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The Richness Of Lake Manyara National Park

Lake Manyara National Park is a lovely scenic gem, a lush green paradise enjoying spectacular settings against the a back-drop of 600 m high rift-valley escarpments. Lake Manyara national park is famous for its tree climbing lions, profusion of birdlife with 390 speicies recorded, 670 species of flowering plants and ferns recorded some of which have evolved into a beautiful stands of ever green ground water forests, the largest troop of baboons anywhere in the world, hot water springs, large herds of elephants. The wildebeest migration spectacle comprising of over 1.7m gnus, 200,000 zebras and gazelles pass through the park in May. The park too has 180 species of butterflies.

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Lake Manyara National Park Location, Area, Climate
Location

Lake Manyara national park is located in Northern Tanzania, 126 Km from Arusha, about 180 km from Kilimanjaro Airport.

Area

Lake Manyara National Park occupies and area of 325Km².

History

Lake Manyara National Park is park of Lake Manyara Biosphere set up by UNESCO in 1981. It was established as a game reserve in 1957 and elevated to national park in 1960

Climate

Lake Manyara National Park experiences a modified tropical climate with two rainy seasons. Long rains between March and May; Short rains in November and December. April is the wettest month. June and July are the coldest and driest months with average temperatures of 25°C. January and February are the warmest months with temperatures averaging 30°C.

Lake Manyara National Park Attractions-A Summary

In summary attractions in Lake Manyara comprise of what visitors see (That is attractions or items of eye appeal), what visitors do (activities they undertake at the destination), the destination itself, annual events like the migration and the cultural tourism programs and encounters with the local people at the destination, . Below is a summary list of attractions:-

  • The location or destination Lake Manyara itself
  • What visitors see, attractions or objects of tourist gaze within and without the park like
    • Physical features-mountains/ hills, rivers, valleys, beautiful scenery, forests, lakes,
    • Wildlife-plants, animals, birds, insects
  • What visitors do / Activities they undretake like day/ night game drives, sight seeing. kayaking, sundowners, massage, hiking, cultural tours, bird watching/ bird walks, camping
  • The rich culture of the local people, the Maasai, the Iraqw, the Barabaig and the visitor experience at various points of contact with the locals and other visitors.
  • Events / festivals, natural phenomenon like the wildebeest migration
  • Cultural tourism programs of Karatu and Mto Wa Mbu towhships

Lake Manyara National Park Attractions And Activities

In summary tourist attractions in Lake Manyara National Park comprise of what people see, objects that attract the eyesight and what visitors do, activities at the destination

Lake Manyara National Park Attractions

Tree climbing lions and Wildebeest Migration ranks among the top 10 attractions in Lake Manyara National Park which are:

  • Tree Climbing Lions

    Found in lake Manyara National Park are the tree climbing lions. Tree climbing lions are also to be found in Ngorongoro, Tarangire and Serengeti Parks. In Uganda, will find them in Isasha sector of Queen Elizabeth National park. They climb up the trees to avoid the often painful bite of the tsetse flies.

  • Wildebeest migration

    The wildebeest migration spectacle is the never ending milling of over 2.5 million wild animals composed of a about 1.7 million wildebeests, and 800,000 common gazelles and zebras with predators-lions, hyenas, leopards, jackals in tow passes through Lake Manyara in May on its way to southern Ngorongoro and Serengeti. In this picture add thousands of vultures providing air cover the to migrating animals, the goggling human traffic; the hazardous crossing of crocodile invested Mara and Grumeti rivers and behold your magical wonder of nature.

  • Visitor Activities /What to do in Lake Manyara National Park

    Lake Manyara National Park activities, what to do in Lake Manyara, during the day (diurnal) or at night (nocturnal) are what attracts visitors to Lake Manyara. These includes Game drives, nature walks, night game drives, cultural tours, mice, sundowners, wining and dining, picnics, bush breakfasts and meals, etc

  • Physical Features
    • Lake Manyara
    • Njoro Hotsprings
    • RiftValley
    • Rivers
    • Underground water evergreen forest
    • Ngorongoro Crater
      Ngorongoro has an impressive animal sighting. The crater is home to 25000 to 30000 big mammals including rare black rhinos, the beautiful scenery, phenomenal photography opportunities and local communities. Cultural visits organized through cultural tourism programs at Karatu. Other attractions include archeological site of
  • Wildlife
  • Lake Manyara National Park is part of Lake Manyara UNESCO Biosphere Reserve established in 1981. Lake Manyara national park is famous for its tree climbing lions, profusion of birdlife with 390 speicies recorded, 670 species of flowering plants and ferns recorded some of which have evolved into a beautiful stands of ever green ground water forests, the largest troop of baboons anywhere in the world, hot water springs, large herds of elephants. The wildebeest migration spectacle comprising of over 1.7m gnus, 200,000 zebras and gazelles pass through the park in May. The park too has 180 species of butterflies.

