Tarangire National Park in Tanzania
Tarangire National Park is an often unexplored destination on the northern safari circuit in Tanzania.
Everything you need to know about Tarangire National Park
When you think of the northern reaches of Tanzania, you’re likely imagining the arid Serengeti and rich caldera flatlands of the volcanic crater regions. Tarangire National Park is a hidden gem that falls within the same vicinity, but often gets overlooked or squeezed in on a frenetic safari journey, with little more than 24 hours to take in its extraordinary sights. If you’re on the lookout for a less commercial, more authentic Tanzanian destination that offers gorgeous scenery, immersive accommodation and lots of awe-inspiring wildlife, this is the place to be.
Where is the reserve located?
The park is situated in the Manyara region of Tanzania. Encompassing a 2600 km2 area between the Maasai Steppe and Great Rift Valley lake region, it is the sixth largest park in the country, and named for the river that is the primary source of water for the region’s wildlife throughout the dry season. It forms part of what is referred to as Tanzania’s northern safari circuit.
About the reserve
What type of wildlife will we see?
The park comprises large swaths of dry, open woodland, punctuated by thorny acacia thickets and plenty of scenic baobabs, with an expansive network of swamps towards the south. The region’s avian biodiversity is exceptional thanks to its inimitable array of habitats, and it is home to plenty of high-profile mammals as well. This includes large herds of elephant, wildebeest and zebra, as well as impala, buffalo, eland and giraffe. Lions, leopards, cheetah and spotted hyena are also common.
Top experiences to enjoy at Tarangire National Park
From immersive walking safaris with seasoned local guides, to fly camping safaris that take you into the thick of the wildlife action, there is something for everyone to enjoy at this exceptional Tanzanian reserve. Elephant encounters are also high on the list of most visitors, since the park is known to be one of the best places in the world to view these gentle giants up close. Maasai cultural experiences provide insight into the fascinating heritage of local tribes, and there is some exceptional birding on offer as well, with 550+ different bird species that flock to the swamps that are spread throughout the park.
When to visit
If you’re headed to Tanzania primarily for the wildlife, the middle and the end of the dry season (late June to October) is your best bet. This time of year, all the animals in the vicinity gather around the Tarangire River due to the very infrequent rainfall, which also makes it high season with plenty of guests around since the terrain is good and dry for safari runs. Low season is during April and May, when animals mostly move out of the park for the wet season and it’s also tough going on the slick roads.