Ng=iresi Cultural Tourism Programme

Welcome to the fascinating slopes of Mount Meru, where you can experience real African village life.

We villagers of Ng'iresi offer you:

*             a guided tour to some farms on the green and steep slopes of Mt. Meru

*             a visit to several development projects in our village (soil conservation, irrigation, cross breeding, bio gas, fish nursery)

*             a climb to Kivesi Hill, an old volcano with a natural forest on top

*             a view into the Wa-arusha culture (old stories, traditional houses)

*             delicious lunch and dinner prepared by the Juhudi women's group (for smaller groups, meals are provided by a local family)

The profit will be used to improve our primary school

Thanks to your visit our children get better education.

A cultural tourism programme executed with advice from SNV B the Netherlands Development Organisation and the Tanzanian Tourist Board.


Ng'iresi is situated 7 kilometres out of Arusha on the green and steep slopes of Mount Meru. The inhabitants of the village are all farmers of the Wa-arusha tribe. The Wa-arusha are family of the Maasai, but have gradually shifted from pastoralism to agriculture. Some Wa-arusha are still living in the traditional bomas, others try hard to build up stone houses; some still depend on their cows, others have cultivated large plots. The village perfectly shows the transition from traditional into modern African life.

On the steep slopes agriculture is not an easy activity. If farmers don't take preventive measures, soil erosion takes place rapidly. Many farmers now have started to place contour lines and build terraces. The irrigation system in the village further helps the farmers to increase their harvest. Some villagers even participate in other innovative projects, like a fish nursery, a biogas system and a cross breeding project.

All the activities take place on the magnificent slopes of Mount Meru, where small rivers race downhill cascading into impressive waterfalls. The volcanic activities of Mount Meru have created many small hills around Ng'iresi. Some of them easily can be climbed within an hour. From the top you have a beautiful view over the surrounding area.



Different modules

You can choose different modules that vary from half a day to one and a half day. Visitors are also welcomed to stay overnight or make their own custom tours incorporating different options.

Half day Tour

In the half day visit you will be welcomed with coffee and tea at Mzee Loti's farm and get an explanation about the biogas, crossbreeding and soil conservation projects on the farm. Next, you make a walk to some nearby bomas, where you can see the various styles of traditional Maasai and Wa-arusha houses. From there you start climbing Lekimana hill, from where you have a beautiful view over Arusha town and the surrounding Maasai plains. With clear weather Kilimanjaro is visi-ble. You descend Lekimana hill on the other side, so that you can visit Ng'iresi primary school. Back at Mzee Loti's farm, you get a traditional meal cooked by the Juhudi women's group.

Day Long Tour

The one day tour adds a visit to the catchment forest on the higher slopes of Meru. Here you can see the spring that is the main water source for the village. A few meters downstream the farmers are building an intake for the irrigation system. Groups with a special interest can plan a visit to a traditional healer at the edge of the forest. Further downhill a fish nursery is visited in the backyard of a farmer. The day is finished with a dinner at Mzee Loti's farm.

Day and a Half Tour

During the one and a half day tour, you spend the night camping at Mzee Loti's farm. From here the next morning you start climbing of Kivesi hill, an old volcano with a natural forest on top. Baboons and gazelles can be seen in the forest. You descend the hill on the other side and return to Arusha.

On request other modules can be arranged as well.


Traditional Medicine Tour

All tours to Ng=iresi can include a visit to a traditional healer who is living in the area. However, visitors who are keen to learn more about the traditional medicine can spend a half or full day walking through the slopes of Mount Meru collecting herbs and plants that have been used by local people for 1000>s of years. A sheet listing the various plants will be given with their Latin and common name in the local dialect. A special guide will help you identify and collect samples of the numerous medicinal species.


Our guides are all villagers who have lived many years in Ng'iresi. They speak good English and can tell interesting stories about history, culture and daily life in our village. They also are well informed about the different development project in Ng'iresi and can tell you all the ins and outs about the Wa-arusha culture.


Meals are prepared by the Juhudi women's group. The women can make various traditional African meals, but can serve western food as well. All meals will be prepared in a clean environment. The women's group has already cooked for the Ambassadors of Sweden and The Netherlands.


At Mzee Loti's farm there is a simple but clean toilet, from the model pit latrine. From the first revenue a small bathroom will be built that can be used by the guests who spend the night at the farm. Visitors can put up their tents on one of the shambaas around Mzee Loti's house. A watchmen will guarantee the safety. An idyllic dining place has been built under the green leaves of a jasmin tree. With rain, visitors can shelter in Mzee Loti's house.

Conservation of the natural forest

We see the natural forest on top of Kivesi hill as an important natural resource for our village. It helps us preventing further soil erosion, forms an important refuge for the many birds in our village, is used for initiation ceremonies in the Wa-arusha culture and is also a nice attraction for tourists. We want to preserve this natural forest and therefore don't cut any trees in the natural forest.

Improving Ng'iresi primary school

Ng'iresi primary school was built in 1975. The schoolbuilding consists of seven classrooms. In total 510 children attend the school. The classrooms are rather crowded and there are not enough learning materials for everyone. With the tourism programme we hope to generate funds that we can use for improving our primary school. From the money earned from the visit of every tourist, 4 US$ will go to a school development fund, used for improvements of the school. For one dollar we can buy two schoolbooks; five dollars is enough for wood from which the children can make a desk and for ten dollars we can buy a large topographic map of our country.

We hope that the tourism programme may help us to give better education to our children, so that they can acquire the knowledge and experience needed to lead a good and happy life. When you are in the village feel free to visit our primary school. Our children will welcome you with nice Swahili songs.

Tourist information

In Mto wa Mbu, tours can be arranged through the Tanzanian Tourist Board or your local tour operator.

The following costs in Tanzanian Shillings are as follows. Tour costs are subject to change. Please note that tours booked through tour operators may require an additional co-ordination fee.

Development Fee (per person for all tours): 2,500

Guide Fee (per person): 3,000

Lunch or dinner (optional): 3,500

Tea or Coffee: 300

Visit to Wa-Arusha Boma (per group): 4,000

Visit to Traditional Healer (per person): 1,000

Overnight Camping fee (optional): 1,000

For further information

Please contact your tour operator


TTB information Centre in Arusha

(Boma Road, Tel: 057 - 3842/3)