Ruaha National Park

Ruaha National Park is the largest national park in Tanzania covering an area of 20,226 square kilometers. The park was established as a National Park in 1964. Its borders were extended in 2008 to include Usangu Game Reserve to protect the Ihefu wetlands and the Great Ruaha River catchment areas and biodiversity. The name of the park is derived from the Great Ruaha River, which flows along its southeastern margin and is the focus for game-viewing. The park can be reached by car on a dirt road about 130 kilometers (81 mi) from Iringa which can take two to three hours and there are two airstrips –Msembe Airstrip at Msembe (park headquarters), and Jongomero Airstrip, near the Jongomero Ranger Post.

Ruaha National Park is famous for its herds of elephant and buffaloes. The Ruaha River, which plays an important role in the ecosystem of the park, provides sanctuary to a large number of hippos and crocodiles. During the dry season the river attracts great quantities of wild animals includes cheetah, lion, leopard, wild dog, spotted hyena, giraffe, hippopotamus, grater kudu, laser kudu, sable antelope, dik dik, impalas, grant gazelle, zebra, eland, warthogs and many more. More than 571 species of birds includes migratory birds have been identified in the park. Among the resident species are Hornbills.

There is a wide selection of accommodation inside the park or outside near the park. Ruaha National Park is operating public and special campsites, a hostel, self-catering tourist bandas, and cottages.

The best time for game viewing is during the dry season, from May to December. During the wet months from January to April some tracks become impassable.

Activities

  • Game drive
  • Walking safari
  • Night game drive
  • Balloon view

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