Mahale National Park, also Mahale Mountains National Park is one of the various national parks of Tanzania that travellers can visit on Tanzania safaris. Mahale National Park lies in the eastern shore of Lake Tanganyika in Kigoma region of Tanzania. Mahale National Park is named after the Mahale Mountains range this within the park’s borders. Mahale National Park is one of the only two protected areas in Tanzania to inhabit chimpanzees in Tanzania, with the other chimpanzee destination in Tanzania being Gombe Stream National Park which was made most famous by the tireless efforts of Jane Goodall.
Mahale Mountains National Park inhabits the largest known population of eastern chimpanzees and given the amazing scenery and vegetation cover of the park, chimpanzee populations here do flourish. Mahale National Park is the only place that inhabits both chimpanzees and the kings of the jungle, lions. Mahale Mountains National Park is one of the few places in Africa that one need to experience and explore on foot.
Mahale Mountains National Park Location
Mahale Mountains National Park is located in the western part of Tanzania, and along with Gombe Stream National Park and Katavi National Park make up the western safari circuit of Tanzania, another hotspot for game viewing especially chimpanzees. Mahale National Park is found in the north of Gombe Stream National Park, and is south of Kigoma town. Mahale National Park borders Lake Tanganyika which is the longest lake in the world, and the second deepest lake in the world.
Mahale National Park attractions
There are a number of attractions in Mahale National Park that travellers get to enjoy while in the park. Below are some of the most amazing things to see in Mahale National Park;
There are over 800 chimpanzees in Mahale National Park, recorded to inhabit the park. Of these about 60 chimpanzees are fully habituated and available for chimpanzee trekking experiences in Mahale National Park. It is the chimpanzees that most travellers do visit Mahale Mountains National Park to see the chimpanzees in their natural habitat. The about 60 chimpanzees being to the Mimikere group, and travellers can see them with chimpanzee tracking in Mahale Mountains National Park.
Other animals in Mahale National Park
Apart from chimpanzees which is the main reason why most travellers do visit the park, there are a number of Mahale National Park animals that travellers can still spot while in the park, on a Tanzania safari tour in Mahale National Park. The various Mahale National Park animals that travellers can spot while in the park include the Angola colobus, red colobus, red-tailed and blue monkeys, warthogs, lions, among so many others.
There are a variety of birds in Mahale National Park that travellers can spot while on various activities in the park.
Mahale National Park is a chain of wild jungle peaks towering at almost 2km above the sea shore of the beautiful Lake Tanganyika. Mahale National Park has amazing Mahale Mountain ranges, the classic Rift Valley Lake with steep escarpments and white sandy beaches, which all together give amazing scenic views to guests. The beautiful Lake Tanganyika is best appreciated on a dhow trip, and what amazing sunset views shall you be rewarded with should you embark on an evening dhow ride.
Activities in Mahale Mountains National Park
With so much to see, there is equally so many things to do in Mahale National Park. there are various activities in Mahale National Park that travellers can do, including chimpanzee tracking which is the most sought after activity, hiking and nature walks, camping, snorkelling, canoeing, as well as sport fishing among others are some of the various activities you would do in Mahale National Park.
Best time to visit Mahale National Park
Mahale National Park can be visited all year through; and chimpanzee tracking in Mahale National Park is possible all throughout the year as well. The best time to visit Mahale National Park however is during the dry season, in the months of July to October when the chimpanzees most a times are seen hanging around the lower slopes of the park thus giving you shorting tracking hours.
Getting to Mahale National Park
Getting to Mahale National Park is something that should be known by anyone looking to embark on a Mahale National Park safari. Mahale National Park is one of the almost hard to reach national parks of Tanzania, given the park is quite remote. Depending on your Tanzania safari itinerary, your point entry may be either Kilimanjaro International Airport in Arusha or Julius Nyerere International Airport in Dar es Salaam. The best way to get to Mahale National Park is by taking flights from any of the mentioned airports, to Mahale National Park. The only public flight that operators to Mahale National Park is operated by Safari Air Link, operating twice weekly. Alternatively, one would consider chartering flights operated by Mbali Mbali Lodges, operating twice weekly flying and connecting the northern Tanzania safari circuit and the western circuit, incorporating Katavi National Park and Mahale National Park as well as Gombe Stream National Park. From Kigoma, Mahale National Park can be reached by boat.
Mahale National Park accommodation
There are a number of lodges and camps in Mahale National Park that travellers can choose to stay in while on a Mahale National Park safari, depending on their budget and preferences. Some of the various Mahale National Park accommodation to choose from include Nomad Safaris Luxury Tented Camp, Nkungwe Luxury Tented Camp, Mbali Mbali Mahale Lodge, among others.
Looking to experience chimpanzee tracking in Tanzania? Mahale National Park is one of the best option in Tanzania. You would blend your chimpanzee tracking adventure in Mahale National Park with a Tanzania safari in the northern circuit including Serengeti National Park, Ngorongoro Crater, among others. Get in touch with a reputable tour operator to help you curate an amazing Tanzania safari tour.