    • Mammals
    • Lake Manyara National Park has an overwhelming presence of mammals in terms of species and numbers. Besides the tree climbing lions other big mammals in the park include buffaloes, zebra, giraffe, impala, waterbucks, klipspringer ( on the cliffs), leopards, warthogs, mongoose.

    • Profusion Of Birdlife
    • Over 390 species of birds have been recorded in Lake Manyara National Park is a perfect bird watcher's paradise. The star of this afivauna are the large flocks of pink feathered flamingos on the lake shores. The availability of geothermal heated hot-springs makes it possible for the green algae, spiralina (food of flamingos) to thrive. Other wanders (water birds) to be found on the lake shores are pelicans, storks, jacanas, egrets, plovers, ducks and geese. Elephants and other mammals do visit the forest too.

  • Cultural Tourism Programs

    A another attraction in Lake Manyara is the Mto wa Mbu, a multi-ethnic with lively colourful markets and thriving cultural tourism programmes. The central market is quite impressive with all the local produce including the Masai beads and shukas. The cultural tourism programe includes visits to shambas (Farms). This visits the local farms where you will witness and even participate in making of banana beer (mbege). Other excursions from Mto wa Mbu includes hikes to Lake Miwaleni, Balaa Hill or Njoro hotsprings. Canoeing is also available on the west side of the lake when the water is high.

    Open Air Market

    If you happen to be around on 22 of any month, visit the mnada, the animal auction market which attracts buyers from all over the country.

What to do in Lake Manyara National Park?

Lake Manyara National Park activities, what to do in Lake Manyara National Park, during the day (diurnal) or at night (nocturnal) are what attracts them to Lake Manyara.

Lake Manyara National Park Activities

The most popular, top 10 activities in Lake Manyara National Park Are:-

  • Game drives. Game drives are best undertaken in the morning and evening. However you can go opt for a full day game drive with picnic lunches
  • Excursions to the hotsprings and lake shores
  • Nature walks. Nature walks are conducted by local guides from your lodges
  • Bird walks/ warching
  • Sundowners/ sunset watch meals and drinks - romantic samptous meals served with sparkling drinks in the most scenic locations as the sun sinks in the horizon is an experience never to be missed. Most of the facilities do offer these on request
  • Picnics
  • Night game drives
  • Kayaking / Canoeing
  • Bush breakfasts/ dinners
  • Camping - camping is available in the public and special campsites. Unlike public campsites, there is nothing special in Special campsites. Special campsites are do it yourself and lack amenities like toilets, showers, kitchens
  • Swimming most of the lodges have fitness centers that feature swimming pools
  • Mice- Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, Exhibition facilities are available in the lodges
  • Cultural tourism programs to Mto wa Mbu and Karatu
  • Wildebeest migration
  • Campfires are meeting or gatherings open to all guests. At the campfire ground is a big fire to keep the guests warm as they dance, tell stories and jokes, drink and exchange contact. Yes most of the campfires feature campfire bar where guests can order drinks. It is a lovely experience never to be missed
  • Health and spa in massage parlours
  • Wining and dining with numerous avenues and opportunities to sample local cuiseine
Wildebeest Migration

Every year, in the months of July August and September, over 1.7 million wildebeests accompanied by about 800,000 gazelles and Zebras migrate from Serengeti into Maasai (Masai) Mara and back. The river crossings are particularly dangerous as large crocodile lie in wait of unsuspecting animals, killing and maiming thousands of them. Besides predation, migrating herds have to contend with flooded rivers and disease outbreaks. The wildebeest mate in Maasai Mara and Calve in Serengeti.

The annual wildebeest migration is not about wildebeests migrating per se but rather its influence on the movement patterns of the other animals including human beings. Picture a never ending milling of over 2.5 million wild animals composed of a about 1.7 million wildebeests, and 800,000 common gazelles and zebras with predators-lions, hyenas, leopards, jackals etc following closely. In this picture add thousands of vultures providing air cover the to migrating animals, the goggling human traffic; the hazardous crossing of crocodile invested Mara and Grumeti rivers and behold your magical wonder of nature.

