LAKE MANYARA NATIONAL PARK ACTIVITIES
Lake Manyara National Park Activities : Lake Manyara is located in the Lake Manyara National park which is situated in northern Tanzania at about 70 km from the Tarangire national park. With its pink color at distant look, this alkaline water lake is famous for its diverse biospheres one of which is the tree-climbing lions. The park occupies 330 square kilometers with the lake taking up to 230 square kilometers. Before you take a stand on your activities to do on this park, here are just but few of the activities in Lake Manyara National Park;
Famously recognized as a world’s best bird-watching site, Lake Manyara is home to over 400 bird species, three of which are world’s rare and endangered species. Some birds migrate from Lake Natron where they breed, and ally with the birds of Lake Manyara National Park for the sake of food. Among of the species of Lake Manyara National Park birds you could encounter in this park include, Grey-crowned crane, Fischer’s sparrow lark, Crowned Plover, turkey, yellow-billed storks, marabou storks, goose and the most beautiful pink lesser flamingos; yes indeed, flamingos of Lake Manyara National Park which cause the pink appearance of the lake.
This 370m air walk on top of the trees will not only give you an impressive scenic view of the flora and fauna, but also a thrilling feeling of walking on air in the middle of forest. The treetop bridges always rise to an altitude of 17-18 meters off the ground. With the treetop survey, you are given enough time to explore the attractive species of birds, monkeys and other rare fauna. You can engage in photographing beautiful scenes of your choices while on Lake Manyara treetop walkaway.
Using a canoe, you will discover dozens of aquatic species and possibly go for a fishing trip if at all fishing is your thing. Lake Manyara National bird species such as the eye-catching pink flamingos will make you spend hours canoeing while watching them tirelessly, if you are after concentrating on their beauty. Canoeing will as well allow you interact with the fishermen and discover their large canoes made with fig and mahogany trees. What a creativity from these untrained people.
Under the guard of an armed park ranger to defend you from dangerous animals, Lake Manyara walking safaris sets forth an adventitious fate of discovering the nature without using a car or a canoe. A case in point, you will be able to visit old baobab trees with more than 250 years near Rift Valley, at Mto wa Mbu. You can also request for village walking tour to Mto wa Mbu village situated few meters from the Lake Manyara entrance gate. There you will learn a whole shebang of up to the minute costumes and traditions, without forgetting tasting their local cuisines dishes.
In the Lake Manyara National Park, hiking is available both inside and outside the park. You can choose to hike the Rift valley escarpment that looks like hills surrounding the park, or decide to hike the tall hills of Rift valley escarpment and hills like Kirurumo and Balaa outside but close to the park. Hiking might turn the chalk horse for visitors who physical fitness is part and parcel of their daily deeds, as it is partway a physical exercise. Lake Manyara National Park It is also a good warm up for those preparing to hike highest mountains like Mount Kilimanjaro and Mount Meru, both of which are the pride of Tanzania.
Lake Manyara National Park offers you day game drive and the rarely offered night game drives. Going for a day game drive enables you to view mysterious lion species, and specifically the Lake Manyara National Park tree climbing lions. This wonderful lion species is more concentrated in this park and other few places in Tanzania. Game drives will also enable you spot animals in Lake Manyara National Park such as the ‘Big Cats’ (leopards and lions), larger mammals like elephants, buffalo, zebra, wildebeest and warthogs; and smaller mammals such as dik dik, and rabbits. A morning drive rewards more because most of the bird species are available and active before moving to other areas for food and hibernation. Big cats are also active before dropping off-sight deep into the tree shades when the sun becomes hotter. Afternoon game drives are highly accredited for offering a superb scene in the plains where herds of wildebeest and zebra spent their day grazing, enjoying all the freedom they have after a short hibernation of the Big Cats. Lake Manyara is one of few national parks that offers night game drives. You will be able to capture unforgettable sight of nocturnal species. Other bird species such as nightjar will make your night drive so attractive. An armed ranger is a must during this drive, since the most aggressive (aggressive only upon disturbance though) kings of African savannah (lion) is way too dangerous to allow a free drive without an armed ranger.
Both luxurious and ordinary campsite are available, so it is all upon your budget to settle up to the most suitable one for you. You will experience indelible nights in the wilderness listening to the midnight bird’s songs and lion’s roar. The escarpment luxury lodges in Lake Manyara National park offers campsites as well, whereas the ordinary campsites are situated just outside the park. These ordinary campsites may include Twiga campsites, holiday camps and tented camps in the Mto wa Mbu village. Some of these camps are situated at a very good viewing site where you can observe the rest of the Lake Manyara National Park. In order to ensure your safety, campsites are highly secured by armed officials.
Visiting local communities in the Mto wa Mbu village gives you an explorative experience. This village close to Lake Manyara National Park entrance and is inhabited by the Maasai, a tribe with unique culture in Tanzania while on Tanzania Safaris. You will learn their architectural design which make the use of traditional building materials such as wood and dry grasses. Their homes are surrounded by thorn fences to block the entrance of dangerous wildlife cats. You will see kraals where livestock like goats, sheep and cattle are kept.
Maasai are also famous for their traditional dances, where you will find yourself offering smile after listening to their traditional songs sang in ‘Kimaasai’, their local language. Maasai are also good in arts and design. Maasai is among the most sophisticated society when it comes to the skills of art and design. This can be proven by the beauty and uniqueness of their beaded jewelry artifacts such as necklaces, bangles, earrings and anklets usually made by the Maasai women.
Lake Manyara Biking tours
With an escort of a tour guide, you can ride to different parts of the Mto wa Mbu village using a classic bike available in the Lake Manyara National Park. These villages include Lake Miwaleni, Miwaleni waterfalls, Kibaoni viewpoint, and a special ride to the Maasai boma. Bike riding on a regular Thursday will reward you a visit to the busy Maasai market, and get some precious moments interacting with the indigenous of the nearby villages.
Other activities that can be done in the Lake Manyara National Park include visiting the natural hot spring. This hot spring has a temperature of up to 60 degrees Celsius, a temperature enough to boil an egg within just fifteen minutes. Agro tours is another common activity in the Rhotia area where about 1800 square kilometers area is used for agriculture. The indigenous farmers grow coffee and banana on this land piece reserved special for agricultural purposes.
If visiting Lake Manyara National Park is your choice, you can reach the park through airstrips or driving from Arusha to Mto wa Mbu and then enter the park.
Since Lake Manyara National Park is small as compared to other national parks such as Serengeti, Tarangire and Ngorongoro, you can choose to have multi-day safari across the great national parks and have your stopover point at Lake Manyara National Park before going to Kilimanjaro National Park where the mysterious Mount Kilimanjaro stands.