Ruaha National Park 365

Ruaha National Park encompasses over 20 000 square kilometres of diverse habitats. This remote park is situated in the centre of the country between the Ruaha River in the east and the Mzombe River in the west. Between these two rivers lies varying terrain – from rocky outcrops and rolling hills to semi-arid grasslands dotted with baobabs. The park forms part of Tanzania’s Southern Safari Circuit, which, while less prominent than the famous Northern Circuit, is fast gaining recognition.

The appeal of this destination lies in its largely untouched landscape, which is untamed and offers exceptional wildlife encounters, and fewer fellow travellers. The dry season, between July and November is by far the best time to plan your Ruaha safari. Around this time of year, it’s drier, so the vegetation is sparse and wildlife congregates around rivers, making game viewing easier and more rewarding. Watch out for elephant (the park has large herds) collecting water from dry sand rivers using their front feet and trunks to dig holes The park is also home to zebra and a significant complement of predators, including African wild dog, leopard and cheetah. It’s also the only national park in Tanzania where Greater Kudu can be found.

An encounter you might be lucky enough to witness is the interaction between Ruaha’s vast buffalo population and its large prides of lion, sometimes numbering up to 20, which make for riveting viewing.

This destination combines well with both the Selous Game Reserve and the Mahale National Park.