translate where only Barbaig language is spoken. Seated on three legged stools you have dinner prepared by the women. In the huts a bed with a skin only is waiting for you.
Day 2:
A relaxed day where the visitor can mix freely with people and gain the cultural insights from men and women, taking pictures together and knowing more about procedures of marriage, burial of elderly men, religious rituals, local taboos etc. Have a look at how they make the goatskin gowns and the ornaments, how they prepare the famous honey brew called Gisuda. One can try to herd cattle or fetch water the Barbaig way. The only school and dispensary can be visited where you can talk with teachers and nurses.
Day 3 :
Walk back to Katesh, where you have lunch, further bus trip to Babati or Arusha. Mount Hanang (3,418 meters) Trekking From Katesh, the fourth highest mountain of Tanzania, can be climbed in one day. An early start is necessary with guides and porters through farmland, forest, scrub and grasslands. Finally, after five to six hours walking, you will reach the summit. Another three to four hours is needed for the descent. But it is advisable to climb from Gendabi at the foot of the mountain, a three-hour walk from Katesh. Teachers from the Secondary school will provide accommodation and food. After spending the night in the village you climb and have more time to enjoy the scenery. Summiteers will receive a certificate.
God’s Bridge Walk :
Drive from Babati to Bacho village at the foot of the Rift Wall where you visit local fish ponds. Along local paths climb the escarpment and visit God’s Bridge with a fantastic view. Descend and walk to the main road where you drive back to Babati Combined tours. All tours can be combined. A cycling expedition can be organized on request. For birdwatchers exclusive safaris are designed. A combination of a visit to the National Parks with our Cultural tour is possible. The five hours drive from Karatu, Mbulu, Dareda to Katesh is of an extreme beauty. From Katesh, the Tarangire gate can be reached within three hours.
Facilities :
Full board accommodation in selected local hotels and guesthouses in Babati and Katesh. Selected family homes/huts in the villages with basic standards and without running water. Temporary self catering campsites can be organized. In the villages women provide food. Lunch boxes can be ordered from Joas Kahembe. Recommended equipment: Good walking shoes, sleeping bag (mattress), water bottle, filter or micro-pure tablets, anti-malaria pills and torch.
Development Project :
In Managhat the villagers decided to invest the Village Development Fee in the rehabilitation of the primary school.
Guides :
English speaking guides who know the area will help you around. A Barbaig born guide will tell you about Barbaig culture.


  • The cost of all ground transportation and Fuel
  • Full-time safari guide and his associated expenses
  • Park entrance fees
  • Accommodation and meals


  • Items of personal nature like Laundry, Beverages, Flights, Beers, Beverages
  • Tipping of staff
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