Lake Manyara National Park

lake manyara wildlife

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What is the size of the park: 330 sq km (130 sq miles) of which 200 sq km (77 sq miles) are lake when water levels are high
When was it established: 1960
What is the distance from Arusha: 126 km (78 miles)

Lake Manyara National Park is one of the most diverse of Tanzania’s national parks, a tiny (325 square kilometres/125 square miles) combination of Rift Valley soda lake, dense woodlands and steep mountainside. The Park was established specifically to protect the elephant herds that have made the area world-renowned. Known for its elephants and tree-climbing lions, Lake Manyara is also excellent for flamingo spotting and other fascinating birds in and around the soda lake.

The Park also features a ground-water forest, Acacia Tortilis woodland and hot springs called “Maji Moto”. Lake Manyara National Park is a birding paradise (more than 400 species), particularly for waterfowl and migrants, and the forests are famous for lion sightings. Lions hunt on the grassy shores of the Lake, and are known for their habit of climbing and lounging in trees.The Park was once favoured by big game hunters. Today the wildlife is protected, and includes blue and vervet monkeys, baboons, Maasai giraffe and impala.

Attractions in Lake Manyara National Park
There are a number of fascinating tourist attractions that can be explored within Lake Manyara National Park. Located in the northern part of Tanzania, this National Park is 126 kilometers west of Arusha Town. The park is sized 330 square kilometers of which 220 sq kilometers form the lake when the water levels are high in the rainy season. Alternating to the nearest Park of Tarangire National Park through the kwakuchinja corridor the parks share world animals. They can be seen easily nearby the roads towards Lake Manyara and Serengeti National parks.


Below we have highlighted the top attraction / things to see in Lake Manyara National Park

Lake Manyara
The shallow lake Manyara is an alkaline lake found in this park that swells up and reduces in size basing on the seasons found within a long silvery bowl of salt deposits. It covers an area of 220 sq km which is two thirds of the park’s total surface area. The lake hosts a large number of pink flamingos in addition to other wildlife like hippos that dwell in the shallow part of the river.

Wildlife In Lake Manyara National Park
The game in Lake Manyara includes plenty of elephants, wildebeests along with so many giraffes, and buffaloes. In addition, the park is also very famous for its large number of zebras, impalas, warthogs and waterbucks. On the slopes of the escarpment, you may need to search a little hard for the tinny and renowned shy kirk’s dik dik and klipspringer.

The road circuit for game drives is limited and can be covered in about 3 to 4 hours where you can see the animals that are always on the move. On Average a Tanzania safari cost about $200 per day if you are using road. A luxury safari involving flights translated into high prices. It is therefore worth to revisit. Most safari companies organize for afternoon visits but taking a morning one is far much better as there are fewer other vehicles yet with more wildlife activity.

lake manyara giraffe

Tree Climbing Lions In Lake Manyara
Among the lions living in Lake Manyara is a healthy population of the unique tree climbing lions whose unique tree climbing character can only be found in just two populations across the world the other being in Ishasha Area in Queen Elizabeth National Park – Uganda. A very large number of tourists and photographers visit the park to see these exceptional animals.

Birds In Lake Manyara
The large number of birds found in Lake Manyara National Parks differs basing on one habitat to another. Often; you will be able to see huge flocks of pelicans and pink flamingoes on the lake, while close to the park borders and floodplains you will enjoys views of many egrets, stilts erons, spoonbills, stalks and other waders. The woodlands equally will reward you with great bird views thanks to the so much water around. But the more interesting species will be viewed in the evergreen forests; for example, crowned eagles, crested guinea fowl and the silvery cheeked hornbills.

The Tree-Top Canopy Walk
Besides the traditional way of viewing wildlife in Lake Manyara National Park, the tree-top canopy walk offers you an opportunity to see other wildlife in yet a unique way. Walking at tree-top height you will be able to see some primates and various birds within the forest.

The heart of Masaai Country houses Manyara National Park. Here is where you can visit the unforgettable appealing red-robbed pastoralists who are populous in a boma. Outside the park, undertaken can be mountain bike tours, and escarpment forest walks. When water levels are suitable, canoe safaris are also offered.

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