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Swahili vocabulary

Swahili vocabulary

Here are some Swahili words and phrases you may need to exchange pleasantries with your Kilimanjaro support crew. These Swahili words and phrases may also come in handy when you want to contact some of your support crew members whose English is not fluent.

Swahili vocabulary you may need while trekking Kilimanjaro

Jambo  – Hello

Habari  – How are you

Nzuri  – Good. It is a reply to the greeting habari.  Note also nzuri means good as in Good product.

Hakuna matata, this phrase was made famous by Disney’s movie – The Lion King, it means “No worries.” Or “No problems”.

Asante sana –  Thank you very much

Asante – Thank you

Pole pole – Slowly slowly

Pole – sorry (Used to console a person)

Samahani – I am sorry (Used to excuse oneself)

Twende  – Let’s go

Unaweza – You can do it

Maji moto – Hot water

Maji – Water

Naomba ….. – Can I ….It is polite to start with Naomba when you want to ask someone to give you something

Mambo – Howdy, an informal greeting you will often hear around here. Want to sound like a local, use Mambo instead of Jambo.

Poa –  Good or Cool. It is a reply of the greeting Mambo.

Mgumu – Porter

Kamanda – Commander, an informal way of calling buddy. You may hear your support crew members calling each other.

Sawa – okay. The word is used to agree on something.

Unaweza – You can do it.

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