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Speed Boats Ferries Dar es Salaam Zanzibar Pemba Islands

Speed Boats between Dar es Salaam to Zanzibar depart daily at 7am, 9am, 1230pm and at 330pm.

Cost per seat one way booking through us is $40.- USD for economy and $55.- USD for business class, VIP and 1st Class.

Speed Boats between Dar es Salaam via Zanzibar to Pemba one always have to check with out on schedules which keep changing and are not as reliable due to rough sea conditions at times and it is adviced to fly.

Reporting times are a good 30 minutes before departure and both of our properties in Dar es Salaam to House of Changes Magomeni Mikumi and the House of Changes Roof Gardens are within walking distances +30 minutes but a taxi is recommended.

MV Liemba Ship Kigoma Lake Tanganyika

MV Liemba Ship Kigoma Lake Tanganyika is really a classic, authentic safari on Lake Tanganyika.

MV Liemba Ship Kigoma Lake Tanganyika when running, it connects Kigoma with Mpulungu in Zambia every other week (1st/2nd/economy class about US$100/90/70, US dollars cash only, at least 40 hours.

En route, the Liemba stops at various lake shore villages, including Lagosa (for Mahale Mountains National Park), Kalema (southwest of Mpanda), Kipili and Kasanga (southwest of Sumbawanga).

In theory, departures from Kigoma are on Wednesday at 4pm, reaching Mpulungu Friday morning.

Departures from Mpulungu are (again, in theory) on Friday afternoon at about 2pm, arriving back in Kigoma on Sunday afternoon.

Length: 234?

Construction started: 1913

Launched: 1914

Weight: 1,575 tons

Draft: 9.843?

Builder: Meyer Werft

Builder: Meyer Werft

MV Liemba Ship Kigoma Lake Tanganyika

The Liemba is Owned and operated by MSL (Marine Services Ltd).


German Empire

Name: Graf von Goetzen

Namesake: Gustav Adolf von Götzen

Builder: Meyer Werft

Laid down: 1913

Launched: 5 February 1915

In service: 9 June 1915

Fate: Scuttled on 26 July 1916

Flag of Tanganyika (1919-1961).svgTanganyika Territory

Renamed: MV Liemba

Reinstated: 16 May 1927


Name: MV Liemba

Operator: Marine Services Company Limited

Homeport: Kigoma, Tanzania

Status: in active service

General characteristics

Displacement: 1,575 t

Length: 71.4 m (234.25 ft)

Beam: 9.9 m (32.48 ft)

Draught: 3 m (9.84 ft)

Installed power:

Steam 500 ihp (370 kW)

Diesel 1,240 hp (920 kW)

Propulsion: Triple-expansion steam engine, (until 1970, replaced with Diesel): 2 screws

Speed: 11 knots (20 km/h)


(removed 1916)

1 × 10.5 cm (4 in) gun

1 × 8.8 cm (3 in) gun

2 × 37 mm revolver guns

To this day the German government would like her back, put her in a Museum in Berlin I guess and give the Tanzanians a brand new ship but tyhe Tanzanian government will have non of that.

Tickets and prices

Itinerary of MV Liemba with prices

Cost for tickets one way from Kigoma to Lagosa booking through us:

USD100 per person in a 1st class cabin (2 Persons, own fan, a little desk and your own lavatory)

USD70 per person in a 2nd class cabin (4 Persons, below first class cabins)

USD60 per person in 3rd class (benches below deck, not recommended)

It seems Mzungus (whites) are talked into 1st class.

That said, the upgrade cost from 2nd to 1st (and even more so 3rd to 2nd) is very much worth the difference.

There are ten 1st class cabins.

Cabin #1 has two additional windows to the front, thus you can watch the scenery from the cosiness of your own cabin.

Also vibrations of the engine are much less notable than in the cabins further back.

There is one more cabin to the front (#2? #6?) which shares these advantages.

This picture is from the office in Kigoma.

It shows a price list of 2011. Though prices have increased (see Tickets) this should give an idea on what to expect.

Also this may give an idea on the itinerary of MV Liemba Ship Kigoma Lake Tanganyika.


