About Lake Manyara National Park
Lake Manyara National Park is located in northern Tanzania, 126 kilometers (78 miles) southwest of Arusha. Established in 1960, it covers 330 square kilometers (127 square miles). The park is named after Lake Manyara, a shallow alkaline lake. The diverse ecosystem attracts numerous wildlife species, offering visitors a unique safari experience.
Lake Manyara National Park is situated about 126 kilometers (78 miles) west of Arusha, the gateway to the popular northern Tanzanian safari circuit. It spans an area of approximately 330 square kilometers (127 square miles) and is nestled between the Great Rift Valley's steep western escarpment and the beautiful Lake Manyara.
The park's landscape is incredibly diverse, offering a unique blend of ecosystems. The centerpiece of the park is Lake Manyara, a shallow alkaline lake that covers a significant portion of the park. Surrounding the lake is a patchwork of dense forests, open grassy plains, acacia woodlands, and towering cliffs. The western escarpment provides breathtaking panoramic views of the Rift Valley, adding to the park's scenic beauty.
Despite its relatively small size, Lake Manyara National Park is renowned for its abundant and diverse wildlife. The park is home to a wide array of mammal species, including elephants, giraffes, zebras, wildebeests, buffaloes, impalas, hippos, and warthogs. One of the park's highlights is its famous tree-climbing lions, which are often spotted lounging on the branches of acacia trees. Lake Manyara is also a haven for birdwatchers, hosting over 400 bird species, including flamingos, pelicans, storks, and a variety of raptors.
Lake Manyara National Park offers several exciting activities for visitors to enjoy. Game drives are the most popular way to explore the park, allowing visitors to spot wildlife and immerse themselves in the stunning landscapes. The park's dense forests provide an ideal environment for walking safaris, enabling visitors to discover the smaller inhabitants of the park, such as monkeys, baboons, and colorful bird species. Additionally, birdwatching excursions, canoeing on the lake, and cultural tours to neighboring villages are also available.
Lake Manyara National Park is easily accessible by road from major towns and cities in northern Tanzania. It is a relatively short drive from Arusha, which has an international airport and serves as a major transport hub for safaris in the region. The park can also be reached by a scenic flight to Lake Manyara Airstrip, which is located near the park's entrance. Once inside the park, there are well-maintained roads that allow visitors to explore its various attractions.