Back in April last year, Jerry our friend organized a getaway of around 20 close friends to visit their estate up in the The Eastern arc of the Usambara mountains, in Muheza District. Turned out to be an experience of a lifetime! The beauty of the Magoroto estate holds is unexplainable.
I had to forego the urge to document this experience and enjoy the oneness with nature throughout. No internet connections, just bonded with the group throughout. Shoutout to everyone that was in that group and made it all worthwhile.We now credit ourselves for being the original explorers before Magoroto estate blew up and became famous!
Fast forward to four months later, sometime in August of the same year, I made a solo trip to just capture the beauty in this non touristy small village. The photos in this article are all from back then, when the place had not been renovated to what it is now.
Magoroto Hills: Trails and Attractions
1. Magoroto estate headquarters:
- A beautiful tropical garden in the backyard of the main house which also serves as a camping site.
- An impressive view to the low land
- A large variety of bird species
- Old factory building with palm oil processing machineries
- A visitor information center
2. Lake Trail
A beautiful small lake ca 1km from Magoroto Hq
Now, with everything that is good up in Magoroto, this is the main attraction for me!!! It is unreal! And to think that this beautiful lake is man made is absolutely mind boggling! Resting in the middle of a thick rainy forest with no houses or any human occupation in the vicinity, Who would’ve thought that there are places in Africa with this much unprecedented beauty! This lake had my heart at first glance. It reflects the true meaning of what serenity and tranquility stands for.
- Swimming, fishing, bird watching
- Yoga by the banks of the lake
- A day or night walk around the lake
- “Jiwe la Kike” a rock with a shape of female genitals
- A banda for picnic and relaxing
3. Kitulwe trail
Length: 3-5 km, ca 3 hrs, depending on the starting point.
Level of difficulty: easy if you return back from the ridge before the Kitulwe peak
- A cardamom plantation
- Forest biodiversity, including Saintpaulia.
- A view to the lowland and the Indian ocean
- Cool kitulwe peak in the humid natural forest
- Interesting flora
- A view to the lowland.
4. Mgambo trail
Length: about 2km, approx 3 hrs
Level of difficulty: easy
- Start point in Mgambo village center
- Farm of sefu mbwana- a self learned engineer: hydro powered farm machinery
- A view point close to primary school- nice view Muheza, Indian ocean, amani nature reserve etc
- Home gardens with various tropical crops and domestic animals, traditional palm oil processing site
Note: you can walk all the way to Kitulwe ridge and connect with kitulwe trail
5. Kwemng’ongo Trail
Length: about 5km ca 4 hrs
Level of difficulty: easy
- Start at mgambo village center or magoroto estate hq
- Natural forest flora and fauna
- Crossing of a stream with nice cliffs
- Meet local people in Manga village in their daily activities
- Nice agroforestry farm
- Kwemng’ongo viewpoint with a view to Amani Nature Reserve and the lowland
6. Mwembeni Bird Travel
Length: about 1.5 km
A short and easy walk from Mwembeni village with good possibilities of observing birds. The trail mostly passes through shrub vegetation with scattered trees, and through settlements and farms.
7. Mlinga mountain Trail
I will just warn you in advance about this trail, hiking up this mountain was the hardest hike of my life. It requires one to be utterly fit for this. It is a hard hike. Woke up at 4 am to ascend this mountain as we wanted to get stunning photos of the sunrise, but oh boy, we were in for a shock. It was raining and foggy and windy. So our objective wasn’t achieved. After several falls and almost giving up, we made it to the top and back. It was all worth it though.
Will soon post a video on youtube to show my insane hike up this mountain.
Length: about 12km ca 8 hrs
Level of difficulty: for fit people who can walk in variable terrains ( several climbs and descents)
- Start at Mwembeni village center
- Kijaji viewpoint, View of Mlinga Peak, nearby hills, the lowland and the indian ocean
- Treasure cave, Vikioi ritual site
- Mlinga forest reserve entry
- Mlinga mountain peak (1060m above sea level) with magnificent sceneries.
- A population of saint paulia
- Mabejani subvillage
- Paint hole – colored earth for house painting, Kwesimba sub-village
8. Magula trail
Lenghth: about 10km, ca 8 hrs
Level of difficulty: for fit persons- several hundred meters descents to Magula village and climb back
- Palm oil cultivation and natural forests
- Birds, insects, small wildlife, plants and trees
- A proposed camping site (1)
- Mkungu sub village(2) on a beautiful ridge. In the historical “drumming place” (3) drum was beaten or trumpet played to warn the villagers during tribal wars or to call meetings.
- Seluke sub village (4), the administrative center of Magula with a primary school and some small kiosks. Observe/ participate in the village life.
- Magoroto estate lake ( 5) nice view and a banda for picnic and relaxing.
Fees and reservations
Always hire a local guide for your tour to learn more and to create employment.
Entry fees is per heed per entry when visiting the villages of Mwembeni, Magulla and/or Mgambo
Foreign adults 5 USD
Foreign children (5-17 years) 3 usd
Tanzanian adults 1,500 Shillings
Tanzania children (5-17 yrs) 500 shillings
Is per head per day. Foreigners 5 USD. Tanzanians 2500 shillings ( same for adults and for children)
Note: pay village entry and guiding fees directly to your local guide and ensure you will be provided with a receipt.
Magoroto estate entry fee.
USD 10 for day visits to the estate (payable at the estate HQ) included for people who stay overnight in the estate.
Special interest activities:
When making the tour reservations, let the local guides know if you wish to include special elements in your tour e.g local music/ dance, cooking local food, plant identification or a visit to a traditional healer.
We have partnered up with the owners of the Estate, to exclusively execute all the Reservations/accommodations/tours for all the people wanting to experience this once in a lifetime adventure. So for the best offers contact us.