Udzungwa Mountains National Park Tanzania
Udzungwa Mountains National Park is in Southern Central Tanzania within the Iringa region, Mikumi being the nearest city to the park. Udzungwa Mountains National Park was formed from 5 forest reserves in the 1950s and formally established in 1992. The park is a residence for the Hehe people and the name Udzungwa came from a Kihehe word ‘Wandzungwa’ which means people who inhabit the mountainsides of Udzungwa. Udzungwa Mountains National Park is part of the Eastern Arc mountain range and occupies an area of 1990 square kilometers.
Udzungwa Mountains National Park can be visited the whole year but the best time is during the dry season from June to October with satisfying views of the landscape. From March to May, the rains are heavy and the trails may be slippery but the season brings out different butterfly species that flourish within the park.
Attractions in Udzungwa Mountains National Park
The park is surrounded by tropical rainforests, montane rainforest, Miombo woodland, and grassland. These inhibit the several animal and bird species that live within the park.
The Sanje waterfalls with plunge pools underneath are good for a swim.
Udzungwa Mountains National Park has a high diversity of endemic species including the Sanje crested Mangabey monkey and the Iringa red colobus monkey that can be spotted in the forest with other primates. Elephants, buffalos, leopards, Abbott’s duicker, African wild dogs, and elands also occupy the park. Species of birds here include; Francolin, Malachite Kingfisher, Crowned Eagles, Silver cheeked Hornbill, and not forgetting the Udzungwa forest Patridge.
Activities in Udzungwa Mountains National Park
Taking a walk through the lush vegetation and get an opportunity to come close to the wildlife within the park including the bird and animal species. This activity cannot be missed since the park can only be accessed on foot. Go through Mangula village and take a tour of the local market as you interact with the local people.
Climb to the top of the popular Sanje waterfalls and get an outstanding view of the mountain and the rainforests. Along the way, you will enjoy taking pictures of the surroundings and at the waterfalls, you find plunge pools underneath the waterfalls where you can take a swim after the long and hectic hike.
Cycling in Udzungwa Mountains National Park can be done within the village. You can also participate in activities like rubber plantations as you interact with the local people. You can rent or come with your own bike so as to carry out cycling.
How to get to Udzungwa Mountains National Park?
By road: Drive from Dar es Salaam for about 5hours and approximately 350km.
Accommodation facilities in Udzungwa Mountains National Park
- Hondo Hondo Udzungwa Forest Camp
- Udzungwa Mountain view camp
- Udzungwa Falls Lodge