er Lake Manyara Nationalpark ist der letzte Nationalpark auf unserer Safari durch den Norden von Tansania. T he Lake Manyara National Park is the last national park on our safari through the north of Tanzania. Many safari providers do not even have it in the program or tick it off in quick succession. That's a pity, because Lake Manyara is one of the most beautiful places in the world, blessed by a paradisiacal landscape and wildlife. After all the stops in the Serengeti , the Ngorongoro Crater and the Tarangire National Park , I did not expect to see such a highlight again. But in the end I have to say that I liked the Lake Manyara National Park better than the Ngoronogo Crater.

Thanks to our guide Iddy, we spent a full safari day here, which was really worth it. We pass the entrance gate of the park and receive a brief introduction to the vegetation from the ranger, for example the ancient rhino ribb trees, which look like the ribs of the rhinoceros, which once existed here in large numbers. Today, the black rhinos are threatened with extinction.

Safari in Lake Manyara - first encounter with a monkey

We drive through dark green jungle landscape. Our first encounter is with a Meerkatze, which are rarely seen. While Iddy stops, so that we can photograph the sea monkey, I hear a deep drone in the thicket. "A lion," I scream euphorically, though I can not see him, Iddy grins and nods. Yes, somewhere in the thicket a cat has to sneak around. Close and yet invisible. Lake Manyara is known to have lions climbing trees, which is rare. Because lions tend to roam the prairie rather than climb trees. In addition, Iddy has already warned us, it would be rare to see the lions, as they like to hide from the cameras of tourists. The last time Iddy saw lions on trees a year ago. I'm disappointed, we were so close, I heard the cat humming so close to me, but she just did not want to show it to us. Disappointed we drive on.

Ritual battles among baboons - monkeys race through the forest in Lake Manyara

The landscape is beautiful, on the slopes grow baobab trees, acacia trees, liverwurst trees, weaver birds acacia trees, date palms and much more. I enjoy the wind through the fresh damp morning air. We drive over streams, past endless green. On the trees around us, baboons are shuffling through the branches. Looking up, you can see that the whole tree is full of monkeys. Then we witness a mega fight among the monkeys. Two males hunt across the prairie and cause a loud scream. The females take with serenity or flee into the thicket. The males race through the jungle scrub, they cross our path. They bit each other bloody. They climb trees, a branch crashes, they tumble along with the branch on the ground. We laugh. The screaming continues on the ground, the fight for the area is far from over.

Next to us in the forest a couple of elephants are chewing on branches. A small elephant sucks the red dust from the earth with its trunk and snorts it over itself. This protects his sensitive skin from the sun. The habitat of the elephants seems to be quite different here than in the endless expanse of the Serengeti.

Lake Manyara has one of the most beautiful landscapes in Africa

Our jeep winds its way through the forest and finally reaches a level on Lake Manyara, which gave the park its name. Above us in the sky is a swarm of pelicans and flamingos. Another special feature of the park is the variety of birds. In particular, flamingos that paint the plain on the lake in a soft pink color, but also storks, cormorants, cranes, pelicans and many other exotic birds live here. The plain at the lake looks like a scene from paradise. Gnus and zebras graze on the shore, giraffes walk majestically between them. A couple of wildebeests take a dip in the lake. I do not know if I have ever seen a more peaceful scene than this one. Here God must have created the earth. Maybe I said that already from Ngorongoro Crater, but here everything is topped up again, I think. This scene paints like a painting in my memories. The minutes go by way too fast.

Elephants in focus at Lake Manyara

On a steppe-like level, we encounter a slightly larger herd of elephants with many young animals. We stop for a while to watch the herd. While the elephants are eating, the leader eyed us suspiciously. We have to be very quiet so as not to make the animals nervous. But we are in any case speechless.

The hot springs on the southern shores of Lake Manyara

We drive to the southern shore of the lake, where the hot springs Maji Moto splash out of the rock into the lake. The water is 60 degrees warm, so warm that I almost burn it. It has healing powers for the skin, I fill a bottle for the shower tonight.

Here on the lakeshore is a rest area where we unpack our packed lunches and lunch with views of the lake. While we eat, we see hippos swimming in the lake. This place is so idyllic. No wonder, for Ernest Hemingway was Lake Manyara, the most beautiful thing he had seen of Africa.

Rest area on Lake Manyara

Giraffes in focus at Lake Manyara

On our way back we see giraffes licking out between green acacia trees. Even a black giraffe. Again and again we are delighted by each of the animals again and stop to take pictures. Also cute are the little Dik Diks - the smallest antelope in the world. Dik Disk are always traveling in pairs, when one dies, the other also dies. With their huge eyes eyes you just have to close them in the heart.

The Tree Climbing Lions of Lake Manyara National Park

As we head towards the exit, Bernd suddenly shouts excitedly "stop, back, back!" Everyone tears their necks around "lion on tree, lion on tree," shouts Bernd. Lightning fast, the adrenaline shoots through our veins again. We had not expected to see the tree-climbing lions that Lake Manyara Park is so famous for. Our guide Iddy had probably not expected it, because I realize how he too suddenly awake and nervous. In a flash, he puts the reverse gear in and actually. There lies a huge lioness in the treetop of an acacia and sleeps. How can you sleep on a tree without falling off? We snap what the stuff holds. The lioness slowly opens an eyelid, her paw hangs down bored from the branch. Allegedly, lions climb trees because of the ants. I almost laugh when I hear that, the king of the animals is actually afraid of ants, is not it a roar?

Ernest Hemingway "Lake Manyara is the most beautiful thing I have seen in Africa"

The chief of our safari group says "now I've seen everything, now I can die". We drive on and after a short time we see even two little lion cubs on a tree. They are really cute. And then again a bigger lioness on the tree. Luckily we saw so many lions on trees. Our last safari day has become a real highlight. But not only because of the tree climbing lions I can recommend the Lake Manyara, but simply because of the indescribably beautiful landscape, which alternates from forest, to the plain, lakeside and steppe. Because of the 400 different species of birds and the paradisiac scenes that take place on the lakeshore. Lake Manyara, as Ernest Hemingway said, is certainly one of the most beautiful spots in Africa, despite the fact that he is mostly forgotten along with the Serengeti. Luckily, because then we had the chance to see the animals too. The other tourists would have scared them. We do not. we just took pictures and were overjoyed to go back to Karatu, where we spent our last night in Tanzania.

My accommodations in Tanzania:

  Information about a safari on Lake Manyara
Location: Lake Manyara is located on the outskirts of Mto wa Mbu, near Karatu and about 126 km southwest of Arusha. The Serengeti, the Ngorongoro Crater and the Tarangire National Park are all pretty close to each other.
Size: 330 square meters, of which Lake Manyara is already 220 square meters
Parking fee: 45 USD / day / person. Additional fee for driver and vehicle.
Best travel time: In the dry season you can drive all areas of the park with the vehicle well, since the streams have low water. Thus, the best travel time is from June to October and from November to March between the rainy seasons. If you mainly want to watch birds and visit the waterfalls, there are good chances to do so even in the rainy season. However, some paths are then flooded by the brooks.
Animals in Lake Manyara: elephants, wet horns, giraffes, buffaloes, zebras, lions, hippo wildebeest, dik diks, impalas, antelopes, birds
Characteristics of Lake Manyara: 400 different species of birds, tree-climbing lions, hot springs Maji Moto
Stay: High View Hotel in Karatu

More tips for your safari at Lake Manyara in Tanzania

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