Mikumi National Park
This National Park is less than 300 km (186 mi) from Dar es Salaam, the commercial capital city of Tanzania. Because of its location, Mikumi National Park is one of the most popular parks in Tanzania and is an educational center for ecology and conservation students. Animals frequently seen in the park are lion, wild dog, elephant, cape buffalo, civet cat, reedbuck, crocodile, monitor lizard, python, yellow baboon and hippo.
Ruaha National Park
One of Tanzania’s best kept wildlife secrets is the Ruaha National Park. Ruaha National Park is the country’s second largest park and biggest elephant sanctuary. The park name derives from the Great Ruaha River, which flows along the park’s Eastern border. The river is home to hippo and crocodile. The river and its surrounding grasslands also attract waterbuck, reedbuck, cape buffalo, lion, leopard, cheetah, hyena, wild dog, various antelope species, giraffe, zebra, warthog, mongoose and porcupine. This park is also home to over 370 species of birdlife.
Selous Game Reserve
The Selous Game Reserve is the largest protected wildlife area in Africa. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is an uninhabited area larger than the country of Switzerland. Selous Game Reserve boasts Tanzania’s largest population of elephant as well as large numbers of lion, leopard, wild dog, cape buffalo and hippo. Also commonly seen are bushbuck, red and blue duikers, eland, hartebeest, hyena, klipspringer, oryx and many species of primate. The park is also home to the rarely seen black rhino and red colobus monkey.
Udzungwa Mountains National Park
Udzungwa Mountains National Park is a conservation area of about 2,000 sq km (770 sq mi). The major attraction of the park is its bio-diversity and unique rainforest where many rare plants have been identified. The park is home to six types of primates, including the endangered red colobus monkey and the endangered Sanje crested mangabey. Most commonly seen animals are bush baby, civet cat, duiker, honey badger and mongoose. The park is also home to a number of rare forest birds.