Surrounded by hills with enormous boulders, and set on the shore of Lake Victoria, is Mwanza, Tanzania’s second largest city. The home area of the country’s largest ethnical group, the Sukuma, and the economical heart of the lake region Mwanza is a busy port and the starting point if you want to visit Rubondo Island National Park. It’s also a good alternative for starting or ending your Serengeti wildlife adventure.
Founded in 1892 as a cotton trading city, Mwanza has become growingly more and more important du to it’s location for the mining areas close by, and for it’s port handling the cotton, tea and coffee grown in this fertile area of Western Tanzania.
Lake Victoria was “discovered” by the British explorer John Hanning Speke in August 1858, due to his dispute with his fellow explorer Richard Francis Burton about the source of the Nile. Burton was sure that Lake Tanganyika was the source, but Speke circled half of the Lake Victoria and sailed all the way down to Cairo in 1863 to prove his theory.
Besides the lake itself, Mwanza town have an Oriental feel to give you due to the many Hindu temples and mosques to be seen.
A walk through city centre will take you to the central market, bustling and chaotic, or to the amazing towering stack of boulders just offshore, the Bismark Rock, a major landmark of the city.
The Sukuma’s are known for their dancing, and the annual dancing festival “Bulabo”, arranged in Bujora just outside Mwanza. About 60 days after Easter, you can join the spectacle dancing.
Most famous are the dances including animals, the banungule – the hyena dance – and the bazwilili bayeye – the snake and porcupine dance. You should also visit the Sukuma Museum in the same area, showing a lot from the traditions of the Sukuma people.
Our packages that includes Mwanza City: