MOUNT KILIMANJARO NATIONAL PARK

UDZUNGWA MOUNTAINS NATIONAL PARK

 

The Udzungwa Mountains are almost unearthly. Primeval. Burgeoning with rampant, verdant growth. An enchanted forest of leafy glades freckled with sunshine, where fungus, lichen, moss and ferns ingratiate themselves into every damp crevice. It is at once vivid detail and larger than life: a new variety of the tiny African violet discovered in the shelter of 30 metre high trees. It is a hothouse nurturing species found nowhere else on earth, a secret bank account of precious genetic stock. Of its six types of primate, two are endemic – the Iringa red colobus monkey and the Sanje Creseted Mangabey, not detected until 1979. Four previously unknown birds including the rufous-winged sunbird and a new species of the partridge-like francolin, make this Tanzania’s richest forest bird hbitat and among the three most important bird conservation areas on the continent.  One of East Africa’s great forests, undoubtedly this undisturbed habitat is yet to reveal all its treasures, waiting for further scientific exploration to catalogue its wealth.

A link in the chain of Africa’s eastern arc mountains, Udzungwa is made for hiking and climbing with trails through the rainforest and escarpment. The plateau is a natural penthouse, with views of sugar plantations against a patchwork of grassland and mountain forest extending over 100 kilometres. But the centrepiece is the Sanje River where it reinvents itself as a spectacular waterfall, plunging 170 metres through the forest to land in a spray of mist in the valley below.

 

Size 1990 sq kms
Location 5 hours (348 km, about 215 miles) from Dar es Salaam; 64 kms (about 40 miles) southwest of Mikumi National Park.

Getting there

Drive from Dar es Salaam or Mikumi National Park.
What to do From a 2 hour hike to the waterfall to camping safaris. Combine with nearby Mikumi National Park or en route to Ruaha National Park.
Best Time Possible year round although slippery in the wet. The dry season is June-October before the short rains but be prepared for rain anytime.
Accommodation  Camping inside the park. Bring all food and supplies. Accommodation just outside the park entrance, Luxury Mobile Camping.


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