Lake Manyara National Park between Lake Manyara and the Great Rift Valley, and covers an area of 325 km² including about 230 km² lake surface. It’s proximity to Arusha makes it a great place to start your safari.
The park is considered one of the best places for bird watching in Tanzania. The shallow alkaline lake and its surroundings gather an incredible number of birds. It is famously known as the seasonal home of the greater and lesser flamingos.
Lake Manyara National Park offers a wilderness experience in diverse habitats, from its Rift Valley soda lake to dense woodlands and steep mountainsides. The remarkable wildlife includes tree-climbing lions, vast elephant herds, giraffes, water bucks, monkeys, hippopotamus and more.
There are also interesting sites to visit such as the treetop walkway (canopy walk), hot springs, and a boardwalk on the lake.
Lake Manyara is a shallow, alkaline lake at the base of the Western Rift Valley escarpment. The park has a remarkable variety of habitats in a small area. The park entrance leads to a beautiful groundwater forest. Other habitats include the grassy floodplain, rocky escarpment and acacia woodland, all of which can be covered in a half-day visit. Deeper into the park a visit to the hot springs (Majo Moto) is recommended.
Weather and Climate
The climate never overheats at Lake Manyara, where average daytime temperatures peak at around 29°C/84°F in the Wet season (November to May). The pattern in this period is a month or two of ‘short rains’, then a dry spell, then a longer stretch of rain. It’s slightly cooler in the Dry season (June to October). The temperature plummets at night, however. Freezing conditions are rare, but they can happen.
Best time to visit
The wildlife watching is good at Lake Manyara practically all year. As a consequence, it’s high season in the park for all but two of the wetter months (April and May). That means maximum prices and lots of tourists. Most people visit the park in the afternoon, so if your itinerary allows it, an early morning visit is highly recommended.