TANZANIA Arusha National Park SAFARIS


About Arusha National Park

Though very accessible, Arusha national Park isn't on many safari itineraries. This is mainly because it doesn't offer a chance of seeing the Big Five. The park is at the base of Mount Meru, which is good for climbing. It has a range of habitats including forest - home to black-and-white colobus monkeys - and is excellent for birding.

Size: help
552 km˛ / 212 mi˛
Altitude: help
1340-1839 m / 4396-6033 ft

Very scenic with different habitats, including forest
Views of Mount Kilimanjaro
Excellent birding with about 400 species, including forest birds
Close to Arusha and accessible for a day trip
Canoeing safari is offered
Off the beaten track and not crowded


Game viewing in Arusha national Park is more low-key than in the other parks in Northern Tanzania. Animals that are easily seen include buffalo, giraffe and several antelope species. More exciting are the black-and-white colobus monkeys that live in the forest, and the large number of bird species. Several lakes often host flocks of flamingos.

Animals & Wildlife in Arusha National Park
Arusha National Park is the "odd one out" in Tanzania's northern safari circuit. It doesn't offer the usual range of wildlife that the other parks do. Of the Big Five, only buffalo are regularly seen and lion and rhino are absent. It's appeal lies in scenic beauty and unusual animals. The charismatic black and white colobus monkey is the flagship species.

Wildlife highlights
The forest in Arusha National Park is home to species not often encountered in other parks in northern Tanzania, including blue monkey and black and white colobus. If you are lucky, you might also spot a shy red duiker. More common is the even smaller Kirk's dik-dik. Giraffes are very common in the area around the Momella lakes.

Best time for wildlife viewing
The Dry season from June to October is the best time for game viewing in the park. Wildlife is easier to spot because vegetation is thinner and animals gather around predictable water resources.

The park's appeal is mainly its scenery. The habitat diversity spans from montane rainforest to moist savannah to alpine moorland. The most prominent landmark is Mount Meru. Other highlights are a massive extinct volcano and several scenic lakes, with Mount Kilimanjaro in the background on a clear day.