Mikumi National Park
Mikumi national park derives its name from a palm tree called Borassus palm which once grew there, its Tanzania’s fourth-largest national park established in 1964 with an area of 3,230 sq km (1,250 sq miles) and only a few hours drive from Tanzania’s largest city. The vegetation in Mikumi national park consists of savannah dotted with acacia, baobab, tamarinds and some rare palm. The park contains a subspecies of giraffe that biologists consider the link between the Masai giraffe and the reticulated giraffe. The park has got a wide variety of wildlife that can be easy spotted and also well acclimatized to game viewing such as elephants, zebras, impala, eland, kudu, black antelope, baboons, wildebeests and buffaloes. At about 5 km from the north of the park, there are two artificial pools inhabited by hippos and there are over 400 different species of birds also inhabit the park. Lions survey their grassy kingdom and the zebra, wildebeest, impala and buffalo herds that migrate across it from the flattened tops of termite mounds, or sometimes during the rains, from perches high in the trees. Giraffes forage in the isolated acacia stands that fringe the Mkata River, islets of shade favoured also by Mikumi’s elephants. Most visitors come to Mikumi National Park aiming to spot the ‘Big Five’ (leopard, lion, elephant, buffalo, and rhino), and they are always not disappointed. Hippo pools provide close access to the mud-loving beasts, and bird-watching along the waterways is particularly rewarding.
Attractions in Mikumi national park
The park has many wildlife like buffalos, Lions, Zebra, Giraffes and Elephants. Giraffes are often seen browsing leaves from the isolated acacia trees that fringe the Mkata River. Also the greater Kudu and sable antelope can be found in the miombo woodland-covered foothills of the mountain that rise from the Park boundaries.
The Mkata plain is great place for birding. Mikumi boasts with a respectful 400 species of birds with the most common ones being the black bellied bustards, guinea fowls, marabou storks, bateleur eagles, ox peckers, colorful lilac breasted rollers and yellow throated long claw.
Activities in this park
This park has got different activities;
The entire area of Mikumi is always teeming with wildlife hence memorable sighting are assured. The park has got different games like the morning game drives, full day and evening games where you are able to come across different mammal species like elephants, hippos, civet cats, spotted leopards, cheetah, lion, buffalo, rhino and much more.
The Mkata plains is a great place for birding Mikumi boasts with a respectful 400 species of birds with the most common ones being the black bellied bustards, guinea fowls, marabou storks, bateleur eagles, ox peckers, colorful lilac breasted rollers and yellow throated long claw.
Walking safari is best done in the morning or evening when the temperature is low. During this time animals are also active searching for their food taking advantage of the cool temperature. Enjoy the beautiful sounds of nature comprised of bird songs, animal voices and insect sounds.
How to get to Mikumi national park
Mikumi national park can be accessed by direct highway that starts from Dar es Salaam through Mikumi national park to South Africa. The drive takes from 4 to 5 hours if using private means and if using public means it may go beyond that due to the frequent stops by buses in most of the small towns along the way. The drive is more scenic and unjoyful especially if using the prvate means where you have chance to stop at the key tourist destinations. You will have clear view of the Udzungwa Mountains along the way.
Accommodation in Mikumi national park
- Mikumi Wildlife Camp
- Vuma Hills Camp
- Stanley’s Kopje Camp