Arusha national park is a small park situated in the north Eastern region of Tanzania; the park is beautifully endowed with magical landscapes of scenic striking views. Its one of those awesome places to go to for lifetime safaris in Tanzania.
Arusha national park is just a few kilometers from Arusha the nearest town the park offers a wilderness experience you might not encounter in the northern circuit of Tanzania national parks, mount Meru which is the fifth highest mountain in Africa overlooks Arusha national park with its magnificent slopes spreading into vast forested hills, this is also one of the best places to do a mountain climbing Safari from.
Mount Meru will also offer breathtakingviews of Africa’s highest mountain Kilimanjaro from the summit. Arusha national park boasts with seven shallow lakes like the Big and small momella lakes, Elkekhoitoito, Rishateni, among the rest, these lakes are flooded with greater and lesser flamingos and the Ngurdoto Crater Lake also offers spectacular views. Lake Longil is the only fresh water lake in the park always streamlined with animal’s drinking water at the shores. One of the distinctive natural features of the park is the fig tree arch; this outstanding feature is big enough for an elephant or even a car to through.
Arusha national park was established in the year 1960, before being gazette as a park, it was a battle ground for the Masai people and their neighbors. In the early 19th century a German family had owned a farm on top of Mount Meru but were later dismissed by the locals who saw them as enemies of the black people, one of the ladies in the Trappe German family was one of the best women hunters in East Africa the family returned later on and purchased their land back.
Arusha national park is established with very rich Flora and fauna, tourists can engage in various activities at the park some of which can be seen below;
Game drives: Driving around the parks momella lakes will give you unforgettable experience as you came across a lot of wild animals like; hippos, zebras, elephants, buffalos, monkeys, hyenas, water bucks, warthogs, lions and leopards can also be seen occasionally. Arusha national park has the highest number of giraffes in Africa.
Mountain climbing: The famous Mount Meru stands 4566 meters above sea level, Mount Meru is the second highest peak in Tanzania after mount Kilimanjaro. Climbing mount Meru will give you a thrilling experience as you encounter wild and plant life as you ascend to the top, the sloping Forest hills will expose you to primates like the white and black Columbus monkeys, red tailed monkey, olive baboon and many more while the wooded Savannah vegetation is filled with giraffes and zebras grazing.
Before reaching the peak tourists will come across Kiplinger’s and a lot of flowers clinging on the alpine desert area. Mount Meru also offers excellent views of Mount Kilimanjaro which is just about 60 kilometers afar off.
Canoeing: Tourists can complement their Tanzania adventure holidays by canoeing on the momella lakes of Arusha national park, this will provide you with magnificent views of the lake shows as you come close to animals like giraffes and buffalos at the shores but the most outstanding are number flamingoes and other water birds. This activity always takes about 2 to 3 hours.
Bird watching: The small magnificent momella lakes that usually change color in the breeding seasons harbor flamingoes and other water birds like; Tawny eagle, verreaux eagle, red fronted parrot, African fish eagle, Egyptian goose, great crested grebe, lammergeyer, black saw wing and cinnamon chested bee eater among the rest.
Guided nature walks: Tourists can also come to close contact with the wild through a guided nature walk in the park, there are a number of various walking trails and tourists must be accompanied by an experienced tourist guide and pay attention to instructions some of the trails are as seen below: Kitoto to Njeku via Meru crater, momella gate to Itikoni, Ngurdoto crater rim, Buffalo to Kaitong, Laitong to Buffalo and Momella gate to Tululusia water fall. This take about 2-6 hours depending in the trail being used.
Arusha national park can be accessed by a forty minutes’ drive from Arusha national park, Kilimanjaro international airport is just few kilometers and Moshi town is about 58 kilometers. Arusha national park can be visited all year round but the peak seasons are from June to October for game drives, the best time for climbing Mount Meru is from June to February, tourists can have best views of Mount Kilimanjaro from December to February, and for bird enthusiasts the best time to do this activity is between November and April where you can view migratory and residential birds.
Arusha National Park has a good number of accommodation units where to stay will depend on tourists’ budget. Come experience the wilderness in Africa’s treasure and take back home unforgettable memories.
Some accommodation units in Arusha national park include, momella wildlife lodge, Mbega lodge and mount Meru lodge to mention a few.