Lake Manyara’s draw lies not in its size, but its beauty. While other parks may stretch into the tens of thousands of square kilometres, Lake Manyara National Park is a rather more intimate 230 square kilometres. One of Tanzania’s smaller parks, the concentration of wildlife here is more limited than at the larger reserves, but what it does have is incredibly picturesque scenery.
Its western border is formed by the Rift Valley’s dramatic western escarpment, and its east given over to the alkaline Lake Manyara which is famous for its huge numbers of vibrant pink flamingos. The lake covers over a third of the park’s entire area, retreating considerably in the dry season and playing host to a beautiful array of birdlife during the rains. The park can be included in most itineraries on the way to Ngorongoro National Park, and for birdwatchers and photography buffs alike Lake Manyara holidays are not to be missed.
Despite its diminutive size Lake Manyara is home to a diverse range of vegetation, made up of 11 separate ecosystems ranging from savannah to marshes and evergreen forest. The usual safari suspects can all be found in the park, with elephant, hippo, zebra, giraffe, buffalo and wildebeest regularly spotted. Resident predators include leopard and hyena, as well as the unusual tree-climbing lion.
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