Private taxis and crimes
Private taxi drivers operates in Dar es Salaam, and some of them are thiefs. Robberies has been reported when the car ends up in a quiet back street at nights. Tourists have in some cases been threatened to give away the PIN code on their credit card.
The thiefs normally operates in the evening when the long distance buses arrives in Dar es Salaam. As a tired tourists you might take the first and best car. Especially if the price is low. Be critical if the driver agree to a price lower than 15000 TSH. They normally charge tourists 20-30000 TSH to the beach hotels. Never take a car when the driver has his friends in the car. Make sure other people see you enter the car. Write down the registration number. Have a plan where to go when you enter Dar es Salaam.
Slipway area and crimes
Slipway is an isolated resort area in Dar es Salaam with exclusive hotels. It has been many incidents of pickpockets from cars where the passenger snap the bag from walking tourists and then drive away in full speed. Be careful with your bags.
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Kunduchi beach and crimes
Kunduchi beach is in my mind the second most beautiful beach in Dar es Salaam. The beach has some exclusive hotels. But it has become so dangerous for tourists so it is adviced not to stay there before the police and the hotels themselves does something with the violent crime. It is not enough to have many security guards inside the hotel beach plots when the tourists are robbed as soon as they go outside.
Groups of very poor and in some cases drugged men are sitting along the beach side. Violent crimes with Machete, knife or sticks happens every month, and tourists have been injured. Kunduchi police post is located 4 km away and seam to be useless in the way of helping tourists with problems.
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Crime is increasing in Dar es Salaam
Tanzania is a peaceful country and the people are friendly, but the difference between rich and poor are increasing. The poorest people have nothing. It is normally safe to walk around in the city, but be careful to walk in poor areas, deserted beach and dark streets.
Don't carry bags around. Don't show your camera and mobil phone when walking in the streets. Fast pickpocketing from cars happens. Robberies in the side streets happens, robberies at deserted beach happens.
The police in Tanzania is normally useless when it comes to help out tourists in problems. Their english skills are poor and they asks in many cases for a tip to write a police report.
Before you fly to Tanzania!
Make sure you have a shot of the Yellow Fever Vaccine. It is required to have it to enter the country for your own protection, I assure you. So many mosquitoes and they're big (at least to me).
Please ensure that you got your shot at least ten (10) days before arriving in Tanzania. And bring that yellow card with you.
There are some men in white uniforms who position themselves before the immigration area. You will have to bribe them or you will risk to take the next plane if you don't meet the health requirement.
While we were staying at Kipepeo beach, someone staying at the campsite just down the beach had been out jogging in the morning and had been robbed at knife point of money and her shoes. Best to avoid jogging or walking far alone.
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Danger at Night
Be warned though, like all seaports, it has its dangers. You are strongly advised not to wander around the city at night in small groups, particularly around the port and on the beaches north of the city around Kunduchi. And never exchange money on the streets with the touts who offer you ?best rates in town?. They will either be rip-off artists who cleverly pad a wad of shillings with blank paper, or undercover policemen who will give you a warning, but keep your dollars. The Tanzanian shilling is, in any case, a regulated currency, and the black market will yield scant rewards.
Watch out for the working ladies
If you are a man in Dar, then you have to be very careful about your drinks in nightclubs. I have known several occasions when guys have got drunk and had their drink spiked by one of the numerous ladies surrounding you (this is especially the case in California Dreamers). The next morning, they have found that they have had their wallet and mobile phone stolen.
I advise you to always keep you drink in your hand and it should be ok. It has never happened to me basically because I have been continuously vigilant.
The citycenter of Dar es...
The citycenter of Dar es Salaam is ok to walk alone late at night, but outside the center its better to use a taxi, which aren't expensive.
The beach at Dar es Salaam is known for its muggers, Coco beach its called, a friend of mine was mugged by three men with a very large knive, its better to take a small boat to one of the small gaunted islands, eg. take the boat from the Slipway which takes about 30min to a small island, Bongoyo beach. A return ticket is about 5000sh (6usd). There is service at the island you can get drinks and they serve very nice fish and chips (freshly caught fish). Or you can take the ferry from Dar es Salaam harbour to Southbeach, which has a beautiful deserted beach. But you will need a car... which is far easier then going by 'dala dala' (the local bus, minibus).
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