ABOUT ARUSHA NATIONAL PARK
The closest national park to Arusha town, northern Tanzania’s safari capital, Arusha National Park is a multi-faceted jewel, often overlooked by safari goers, despite offering the opportunity to explore a beguiling diversity of habitats within a few hours.
Size: 552 sq km (212 sq miles)
Location: Northern Tanzania, northeast of Arusha town
An easy forty (40) minute drive from Arusha. Approximately 60 km (35 miles) from Kilimanjaro International Airport. The lakes, forest, and Ngurdoto Crater can all be visited in the course of a one half day outing at the beginning or end of an extended northern safari.
What to do
Forest walks and numerous picnic sites.
The montane forest is inhabited by the blue monkey, colorful turaco, and trogon. This is the only place on the northern safari circuit where the black and white colobus monkey is seen. In the midst of the forest stands the spectacular Ngurdoto Crater, whose marshy floor is dotted with herds of buffalo and warthogs.
Further north, the rolling grassy hills enclose the Momela Lakes, which are sometimes tinged pink with thousands of flamingos.
The lakes support a rich selection of resident and migrant waterfowl, and waterbucks are found along the water's edges. Giraffes glide across the grassy hills between grazing herds of zebra, while dyk-dyks dart into the scrubby bush.
Mount Meru, the second highest mountain in Tanzania and the fifth highest in Africa at 4,556 meters (14,990 feet) dominates the park’s horizon.
Three or four day Mt. Meru climb – good acclimatization for Mt. Kilimanjaro. Permit 12 hours to climb Mt. Meru. Best time to climb Mt. Meru is from June to February, although it may rain in November.