6 weeks in Dar es Salaam coupled with our exceptional eating and drinking skills has allowed us to create the ultimate weekend guide to ensure food coma status by the end of it. This is not for people who like to do touristy and/or historical things (well, maybe this is a little bit for you). This IS for people who like to spend weekends eating, drinking and gazing at oceans.
Before we begin this culinary journey of delight, I would like to add a caveat: this itinerary is very much limited to our experience - there is so much in Dar we did not see (we're really quite lazy) and if you have any further suggestions, we'd love to hear them! Also, we've left breakfast out - we'll leave that up to you, although Salt is always a good bet if you're at a loss.
Enjoy. And remember to wear stretchy pants.
Head straight over to the Cape Town Fish Market in Msasani for sundowners. The cocktails are half price (~ $2.70 each) from 5 - 7pm and the view is epic. The food is good too, although I can't recall that part too well, given my focus was on margaritas and dawas. I know this may defy logic, but keep in mind that half price cocktails doesn't mean you should drink twice as much - a top tip, especially for lightweights like myself.
Coincidentally, sushi is not an ideal meal, 1 dawa & 4 margaritas in.
You're probably feeling a bit hungover. Sorry. Luckily, this day does not require an early start. When you're ready, have a cup of coffee and get an Uber to Mediterraneo, an inconspicuous Italian restaurant on the other side of Msasani Bay. Get there around noon so you can grab one of the loungers overlooking the Indian ocean. They fill up fast.
Don't order a starter. They provide the most delicious basket of fresh bread and tomato & garlic relish.
Now, you're going to probably be there for the next 5 hours, so take it easy. We recommend a couple of beers followed by a couple of pastas followed by a couple more beers. Try the prawn and tomato pasta if it's available - it's outstanding. The pizza is also fantastic. Consider ordering one of those to take home (we did).
If you're feeling wild, try their dawa (best we had in Dar) and finish off the lunch extravaganza with a melty chocolate dessert and a double shot of Limoncello.
Chances are by the end of your afternoon at Mediterraneo, you've overdone it and feeling a bit full and a little bit tipsy. In that case, go home and recover. On the off chance that you're like us and insist on 3 meals a day, make a bee line for Flames, and get yourself a masala dosa and a local kachumbari salad. You won't be disappointed.
You should probably go for a walk or something considering how much you have consumed since Friday. Pop down to Coco Beach for a leisurely stroll. Or not, totally up to you. Probably not.
Make sure you get to Slipway around 10am to catch the 10.30am ferry to Bongoyo island (it will cost you around $20 for a round trip). It takes about 45 min to get to this little piece of paradise, where you can spend the day in the sun, periodically dipping into the turquoise sea.
As soon as the ferry reaches the beach, make a run for it to grab one of the few huts to ensure some sun cover.
As soon as you arrive on the island, you will be asked to give your lunch order, which will be served later at the (one and only) restaurant a short walk from the beach. I had the calamari, Bayka had the fish - both were tasty and hit the spot.
If you're clever like us, you would have popped into Shrijees - a supermarket at Slipway - before you got onto the ferry to stock up on some beers. This is ideal as you can have an ice cold Kili on a boat, and save a little bit of money by not buying as many beers on the island.
Don't forget to bring a book and some suntan lotion with you too - you're going to be there the whole day. The last ferry leaves around 5pm (although, in our experience, that was the one and only return ferry - so don't miss it!).
By the time you get home, you're going to be exhausted and have probably put on 5 kgs. We suggest fasting on Sunday evening to balance everything out.
Been to Dar? Got any tips? We'd love to hear them.