Kitulo Plateau

Area: 402 km²

Kitulo is commonly known as Bustani ya Mungu (God's garden in Swahilli).The first area in Africa protected for its flowers.

Apart from the Kitulo Plateau, the Southern highlands of Tanzania includes Mount Rungwe, Uporoto, Ngosi, Ukinga, the Mbeya range, the Livingstone Mountains, Umalila and Ufipa Plateau.

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Mikumi National Park

Area: 3,230 km²

Mikumi National Park abuts the northern border of Africa's biggest game reserve, Selous National Park. It is the most accessible part of a 47,000 square mile tract of wilderness that stretches east almost as far as the Indian Ocean. With open horizons and abundant wildlife, Mikumi draws frequent comparisons to the more famouse Serengeti Plains. Lions survey their grassy kingdom. Zebras, wildebeest, impala and buffalo herds migrate across it. Giraffes forage in the isolated acacia stands that fringe the Mkata River. The Mkata Floodplain is perhaps the most reliable place in Tanzania for sightings of the powerful eland, the world's largest antelope. You may also spot the equally impressive greater kudu and sable antelope. More than 400 bird species have been recorded, such as the lilac breasted roller, the yellow-throated longclaw, and bateleur eagle. Hippos are the star attraction of a pair of pools north of the main entrance. 

Trees and other plants distinguish Mikumi. Marula trees (Mng'ongo in Swahilli) are common. This tree occurs in deciduous, wooded grassland from south Africa to Ethiopia and the fruit is used to make the Amarula wild fruit cream drink that is indigenous to Africa.

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Ruaha National Park

For anyone seeking a true African wilderness experience, a visit to Ruaha National Park is a must see! One of Tanzania's wildest parks, Ruaha can only be described as a true unspoiled African wilderness. Due to its distance from any major city, very few travelers visit this park each year, but those who do are treated to unsurpassed wilderness and complete isolation.

 

The landscape is rugged and harsh. Vast and untouched, Ruaha is now the largest National Park in Tanzania. It is larger than Wales. This park is perhaps the least well known and yet it is one of the most spectacular in Africa. Although without the teeming herds common in the Northern part of the country, Ruaha holds an incrredible amount and variety of animals, with an estimated 20,000 elephants. Ruaha's secret lies in its extraordinary diversity of animals, plants, and birds. Within the park are over 1,600 species of trees, as well as 530 species of birds. Half of all Tanzania's bird species can be spotted in Ruaha. 

Among the mammals, this park possesses one of the largest species counts of large mammals. With all the regular animals such as elephants, huge herds of buffalo, giraffes, elands, hippos, crocodiles, lions, and leopards, Ruaha holds many more rare creatures such as lesser kudus, sable antelope, and  roan antelope. 

Ruaha is also home to the second larges population of wild dogs in Africa. As for pachyderms, it is not uncommon in dry season, to see well over 100 elephants in a single drive. Hippos rule the river, and vast quantities of hippos can be seen sunning themselves along the stunning river banks on an early morning. 

The Ruaha climate is perfect! Nights are delightfully cool, but warm during the daytime. The rains in Ruaha begin in December, which then turn the park into a green paradise. Game viewing is more difficult during this time, but for scenery, birds, beauty and flowers, it is by far, the best time of year. 

For the most discerning safari lover looking for an 'off the beaten track' pure wilderness experience, a visit to Ruaha to view its larger beasts, stunning vistas, numerous baobabs, and its unique birds and animals must not be missed!

   

Selous National Park

Selous_Game_Reserve

Area: 44,800 km²

Selous National Park is a treasure of Tanzania and one of the largest protected areas in the world. Imagine a protected area the size of Denmark, blanketed by a primative wilderness that still holds areas that have never felt the footstep of a human being. The ideas of such a large and undiscovered area, teeming with spectacular wildlife, beckons to the heart of the adventurer. This place is unique. The massive size of the wilderness here is all-consuming. As your gaze skims the horizon of glassy lakes and towering trees, it is easy to feel like the only person left on the planet.

Not only is the area beautiful and pristine, but it is also home to some spectacular wildlife. Selous is one of the few places where the leopard population actually outnumbers the lion population.The Selous is known in Swahili as Shamba ya Bibi - literally translated as "women's garden". It has the largest number of several species of animals found in a single reserve anywhere in the world:

  • elephant - 65,000
  • Buffalo - 110,000
  • Hipopotamus - 40,000
  • Lion - 3,000
  • The endangered African Hunting Dog - 1,300

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Udzungwa Mountains National Park

Udzungwa_National_Park

Area: 1,990 km²

Udzungwa Mountains National park has no tourist accommodation. It is a camping and hiking wilderness retreat with few defined trails, extremely beautiful scenery including endemic trees, shrubs and herbs, and precious few visitors.

The mountain range makes up only 2% of Tanzania's land area, but the forests contain 30% - 40% of the country's plant and mammal species. They also have the secound highest bird diversity in Africa behind the less accessible ituri forest in the DRC.

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