Mkomazi National Park-
Mkomazi National park is located in northeastern Tanzania along the Kenyan border in Kilimanjaro region and Tanga region. It was established as a game reserve in 1951 and later upgraded as a national park in 2006. Dominated by vegetation, Ruaha National park covers an area of about 3,234 square kilometers and it is contiguous with Kenya’s Tsavo west National park.
Mkomazi area is the union of two previous game reserve that is Umba Game reserve in the east and Mkomazi game reserve in the west thus at times referred to as Mkomazi-Umba game reserves in the government documents. The park is common for hosting the two highly endangered species like the wild dog and the black rhino which were introduced into the park in the 1990s.
Safari attractions in Mkomazi National Park
Mkomazi National park is endowed with various safari attractions like animal species and both the residential and migratory bird species.
Animal species: Mkomazi National Park is a home to a number of animal species. The high herds of elephants can be seen along the borders of Tsavo. Among the other animals in the park include giraffe, buffalo, zebra, eland, Kongoni and others. Mkomazi National park is the only place in Tanzania where one can spot gerenuk, oryx and the lesser kudu. Also the park is a refuge for the endangered wild dog and black rhino. The park also hosts predators like cheetahs, lions and leopards.
Bird species: Mkomazi National Park is one of the best destinations in Tanzania for birding. Birding is one of the main reasons why many travelers visit the park. The park records more than 450 species of birds with both the residential and migratory birds. Among them include the ostriches, southern ground hornbill, violet wood hoopoe, martial eagle, cobalt-chested vulturine guinea-fowl, secretary birds, long crested eagles, colossal verreaux’s eagle, Shelley’s starling, hunter’s sunbird, white headed mouse birds, Africa marsh harriers, tawny eagle, augur buzzards and some of the migratory species include the Eurasian roller.
Safari Activities in Mkomazi National park
A traveler can take part in a number of activities that are done in the park including game viewing, walking safaris and also bird watching. The activities can be done after the payment of the entry fee of US $ 30 for the Non East African citizens of above 16 years of age and US $ 10 for those below 16.
Birding: With over 450 bird species, Mkomazi National Park is surely a birders paradise. The park hosts a variety of rare species including the world’s largest birds- the ostriches and Kori bustards. Also, the park is sometimes occupied by the migratory birds from Europe and northern Africa which mostly come in the month of November and April. Other bird species in the park are vulturine guinea-fowl, secretary birds, violet wood hoopoe, long crested eagles, Africa marsh harriers, martial eagle, pygmy falcon and others.
Game viewing/ drive: Mkomazi is a habitat to various wild animals including the oryx, elands, topis, zebras, elephants, lions, kudus, coke’s hartebeest, giraffes, buffalos, eland, leopards, cheetah and others. All these animals can be spotted during the game drive using four-wheel (4×4) vehicles which is best done during the Dry season that is from June to October.
Walking safaris: Mkomazi National park has got a number of different trails where walking safaris and hiking can be done. Among these trails include the Dindira trail (4km) which takes about 3hours and also Mbula Hill trail (5km) which also take about 4hours. These safaris are good to be done in the early morning and late afternoon.
Where to stay while at a safari in Mkomazi National Park
There are accommodation facilities like camps and lodges within and outside the national park. These accommodations range from different options like luxury, midrange and budget. Among them include; Mambo viewpoint – luxury