The untouched beauty of the south
Ruaha National Park is one of the few famous wilderness areas in Tanzania where one can have a rare experience of game viewing spiced up by the fascinating landscape. It is Tanzania’s largest national park, a vast wilderness in the south-west of the country visited by only a handful of travellers each year.
Ruaha has a high diversity of plants and animals including elephants, buffalos, antelopes and some of rare and endangered species like African wild dog. The park serves as water shade both for wildlife and human being. This makes it to be economically significant as it supports agricultural activities down stream and contributes to hydro- electric power (HEP) for the country at Mtera and Kidatu dams.
At the park’s heart is the Great Ruaha River
The Great Ruaha River as other rivers like Mwagusi, Jongomero and Mzombe save as the life line of the park. During dry season, these rivers become mostly the main source of water for wildlife. There are few natural springs saving the same purpose.In the pick of dry season, elephants obtain water from dry sand rivers using their front feet and trunks. The remaining water falls along the Great Ruaha River are also important habitat for hippopotamus, fish and crocodiles.
Converging with the Great Ruaha are hundreds of sand rivers, natural game corridors when dry and sparklingly clear streams when wet. Waterbuck, impala and the world’s most southerly Grant’s gazelle risk their lives for a sip of water – the shores of the Ruaha are a permanent hunting ground for lion, leopard, cheetah, jackal and hyena. Ruaha’s elephants are recovering strongly from ivory poaching in the 1980’s and remain the largest population in East Africa. Ruaha represents a transition zone where eastern and southern species of flora and fauna overlap.
The park being rich of plants and animals such as Greater Kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros) which can not be found in any other national park, she boasts of her almost untouched and unexplored ecosystem, making visitors’ safari experience very unique.
Traveling to Ruaha National Park will give you a truly rare experience- a very close safari experience.
When is the best time to visit?
Just like Selous Game Reserve, Ruaha National Park is best during the dry season, specially at the end, when waterholes dry up and the game concentrates around whatever water that is available. If you do decide to travel to the park in low season, you are almost guaranteed not to see any other people in the park; there is a beauty and tranquillity to Ruaha in the low season that is hard to beat and there are pockets in the park where game is good any time of the year. Also birding is excellent between December and March.
What is there to do?
The main activity in Ruaha is game driving daytime since night game drives are not allowed. Walking safaris are not very common due to the hogh number of elephants in the park but there are some few camps that arrange that.
Contact us with an email or on Skype for more information about Ruaha.
How about accomodation?
In Ruaha you can find some amazing top end camps like Mwagusi and Jongomero. If you don’t want to spend as much but still have luxury, there are several alternatives like Kwihala Camp, Mdonya Old River and Ruaha River Lodge.
Tanzania National Parks operate bandas inside the parks; simple, clean accomodation (both self contained and with sharing showers/toilets) at a very low price. We do however recommend to bring a private cook as the dining offered is not the best.
There are also a number of excellent lodges and camps just outside the camp; a cheaper alternative than staying inside the reserve.
Lemasani Safari specializes in camping safaris; stay in our semi-luxury tents at the campsite in the park, enjoy your specially prepared meals under the open sky and get a magical and closer safari experience.
Contact us for more information on Ruaha accomodation
Check out some pics taken in Ruaha National Park.