Where are the Wildebeest? Maasai (Masai) Mara or Serengeti? The Migration Cycle:-

The migration follows a clockwise direction dictated by the rain patterns in the Mara/Serengeti ecosystem. The Migration has been going on for as long as our ancestors can remember and where it started is debatable. The best times to view migration in Serengeti is December to Jul. While in Maasai Mara, the best time is August to November. Between December and March, the herds congregate in Eastern Serengeti Plains where carving takes place. Births accounts for over half a million calves annually. April and May still in Serengeti the calves matures and gets ready for migration. June is the month of crossing Grumeti River along the Northern Corridor towards Maasai Mara. In July/August, the herds cross the Mara River into Maasai (Masai) Mara, where mating takes place. By November the succulent grass in Mara is finished and the migrating herds heads for Serengeti where curving will take place and the entire cycle starts all over again.

Lake Manyara National Park Getting There

Lake Manyara is accessible to visitors from all over the world. One can drive or fly to Lake Manyara from Kilimanjaro, Arusha or Dodoma.

Lake Manyara National Park Gates

Remember the rule is that you should enter the park through official gates.

Lake Manyara National Park Accommodation/ Lodges/ Tented Camps and Public Campsites:

There are a variety of accommodation facilities in Serengeti varying from the luxury eco-lodges to basic campsites.-

  • Lake Manyara Serena Lodge
    USD 161 PP HS (01JAN-14MAR/ 01JUN 31OCT /16-31DEC);USD 130 PP LS(15MAR-31MAY /01NOV -15DEC)
  • Lake Manyara Tree Lodge
    USD 161PP HS (01JAN-31MAR/01JUN- 31OCT/16-31DEC; USD 130PP LS (15MAR-31MAY/01NOV- 31DEC .
  • Kirurumu Tented Lodge
    USD 161 PP HS (01JAN-14MAR/ 01JUN 31OCT /16-31DEC); USD 130 PP LS(15MAR-31MAY /01NOV -15DEC) .
  • Lake Manyara Hotel
    USD 271 PP HS (01Jan-31Mar/01JUN - 31Oct/16-31Dec; USD 174 PP LS (15Mar-31May/01Nov - 31Dec
  • Migunga Forest Camp
    USD 316 PP Ps (01Jan-28Feb/ 01Jul 31Oct /22-31Dec); USD 251 PP Ps1(01-30JUN); USD 184 PP HS(01MAR-31MAR/JUN/ 01NOV-21DEC);USD 130 PP LS(01APR - 31MAY)
  • Lulimac Lake Manyara Lodge
    USD 161 PP HS (01JAN-14MAR/ 01JUN 31OCT /16-31DEC); USD 162 PP LS(15MAR-31MAY /01NOV -15DEC) .
  • Octagon Lodge
    USD 161 PP HS (01JAN-14MAR/ 01JUN 31OCT /16-31DEC); USD 130 PP LS(15MAR-31MAY /01NOV -15DEC) .
  • Eileen's Trees Inn
    USD PP HS (01JAN-14MAR/ 01JUN 31OCT /16-31DEC); USD PP LS(15MAR-31MAY /01NOV -15DEC) .
  • Flamingo Safari Lodge Karatu
    USD 161 PP HS (01JAN-14MAR/ 01JUN 31OCT /16-31DEC); USD 230 PP LS(15MAR-31MAY /01NOV -15DEC) .
  • Karatu Tented Lodge
    USD 161 PP HS (01JAN-14MAR/ 01JUN 31OCT /16-31DEC); USD PP LS(15MAR-31MAY /01NOV -15DEC) .
  • Lake Manyara Kilimamoja Lodge
    USD 161 PP HS (01JAN-14MAR/ 01JUN 31OCT /16-31DEC); USD PP LS(15MAR-31MAY /01NOV -15DEC) .
  • Burudika Manyara Lodge
    USD 161 PP HS (01JAN-14MAR/ 01JUN 31OCT /16-31DEC); USD 130 PP LS(15MAR-31MAY /01NOV -15DEC) .


OUR SPECIAL SAFARIS

Wildebeest migration safari are organized in bothMaasai (Masai) Mara and Serengeti National Parks. The duration of the safari depends on various factors but mostly on time and budget but also the flexibility of the guest. The all drive 11 days Masai Mara Serengeti/ Ngorongoro/ Manyara Migration Safari commences from Nairobi and returns to the same via Maasai Mara, Serengeti, Ngorongoro, Manyara, and Amboseli. The 8 days fly drive Wildebeest Migration Safari Masai Mara National Park (Mara Explorer 8 days) is a luxury option. Guests fly from Nairobi Wilson to Masai Mara and return to the same.The 4 days 3 Nights Migration safari combines Masai Mara, Lake Nakuru National Park and Lake Naivasha. The 6 days Best of Tanzania Safari focuses on wildebeest migration in Serengeti National Park. The best time to witness migration in Masai Mara National Park Kenya, is between July to September. Serengeti National Park is best visited between March and May

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