Tanzania’s Top Wildlife Viewing Destinations
Where in Tanzania is the best place for wildlife safari viewing? Tanzania is one of the top safari destinations in Africa for many tourists due to its incredible diversity, vast wilderness areas, and abundant wildlife. Tanzania is at the top of many African tourists’ wish lists because it offers something for everyone and every budget. Tanzania offers some of the most breathtaking opportunities for wildlife viewing in the world, from the wildebeest migration in the Serengeti to the tree-climbing lions of Lake Manyara.
Tanzania offers a wide variety of national parks and game reserves, making it without a doubt one of the best African safari destinations. All of Africa’s big five, which are mostly found in the Ngorongoro crater, as well as numerous rare and endangered species, countless bird species, beautiful beaches and islands, and of course the Great Migration, the world’s greatest wildlife spectacle, can be found in this East African nation. About 38% of its 947,303 square kilometers have been set aside as protected areas, including game reserves and national parks with a range of travel options.
Tanzania has two main “safari circuits”: the Northern Safari Circuit, which includes the famous Serengeti National Park, the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, the Arusha National Park, the Lake Manyara National Park, and the Tarangire National Park; and the Southern Safari Circuit. The southern safari circuit provides secluded wildlife encounters away from crowded areas. It includes Ruaha National Park, Nyerere National Park, Gombe National Park, Udzungwa National Park, Kitulo National Park, and Mikumi National Park. Which national parks on these circuits provide the best opportunities to see wildlife, then? Before booking a flight for a safari in Tanzania, you should ask yourself this following question: Don’t worry, though; Focus East Africa Tours has you covered in today’s blog post.
Where in Tanzania can you go to see wildlife the best? You must decide which parks in Africa and Tanzania will provide the best opportunities for viewing wildlife when organizing your safari. So which parks are these? Here is our list of the top Tanzanian national parks for wildlife viewing, and we strongly suggest adding them to your itinerary or Tanzania travel bucket list for an unforgettable safari experience.
- SERENGETI NATIONAL PARK
One of the best-known parks in the world is Serengeti National Park. It is situated in northern Tanzania, in the Simiyu and eastern Mara regions. Its size is 14,763 square kilometers, and to the north, it is bordered by the vast Masai Mara and Ngorongoro Crater. The annual Wildebeest Migration, the greatest wildlife show on earth, takes place in this UNESCO World Heritage Site. In addition, it has the highest concentration of lions, elephants, leopards, cheetahs, and other wildlife species, as well as a number of different bird species. The entire year, Serengeti National Park offers traditional wildlife encounters.
In addition, the Serengeti has a wide selection of luxurious camps and lodges to give visitors a comfortable place to stay while on their captivating safari adventures. Any time of year is a good time to visit Serengeti National Park.
- Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Another well-liked safari location in Tanzania is this one. On the northern safari circuit, close to Serengeti National Park, is the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Ngorongoro is probably your best choice if you want to find a complete safari package in one location. It has been in operation for a while and is also the world’s largest caldera. The crater’s diverse habitats, which include savannah grasslands, wetlands, and forests, reward visitors with breathtaking views. Over 30,000 wild animals live there, including lions, elephants, black rhinoceroses, giraffes, antelopes, and others.
The crater’s rim offers some of the most surreal views in the surrounding wilderness. The best time to visit Ngorongoro if you’re planning a safari is between April and May, when the crater is lush and lovely.
- Lake Manyara National Park
Lake Manyara National Park is located between Lake Manyara and the Great Rift Valley. The park covers an area of approximately 325 square kilometers, of which 230 square kilometers are occupied by the soda ash lake Manyara. The other surface contains a variety of habitats, such as the Rift Valley, highlands, and woodlands.
Tree-climbing lions are a famous feature of Lake Manyara National Park. Aside from the Ishasha Southern Sector of Uganda’s Queen Elizabeth National Park and South Africa’s Kruger National Park, it is one of only three national parks in Africa with tree-climbing lions. Large herds of elephants, numerous buffalo, Masai giraffes, cheetahs, impalas, olive baboons, and a variety of Sykes monkeys can all be found in the park. Outstanding wildlife encounters can be had at Lake Manyara National Park via safari game drives, safari walks, and bird watching. Bird watching, indeed! More than 400 different bird species call it home, including the tens of thousands of pink flamingos that grace Lake Manyara’s shores.
- Tarangire National Park
With a total area of about 2,600 square kilometers, Tarangire National Park is the sixth-largest in Tanzania. In comparison to other parks in Tanzania, it is renowned for having sizable herds of elephants. It has a stunning landscape with a variety of habitats, including wetland, woodland, and acacia and baobab trees. The park is a haven for birders because it is home to a variety of wildlife and more than 500 different species of birds. These include, among others, the Kori Bustard, Pygmy Falcon, and Ashy Starling.
