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Lake Victoria the Beaches and the Culture

After a long hard day being a tourist, after driving and walking in the hot equatorial sun head back to the hotel. What is needed to finish the day off and relax is not to sit in the hotel for your dinner, however nice the food and surrounding. You are on Safari and have probably traveled long and hard to get to see Africa proper.

No; the hotel/lodge restaurant will just no do! Head to the beach in front of the hotel and relax on the sands of Lake Victoria and listening to traditional African music. Chefs from the hotel will cook on the beach whilst you relax and drink in the magic of this region.A leisurely dinner stretching into the evening as the warm waters of the lake and the balmy African evening along with the traditional music will seduce you into loving Africa; life will never be the same; you have been warned.This region of Tanzania has a rich culture, if you are lucky the young people of the area will come down to the beach to dance to the music.

In Africa it is not the beat but the rhythms of the music that is important. A word of warning do not be tempted to attend any of the tired performances created for the tourists, but choose a place on the beach that the locals visit. If you want safe and neatly choreographed then I would surest Disney World as the better option. And if you feel the urge join in with the dancing. It is unforgettable.

If later in the evening the mellow story telling around a campfire and gazing at the night sky and stars of the Equator is just to boring for you ? then "Bukoba Beach" is a great place to go and there are many discotheques in Bukoba town centre.Cultural tours are a must whilst in Tanzania and by far the best way to do this is to discover the local culture on foot or by bicycle. This is a chance to get in contact with the local people in their daily life - don't miss it. A tour operator will gladly hire out an experienced English-speaking guide to bring Bukoba to life. You can set the pace and set the distance, physical exertion and amount of cultural enrichment you are able to assimilate in a day! The secret is don't try to do too much, the less you do the more enriching the experience.Go fishing with Local fishermen.

How more cultural can you get? Experience the local life of fishermen by joining them in their work; fishing. Maybe go out in a small wooden canoe and try to see who can catch the most Tilapia or Nile perch. At the end of the day someone can prepare your catch and cook your days spoils; nothing better than to eat fresh fish on the beach you have caught yourself. An organized trip will cost about US$15 ? and if your fisherman is good ? slip him a couple dollars tip.

Possibly the area's [not so best-kept] secrets is the caveman rock paintings close to Bukoba town plus one of the first religious shrines built in East Africa [as with all tourist information take all statistics with a pinch of salt.L.A.


G.A.M. is the Lake Victoria Botanical Garden of Medicinal Plants. This place is a fabulous project to preserve and protect the traditional plant life and their use within the region.Karobela or Kabaranda Beach - take a hike along this remote area to experience culture and panoramas.

Pass through banana plantations, forest and wild ending up at a spectacular viewpoint; looking across Lake Victoria. Then, with your guide leading the way, climb down to a fantastic secluded beach. Rest here and watch the birds or the local fisher folk perform their daily activities.

If arrangements are made in advance join them in and try to catch your supper.

.See the Tanzania information page at http://www.

tanzania-info.co.uk or for more specialized safari information see http://www.betheladventure.

co.uk use responsible tourism to change lives.

By: Ian Williamson

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