If you ask us for a list of amazing things to see in Moshi town, we’ll probably have to disappoint you. There’s no architectural treasures or perfectly maintained parks. No shopping malls or hip restaurants for a fancy dinner. But there’s a vibe. A laid-back atmosphere that we can’t quite manage to define. Streets full of people, lively markets and bars playing reggae music all day long. Coffee plantations, waterfalls and little local villages just 30 minutes out of town. Unexpected encounters whilst driving along bumpy roads, and views out of a dream. The smell of a homemade meal, and the pride of your local guide when he tells you about his tribe’s culture.
Moshi is a small, bustling town that nestles in the gently-sloping foothills of the majestic Kilimanjaro. It’s the traditional jump-off point for the brave souls that attempt Kilimanjaro but Moshi isn’t just about climbing. It has a spirit and energy all its own, and, although the grand beauty of Kilimanjaro looming in the distance is ever-present, it’s worth exploring for its colour, bustling markets and daily lives of its Chagga residents.
If you’re a culture vulture then there are treats aplenty in the nearby Maasai villages. Explore the Chagga underground caves, which, centuries ago, protected the Chagga from the marauding Maasai; visit a coffee farm to find out about how coffee is grown, harvested and roasted – and you’ll have the opportunity to prepare your own!
If you love nature then you’re spoiled for choice. The hikes surrounding Moshi are truly breathtaking. If you’d like to explore the spirit of Kilimanjaro without the actual climb, then its foothills will present you with miles of paths through valleys and along ridges, through lush rainforest alive with birdsong and colobus chatter, and even up into eerie montaine forest.
And if you’re seeking perfect tranquillity and relaxation, choose between Lake Chala or the Chemka Hot Springs (or choose both!). An hour’s easy drive from Moshi, Lake Chala is serenity itself. A crater lake on the Kenyan border, it’s a quiet, romantic spot for a long, hand-in-hand walk around the lake or a short stroll directly to its peaceful shores for a swim in the calm waters. The Chemka Hot Springs are geothermally warmed waters that rise up, clear and turquoise, into limpid pools that are a little piece of heaven.