The River Tarangire, which flows through to Lake Burungi, dominates the Tarangire’s northern side. The majority of the wetlands in the park’s southern region are wetlands that frequently dry out during the dry season to become lush steppes. Any time of the year is a good time to visit Tarangire. But the best time to go is from June to November, when it’s dry and most animals are congregated at the Tarangire River to drink.
- Nyerere National Park
Southern Tanzania’s Nyerere National Park, formerly known as Selous Game Reserve, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. With more than 50,000 square kilometers of forests, grasslands, open woodland, and mountains, it is the largest protected area in Africa. The hidden gem, which is 219 kilometers from Dar es Salaam, provides visitors with amazing wildlife encounters. The reserve also provides a variety of lodging options for visitors of all kinds.
Buffaloes, lions, giraffes, wildebeests, hippos, crocodiles, impalas, puku antelopes, sable antelopes, elands, waterbucks, African wild dogs, bushbucks, Lichtenstein’s hartebeests, and zebras are just a few of the animals that can be found in Nyerere National Park. Additionally, the reserve is home to over 445 different bird species, including migratory ones. Birds include giant kingfishers, pelicans, turacos, bee-eaters, hornbills, African skimmers, and African fish eagles, among others. Between June and October, people go there.
- Mahale Mountains National Park
The park, which is situated in the Mahale Mountains, provides real safari experiences, especially if you dislike large crowds. The park is located in Tanzania’s Kigoma region on the eastern shore of Lake Tanganyika. Mahale National Park was created primarily to safeguard the area’s thousands of critically endangered chimpanzees. It is well known for its stunning sunsets over Lake Tanganyika, among other things.
Mahale has a variety of habitats, including grasslands, alpine bamboo, woodlands, and montane rainforests, which are home to more than 50 different species of wildlife that have been identified. Chimpanzees, vervet monkeys, red colobus monkeys, olive baboons, leopards, and antelopes are just a few examples of these. Visitors on safari to Mahale National Park take part in activities like chimpanzee trekking, forest hikes, bird watching, and sport fishing. The best time to visit the park is from July to October, when it’s dry season and lots of chimpanzees congregate by the lakeshores.
- Ruaha National Park
At about 20,226 sq. km., Ruaha National Park is Tanzania’s second largest protected area. It is situated in both central and southern Tanzania, about 130 kilometers west of Iringa. Its diverse ecosystem is made up of riverine savannah grasslands and baobab trees, which give the region its breathtaking scenery. The Great River Ruaha, which borders the park on the southeast, is where it gets its name. Particularly during the dry season, when gazelles, waterbucks, impalas, and many other animals congregate to drink water, the River Ruaha offers exhilarating game viewing.
In the meantime, predators like cheetahs, crocodiles, jackals, and hyenas can also be seen lurking in the shadows, waiting to seize their prey. Additionally, Ruaha is the best location in Tanzania to see critically endangered wild dogs. Any time of year is suitable for visiting the park. However, the best time for birdwatchers to visit the park is during the rainy season, when migratory birds are present.
- Katavi National Park
This is a remote, ancient national park in Tanzania’s Katavi region. Even though it’s less well-known and a little challenging to get to, Katavi offers fantastic safari opportunities. Predators, including lions, leopards, spotted hyenas, wild dogs, and jackals, live there. In contrast to other animals, predators are actually very common in Katavi. This park is also home to a wide range of grazers, including elephants, giraffes, cape buffaloes, zebras, reedbucks, sable antelopes, roan antelopes, impalas, and others.
A river gives Katavi its name, and the park also has two seasonal lakes, Katavi and Chada, which are home to a variety of crocodiles and hippos. However, the park only has a small number of accommodations due to its isolation. There are roughly four lodges and camps there: Bab’s Camp, Mbali-Mbali Katavi Lodge, Simply Saadani Camp, and Katavi Wildlife Camp. However, the park is open all year long, with the best time to go being from June to November when the animals congregate around the few available water sources.
Mikumi National Park, Udzungwa Mountains National Park, Gombe National Park, Arusha National Park, Rubondo National Park, Saadani National Park, and Mkomazi National Park are just a few of the other safari destinations in Tanzania that offer the best wildlife viewing safari experience.
Tanzania has beautiful and amazing wildlife. Tanzania is the only country that contains all of the wildlife on the African continent. It’s difficult to come up with significant African wildlife that Tanzania doesn’t contain. For this reason, Tanzania was chosen as the best safari destination in Africa by more than 1,700 votes from travelers and safari specialists. What location will you choose for your upcoming trip to Tanzania to enjoy the wildlife? Let us know so as we can organize your unforgettable safari experience.