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National Parks & Reserves

Arusha | Tarangire | Lake Manyara | Kilimanjaro
Ngorongoro | Ndutu | Olduvai Gorge | Serengeti


With an area of 137 sq. km, Arusha National Park is one of the smaller and most beautiful National Parks in Tanzania. Situated only 37 km from Arusha town, the park is very popular for day trips. Altitudes range from 1500 above sea level at Momella to 4572 at the summit of Mount Colubus monkeyMeru. Mt Kilimanjaro, towering at 5895 m to the east, can be visible on clear days from many locations in the park. The major attractions in this tiny park are the Natural Momella Forests, the Momella Lakes, the Ngurdoto Crater and the Meru Crater with its ash cone at 1829 meters. Another of the special features of the park are the many places where visitors can leave their cars and walk in the fresh air. The most common animals found in this park are the Abyssinian black and white colobus monkeys, the Vervet monkeys, the red forest duikers, hippos, elephants, giraffes, buffaloes, bush-bucks and sometimes the leopard. More than 400 species of birds have been recorded in the park including Eurasian migrants, which can be seen between October and April. Mount Meru can be scaled within 2 nights and three days, with overnight accommodation in alpine huts on your way up and down.



Tarangire National Park lies 120 km. south of Arusha, along The Great North Road highway. Tarangire offers a wide variety of wildlife in its area of 2,600 sq. km. As in all ecosystems, the vegetation and the types of animals you find are closely correlated. The principal features of the park are the flood plains and the grassland with thinly scattered acacia and baobabs. The Tarangire River, after which the park is named, provides the only permanent water for wildlife in the area. When the Maasai Steppes dry up with the end of the long rains in June, migratory animals return to the Tarangire River, making Tarangire second only to Ngorongoro in the concentration of wildlife. This period stretches between June and November and it is the best season for game viewing in Tarangire. The most common animals found in the park include zebras, wildebeest, lions, leopards, waterbucks, giraffe, elephants, gazelles, impala, gerenuk, lesser kudu and the beautiful fringe-eared oryx. You may be lucky to spot the tree-climbing python for which the park is famous, or the greater kudu and the roan antelope which are rare species in Northern Tanzania. Over 300 species of birds have been recorded in the Park.



Lake ManyaraLocated 125 km west of Arusha town under the wall of the Great Rift Valley, Lake Manyara National Park has one of the most spectacular settings in Africa. The park has three distinct habitats. The savanna grassland of the Maasai Steppe, which approaches from the east but is interrupted by the Great Rift Valley, the ground water natural forest, and the soda lake itself. The park has a total area of 320 sq. km., about 70% of which being the lake. Lake Manyara is an ornithologist’s paradise containing over 400 bird species including most of the birds found in East Africa’s savanna or river habitats. Common water birds to be seen here are pelicans, spoonbills, Egyptian geese, hammerkops and the migratory flamingoes which arrive in hundreds of thousands creating one of Africa’s great natural sights over the soda lake. The most famous spectacle in the park is the tree-climbing lions, which are occasionally seen along branches of acacia trees. Other animals found in this area include buffalo, elephants, leopards, baboons, impala, giraffes and hippos. The altitude of Lake Manyara is about 1,000 metres, and it can be quite hot during midday. Game drives are therefore best in the morning and late afternoon. The park is very popular and can be visited throughout the year, although some roads may be closed during the rainy season from March to May.



“As wide as all the world, great, high and unbelievably white in the sun was the square top of Mount Kilimanjaro”, wrote Ernest Hemingway of this majestic volcano, rising to 5,895 metres above sea level. Situated near the town of Moshi, Mount Kilimanjaro rises from the dry plains Kilimanjarothrough a wide belt of forest and high alpine heath to an almost bare desert and finally the snow capped peak. The highest point in Africa, Uhuru Peak in Kiswahili language, means ‘’The Peak of Freedom’’. The outstanding features of the Kilimanjaro are the volcanic centres, like the Shira in the west, Mawenzi in the east and finally the snow capped Kibo in the west. The ascent of Kilimanjaro can be done from six routes: Mweka, Umbwe, Shira, Rongai, Machame, and the Marangu Route which is the easier and the most popular. Depending on which route one wants to use, the climb of Kilimanjaro can take between four nights to six nights on the mountain. On the famous Marangu Route, accommodation is in alpine huts while on Machame Route it is camping throughout. While expert guides and porters will accompany you on your climb, unlike Mount Everest, no technical equipment is required.


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