Lake Manyara Safari| Lake Manyara National park

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Lake Manyara

Lake Manyara Properties by Star Rating:

Lake Manyara National Park's popularity with safari travelers belies its small size. The park has possibly the greatest biomass density, measured as weight per area, of mammals of any place in the world. With all that mammalian poundage standing in one place, visitors are sure to spot several of the Big Five during a single morning's game drive.

Hot springs burble on the southern shores of the lake, fed by water seeping up from volcanic rock. The lake is one of many such alkaline lakes that dot the floor of the Great Rift Valley, which dominates the geography of East Africa. The geologic forces that created the Rift Valley are also responsible for the region’s volcanoes, nearby Mount Kilimanjaro and Mount Meru among them, as well as the craters and calderas, such as Ngorongoro, that dot the landscape.

Quick Facts

  • At just 127 sq mi (330 sq km), 77 sq mi (200 sq km) (77 sq mi) of which is taken up by the lake itself, the park is the smallest of the Northern Circuit reserves. 
  • While the lake hosts hundreds of thousands of algae eating flamingos, it is no more than 15 feet deep at its deepest.

The Wildlife
So what species make up all that Lake Manyara poundage? Wildebeest, giraffe, buffalo, elephant (those last two are responsible for much of the mass), impala, zebra, bushbuck. Baboons live in the groundwater forest. Hippopotamuses wade in the lake.
The lions of Lake Manyara famously rest up in the limbs of acacia trees, perhaps as a means of keeping from getting caught under foot and hoof. Sightings of limb-lounging lions are rare, however, and visitors who manage to spot a lion up in the leaves are lucky indeed.

Significant Mammals

Elephant -  Tree climbing lion -  Cape buffalo -  Hippo -  Impala -  Waterbuck -  Giraffe - Zebra - Warthog - Reedbuck - Baboon -    

Significant Birds 
Lesser & Greater flamingos - Pelicans - Cormorants - Storks - Herons (Grey/Black headed) - Egrets (Cattle/White) - Storks (Marabou/Saddle billed/Yellow billed) - Geese (Spur winged/Egyptian).

Game Drives
Early morning game drives begin just before sunrise, when one is woken to a cup of Kenyan highland coffee. As the sun rises, you are out on the savannah, witnessing the reserve and its wildlife. Afternoon game drives begin late after the mid-day heat has relented and end just before darkness falls.
You are accompanied by a driver-guide who is knowledgeable about the flora, fauna, landscape, and the local culture.

Bird watching - More than 450 species of bird have been spotted here, and during a bird walk or game drive, vigilant watchers might spot 100 or more of them.

How to Get There - Lake Manyara is 80 miles southwest of Arusha.
By Road - The drive from Arusha to Lake Manyara takes between two and three hours. 

By Air -The flight from Arusha to Lake Manyara is 25 minutes.