A round trip starting from and ending in Kigoma on the MV Liemba takes about 5 days (plus the delay). Typical itineraries include the following (and vice versa):

From Kigoma to Lagosa (152km, get off here to get to Mahale, around 10 hours)

From Kigoma to Kasanga (538km, last stop in Tanzania)

From Kigoma to Mpulungu, Zambia (572km, around 2.5 days)

From Kigoma to Kigoma (1144km, around 5 days, round trip)

While it may be possible to get off at some points and explore stuff on shore, you should be aware that the boat is not going to wait for you to get back on board.

Should you miss it, you may need to wait up to 14 days to continue your journey.

Always check with the captain of the Liemba before getting off the ship.

List of stops from Kigoma to Mpulungu:





















Mpulungu (Zambia)


Breakfast is available.

Dinner can be available as

Buffet (no refills) for TZS6000

Rice (or Ugali) with beef (or chicken) for TZS4,000. Choose the beef.


A variety of cold local beer are available for a very reasonable TZS2,500 per bottle.

Soft drinks and water are also sold.

Should the MV Liemba Ship Kigoma Lake Tanganyika arrive after 8pm in Kigoma you will have to stay another night on the boat, because the harbor in Kigoma is closed and you are only allowed out after 8am on the next morning.

When the crew realizes this may happen, they sail slower.

This is an attempt to not be standing still in the middle of Kigoma bay for too long.

After getting off in Kigoma you will need to pass through immigration.

Expect your passport and (yellow) vaccination book to be checked.

The calendar below shows her most accurate sailing schedule to date, but this might vary without notice:

MV Liemba Ship Kigoma Lake Tanganyika

She is an incredible ship to have on the Lake, here are some commonly asked questions about her:

The MV LIEMBA, a former German war ship, is now the ferry on Lake Tanganyika and travels up and down the Lake every second week.

Not only does she form the lifeline of the Lake, but she is a wonderful part of history and is the only ferry of her class, still in active service. She offers adventurers an inexpensive method to access the entire Lake.

There are 2 x VIP Cabins on board and 9 x First Class Cabins. One VIP Cabin has its own hot water shower and toilet and one VIP Cabin is not ensuite.

Both VIP Cabins are set up with a double bed.

The First Class Cabins share communal bathroom facilities.

Each First Class Cabin is configured with 2 x bunk-style beds.

There is a restaurant and bar onboard where you can get hot meals and cold drinks. What more could you ask for from a 100 plus-year old Lady?

The MV Liemba Ship Kigoma Lake Tanganyika leaves Kigoma every second WEDNESDAY around 5pm, traveling southwards and docks in Kipili each THURSDAY evening.

She then travels further south to Zambia, arriving in Mpulungu on a FRIDAY.

From Mpulungu she starts her northward journey, returning to Kipili on a SATURDAY and then onward to Kigoma, arriving there on a SUNDAY late afternoon.

Her sailing times are not exact and vary depending on the amount of cargo being loaded and unloaded at the various ports along the way.

We can collect guests from the Liemba on a Thursday night or take guests to the Liemba on a Saturday when she docks in Kipili.

We charge $25 per person for the boat transfer.

MV Liemba Ship Kigoma Lake Tanganyika


Originally called the Graf von Götzen, she was built in 1913 at the Meyer-Werft Shipyard in Papenburg, Germany, and named after the former Governor of German East Africa, Count Gustav Adolf Graf von Götzen.

She weighed 1,150 tons and measured 67m long and 10m wide. She was built to carry 480 tons of cargo, 60 tons of coal and 10 tons of water.

Her 2-steam engines produced together 500 horsepower which allowed her to travel at a speed of up to 10 nautical miles per hour.

Soon after being assembled, she was taken apart and packed into 5,000 watertight boxes and transported by railway from Papenburg to Hamburg harbor.

From Hamburg, the boxes were loaded onto several steam ships and shipped through the Mediterranean Sea and the Suez-Canal, round the Horn of Africa, down to Dar es Salaam.

In Dar es Salaam the boxes were put onto the new Central Railway Line to Kigoma.

The railway tracks stopped 50km short of Kigoma at that time, and so porters carried the 5,000 boxes the final 50km to Kigoma.

It took 13 months for 3-German engineers with Indian and African workers to reassemble the Graf von Götzen.

On the 5th February 1915, she was released into the water and in the next few weeks all the other fittings were done and the work was completed.

By May 2015 the First World War had reached Africa and the Graf von Götzen was converted into a war vessel by fitting guns onto her deck and loading her with other military equipment.

