"The most compact of the major reserves on Tanzania’s northern safari circuit, Manyara supports an extraordinary diversity of habitats, from the open water and grassy floodplains associated with the eponymous lake to dense acacia thickets and lush groundwater forests. Most people are there to seek out the famous ‘tree-climbing lions of Manyara’, but it is also a strikingly scenic park, set below the towering rusty-gold cliffs of the Rift Valley escarpment, and well stocked with other wildlife. ”

- Philip Briggs

Lake Manyara National Park

Boasting a setting extolled by Ernest Hemingway as “the loveliest I had seen in Africa”, Lake Manyara is a shallow alkaline lake nestled at the base of the Rift Valley escarpment.

The diverse landscapes of this underrated gem support a correspondingly varied fauna. The undisputed stars are its legendary tree-climbing lions, but Manyara is also a good place to see elephant, giraffe, buffalo and various antelope.

A unique ecological feature is the lush groundwater forest of shady mahoganies and sycamore figs that runs south from the main entrance gate. Explorable by road or on the thrilling Manyara Treetop Walkway, this forest harbours several large troops of olive baboon, along with forest specialists such as the handsome bushbuck, the shy blue monkey and the raucous silvery-cheeked hornbill.

Other notable landmarks include a large hippo pool close to the entrance gate and the hot springs that bubble up along the western lakeshore deeper into the park.

Manyara provides a superb introduction to East Africa’s birdlife, with a wide variety of waterbirds, raptors and colourful bee-eaters, barbets, kingfishers and rollers conspicuous among 400 recorded bird species.

When to go

Find out when is best to visit

  • Excellent
  • Good
  • Poor
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DRY SEASON

A brief dry interlude before the wet season arrives in late March.

After the ‘short rains’ wildlife tends to be less concentrated, while vegetation becomes lush and thick, making game-viewing more difficult. However the colours of the park are a lot more impressive after the rains, and the large volume of insects draws in migratory birds who will be in their full breeding colours.

Its proximity to the equator means that Lake Manyara National Park has very consistent temperatures throughout the year. The high altitude (954– 2,055m/3,130–6,742ft) moderates daytime temperatures within the main driving circuit of the park to a very pleasant average maximum of between 24°C/75°F to 27°C/81°F. Mornings can be a little chilly however, so be sure to bring a light fleece!

There are two wet seasons in Tanzania. The first, known as the ‘long rains’, takes place between March and May, while the ‘short rains’ take place between November and December and are much milder. During the main dry season (June – October), wildlife is more densely concentrated and vegetation is sparser, making it the ideal period for game-viewing. During the rest of the year, wildlife is more difficult to spot, however the excellent birding opportunities and general beauty of the park more than make up for this.

DRY SEASON

A brief dry interlude before the wet season arrives in late March.

After the ‘short rains’ wildlife tends to be less concentrated, while vegetation becomes lush and thick, making game-viewing more difficult. However the colours of the park are a lot more impressive after the rains, and the large volume of insects draws in migratory birds who will be in their full breeding colours.

Its proximity to the equator means that Lake Manyara National Park has very consistent temperatures throughout the year. The high altitude (954– 2,055m/3,130–6,742ft) moderates daytime temperatures within the main driving circuit of the park to a very pleasant average maximum of between 24°C/75°F to 27°C/81°F. Mornings can be a little chilly however, so be sure to bring a light fleece!

There are two wet seasons in Tanzania. The first, known as the ‘long rains’, takes place between March and May, while the ‘short rains’ take place between November and December and are much milder. During the main dry season (June – October), wildlife is more densely concentrated and vegetation is sparser, making it the ideal period for game-viewing. During the rest of the year, wildlife is more difficult to spot, however the excellent birding opportunities and general beauty of the park more than make up for this.

WET SEASON - 'LONG RAINS'

The beginning and end of the rain spells vary, but generally this period is the wettest time of the year, making game drives potentially quite difficult. This wet season is often characterised by overcast skies and consecutive days of rain.

Wildlife is at its most spread out by this stage, and the vegetation will be thick and high throughout the park – nonetheless, like the Ngorongoro Crater, we would still recommend visiting Lake Manyara during this period, if only to take in the sheer beauty of the park!

Its proximity to the equator means that Lake Manyara National Park has very consistent temperatures throughout the year. The high altitude (954– 2,055m/3,130–6,742ft) moderates daytime temperatures within the main driving circuit of the park to a very pleasant average maximum of between 24°C/75°F to 27°C/81°F. Mornings can be a little chilly however, so be sure to bring a light fleece!

There are two wet seasons in Tanzania. The first, known as the ‘long rains’, takes place between March and May, while the ‘short rains’ take place between November and December and are much milder. During the main dry season (June – October), wildlife is more densely concentrated and vegetation is sparser, making it the ideal period for game-viewing. During the rest of the year, wildlife is more difficult to spot, however the excellent birding opportunities and general beauty of the park more than make up for this.

