Tarangire National Park
With a landscape and vegetation so richly diverse, this 6 largest national park in Tanzania is not to be missed. Named after its river, Tarangire National park’s wildlife concentration in the dry season is arguably just as diverse and consistent as in the Ngorongoro Crater, as large herds of elephants are drawn to the riverbed to quench their thirst, while other migratory animals such as wildebeest, zebra, buffalo, impala will gather the shrinking lagoons. Against the ever-so-picturesque backdrop of giant baobab trees and the hilly landscape, Tarangire is a majestically beautiful park to behold, with its own migration during the wet and dry seasons.
Oftentimes referred to as an ‘elephant haven’, Tarangire offers an up-close-and-personal experience with the elephants. Within a safe distance, our guests can watch large herds of elephants cross right in front of their vehicle, or witness these wondrous animals interact playfully with each other in the open. With an estimated 3,000 elephants in the park, Tarangire is said to have the largest elephant population in Northern Tanzania. During the dry season, up to 300 herds of elephants will scratch the dry river bed for underground streams with their extraordinary smelling abilities, and along with their strength to dig down to the water source, as a result, creates an abundant supply for other animals in the area.
The Tarangire River also attracts an impressive diversity of wildlife such as the migrating herbivores (zebra, wildebeest, buffalo), as well as the resident herbivores (impala, gazelle, oryx and gerenuk, bushbuck, waterbuck, dik-dik, warthog, and reedbuck). Larger predatory animals such as lions, cheetahs and leopards can also be sighted with more time spent inside the park, with our guides taking you to the farther interior and exclusive areas of the park. African wild dog sightings can be rare, but they have recently been spotted in different areas in and near the national park.
There are approximately 550 bird varieties that can be found in the swamps, making this the most breeding species in one habitat in the world. One of the main attractions for birders would be the variety of raptors that can be found within the park, such as the bateleur eagle, tawny eagle, martial eagle, fish eagle and spotted eagle owl. Other birdlife includes the Kori bustard, the stocking-thighed ostrich, as well as ground hornbills. For keen birders, the ones to look out for would be the colourful yellow-collared lovebird, rufous-tailed weaver and ashy starling, which are all endemic to Northern Tanzania.
Things to do:
Night Game Drive
This is a fantastic way to discover Tarangire in a completely different setting compared to daytime game drives! For this activity, you will be in an open vehicle with a driver, and local Maasai to spot the nocturnal animals such as porcupines, genets, bush babies, and the occasional hippos and leopards who hang about at night.