Located just a few kilometres north of the city centre, the Msasani Peninsula is a popular choice for diplomats and embassy staff, ex-pats whose accommodation is provided as part of their work contract and government officials and politicians.
The area is divided into three neighbourhoods: Masaki at the northern tip of the Peninsula; Oyster Bay to the south and Msasani to the west.
Housing is mostly in spacious two-storey villas or bungalows in large, gated plots of land with inside parking. However, despite this being one of the most sought-after residential areas of the city, away from the main roads the roads are in poor condition and there is no street lighting.
The Peninsula is home to some of the main centres of ex-pat life in Dar es Salaam, including the two main shopping and recreation centres, Sea Cliff Village and The Slipway on the northern tip and the western seafront respectively. However, away from these places the area is extremely quiet and feels deserted even at weekends.
Sea Cliff made headlines in September 2007 after the restaurant in the adjacent hotel burnt down; both centres have boutiques, a bookshop, banking facilities, restaurants and internet while The Slipway also has a small arts cinema, an art gallery, service apartments and a Shoprite supermarket. The Dar es Salaam Yacht Club, along with the Gymkhana Club, one of the principal sports’ and recreational clubs in the city, is located a short distance to the north.
There is a smaller and less ostentatious shopping centre in Oyster Bay, near the French school at the centre of the Peninsula; facilities include a few small shops, an estate agent and shady parking.
Other amenities in the area include several hotels, numerous bars and clubs, the Colosseum fitness centre, the Little Theatre, with its regular English-language productions, the secondary school section of the International School of Tanganyika (IST) and the associated IST medical clinic.
Coco Beach on the eastern side of the Peninsula is popular especially with local residents at weekends. However, it can be dangerous during the week and at night and it is best not to go there alone.
There is no public transport in this area and it is necessary to own a car.
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Msasani Peninsula, Dar Es Salaam