In the 19th century Mzizima (Swahili for "healthy town") was a coastal fishing village on the periphery of Indian Ocean trade routes. In the late 1900’s Sultan Majid bin Said of Zanzibar began building a new city very close to Mzizima. He named it from an Arabic phrase bandar as-salam meaning harbour of Peace.
Dar es Salaam fell into decline after Majid's death in 1870, but was revived in 1887, when the German East Africa Company established a station there, the administrative and commercial centre of German East Africa and industrial expansion resulting from the construction of the Central Railway Line in the early 1900s.
German East Africa was captured by the British during World War I and from then on was referred to as Tanganyika. Dar es Salaam was retained as the territory's administrative and commercial centre. After World War II, Dar es Salaam experienced a period of rapid growth. Tanganyika attained independence from colonial rule in December 1961 and 1964 Tanganyika and Zanzibar merged to form Tanzania, with Dar es Salaam continuing to serve as its capital.
Dar es Salaam today is a hustling, bustling seaport. The main sights are the colourful Kariakoo Market and clock tower, the National Museum, and the Botanical Gardens. About 10 km from the city centre along the road to Bagamoyo, is the Village Museum, which is also worth a visit. The best beach close to the capital is Oyster Bay.
To get you started with planning your holiday to Dar es Salaam, we have showcased below some popular itineraries requested by our clients which we hope will inspire your visit to Africa