WET SEASON - 'LONG RAINS'

The beginning and end of the rain spells vary, but generally this period is the wettest time of the year, making game drives potentially quite difficult. This wet season is often characterised by overcast skies and consecutive days of rain.

Wildlife is at its most spread out by this stage, and the vegetation will be thick and high throughout the park – nonetheless, like the Ngorongoro Crater, we would still recommend visiting Lake Manyara during this period, if only to take in the sheer beauty of the park!

Its proximity to the equator means that Lake Manyara National Park has very consistent temperatures throughout the year. The high altitude (954– 2,055m/3,130–6,742ft) moderates daytime temperatures within the main driving circuit of the park to a very pleasant average maximum of between 24°C/75°F to 27°C/81°F. Mornings can be a little chilly however, so be sure to bring a light fleece!

There are two wet seasons in Tanzania. The first, known as the ‘long rains’, takes place between March and May, while the ‘short rains’ take place between November and December and are much milder. During the main dry season (June – October), wildlife is more densely concentrated and vegetation is sparser, making it the ideal period for game-viewing. During the rest of the year, wildlife is more difficult to spot, however the excellent birding opportunities and general beauty of the park more than make up for this.

WET SEASON - 'LONG RAINS'

The beginning and end of the rain spells vary, but generally this period is the wettest time of the year, making game drives potentially quite difficult. This wet season is often characterised by overcast skies and consecutive days of rain.

Wildlife is at its most spread out by this stage, and the vegetation will be thick and high throughout the park – nonetheless, like the Ngorongoro Crater, we would still recommend visiting Lake Manyara during this period, if only to take in the sheer beauty of the park!

Its proximity to the equator means that Lake Manyara National Park has very consistent temperatures throughout the year. The high altitude (954– 2,055m/3,130–6,742ft) moderates daytime temperatures within the main driving circuit of the park to a very pleasant average maximum of between 24°C/75°F to 27°C/81°F. Mornings can be a little chilly however, so be sure to bring a light fleece!

There are two wet seasons in Tanzania. The first, known as the ‘long rains’, takes place between March and May, while the ‘short rains’ take place between November and December and are much milder. During the main dry season (June – October), wildlife is more densely concentrated and vegetation is sparser, making it the ideal period for game-viewing. During the rest of the year, wildlife is more difficult to spot, however the excellent birding opportunities and general beauty of the park more than make up for this.

DRY SEASON

A more stable and predictable time of the year, usually with clear skies.

During this period, the land dries up and wildlife becomes more densely concentrated. This combined with thinning vegetation makes the dry season the perfect time to Lake Manyara.

Its proximity to the equator means that Lake Manyara National Park has very consistent temperatures throughout the year. The high altitude (954– 2,055m/3,130–6,742ft) moderates daytime temperatures within the main driving circuit of the park to a very pleasant average maximum of between 24°C/75°F to 27°C/81°F. Mornings can be a little chilly however, so be sure to bring a light fleece!

There are two wet seasons in Tanzania. The first, known as the ‘long rains’, takes place between March and May, while the ‘short rains’ take place between November and December and are much milder. During the main dry season (June – October), wildlife is more densely concentrated and vegetation is sparser, making it the ideal period for game-viewing. During the rest of the year, wildlife is more difficult to spot, however the excellent birding opportunities and general beauty of the park more than make up for this.

DRY SEASON

A more stable and predictable time of the year, usually with clear skies.

During this period, the land dries up and wildlife becomes more densely concentrated. This combined with thinning vegetation makes the dry season the perfect time to Lake Manyara.

Its proximity to the equator means that Lake Manyara National Park has very consistent temperatures throughout the year. The high altitude (954– 2,055m/3,130–6,742ft) moderates daytime temperatures within the main driving circuit of the park to a very pleasant average maximum of between 24°C/75°F to 27°C/81°F. Mornings can be a little chilly however, so be sure to bring a light fleece!

There are two wet seasons in Tanzania. The first, known as the ‘long rains’, takes place between March and May, while the ‘short rains’ take place between November and December and are much milder. During the main dry season (June – October), wildlife is more densely concentrated and vegetation is sparser, making it the ideal period for game-viewing. During the rest of the year, wildlife is more difficult to spot, however the excellent birding opportunities and general beauty of the park more than make up for this.

DRY SEASON

A more stable and predictable time of the year, usually with clear skies.

During this period, the land dries up and wildlife becomes more densely concentrated. This combined with thinning vegetation makes the dry season the perfect time to Lake Manyara.

Its proximity to the equator means that Lake Manyara National Park has very consistent temperatures throughout the year. The high altitude (954– 2,055m/3,130–6,742ft) moderates daytime temperatures within the main driving circuit of the park to a very pleasant average maximum of between 24°C/75°F to 27°C/81°F. Mornings can be a little chilly however, so be sure to bring a light fleece!

