HomeArusha National Park

DISCOVER ARUSHA NATIONAL PARK

Arusha National Park serves as an accessible gateway to Tanzania’s remarkable wildlife. Nestled near Arusha and Moshi, this park offers a mix of landscapes — from the sweeping savannahs and dense rainforests to the acacia woodlands and the alpine regions of Mount Meru. But what truly makes this park unique is its capacity for varied activities. Arusha National Park Activities range from traditional game drives to canoeing, especially the chance to go on walking safaris, a refreshing alternative to the classic safari experience. But it’s not just the activities that draw visitors in. Arusha National Park boasts a rich collection of wildlife.

The park takes pride in hosting the world’s largest giraffe population, providing a unique spectacle for visitors. Cape buffalos, elephants, hippos, and zebras are common sightings. Even elusive creatures like the lion and leopard may appear for the fortunate traveller. The park’s proximity to Mount Meru adds another dimension to its allure. Given its compact nature and rich offerings, whether you’ve descended from the challenging climb of Mount Meru or are just starting your Tanzania Safari Tours, Arusha National Park stands as a perfect beginning or conclusion to your itinerary.

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What to see in Arusha National Park

Passing the “small Serengeti” during a game drive, you are likely to spot peaceful herds of buffaloes, shy bushbucks on the edge of the forest as well as warthogs and zebras. The area is also home to a high concentration of giraffes. Heading towards the Ngurdoto Crater you will soon find yourself in a lush rainforest – a great place to spot the athletic black and white colobus monkey as well as the elegant mitis monkey. The Ngurdoto Crater is basically a smaller version of the Ngorongoro Crater and has a diameter of about 3 km. With a bit of luck, you might even spot buffaloes in the swamps on the crater floor.

On the way towards the Momella Lakes, visitors are in for a treat as common waterbucks and reedbucks love to hang around the lake shore. An array of water birds like cormorants, kingfishers and beautiful flamingos are also often spotted.

Arusha National Park is also home to about a handful of African elephants but due to their constant movement they are hardly ever spotted. The same goes for leopards which roam the vast foggy forests of Mt Meru.

What to do in Arusha National Park

The most common activity here are classic game drives in 4×4 safari vehicles. Your experienced local guide knows the best areas to spot wildlife and will safely navigate the terrain. It is a great place for a day trip or the start of your longer safari.

But there is more: If you want to get active, you can go on walking safaris in Arusha National Park. There are very few places in Tanzania’s protected national parks which allow you to walk amongst the wild on foot. But the low number of predators in Arusha National Park makes it possible.

A walking safari is a great opportunity for anyone wanting to get up close to wildlife and birdlife, have a closer look at the moss-covered trees and take in the sounds and smells and colours around them. Most common sightings whilst on a walking safari include buffaloes, warthogs, giraffes and a variety of birds such as the silvery cheeked hornbill, little bee-eater and the occasional long crested eagle. The walk takes visitors to the refreshing Tululusia waterfalls and back to the Momella gate.

The Momella Lakes

The Momella Lakes in the north-east are shallow alkaline lakes with different salt levels. An ideal habitat for flamingos! Depending on the season and the water levels, you can spot large flocks of these elegant birds here. On the small Momella Lake, you can also go on a canoe trip. These scenic and peaceful trips take about 2.5 to 3 hours and take you past antelope and buffalo herds grazing along the shore. You will be accompanied by an experience guide.

Arusha National Park truly has such a lot to offer and dazzles with a perfect mix of flora and fauna and diversified landscapes.

Best time to go to Arusha National Park

Arusha National Park is a year-round destination. But as many places in Tanzania, the best time to spot wildlife is during the dry season from June to October. Vegetation is more scarce allowing you to spot wildlife more easily. This is also the best time to go on a walking safari. During the green season the park is literally very green – tall grass and foliage make it trickier to spot wildlife. That being said, the rainy green season does turn the park into a beautiful and lush jewel making for a very scenic visit. It is also a great time to see Tanzania’s birdlife.

