National parks to visit in Tanzania

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Perhaps the main reason to visit Tanzania is the local national parks full of wildlife. Tanzania has a lot of national parks and perhaps the most famous ones are in northern Tanzania. I decided to make a collab post with other travel bloggers so all you need to know about the most famous parks in the north is right here.

National parks to visit in Tanzania

Lake Manyara

Lake Manayra

By Naomi from Love Eat Explore

Lake Manyara is one of the National Parks in Tanzania near Arusha. If you’re planning a safari in Tanzania then you should consider adding this park to your list!

Bird lovers will love this National Park in Tanzania because they are more than 400 different species of birds that live here. If you have a good set of binoculars and keen eyes, you can see more than 50 during your visit!

If you go during the wet season, you will see thousands of pink flamingos on the lake which is an incredible sight to see. From November to April, you’ll also have the opportunity to see many different species of migratory birds flying through the park.

It’s also home to a huge population of elephants, zebras, wildebeests, and tree-climbing lions.

You can stay in Arusha town and do a day trip to Manyara National Park as it is just a two-hour drive away.

Park fees to enter the park are approximately $50.00 USD and you can spend the entire day driving around the park and seeing birds, elephants and huge herds of baboons!

We even got to see a beautiful baby elephant not more than a few months old while we were there.

Lake Manyara is also known for its tree-climbing lions, which you can spot if you’re lucky! It’s definitely a great national park to visit during your safari in Tanzania!

Tarangire national park

Tarangire national park

Elephants waiting for a visit in Tarangire National Park Tanzania

By Jennifer and Tim from Luxe Adventure Traveler

Tarangire National Park is one of Tanzania’s lesser-known parks and often left off tourist itineraries. Famous for its elephant migrations and bird population, Tarangire National Park shouldn’t be missed. Aside from the herds of elephants with up to 300 members, there’s a ton of other wildlife to be seen in the park. The Tarangire River, the permanent freshwater source that the park is named for, attracts an abundance of wildlife from all over the Manyara ecosystem. There’s the possibility to spot four of Africa’s Big Five with rhinos being the only of the Big Five not present in the park. Other interesting African wildlife aside from the big game that can be seen are dwarf mongoose that inhabits the many termite mounds, the miniature-sized deer called the dik-dik, and a plethora of colorful birds. Seasonal visitors to the park are grazers following the rains like impala, gazelle, and waterbuck.

You can easily reach Tarangire National Park from Arusha in just about 3 hours via well-maintained paved roads, making Tarangire a great choice for those wanting to visit on a self-drive. Park entry fees are quite affordable at $45 USD per person per day for non-residents.

You can even stay right in Tarangire National Park in a treehouse built right into the massive baobab trees that the park is also famous for at Tarangire Treetops. Elephants roam about the luxury camp, often dipping their trunks right into Tarangire Treetops’ pool. Giraffes are another common visitor to the camp and even the occasional big cat. Local Masaai tribesmen patrol the camp to keep guests safe from curious wildlife. It’s an experience you won’t forget and a favorite safari destination in Tanzania of Jennifer and Tim from Luxe Adventure Traveler.


ngorongoro national park in Tanzania

By Jeff Miller from Our Passion For Travel

The Ngorongoro Crater might be difficult to pronounce, but it certainly isn’t difficult to appreciate. This crater formed some 2.5 million years ago when a volcano erupted, became inactive and collapsed on itself. And whilst it may have stood barren for many millennia, today it plays home to a huge array of Tanzanian wildlife.

We visited here during the migration season of September on a tour with Intrepid Travel. We were blessed with witnessing many of the famed African animal kingdoms. Observing wildebeest migrating in a straight line to the horizon is simply surreal.  

In the Ngorongoro Crater, you’ll find countless elephants, zebra, buffalo and bounding impalas. All provide fair prey for the cats of the crater including lions, leopards (look high in the trees) and cheetahs. During our visit, we were lucky enough to witness a cheetah take down an impala in scenes straight out of a David Attenborough documentary.

Whilst we weren’t able to spot any, the lucky traveler may witness the endangered black rhino. A sad realization of an endangered species.

There are a surprising amount of accommodation options to choose from, although you’ll need deep pockets for most. For the intrepid traveler, do as we did and pitch your tent at the Ngorongoro Simba campsite. You may have your dinner interrupted by a hungry elephant, have zebra grazing outside of your tent or even have a hyena playing doorman to the shared bathroom facilities. The type of stories you’ll remember vividly long after you return.

Serengeti national park Tanzania

Serengati national park

By Annie Robinson from Off Goes Annie

Serengeti National Park is totally unmissable when visiting Tanzania. As one of the best places to see the big five in Sub-Saharan Africa, you’re pretty much guaranteed to see a wide range of animals as soon as you enter this 14 750 square kilometer reserve. On any one day, you’ll likely see herds of giraffes and elephants, lion packs and hundreds of buffalo. I have visited on four separate occasions and never left feeling disappointed with the number and variety of animals seen that day.

One great way to visit the Serengeti is to stay overnight just outside the National Park at Balili Mountain Resort. Balili Mountain stands just outside of Bunda Town, near the West Gate of the Serengeti. Therefore, it’s possible to stay here without paying the $71 USD park entry fee until your safari the following morning. The resort itself is incredibly special – a beautiful, yet fairly basic, safari lodge awaits near the summit after an adventurous drive up. From here, it’s possible to watch the sunrise over the Serengeti, with elephants visible below, and the sunset over the beautiful Lake Victoria. The following day, you can venture into the National Park itself to tick off the big five from your bucket list. Note, a 4WD and experienced driver is essential for reaching Balili Mountain Resort. Call ahead to arrange a transfer with the very helpful staff if necessary.

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