Ruaha National Park

Ruaha National Park is part of Tanzania’s remote and wild southern circuit (along with the Selous, Katavi, and Mahale) and is a true hidden gem. Ruaha is the largest park in Tanzania, and yet sees far fewer tourists each year than the Serengeti, making it a truly exclusive destination.

The rugged landscape comprises open savannah, lush acacia forests, dry riverbeds lined with palm trees, red soil, and iconic baobab trees. The prolific wildlife also delivers—the park is a predator’s paradise with leopard, cheetah, wild dog, and 10 per cent of the world’s lion population. Lions here have adapted to hunting big game like giraffe and buffalo. Ruaha also boasts large herds of buffalo and elephants, along with 570 species of birds. For those safari connoisseurs, you could also spot rare antelope like roan, sable, and lesser and greater kudu. Guests can enjoy their exclusive safari adventure on game drives, night drives, walking safaris, and fly camping.

The dry season of June to October is the best time to visit Ruaha National Park. June through September sees warm days and cool nights, and offers the best conditions for walking safaris. October and November are hot and dry with wildlife concentrating near water sources. Temperatures continue to increase through to March and might be a bit uncomfortable for most travelers. After the big rains in December, which comes with humidity, Ruaha comes alive. Seasonal sand rivers begin to flow, plants bloom, calving season begins, and migratory birds return. Camps are closed in April and May, mirroring the camp closures in the other parks on the Southwest Circuit.

Ruaha is easy to access courtesy of regular, well-priced flights from Dar es Salaam. It combines nicely with the Selous for a true remote safari or with the Serengeti (direct flight), creating an ultimate Tanzania adventure.

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