Philip is a renowned Africa expert and author of many Bradt guidebooks to African destinations, including the guide to Mozambique.
Philip is a renowned Africa expert and author of the Bradt guidebook to Mozambique.
Philip is the author of the Bradt guidebook to Mozambique.
Gorongosa was once one of Africa’s top parks, but it was abandoned and depleted of wildlife during the civil war. Since 2008, a lot of funding and effort has gone into rehabilitating Gorongosa. Although far from fully recovered, the park is once again a viable wildlife destination. There is a fair amount of wildlife around, including elephant and a variety of antelope.
Wildlife has recovered greatly since the civil war. Four of the Big Five are present (rhino is extinct in the park). There are about 500 elephants and the number is growing. Lions are making a comeback (between 50 and 70). Buffalo numbers are still low. Animals you’re likely to see include waterbuck, zebra and warthog. Crocodiles are particularly numerous.
Situated at the very end of Africa’s Great Rift Valley, Gorongosa has a great variety of landscapes. These include Lake Urema and its network of rivers, vast floodplains, savannahs and woodlands, and rainforest on Mount Gorongosa. A hike to Murombodzi Waterfall on Mount Gorongosa is a great addition to a safari.
Weather & Climate
The climate in Gorongosa is hot and tropical. The Dry season runs from May to October and is cooler than the Wet season. Temperatures start going up in September and peak in October just before the rains. November to March are the wettest months and afternoon showers can be expected most days.
The best time for wildlife viewing is during the Dry season months, from May to October. Conditions improve as it gets drier, and animals will hang around water sources that haven’t dried up. Wildlife tends to disperse during the Wet season and travel conditions can be difficult at this time. In fact, the park closes from mid-December to the end of March.
Sue is an award-winning writer who specializes in African travel and conservation. She writes for national newspapers, magazines, Rough Guides and Lonely Planet.
Gorongosa is a special place: I love it as much for its romance and history as for its wildlife and scenery. Although it’s not the easiest or cheapest place to get to (a flight to Beira is the best way, then it’s a three-hour drive),...