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Live with the Maasai!

Live with the Maasai!
World Unite! offers the possibility of living with the Maasai! The Maasai village in which this is possible is only about 10 km from Kilimanjaro International Airport, and about 50 km from Moshi and 70 km from Arusha. You live in a typical Maasai house and take part in their daily life.
We would like to point out that, this is not an experience staged for tourists or an attenuated program, but the true Maasai life. As a guest, you enjoy preparing traditional food and experience food such as fermented milk.
Two Maasai villages, Laizer and Leronjo, started this initiative and have received approval by the Tanzania Cultural Tourism Programme for the Reception of Foreigners in April 2009; they are familiar with the needs and practices of foreign tourists and have been working with our partners ZARA Tours for many years in Moshi. In the village, there is cellular coverage and emergency medical care and the Kilimanjaro Airport can be reached in 15 minutes.
Read the following Article by Christina, who lived in a Maasai village for 6 weeks.


The Masai (or Maasai, Maassai) are nomadic herders that immigrated from northern Africa to East Africa towards the middle of the 16th century. This most well-known ethnic group in East Africa is now located in the Kilimanjaro region, both in southern Kenya and northern Tanzania. Currently, there are about 1,000,000 Maasai, equally divided between the two countries.
Originally, the Maasai were known primarily as a warriors and shepherds; the culture of the Maasai is mainly based on cattle. The rain god Ngai, perched on the summit of Mount Kenya, is said to have left to them by their faith, all the cattle of this earth. The Maasai believe this, and until until very recently, forcibly expropriated cattle from others. Even today, the cattle is the most important part of their diet.
They feed primarily on the meat, milk and blood from cattle, for their protein and caloric needs. The milk - blood mixture is a traditional Maasai specialty. Vegetable dishes are typically not eaten by Maasai. However, one can see Maasai who live outside the protected areas, resort to agriculture for their income, growing wheat, corn, beans, tea and potatoes. The traditional Maasai however, do not cultivate these but, buy them from other tribes.
There are no chiefs or leaders for the Maasai; they are organised by the age group of males. The transitions from one age group to the next are crucial moments in the life of a Maasai man and his reputation is very dependent on the number of cattle and women. It is not uncommon for a Maasai to have 50 cattle and five women. Numerous ceremonies, including the much criticised female circumcision, mark the life if the Maasai.
The traditional Maasai houses are round or rectangular depending on the region - but definitely built from a clay-manure mixture, which is similar to a half-timbered house attached to a wooden skeleton structure around. A fire is used for cooking and heating as there is no fireplace inside the Maasai house.
The Maasai speak among themselves their own language, Maa, which belongs to the group of Nilotic languages. However, most can also communicate in Swahili, which they have learnt in schools since the 60's.
In addition to language and food, many more features of the west are found in the everyday life of the Maasai. Maasai who go to college, download ringtones on their mobile phone, drive a car, write emails and play billiards and dance hip-hop in the city, are no exception. They do not give up their traditions, but mix them with others. Like no other tribe in Tanzania, the Maasai are faithful to their traditional way of life and benefit from tourism.
Especially for longer stays, it is is definitely advisable to read enough about the culture of the Maasai. We can provide a list of references available.

Live with the Maasai!

Minimum Duration: 3 Days
Maximum Duration: 1 Year
Language Requirements: English
Location: between Moshi and Arusha (about 10 km from Kilimanjaro Airport), Tanzania
Accommodation: Maasai Home. Alternatively, we can also provide a tent available.

Price: In Tab "Rate"




3 Days - 150 EUR
Each additional day 45 USD/Day
When staying for 1 month or longer: 25 USD/Day
Convert to USD, GBP, CAD, AUD and other currencies
* Transfers from/to JRO Airport or Moshi for arrival and departure
* Accommodation in Maasai House or in a tent
* All meals



Other Projects That Might Interest You:

These projects are suggestions for alternatives that may interest you or those that could be chosen as COMBINATIONS. The combination of projects in different organizations is often possible and usually cheaper than two individual bookings. Please contact us to know more! Check out our other listings in the areas of "World Learner" and "Active Travel" at your travel destination to make your stay even more interesting.

