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Tanzania is a top African safari destination, home to diverse species of animals, birds and plants. Herds of elephants, flocks of flamingos, prides of lions and endangered groups of black rhino,  run wild in the numerous national parks of Tanzania. To crown an already impressive set of safari credentials the great wildebeest migration begins in the Serengeti Plains of Tanzania when the heavy Tanzania rainfall during April forces herds of animals to start their journey northwards in search of food.

Tanzania’s location between the Equator and Capricorn means it experiences tropical weather while its vast size means that the weather can vary quite a bit, depending on where you are. Tanzania’s climate zones range from the Indian Ocean coast (hot and humid) to the plains of the Selous and the Serengeti, into the highlands (cool and temperate) and up to the top of the highest mountain in Africa – snow-capped Kilimanjaro.

Like most African countries, Tanzania has two rainy seasons. The long rains are from March to May and the short rains from November and December. The year starts with a hot, dry season in January and February, followed directly by the long rains from March to May. The Tanzania rainy seasons can make travel impossible as many of the roads in the national parks become unusable. Once the rains subside, Tanzania welcomes the cold, dry season from June to October. The majority of the tourists visit the country during this season when parks are accessible, the game is abundant and the temperature is more manageable.

Tanzania Weather Conditions

The following table shows the various seasons in Tanzania and the description of the weather changes by month. It also shows the average temperatures each month in the Serengeti National Park, the most visited national park in Tanzania.

MonthsSeasons in TanzaniaTanzania Weather ConditionsSerengeti National Park,
Tanzania Temperatures By Month
JanuaryHot and Dry SeasonOne of the warmest months of the year, January sees 10 hours of sunlight on an average day. The rare time when it rains, the weather is slightly humid.High Temp: 28°C/82.4°F

Low Temp: 15°C/59°F
FebruaryHot and Dry SeasonThe hot early February marks the peak time for the wildebeest calving season. It is also an ideal month to view birds and other wildlife in Tanzania.High Temp: 28°C/82.4°F

Low Temp: 15°C/59°F
MarchHot and Dry SeasonThe rains start during the early March, bringing high humidity with it.High Temp: 28°C/82.4°F

Low Temp: 15°C/59°F
AprilLong RainsApril sees heavy rainfall, a dangerous time for tourism, but it is a prime time to view the start of the wildebeest migration from the Serengeti plains.High Temp: 26°C/78.8°F

Low Temp: 16°C/60.8°F
MayLong RainsThe torrential rainfall lasts until the end of May.High Temp: 25°C/77°F

Low Temp: 15°C/59°F
JuneLong RainsThe rain gradually recedes. By late June, it’s time for the dry season and a decrease in the humidity levels.High Temp: 25°C/77°F

Low Temp: 13°C/55.4°F
JulyLong RainsThe days during the dry seasons are sunny, the mornings and the nights see a drop in temperatures.High Temp: 25°C/77°F

Low Temp: 13°C/55.4°F
AugustCool And Dry SeasonAugust is one of the dry months. It brings a lot of tourists to Tanzania.High Temp: 26°C/78.8°F

Low Temp: 14°C/57.2°F
SeptemberCool And Dry SeasonThe clear skies and decreasing vegetation let the tourist view the river crossings during the wildebeest migrations in August and September.High Temp: 27°C/80.6°F

Low Temp: 14°C/57.2°F
OctoberCool And Dry SeasonThe favourable sunny weather with clear skies perseveres in October.High Temp: 28°C/82.4°F

Low Temp: 15°C/59°F
NovemberShort RainsWe see scarce and unpredictable rainfall, hence short rains.High Temp: 27°C/80.6°F

Low Temp: 15°C/59°F
DecemberShort RainsThe ‘short rains’ season in some areas of Tanzania is even hotter than the hot and dry months.High Temp: 27°C/80.6°F

Low Temp: 15°C/59°F

*Serengeti National Park, Tanzania Temperature Source: Weather-Atlas.com

Highlights To Visit During The Dry Seasons

  • Arusha National Park
  • Lake Manyara National Park
  • Mount Kilimanjaro
  • Ngorongoro Conservation Area
  • Serengeti Plains
  • Serengeti National Park
  • Tanzania Adventure Safaris
  • Tarangire National Park