Located beneath the cliffs of the Manyara Escarpment in Tanzania, on the edge of the Rift Valley, Lake Manyara National Park offers varied ecosystems, amazing bird life and breathtaking views. Its ground water forests, bush plains, baobob strewn cliffs and algae-streaked hot springs offer huge ecological variety in a small area, rich in wildlife and incredible numbers of birds. 

The alkaline soda of Lake Manyara is home to an incredible array of bird life that thrives on its brackish waters. Pink flamingo stoop and graze by the thousands, colourful specks against the grey minerals of the lakeshore. Yellow-billed storks swoop and corkscrew on thermal winds rising up from the escarpment and herons flap their wings against the sun-drenched sky. Even reluctant bird-watchers will find something to watch and marvel at within the national park. 

Lake Manyara’s famous tree-climbing lions are another reason to pay this park a visit. They make the ancient mahogany and elegant acacias their home during the rainy season and are a well-known but rather rare feature of the northern park.  In addition to the lions, the national park is also home to the largest concentration of baboons anywhere in the world - a fact that makes for interesting game viewing of large families of these primates.

Giraffe and elephant are two other species that you should see in the Park. Although both of these species do occasionally visit the floor of the more popular Ngorongoro Crater you have a far greater chance of seeing them at Lake Manyara.

The lake is located close to the town of Mto wa Mbu (River of Mosquitoes). The town owes its existence to its proximity to Lake Manyara and an irrigation project that turned the surrounding swampland into farmland. Shortly after Tanzania’s independence forcible resettlement into the area resulted in an extraordinary ethnic mix. Almost 50 different tribes now live in and around the town, some of which can be visited as part of a Cultural Tourism programme.

When visiting Lake Manyara we tend to use one of two camps close to Mto wa Mbu. Migunga Forest Camp is set in 35 acres of acacia forest in a secluded part of Migungani Village. Bushbuck and other antelope are sometimes seen on the property. Vervet Monkies and Dwarf Galago (bushbabies) are common and can be seen most days.

The camp consists of nine large, walk-in, self-contained tents. Ensuite bathrooms have running hot and cold water, showers, and flush toilets. There is a dining room and bar under thatch. At night lighting is provided by a 12 volt electricity that is supplied by solar power.

The other camp, close by and very similar in its layout, is Kiboko Bush Camp which also provides a limited amount of accommodation in large safari tents.

Both camps are ideally placed for visits into Lake Manyara Park. It is also possible to walk to the north-eastern lake shore from both places although these walks have to be with an accompanying guide as there are plenty of hippo around in the early morning and large herds of buffalo on the plains close to the lake.

Visits to local village projects such as a flower farm, local farming, and the banana plantations are available. It is also possible to see the making of Maasai spears, knives, and other metal work as well as a visit to a Maasai village. These visits would need to be paid for at the time.