The Royal Tour, Tanzania’s official tourism campaign, was launched after a trip that President Samia Suluhu took to the US. A documentary by the same name was launched to publicise the country’s tourism and investment opportunities.
The tourism campaign idea was mooted by Tanzanians living in the US. They suggested it to revamp the country’s tourism sector after the Covid-19 pandemic.
Several corporates, tourist companies and private business people donated up to Tsh7 billion ($3 million) for the making of the documentary. President Samia said at the Dar es Salaam launch that the country was expecting to get more tourists through the documentary.
The Royal Tour documentary will now be screened in Tanzania by local television stations for free. It highlights Kilimanjaro National Park, Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Serengeti and Mkomazi nature reserves, Manyara and Arusha — the gems of the northern tourist circuit, Indian Ocean beaches, and the cultural and historical heritage found in Bagamoyo and Zanzibar.
The documentary was shot between August and September last year, and was screened in New York on April 18, Los Angeles on April 21, Arusha on April 28, Zanzibar on May 7, and Dar es Salaam on May 8.
The choice of a US launch was deliberate as Tanzania is seeking high spenders looking for unique experiences such as trophy hunting and safaris, and to climb Mount Kilimanjaro.
But Tanzania is also wooing Kenya and South Africa. Kenya is the leading source market for Tanzania’s overland tourists travelling between Nairobi and northern Tanzania, mostly East African citizens and foreigners landing in Nairobi from Europe, Asia and other African states.
Tanzania received 1.5 million tourists in 2019 but the pandemic lockdowns saw arrivals drop to 621,000 in 2020. The target now is two million tourists in 2025.