Southern Circuit

Ruaha National Park

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About ruaha national park

Ruaha National Park is one of Tanzania’s famous wilderness areas where one can experience game viewing spiced up by its fascinating landscape. It covers an area of 20,226 sq km (12,568 sq miles). It is the largest in Tanzania and the second largest in Africa. It is located 125 km west of Iringa town.

The park is rich with plants and animals such as the Greater Kudu. It boasts of her almost untouched and unexplored ecosystem, making it a very rich and special safari experience.

The Great Ruaha River, as other rivers like Mwagusi, Jongomero, and Mzombe serve as the life line of the park. During dry season, these rivers become the main source of water for the wildlife, along with a few natural springs.

Ruaha National Park

During the dry season, elephants obtain water from dry sand rivers using their front feet and trunks. The remaining water falls along the Great Ruaha River are important habitats for the hippopotami, fish, and crocodiles.

The park is one of Tanzania’s birds’ paradise, inhabited by more than 550 species, such as the Ashy starling, Yellow-collard Lovebird, Crested barbet, Violet-crested Turaco, Plovers, Kingfisher, African hawk, and Bateleur eagle. It is also visited by Eurasian, Australian, and Madagascar migrants, including the rare Eleanora’s and sooty Falcons Ruaha red-billed hornbill (Tokus ruahae).The Usangu Basin is one of the country’s most important bird areas (IBA), as recognized by Bird International. The best time for bird watching in this area is during the wet season.

Ruaha National Park Safari

Nocturnal animals that can frequently be seen include the leopard, lion, genet, and hippo among others.The park is characterized by semi-arid types of vegetation, Baobab trees, the Acacia, and others. There are over 1,650 plant species that have been identified. The park is the transitional point of two vegetation zones, the Zambezian (characterized by Miombo vegetation) and Sudanian (characterized by Acacia vegetation).

The park also harbors a number of reptiles and amphibians such as crocodiles, poisonous and non-poisonous snakes, monitor lizards, agama lizards, and frogs. The Great Ruaha and Mzombe rivers are presumably the most preferred habitat for crocodiles.