Lake Manyara National Park: Self Drive Trips.

Lake Manyara National Park is located in northern Tanzania just 43 miles northwest of Tarangire National Park.  The national park encompasses an area of 125 square miles .The boundaries of the national park include 89 square miles  of Lake Manyara itself.  It is a Biosphere Reserve.  Lake Manyara is a shallow alkaline lake created by a depression within the Great Rift Valley.  The lake sits at an elevation of about 3,150 feet.

The lake is shallow making it easy for wildlife to leverage across the entire thing.  Even during the rainy season when the lake is at its fullest, the peak depth is only 12 feet.  During the rainy season, the lake extends 25 miles wide by 9.3 miles long. Typically, the deepest point is about 10 feet.  However, the average depth is only about 2.8 feet.  Marshlands, saline flats, and grasslands surround the lake.  A small forest featuring fig and mahogany trees are near the entrance to the park.  Baobab trees are also found within the park boundaries.

Streams that feed into the lake are covered with sycamore fig, forest toad-tree, Acacia, and the palm Phoenix.  The diversity of the terrain include woodlands, grasslands, swamps and marshes, and alkaline lake.  Because the area has strong water sources, there are large fig and mahogany trees that grace the area. The land portion of the park is a narrow stretch of land that exists between Lake Manyara and the Gregory Rift Wall that lies to the west.  The marshes, grasslands, and accessible lake make this a great place for wildlife.

Lake Manyara National Park is renowned for the abundance of flamingos. There is an estimated 1.9 million flamingo that leverages the shallow alkaline lake for feeding on algae. There is another large population of varied water birds making the collective population of around 2.5 million water birds. There are over 30 different predator species of birds found in the park. It is a bird watcher’s haven. In addition to the abundance of flamingo and waterfowl, there are 40 different species of predatory birds with over 390 species of bird’s altogether.

Lake Manyara National Park

Visit Lake Manyara National Park in Tanzania for an ultimate Self Drive Safari to watch the big five & tree climbing lions with rented car from Car Rental Tanzania.
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Attractions in Lake Manyara National Park

There are a number of fascinating tourist attractions that can be explored within Lake Manyara National Park. Located in the northern part of Tanzania, this National Park is 126 kilometers west of Arusha Town. They can be seen easily nearby the roads towards Lake Manyara and Serengeti National parks.

Lake Manyara: The shallow lake Manyara is an alkaline lake found in this park that swells up and reduces in size basing on the seasons found within a long silvery bowl of salt deposits. It covers an area of 220 sq. km which is two thirds of the park’s total surface area. The lake hosts a large number of pink flamingos in addition to other wildlife like hippos that dwell in the shallow part of the river.

Wildlife in Lake Manyara National Park|: The game in Lake Manyara includes plenty of elephants, wildebeests along with so many giraffes, and buffaloes. In addition, the park is also very famous for its large number of zebras, impalas, warthogs and waterbucks. On the slopes of the escarpment, you may need to search a little hard for the tinny and renowned shy kirk’s dik and klipspringer.

The road circuit for game drives is limited and can be covered in about 3 to 4 hours where you can see the animals that are always on the move. On Average a Tanzania safari cost about $200 per day if you are using road. A luxury safari involving flights translated into high prices. It is therefore worth to revisit. Most safari companies organize for afternoon visits but taking a morning one is far much better as there are fewer other vehicles yet with more wildlife activity.

Tree Climbing Lions in Lake Manyara: Among the lions living in Lake Manyara is a healthy population of the unique tree climbing lions whose unique tree climbing character can only be found in just two populations across the world the other being in Ishasha Area in Queen Elizabeth National Park – Uganda. A very large number of tourists and photographers visit the park to see these exceptional animals.

Birds in Lake Manyara: The large number of birds found in Lake Manyara National Parks differs basing on one habitat to another. Often; you will be able to see huge flocks of pelicans and pink flamingoes on the lake, while close to the park borders and floodplains you will enjoys views of many egrets, stilts erons, spoonbills, stalks and other waders. The woodlands equally will reward you with great bird views thanks to the so much water around. But the more interesting species will be viewed in the evergreen forests; for example, crowned eagles, crested guinea fowl and the silvery cheeked hornbills.

The Vegetation in Lake Manyara: Set under the magnificent of the Great Rift Valley’s steep western escarpment is a long narrow park that conserves the area between the escarpment and Lake Manyara safe. Within the vicinity of the lake are wide grassy flood plains and further as you move away, are bands of mixed acacia woodlands. Leaving that aside, patches of captivating evergreen forests, that are kept going by perennial ground water springs from the base of the escarpment are next to the escarpment.

The large numbers of elephants: This national park is home to a very large number of elephants which can easily be seen within the evergreen forests as well as the acacia woodlands. The high amount of ground water as well as the verdant vegetation provide adequate ground to feed these forest giants.

The Tree-top Canopy Walk: Besides the traditional way of viewing wildlife in Lake Manyara National Park, the tree-top canopy walk offers you an opportunity to see other wildlife in yet a unique way. Walking at tree-top height you will be able to see some primates and various birds within the forest.

The heart of Masaai Country houses Manyara National Park. Here is where you can visit the unforgettable appealing red-robbed pastoralists who are populous in a Boma. Outside the park, undertaken can be mountain bike tours, and escarpment forest walks. When water levels are suitable, canoe safaris are also offered.


Recommended Cars for Tarangire Trip

Landcruiser LX.

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Landcruiser V8

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Extended Safari Landcruiser

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Best Time to Visit – Lake Manyara National park

Watching wildlife in Lake Manyara National Park is good all year, but at its best from late June to October, during the Dry season. However, this very scenic park is at its most beautiful during the Wet season, from November to May, when the vegetation is lush and waterfalls cascade down the escarpment.

Getting To Manyara National Park

The park can be accessed either through the southern or northern gates. The northern gate is more commonly used since most accommodation is located in its vicinity. The distance from Arusha to Lake Manyara National Park is 126 km which about 90 minutes’ drive.
As part of the famous northern safari circuit in Tanzania, Lake Manyara National Park unlike other safari destinations on this circuit is not so commonly visited. Majority of the safaris on this particular circuit to Lake Manyara National Park, start their journey from the town of Arusha

What Extensions do you recommend?

A fantastic option to consider is to self drive in Tanzania’s national park, the best-recommended extension is Uganda or Rwanda for Primate Watching ( Gorilla trekking & Chimpanzee ).

Visit the primates with Car Rental Tanzania that offers a free gorilla permit  &  chimpanzee permits booking. Contact us: Whatsapp +256787471094.

You can also still sleep in your own rooftop tent should you prefer for an adventure of a lifetime!