There are two wet seasons in Tanzania. The first, known as the ‘long rains’, takes place between March and May, while the ‘short rains’ take place between November and December and are much milder. During the main dry season (June – October), wildlife is more densely concentrated and vegetation is sparser, making it the ideal period for game-viewing. During the rest of the year, wildlife is more difficult to spot, however the excellent birding opportunities and general beauty of the park more than make up for this.

DRY SEASON

A more stable and predictable time of the year, usually with clear skies.

During this period, the land dries up and wildlife becomes more densely concentrated. This combined with thinning vegetation makes the dry season the perfect time to Lake Manyara.

Its proximity to the equator means that Lake Manyara National Park has very consistent temperatures throughout the year. The high altitude (954– 2,055m/3,130–6,742ft) moderates daytime temperatures within the main driving circuit of the park to a very pleasant average maximum of between 24°C/75°F to 27°C/81°F. Mornings can be a little chilly however, so be sure to bring a light fleece!

There are two wet seasons in Tanzania. The first, known as the ‘long rains’, takes place between March and May, while the ‘short rains’ take place between November and December and are much milder. During the main dry season (June – October), wildlife is more densely concentrated and vegetation is sparser, making it the ideal period for game-viewing. During the rest of the year, wildlife is more difficult to spot, however the excellent birding opportunities and general beauty of the park more than make up for this.

DRY SEASON

A more stable and predictable time of the year, usually with clear skies.

During this period, the land dries up and wildlife becomes more densely concentrated. This combined with thinning vegetation makes the dry season the perfect time to Lake Manyara.

Its proximity to the equator means that Lake Manyara National Park has very consistent temperatures throughout the year. The high altitude (954– 2,055m/3,130–6,742ft) moderates daytime temperatures within the main driving circuit of the park to a very pleasant average maximum of between 24°C/75°F to 27°C/81°F. Mornings can be a little chilly however, so be sure to bring a light fleece!

There are two wet seasons in Tanzania. The first, known as the ‘long rains’, takes place between March and May, while the ‘short rains’ take place between November and December and are much milder. During the main dry season (June – October), wildlife is more densely concentrated and vegetation is sparser, making it the ideal period for game-viewing. During the rest of the year, wildlife is more difficult to spot, however the excellent birding opportunities and general beauty of the park more than make up for this.

WET SEASON - 'SHORT RAINS'

Weather in this season can be rather unpredictable, with sunshine interspersed with occasional heavy showers and thunderstorms.
Though still considered the wet season, the rains are not as intense during this period as during the long rains. Lake Manyara is less seasonal than many other parks in Tanzania, so while the wildlife might have dispersed a little once the rains arrive, we would still highly recommend visiting the park during this time.

Its proximity to the equator means that Lake Manyara National Park has very consistent temperatures throughout the year. The high altitude (954– 2,055m/3,130–6,742ft) moderates daytime temperatures within the main driving circuit of the park to a very pleasant average maximum of between 24°C/75°F to 27°C/81°F. Mornings can be a little chilly however, so be sure to bring a light fleece!

There are two wet seasons in Tanzania. The first, known as the ‘long rains’, takes place between March and May, while the ‘short rains’ take place between November and December and are much milder. During the main dry season (June – October), wildlife is more densely concentrated and vegetation is sparser, making it the ideal period for game-viewing. During the rest of the year, wildlife is more difficult to spot, however the excellent birding opportunities and general beauty of the park more than make up for this.

WET SEASON - 'SHORT RAINS'

Weather in this season can be rather unpredictable, with sunshine interspersed with occasional heavy showers and thunderstorms.
Though still considered the wet season, the rains are not as intense during this period as during the long rains. Lake Manyara is less seasonal than many other parks in Tanzania, so while the wildlife might have dispersed a little once the rains arrive, we would still highly recommend visiting the park during this time.

Its proximity to the equator means that Lake Manyara National Park has very consistent temperatures throughout the year. The high altitude (954– 2,055m/3,130–6,742ft) moderates daytime temperatures within the main driving circuit of the park to a very pleasant average maximum of between 24°C/75°F to 27°C/81°F. Mornings can be a little chilly however, so be sure to bring a light fleece!

There are two wet seasons in Tanzania. The first, known as the ‘long rains’, takes place between March and May, while the ‘short rains’ take place between November and December and are much milder. During the main dry season (June – October), wildlife is more densely concentrated and vegetation is sparser, making it the ideal period for game-viewing. During the rest of the year, wildlife is more difficult to spot, however the excellent birding opportunities and general beauty of the park more than make up for this.

Explore Lake Manyara National Park Properties

Chem Chem Lodge

Chem Chem Lodge

This superb lodge has a wealth of facilities and experiences at hand, and would make the perfect relaxing start to a safari. Like its sister property, Little Chem, Chem Chem is an owner-run project driven by passion.

Lake Manyara Tree Lodge

Lake Manyara Tree Lodge

andBeyond's Lake Manyara Tree Lodge offers a stunning collection of treehouse suites overlooking the rich wilds of the Lake Manyara National Park delivers outstanding service, food and guiding.

What People Say

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