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Manyara National Park

Manyara is best used as a soft introduction to a safari. The scenic beauty of Manyara is the main reason to travel here and certainly deserves a visit. But the game viewing pales into insignificance compared to the quality of game viewing on offer in Tarangire, the Ngorongoro and the Serengeti. Being famous for its tree-climbing lions, flamingos, breathtaking scenery and the soda-ash lake in the centre makes it reason enough to visit here for a day. Missing it out when driving straight passed Manyara, is ultimately a bit of a shame…we just question its quality as a big game viewing park but why worry when you’re about to go onto the Ngorongoro and Serengeti. Lake Manyara is a lovely scenic park on the road from Arusha to the Ngorongoro Crater. The lake itself takes up much of the park leaving a strip of land running down its shores where game concentrates. Famous for its tree climbing lions, good elephants and baboons, Manyara is often visited for an afternoon’s game drive on the way to Ngorongoro. Overall it’s a great introduction to a Tanzania safari, but a park that is not a patch on its neighbours. It’s not a first choice of ours simply because of the low volume of game and the fact that the game driving areas are so small. But a lovely little park to stop off at and have lunch at the start of your safari. 
Lake Manyara’s game concentrations are not nearly as high as surrounding parks but there are a number of unique species that are reason to safari here. Lake Manyara’s tree climbing lions are the parks main attraction. Why these lions habitually climb trees is still up for debate but viewing a pride relaxing in an acacia tree is an incredible site. The park is also famous for its elephant, huge number of baboons and due to its varied landscape has an impressive range of other game including wildebeest, buffalo, hippo, flamingo, zebra, warthog, waterbuck, dik-dik and impala. The birding here is very good, especially raptors. 

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