Safaris, Kilimanjaro Climbs, Day Trips, Watersports

budgetsafaribannerAs "Budget Safari Tanzania" we are arranging cost-effective yet high-quality safaris, Kilimanjaro climbs, excursions, and watersports activities in Tanzania and Zanzibar. You will group with other World Unite! participants and further travellers.
As a World Unite! participant, you get a 15% discount on all offers of Budget Safari Tanzania. We will share a Discount Code with you that you can use with the online booking of your safari, Kilimanjaro climb, excursion or watersports activity.

Learning Swahili in Moshi!

Swahili TeacherIt is always helpful to know Swahili while doing your project here. Swahili is a relatively easy language for participants and some start to follow it within the first few lessons. You can choose the intensity of the lesson. We would, however, recommend a maximum of ten hours per week. The lessons are conducted individually; in some cases, 2-3 participants with similar levels of knowledge may be given combined lessons. The number of participants does not affect the cost of the lessons.
The cost for Swahili lessons: 1 Student: 6 EUR
Please check "Language Training Required" in the registration form and specify your desired duration (minimum 20 hours).

Travel Health Insurance

We recommend the following travel insurance that is meant specifically for participants of internships, volunteering, language study, working holiday, and courses abroad. It is available for travelers of all nationalities and usable for all countries, except your home country. You can also add a journey liability insurance.
Just click on the link, fill in the form and you will get a confirmation email.



Check out our video on Moshi!

In this video, tourism intern Iris and our supervisor Adelina show us around Moshi Town and the surrounding areas. Adelina and Themi, our coordinators, introduce themselves (please note that Miriam and George are now also part of our team in Moshi!). We also meet the volunteers Pia, who collaborates with the Social Reality Tour, and Laura in their host family. Coffee Farmer Dennis talks about coffee and we see a few shots from a Maasai Village.

Moshi at Kilimanjaro

Moshi is a town in the north of Tanzania, at the foot of Kilimanjaro. Here, you are in the middle of Africa and deal with people like the Chagga and Maasai. The city has about 150,000 inhabitants; however, it appears - like many African cities - much smaller, owing to the fact that many unplanned settlements are spread over long distances outside the city. Furthermore, the majority of the population do not have the purchasing power that would make transactions comparable to for instance a European city of this size. Nevertheless, Moshi is a relatively well-developed city and all necessities may be found here - from ATMs to specialty stores, restaurants to a large grocery store by Kenyan "Nakumat” chain.
Moshi is the starting point of all Kilimanjaro climbs and many safaris to the Northern National Parks of Tanzania start from here. Kilimanjaro International Airport is about 40 km from Moshi. Tourism and trade of coffee and bananas have contributed to the flourishing of the city.
The city lies at an altitude of 813 m and has a year-round climate that people from moderate climates consider to be very comfortable (compared to wet – heat that often prevails on the coast or on the islands).
HIV and AIDS are the biggest problem - it is estimated that up to 16 % of the population are HIV-positive. The resulting problems are the countless orphans and street children, neglected people of retirement age and sick people, about whom no one cares because of lack of money. The other problems are poverty-related - lack of access to education, health care, infrastructure, and destruction of environmental resources such as deforestation.

Our coordinators in Moshi

Our coordinators in Moshi are Adelina and Themi from Tanzania, and Miriam, a nurse from Berlin.

Things to do in Moshi

Moshi is conveniently situated for safaris in all the Northern National Parks of Tanzania; you can travel over a weekend (Tarangire, Arusha National Park, Lake Manyara) or a multi-day tour (incl. Serengeti, Ngorongoro Crater and Conservation Area, Lake Eyasi, Lake Victoria, Lake Natron). The Kilimanjaro rises directly in front of your door - for a climb you need physical fitness and 5-7 days’ time.
As a day trip, you can visit the Marangu Waterfall and the village of Marangu with coffee plantations, the even higher Materuni waterfall, the Arusha National Park, a Maasai village, Lake Chala, swim in volcanic hot springs and hike on the slopes of Kilimanjaro. In Moshi, there are several cafes, restaurants, internet cafes, bars, discos, swimming pool and even an open- air cinema with karaoke.

Getting There


Getting To Moshi

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You book your flight to Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO). If the flights to Dar-es-Salaam (DAR) are much cheaper, you can also fly there and then book a separate connecting flight from DAR to JRO with FastJet. From JRO airport, we pick you and take you to your accommodation in Moshi.

Our Partners

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