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Testimonials

What our Travelers are saying

Elisa M
Elisa M
2024-04-06
Verified
Great Tour Company me and my girl friend went on 7days safari with Awe Safari, to Tarangire, Ngorongoro crater and Serengeti national park, Ray and his Company (Awe Safari) was wonderful and he was also funny Guide and knowledgeable, we had a great time and enjoyable trip, we saw all the animals that we expected to see, Ray went out of his way to make sure that everything is clear and well done, we'll go back again for wildebeest to Zebras Migration in Serengeti national park, I highly recommend this great company for both Kilimanjaro trekking and wildlife Safari, cheers and see you again
Cecilia C
Cecilia C
2024-04-02
Verified
Excellent Safari with Raymond! We went on a safari with Raymond and had a truly amazing time! Raymon was so kind, funny, and knowledgeable. We learned so much and saw so many animals - all of the big 5 while with him! We always felt safe and had a wonderful time. We still think so fondly of our time with Raymond!! Thank you!
Gregg Yan
Gregg Yan
2024-04-01
Verified
Excellent Value for Money Ray Shirima knows where the animals are. He'll get you to them safely. His tours are A-Grade and well worth your time and treasure.
Linda G
Linda G
2023-08-25
Verified
Ray is an amazing guide! Me, my boyfriend and some friends went on a 4-days safari trip. It was one of the best days in my life! The owner Ray is an amazing guide. I highly recommend this company! /Linda from Sweden
VIRGINIA O
VIRGINIA O
2023-02-12
Verified
A fabulous Safari! We went on a 6 day safari with Ray in Jan 2023. Ray is a very friendly young man with a great sense of humour. He is an experienced and knowledgeable guide with a keen eye for spotting elusive wildlife; he is a skilllful driver. He made every effort to make sure we were comfortable and had plenty of time to view and take pictures of the animals. He was accompanied by a chef, Victor, who prepared delicious Tanzanian meals, including a hot lunch. We certainly recommend Ray and Awe Safaris. Virginia O'Brien and Bob Audet
Ivan R
Ivan R
2022-03-15
Verified
Almost there... Almost there... words, words I will never forget. Kili was my dream and after those words, I overcame it with the help of AWE Safari. it was hard and at the same time mental rest from the worries of everyday life. For the rest of my life I will remember that experience and thank Peter, Ino, Majka and of course Ray for organizing and finishing my dream to the end.
kitty_knows
kitty_knows
2021-08-14
Verified
Inside knowledge pays off when you travel this far We did the 5-day camping tour including Tarangire, Serengeti and Ngorongoro. It took us ages to find the operator we wanted to go with. Firstly, because this kind of activity is expensive in Tanzania (the National Parks take a huge chunk of money), secondly because there are so many fake and frankly strange reviews that give little info and, thirdly because the Covid pandemic meant a wildly reduced offering. It is very difficult to imagine what you will really experience on a safari when you have never done one before and all the offers look similar. A lot of operators don’t have proper websites, which is a worry when you try to book. Here is what we luckily found out: Unless you have very specific needs regarding accommodation, tent and foods, the experience of the guide makes the difference between amazing experience, value for money and “ok”. With Ray we had a once-in-lifetime!!! And I will come back to Tansania to have a safari with him again, and I will continue to recommend him to friends and colleagues. The trick on a safari is to know where to go and when to have the best chance of seeing an animal before all the other guides find it. Inevitably, most of the cars in each park will converge on a spot. But if you have a guide like Ray you will have five or ten minutes to yourself before that happens. And this is what sets apart an experienced guide from a novice. The novice (or perhaps the lazy guides) can follow the other cars and their clients will end up seeing the same animals. But no money in the world can weigh up observing a heard of elephants or a mother lioness with her cubs in total calm with nobody else around. No chatter, no screaming children, no posing for pictures just watching. I must stress that this is also dependent on luck. And you will need a lot of it. You never know what you see on any given day. We saw absolutely everything Serengeti had to give. It was just nice. To close my review I will say that a good guide is kind to his clients, kind to all the other workers and kind to the animals. Ray is all of this. So big thumbs up. And hope to be back in Tansania soon!!!
Lone Asif
Lone Asif
2020-12-11
Verified
Lifetime experience We had an amazing trip with Raymond Ray is a wonderful guy he knows everything .Everything was good like Car ' food ' camp ' and also price was affordable Ray is good speaking guide and also very helpful We had a great time with him .Ray is a very knowledgeable about the animals and environment and very good finding the animals .. You don't need to search more just do it with Raymond , you won't regret I highly recommend Raymond for everyone Will sure come again Best regards Lone Asif
Aytekin Bal
Aytekin Bal
2020-11-25
Verified
Raymond is the right one... We had a great experience with Raymond. He is more than a guide… You become like friends in short time.. You dont need to search more. Just do it with Raymond, you won't regret...
Peoscar
Peoscar
2020-11-21
Verified
Highly recommended Back in November of 2017 me, my wife and a friend couple was in Tanzania and had the pleasure of meeting Ray. He was our tour guide through a 4 day safari that can only be described as amazing! I'm really thrilled to hear that he has opened his own company!!! I would recommend his services to anyone. Top of the line; both in terms of professionalism and friendliness!