Up to this moment the discussion has been focussed entirely on the Italian community residing in Tanzania. Naturally, besides these there are also those who are here on short term missions or merely as visitors.

The numbers involved in the latter are far more difficult to estimate. With regard to the tourist data available from the Tanzania authorities we can deduce some approximate information from Graph 6.1.

Graph 6.1 -Italian Tourists in Tanzania (1977-1987)

Italian Tourists in Tanzania

Source: Ministry of Tourism of Tanzania

The tourist flows were seriously affected in the seventies by the attitude of the Tanzanian authorities which did not consider this sector economically exploitable.

Today, approximately 25 years later, this attitude has changed for the better, tourist numbers having almost hit bedrock in the mid eighties.

In virtually all cases, many Italians who have established themselves in Tanzania originally entered the country as tourists, later obtaining relevant work permits automatically giving them residential status.

Italians visiting Tanzania in 1987, the last year for which figures are available, represented 4% of the total tourist influx to the country. This percentage, consisted of 5,815 individuals (43).

Our fellow-countrymen tend to travel abroad on holiday en masse in two specific periods: the European summer months (July-September) and the winter period (December-February).

Their length of stay is on average between 2 weeks and 1 month and their main interest is in visiting the National Parks in the north and in more recent years, the beach resorts of Zanzibar.

A major contributing factor encouraging tourists in particular is the presence of a number of holiday villages presently owned and managed by Italian companies. Others are still under construction.

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