Lake Manyara, which was once a famous hunting ground, is now one of Tanzania’s most attractive sanctuaries. Located at the base of the Rift Valley escarpment, its groundwater forest offers a nice change of scenery from the more savannah-dominated parks. A wealth of surprisingly varied vegetation sustains a wealth of wildlife, nourished by chattering streams and waterfalls spilling over the cliff. Deep in the south of the park, hot springs bubble to the surface in the shadow of the escarpment and hippos wallow near the lake’s borders.
As visitors enter the gate they pass into the lush forest, which is home to troops of baboons and blue monkeys. Further along, the forest opens up to the woodlands, grassland, swamps, and the soda lake itself which covers 390 sq km and is a sanctuary to over 400 species of bird including flamingo, pelican, storks, sacred ibis, cormorants and Egyptian geese.