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Lake Manyara NP

- Overview Lake Manyara Safaris

About Lake Manyara National Park

Lake Manyara NP is a small park at the base of the Rift Valley escarpment. Its groundwater forest offers a nice change of scenery from the more savannah-dominated parks. Although the park is known for tree-climbing lions, big cats aren’t that easily seen. Elephant are prolific and are the main attraction.

Size: help
330km² / 127mi²
Altitude: help
954-2,055m / 3,130-6,742ft
Pros and Cons
  • Very relaxed elephants to view at close quarters
  • Stunning scenery
  • Superb birding
  • Close to Arusha and en route to Ngorongoro Crater and Serengeti
  • Activities include canoe safaris and a treetop walkway
  • Rarely crowded in the morning
  • Gets crowded in the afternoons during peak season (June and July and October to April)


This park is known for its large elephant population. The big cats are present, but not seen that easily. The forest patch is home to habituated troops of olive baboon and blue monkey. Buffalo, giraffe and several antelope species are easily encountered on a drive.
More about the wildlife


Lake Manyara is a shallow, alkaline lake at the base of the Western Rift Valley escarpment. The different habitats of the park are a scenic and wildlife highlight. The park entrance leads to a beautiful groundwater forest. Other habitats include the grassy floodplain, rocky escarpment and acacia woodland, all of which can be covered in a half-day visit.

Weather & Climate

The climate never overheats at Lake Manyara, where average daytime temperatures peak at around 29°C/84°F in the Wet season (November to May). The pattern in this period is a month or two of ‘short rains’, then a dry spell, then a longer stretch of rain. It’s slightly cooler in the Dry season (June to October). The temperature plummets at night, however. Freezing conditions are rare, but they can happen.
More about the weather and climate

Best Time to Visit

The wildlife watching is good at Lake Manyara practically all year. As a consequence, it’s high season in the park for all but two of the wetter months (April and May). That means maximum prices and lots of tourists, particularly in the morning. Less people come during the Wet season (November to May), however, so you might want to time your visit accordingly.
More about the best time to visit

Want to visit Lake Manyara?

Safari Reviews

- Lake Manyara
Expert Rating
Scenic beauty
Bush vibe help
User Rating
Scenic beauty
Bush vibe help
Latest User Review
By Carolyn Widas from CanadaCA
 6 Nov 2017Reviewed:

Beautiful in all aspects including the history, the sunrise and the game.

All 121 user reviews Write a Review

SafariBookings Expert Panel

Our panel of 22 experts wrote a total of 970 reviews about the countries and parks we cover.