Self Drive

Self Drive

Self drive safaris with Kitawa Safaris Tanzania

The best way to experience Tanzania is with a self drive safari. Kitawa Safaris Tanzania offers car hire and camping gear rental at the most competitive rates. Enjoy the country at your own pace in a Kitawa Safaris 4x4 and Drive Your Own Adventure!

Whether you would like to set your own trail and camp under the stars in one of our 4WDs with camping gear, or follow one of our carefully planned Tanzania tours with overnight stays in pre-booked lodges, Kitawa Safaris Tanzania provides you with the reliable vehicle and the peace of mind to set off on the adventure of a lifetime

Our fleet

Our fleet for 4x4 rental cars in Tanzania consists of the Toyota RAV4 and Toyota Landcruiser. These are the most reliable and widely used 4x4 vehicles in Tanzania, and perfect for a self-drive safari. We have chosen these type of cars as they are very common as well as economical to drive, whilst being able to cover almost every terrain, giving you the best value for money. We own all our vehicles and never sub contract from third parties. Rent a 4x4 with Kitawa Safaris Tanzania and Drive Your own Adventure!

Each car is fully serviced at our workshop after every single trip, and we can rely on a close network of upcountry workshops for minor on site repairs. In the unlikely event that you have a breakdown, rest assured that we offer 24/7 roadside assistance and always have a replacement vehicle ready. Please refer to our policies published on this website for more information.

Hire a Toyota RAV4 for self drive

The Toyota RAV4 is a sporty, compact and robust 4WD. The car is also easy and economical to drive. The RAV4 has a four-speed automatic transmission and is in continuous four-wheel-drive, an excellent feature given the hilly terrain in Tanzania. The fuel consumption is very low compared to other 4x4 models, giving you the best value for your money. The RAV4 has a gasoline engine and a fuel capacity of 60 litres with a calculated range between 650 – 700 km depending on the terrain and your driving behaviour. Our fleet consists of two models, both with the same engine and transmission specifications:

A smaller 3-door RAV4, suitable for up to two people with camping and a reasonable amount of luggage. The standard 5-door RAV4, which can fit up to four people. In case you go camping, the maximum is three adults with a reasonable amount of luggage.

Hire a Toyota Landcruiser for your safari

The ultimate safari car, the Toyota Landcruiser is a very sturdy and reliable car. It has a powerful Diesel engine and high ground clearance. This car is a must have on rough roads to such places as Serengeti. It's fabulous for safari as it has a pop-up roof for game viewing. In case you are planning to hire a car with more than three adults and camping equipment, the Landcruiser is a better fit than the RAV4.

All our vehicles are equipped with:

  • Radio with connection port for your USB and iPod.
  • Spare tire, car jack, triangle, fire extinguisher, pull rope and jumper cables
  • Detailed road-map
  • Latest Bradt Travel Guide
  • Car information booklet
  • Mobile phone with a local SIM card for the best network coverage
  • Garmin GPS navigation with Tracks4Africa
  • First aid box

For your comfort and a great experience all our self drive vehicles for camping are equipped with following equipment


Cooking and Cutlery

  • Chopping Board
  • Serving Spoon
  • Table spoon, forks and knives
  • Bowls, plates
  • Jug, mug & flask
  • Washing bowl
  • Wine Glass
  • Dish & washing cloth
  • Table cover cloth
  • Cooking pots
  • Lunchbox plates
  • Whisk ,Turner, peeler
  • Pasta scoop
  • Bottle, & can opener
  • Pizza cutter & Vegetable peeler
  • Grater
  • Wooden spoon
  • Frying pan
  • Cutting knife
  • Slotted spoon
  • Scrubbing brush
  • Wire brush

Camping Equipment

  • Ground/Rooftop Tent
  • Camping table
  • Camping Chairs
  • Axe
  • Saw
  • Shovel
  • Sleeping Mattresses
  • 6kg gas cookers
  • Storage box
  • Cooler box
  • Rechargeable LED light
  • Fly sheet

General equipments

  • Hi-Lift Jack
  • 12V Inflator Kit
  • HF Radio
  • Stereo
  • 2Spare Tires
  • 45L Mini Fridge
  • 500W Inverter for charging small
  • appliances 2 Fuel Cans(20ltre each)
  • Fire Extinguisher
  • Warning Triangle Reflectors
  • Welding Gloves
  • First Aid Kit
  • Wind Up Led Flash
  • 80Ltr Fuel Tank


By East African standards, the road conditions in the Northeastern parts of Tanzania are very good. All the primary roads connecting to most places of interest are smooth asphalt. Then there are gravel roads, so-called off road driving. Usually for the last part of your daily trip (when reaching your accommodation, forest, mountain, beach or inside the game parks), you’ll be driving on these gravel roads. The condition of these roads tends to be variable from one season to the next, and is most difficult during the rainy season. On these roads you should always expect the unexpected. Most importantly, act confident, but take it easy and reduce your speed! The longest unsurfaced sections are the gateways to the safari parks in the South: from Kibiti to Selous (c. 90 km) and from Iringa to Ruaha (c. 110 km). Also, the main "highway" intersecting the interior from Dodoma going north up to Bonga is unsurfaced, but roadworks are implemented and the road should be asphalted by 2016. This stretch of 260km will now take you a full day to complete.

Do's and dont's when driving:

We have been exploring Tanzania by road for many years and have found that the experience is rewarding and safe as long as the following precautions are followed:

Drive slower than you are used to in Europe or the US. The speed limit is 100 km/h on the highway, though we would advise 80 km/h, and 50 km/h in urban areas.

Beware of unmarked speed bumps which are plentiful in many parts of the country, especially when you are reaching a town.

Drive defensively. Minibus drivers are notorious for overtaking on blind corners and the big coaches feel on top of the food chain, so keep an eye in your rear-view mirror and if necessary just pull off the road in advance to let the coach pass.

On long roads with little traffic (which is mostly the case throughout Tanzania), it doesn’t hurt to softly honk your horn when you are overtaking someone. This person is most probably not watching his/her side mirror all the time.

Avoid driving at night; the potholes are difficult to see and fellow traffic often uses blinding high-beams.

Always carry some cash, water and a charged mobile phone to handle any situation.

Keep in mind that a flat tyre can happen easily! It is part of the adventure and can be fixed quickly at any service station.

As you will discover soon enough, traffic in Tanzania drives on the left side of the road…