Lake Eyasi is a massive soda lake that dwarfs Lake Manyara in size, and the saline boundary varies according to the quantity of rain that has fallen during the year. Doum palms are a distinguishing feature, and the trees’ shade is both pleasant and cooling in this generally severe area. The sunsets are spectacular here, and the Rift Valley’s majestic western slope looms imperiously in the background.

Lake Eyasi is a small, seasonal endorheic salt lake on the Great Rift Valley plain. It is located in northern Tanzania, south of the Ngorongoro Crater. You will have plenty of time to relax and take in the beauty of the surroundings. This big lake is situated well above sea level. Lake Eyasi, in contrast to the savannah and parched plains of northern national parks, has large palm trees along its banks.


Lake Eyasi is thought to be 65 million years old, right after dinosaurs became extinct. The formation was caused by the opening of a fissure on the valley floor. For almost 50,000 years, Hadzabe hunter-gatherers have lived on the lake’s banks. The Datoga, a pastoralist people, live in the south-east, specifically in the swampy Yaeda Valley.


  • Seasonal shallow endorheic salt lake
  • Located on the Great Rift
  • Near the Ngorongoro Highlands
  • Known for its many resident species of birds.
  • Hunting with Bushmen


Lake Eyasi does not draw big-game species populations in the same way as neighboring parks and conservation areas do; you will not see the Big Five here. Because of the numerous resident bird species present here, the lake is a birdwatcher’s paradise. From June through November, the shallow waters support a diverse range of nesting water birds. The vast concentrations of flamingos and big white pelicans are the main draws. On the shores of Lake Eyasi, you can see Africa spoonbills, Fischer’s lovebirds, gray-headed gulls, pied avocets, spur fowl, storks, barbets, weavers, and many more birds.

Another fantastic sighting in Lake Eyasi is the abundance of hippos. The lake provides them with a location to escape the harsh sun during the day. When the lake is full, they are known to come and cool off in its brackish waters. A variety of other wildlife species visit the springs in the surrounding area.


The Hadzabe Bushmen inhabit the area surrounding the lake. They are one of the few tribes that continue to live as they did hundreds of years ago. A trip to see the Bushmen is worthwhile! They live solely off the land and hunt with bows. The Hadzabe Bushmen are one of Africa’s few remaining hunter-gatherers who live entirely off the land. Exactly as our forefathers did for thousands of years in the Stone Age.

Lake Eyasi
Hadzabe Bushmen


The Datoga are pastoralists, like the Maasai. These pastoralists, unlike the Maasai, are expert silversmiths who supply the Hadzabe with iron tips, knives, and spears in exchange for honey and fruits. Their roots are assumed to be in the Horn of Africa, where they moved some 3,000 years ago. They dress in traditional attire adorned with colored beads, and the ladies frequently receive face scarification for beauty. The Datoga wear clothing that is reddish brown in color, similar to earth, with reddish patched leather garments, necklaces, beading, and bracelets. The ornamental facial scarification with circular patterns around their eyes is another traditional trait that separates the Datoga from other tribes.


Another Bushmen community, the Tindiga, lives on Lake Eyasi. This is likewise a hunters-and-gatherers society, but they are sick of it and want to join the civilized world. For millennia, they have subsisted on the forest and its products, hunting creatures such as monkeys. Tindiga people do not live in permanent structures and avoid structures made of iron sheets because they believe they cause blindness.


  • Hippos
  • Flamingos
  • Great white pelicans
  • Africa spoonbill
  • Fischer’s lovebird
  • Gray-headed gulls
  • Pied avocet
  • Spurfowl
  • Stork
  • Barbet
  • Weaver


A visit to the local community is something you won’t want to miss, and you might even get to watch how they shower and massage using monkey bones.

The Hadzabe Bushmen inhabit the area surrounding Lake Eyasi. The Datoga, Tindiga and Mbulu tribes can also be found here. A visit with the Bushmen is worthwhile, and they will gladly show you where they live and how they hunt. They live solely off the land and hunt with bows. The Hadzabe Bushmen are one of Africa’s few remaining hunter-gatherers who live entirely off the land. Exactly as our forefathers did for thousands of years in the Stone Age.

On this cultural adventure, you will get a firsthand look at the Hadzabe Bushmen’s culture, habitat, and way of life. Early in the morning, you join the Bushmen on a hunting trip near Lake Eyasi. See how they make fire and cook their food. In the afternoon, you’ll go to a market where Hadzabe exchange their honey, fruits, and other items for knives, arrows, and spears made by Datoga silversmiths. This cultural engagement is unquestionably memorable and well worth the extra time.


Spend the day with the Hadzabe and observe their untouched, traditional way of life and peace with the land. Guests can interact with the Bushmen and learn about their time-honored hunting techniques, survival skills, food preparation, and cultural standards while being accompanied throughout by an enticing tour leader. This is an unmistakably authentic cultural tour into rural Tanzania that uncovers the untold world of these captivating people.

Hadzabe males, one of the world’s last remaining hunter-gatherer tribes, forage for food alone and come home with golden honey, luscious fruit, or robust wild animals when and if available. Depending on availability, women forage in big groups for bright berries, baobab fruit, and tubers. Sweet honey, colorful fruit, tubers, and occasionally meat are the mainstays of their diet throughout the rainy, wet season. This tribe is very skilled, discriminating, and opportunistic in its seekers and searchers, adjusting their meals to the seasons. They can only rely on themselves to feed their family and tribe. Below are the things to do in Lake Eyasi in a summary:

  • Early morning hunt: observing the Hadzabe men in action with their bows and arrows
  • Lessons from the Hadzabe men and boys on using the bow and arrow
  • Purchasing beaded items from the Hadzabe women and mini-spears and jewelry from the Datoga
  • Visiting a traditional Datoga homestead run by the women
  • Visiting the traditional Datoga silversmiths in their outside workshop
  • Distributing solar lights to the Datoga tribe
  • Sundowners at the lakeshore


  • Arusha–Lake Eyasi: 4 hrs.
  • Ngorongoro Crater–Lake Eyasi: 2.5 hrs.
  • Tarangire–Lake Eyasi: 3 hrs.
  • Lake Manyara–Lake Eyasi: 2 hrs.


Lake Eyasi is about 75 kilometers from the Ngorongoro Crater and 100 kilometers from the Serengeti National park. It’s a fantastic addition to either or both of those Tanzania safari destinations, as well as a fantastic destination in its own right!

If you’d like to include this gorgeous place in your tailor-made Tanzania safari, please contact us for more information or to construct your own personalized itinerary. Focus East Africa Tours can help you organize your next big excursion!

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