December in Tanzania

Planning a trip to Tanzania this December? Well, it would be a good idea to discover what Christmas is like on this side of the world! Whether you are here for a Kilimanjaro hike or big Safari, the Christmas spirit continues.

Christmas in Tanzania is a time of joy and celebration, with a unique blend of local traditions and Christian customs. While Tanzania is a multicultural country with a significant Christian population, Christmas is widely celebrated across different religious and ethnic groups. Here are some aspects of Christmas in Tanzania:

1. Religious Observance: Many Tanzanians attend church services on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day to commemorate the birth of Jesus Christ. Churches are often beautifully decorated, and special services, including carol singing and nativity plays, are held to mark the occasion.
2. Family Gatherings: Christmas is a time for families to come together, and it is common for people to travel long distances to reunite with their loved ones. Family members gather to share meals, exchange gifts, and enjoy each other’s company.
3. Festive Food: Traditional Tanzanian dishes are prepared for Christmas, and special meals are shared among family and friends. Depending on the region and cultural background, the menu may include dishes such as pilau (spiced rice), nyama choma (grilled meat), chapati, and a variety of traditional stews and side dishes.
4. Music and Dance: Music and dance play a central role in the festivities, with lively performances and traditional dances adding to the merriment. Local musicians often perform festive songs, and communities come together for musical events and performances.
5. Decorations: In urban areas and towns, you may see Christmas decorations adorning shops, homes, and streets. While the extent of decoration varies, it is common to see Christmas trees, lights, and other festive ornamentation.
6. Acts of Charity: Christmas is also a time for acts of charity and giving. Many Tanzanians engage in charitable activities, such as donating food, clothing, or gifts to those in need, as a way of spreading goodwill during the holiday season.

It’s important to note that Christmas traditions can vary across different regions and cultural groups within Tanzania, so specific customs and practices may differ based on local customs and religious observances. 

The national parks also have some Christmas spirit, and more so if you stay at the lodge!

About the Author
Our Marketing Manager is responsible for our online presence and bookings. She will most likely be the first person to reply to your request. Before moving to Tanzania, she was travelling through East Africa and has been employed in the tourism industry since 2008 in marketing and tour guide positions. Favorite place in Tanzania: Usambara Mountains and Serengeti National Park.

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