Mikumi National Park is the fourth (4th) largest national Park in Tanzania as well as the most accessible when traveling from Dar es Salaam the largest city in Tanzania. The park can be explored in just two days making it an ideal destination for those on a busy schedule and yet they wish to do some game viewing. After the completion of the highway that connects Dar es Salaam to Mikumi park gate, this has become a major safari destination especially for those taking a short weekend Tanzania Safari Adventure from the city. The large number of wild animals that have been recorded here in addition to its proximity to the city have made it the most visited park in the whole of Tanzania.
The biggest number of visitors that come here visit to see Africa’s Big Five, (which include: rhinos, lions, buffaloes, hippos and cheetahs) and indeed they are never disappointed. Large schools of hippos are commonly seen within the muddy water pools found just five kilometers north of the Mikumi main gate entrance, whereas lions are spotted surveying the grassy plains in which wildebeests, buffaloes, zebras and impalas are continuous seen migrating through. The giraffes on the other hand foliage the taller acacia trees that border the shores of lake Mkata which offer good shade to the giant elephants living in the park.
Sample our 3 days safari in Mikumi National Park, or look at our longer safari package that includes Mikumi the 10 days Southern Tanzania safari.
Indeed the very big number of wildlife living within the open seemingly endless mkata floodplains which the most popular tourist center within Mikumi can be compare to that in the Serengeti plains.
Mikumi National Park is located close to Morogoro and covers an area of 3230 square kilometers. To the south it is bordered by the renowned Selous Game Reserve, while the Uluguru Mountains and the Udzungwa mountains are on the other side. It was formed in 1964 and today it has a wide variety of wildlife.
Mikumi National Park – Activities | What to do?
Today, Mikumi has become a popular safari destination in Tanzania offering a number of different activities that can be enjoyed during short Tanzania Safari such as:
Game drives: these will offer you an opportunity to see different animals within their natural habitats such as large schools of hippos playing in the water pool, giraffes, hippos, eland, greater and lesser kuddus, zebras and elephants among others. On a good day, you might even see some lions hunting their prey.
Bird watching tours: according the records of Mikumi National Park, nearly 500 different bird species have been listed to stay here. These include several water birds, savanna bird species, several migratory species, among many more. The Zanzibar red bishop, bateleurs eagle and the yellow throated longclaw are some of the bird species seen there.
Nature walks / walking safaris: another interesting way to explore the park is by talking nature walks. These will give you chance to have a detailed knowledge of the park’s flora, and even see the ‘smaller’ wildlife species such as squirrels that live within the Mikumi.
Picnic Lunches: this is a good place to have your picnic lunch as you will also have an opportunity to enjoy sights of the green wilderness that offers habitats to so many wild animals set right before.
Camping: Mikumi NP has two major camping grounds one of which is a public camping site and the other a private camping ground. The private campsite which also referred to as campsite 5 is found within the vuma hills, while the public campsite also referred to as Campsite 1,3 is found in the Nkata plains. These campsites are open all year round although the best game views are between June and November.
Mikumi National Park Attractions
As the dry season which starts in June and end in October progresses, game viewing becomes very good as most of the water sources have dried up so that animals normally crowd to drink at the few water holes remaining. During the dry season the park is very busy. It receives a very large number of tourists, the park trails are very accessible and game drives are possible in all parts of the park.
From march to April the park is receiving large amounts of rain, most of the vegetation is flourishing, and most of the water holes are full so the animals move deeper into the park making game viewing very hard. At that time, the trails within the park are very slippery and hard to maneuver a thing that makes accessibility poor. So the number of tourists is very low.
The numerous isolated anthills that are scattered across the plains host large colonies of mongoose that come to prey on the ants. There are several other bird species including migratory birds that live inside Mikumi NP that will definitely reward you with a memorable Bird Watching Safari.
The Mkata flood plains are a dominant feature within the park. They comprise of a varied terrain that is covered by a very this vegetation comprised of acacia shrubs plus a varied woodland, with giant baobab trees scattered across it. This served as a varied habitat for different animals and it the best place to have a game drive. You will be able to spot elephants, zebras, wildebeests, antelopes, giraffes and lions in this area.
How to get to Mikumi National Park | Getting there
This national park can be accessed either by road transport or air transport. It is just hour hours’ drive from Dar es Salaam through Morogoro. There are also road connecting from the Selous Game Reserve, Udzungwa Mountains National Park and Ruaha National parks, however these can only be accessible during the dry season
Alternatively, there are chartered flights connecting from Dar es Salaam into Mikumi as well as from other national parks in Tanzania. One of the good service providers for these charter flights is Safari Airlink
In case you are interested in exploring the Mikumi National Park, contact us today as we Safari Desire have specialized in organizing tailor-made Tanzania Safaris and Tanzania Holidays not only in southern Tanzania but across the rest of Tanzania and Zanzibar as well.