After this conversion, and under the command of Lieutenant Commander Gustav Zimmer, on the 19th June 1915 the Von Götzen sank the smaller British steamer Cecil Rhodes near Mpulungu in present day Mpulungu.

In the next 10 days the Von Götzen enabled the German fighters on Lake Tanganyika to beat their enemies and force them into their own territory, managing to control the entire Lake for a whole year.

During that year the Von Götzen did patrols, ferried troops and supplies and supported the German fortress at Kasanga (at that time known as Bismarckburg).

The Von Götzen was also used to launch surprise attacks on Allied troops in Rhodesia and the Congo.

It therefore became essential for the Allied forces to gain control of Lake Tanganyika themselves.

The Royal Navy brought two armed motor boats, Mimi and Toutou, to the Lake from England.

These boats travelled via rail, road and finally river to Kalemie (then called Albertville) on the western shore of Lake Tanganyika.

The two boats waited until December 1915, and mounted a surprise attack on the Germans, capturing their gunboat, the Kingani.

In February 1916 another German vessel, the Hedwig, was sunk, leaving the Von Götzen as the only German vessel remaining to control the Lake.

As a result of their strengthened position on Lake Tanganyika, the Allies started advancing towards Kigoma by land, and the Belgians established an airbase on the western shore at Albertville.

It was from there, in June 1916, that they launched a bombing raid on German positions in and around Kigoma.

It is unclear whether or not the Von Götzen was hit (the Belgians claimed to have hit it but the Germans denied this), but German morale suffered and the ship was subsequently stripped of its gun as it was needed elsewhere.

A wooden replica was installed on the Von Götzen to make it look like she was still an armed vessel.

The war on the Lake had reached a stalemate by this stage, with both sides refusing to mount attacks.

However, the war on land was progressing, largely to the advantage of the Allies, who cut off the railway link in July 1916 and threatened to isolate Kigoma completely.

This led the German commander, Gustav Zimmer, to abandon the town and head south.

In order to avoid his prize ship falling into Allied hands, Zimmer decided to scuttle the Von Götzen.

The most important parts of the machinery of the ship were removed and hidden ashore.

The remaining parts of the steam-engine were greased to protect them from rusting, and the Von Götzen was loaded with sand and carefully sunk at night in the mouth of the Malagarasi River on the 26th July 1916.

As the war progressed, and the Germans retreated from Kigoma, the area came under control of the Belgians who quickly learned from the local community what had happened to the Von Götzen.

They found the ship in the Malagarasi, and in the same year they were able to raise and tow her back to Kigoma. Unfortunately she sank again in the bay of Kigoma due to a storm.

After the war, when Tanganyika was placed under British administration, the Von Götzen was again raised on the 16th March 1924.

She had been under water for nearly 18 years.To everyone?s surprise she was still in unexpectedly good condition.

The original parts of the ship?s engines which had been hidden ashore during the war, were found in good condition and were once again installed in the ship.

After 3-years of restoration work the ship was put back into service on the 16th May 1927, this time christened the S.S.

Liemba (the name of Lake Tanganyika in the language of the tribes around Kigoma).

The Liemba continued to work as a passenger and cargo ship on Lake Tanganyika.

In the 1970?s the Tanzanian Government considered the ships?s best days were over and removed the steam engines, the boilers, the funnel and the rudder and scrapped them.

In 1974 a retired Irish ship engineer, Patrick Dougherty, started to slowly restore the Liemba with support from the World Bank and various other development aid-programmes.

As a result the Liemba was improved to allow an increase in passengers from 430 to 600 and her steam-engines were replaced with 2 Caterpillar diesel-engines.

After almost 3-years of renovating the ship, she went back into service again and her name changed to the M.V. Liemba (motor-vessel) as she was no longer powered by steam.

In 1993 her Caterpillar engines were replaced with 5-cylinder diesel engines by the Karstensen Shipyard of Denmark, funded by Danida.

In 1997, the Liemba was used by the UNHCR, along with the MV Mwongozo, to transport more than 75,000 refugees, who had fled Zaire during the First Congolese War, back to their homeland following the overthrow of longtime dictator Mobutu Sese Seko.

The ship made a total of 22 trips between Kigoma and Uvira during this five month operation.

She was again used to repatriate Congolese refugees back to the DRC in 2013 and she has recently been used to repatriate refugees from Burundi to Kigoma in May 2015.

MV Liemba Ship Kigoma Lake Tanganyika