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Tanzania's Wildlife

Wildlife in Tanzania

Hogging the limelight are Tanzania’s northern parks, which attract the most visitors. In the south, the parks have excellent wildlife but far fewer safari-goers, while the remote west lures adventurers in search of chimps and plains megafauna.


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Tanzania is one of the most biodiverse countries on earth, covering more than 945,000km2, and home to 300 types of mammal, 400 varieties of reptiles and amphibians and 1,100 species of birds.

This breadth of species reflects Tanzania’s diversity of habitats: huge herds of elephants frequent Tarangire’s swamps, wild dogs roam the vast bushlands of the Selous, and big cats dominate the open plains of the Serengeti. In the tropical forests on the steep shores of Lake Tanganyika, chimpanzee troops are increasingly habituated to visitors (this is the best place in Africa to observe their social structure), while shallow soda lakes in the Rift Valley host millions of nesting flamingos.

This diversity extends beyond into the ocean – to shallow coral gardens where you can snorkel with turtles, ocean drop-offs for scuba enthusiasts and plankton-rich bays where whale sharks gather.

Tanzania’s breathtaking contrasts mark it out: you really can watch lions on a hunt in the morning and be floating over coral reefs in the afternoon.

Great wildlife safaris to Tanzania

Here are some of our ideas for great holidays focussed on wildlife in Tanzania.


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Marabou Stork Fly-in Safari

13 days • 5 locations
KILIMANJARO AIRPORT TO DAR ES SALAAM AIRPORT

Four luxurious camps enable exploration of Tanzania’s north and southern regions. With a range of land- and water-based activities available throughout, decidedly comfortable accommodation and applicable long-stay discounts, this adventurous safari is excellent value.

US$14,460 - US$22,100 per person

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Flufftail Guided Safari

10 days • 3 locations
KILIMANJARO AIRPORT TO KILIMANJARO AIRPORT

Stay in three unique camps as you safari across the Ngorongoro Crater and the iconic Serengeti Plains with your private guide and 4WD vehicle: a trip of comfort and autonomy, with excellent wildlife.

US$12,090 - US$17,650 per person

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Firefinch Drive-Fly Safari

9 days • 3 locations
KILIMANJARO AIRPORT TO KILIMANJARO AIRPORT

Enjoy a combination of privately guided and shared game drives during this good-value exploration of northern Tanzania. Explore game-dense regions from three comfortable bases which offer a variety of activities.

US$7,030 - US$10,410 per person

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Jackal Fly-in Safari

8 days • 2 locations
DAR ES SALAAM AIRPORT TO DAR ES SALAAM AIRPORT

Enjoy a range of activities on this luxury fly-in safari. Explore the remoter regions of Ruaha National Park and Nyerere National Park with phenomenal guides during stays at two impressively comfortable camps that remain perfectly in keeping with their surroundings.

US$6,970 - US$9,490 per person

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Chimpanzee Fly-in Safari

8 days • 3 locations
KILIMANJARO AIRPORT TO KILIMANJARO AIRPORT

Combining two of the remotest parks in Tanzania, this safari can deliver extraordinary wildlife viewing in Katavi, and East Africa's best chimp treks, on the shores of Lake Tanganyika.

US$9,130 - US$14,110 per person

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Tinkerbird Fly-in Safari

8 days • 4 locations
KILIMANJARO AIRPORT TO KILIMANJARO AIRPORT

Explore Tanzania’s famous northern circuit in Tarangire National Park, the Ngorongoro Conservation Area and the Serengeti National Park. Four smart sister camps offer a high level of care, first-class guiding and a wide range of activities.

US$9,320 - US$14,380 per person

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Secretary Bird Fly-in Safari

8 days • 4 locations
KILIMANJARO AIRPORT TO KILIMANJARO AIRPORT

Chosen for comfort and relaxation as much as for its range of activities, this safari makes for a leisurely trip featuring stunning accommodation and swift access to many of northern Tanzania’s best wildlife regions.

US$10,910 - US$15,950 per person

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Jasmine Beach Holiday

8 days • 1 locations
DAR ES SALAAM AIRPORT TO DAR ES SALAAM AIRPORT

Relax on Pemba Island’s Manta Resort, a laidback and remote beach retreat with superb views. Enjoy a range of land- and water-based activities, and spend a night in the unique underwater bedroom for a truly special experience.

US$2,530 - US$4,110 per person

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Topi Fly-in Safari

7 days • 2 locations
DAR ES SALAAM AIRPORT TO DAR ES SALAAM AIRPORT

Explore Nyerere National Park and Ruaha National Park from two luxurious, colonially styled camps. Chosen for their access to good game viewing and thrilling remoteness, these camps also offer a range of varied safari activities.

US$5,900 - US$6,540 per person

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Yellow Baboon Fly-In Safari

7 days • 2 locations
DAR ES SALAAM AIRPORT TO DAR ES SALAAM AIRPORT

Two authentic bushcamps offer access to Ruaha’s remote wildernesses through walking safaris, day and night 4WD drives and fly-camping. Explore in almost utter isolation, with superb guiding to heighten your immersion in nature.

US$7,160 - US$8,780 per person

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Tanzania's top camps for wildlife safaris

Click on the dots on the map to show the sightings from that lodges or camps for the species selected. It's based on 3698 reports by 437 groups of our our travellers since May 2018.


Best chances to see

Good chances to see

Some sightings

No sightings yet

Wildlife species in Tanzania

Average % sighting of success

Wildlife species in Tanzania

Average % sighting of success

Quick facts about Lion

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Scientific name:

Panthera leo

Habitat:

Savanna & woodland

IUCN status:

Vulnerable

Adult weight:

120–225kg

Lion

Quick facts about Leopard

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Scientific name:

Panthera pardus

Habitat:

Savanna, woodland, forest, mountains

IUCN status:

Vulnerable

Adult weight:

30–90kg

Leopard

Quick facts about Cheetah

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Scientific name:

Acinonyx jubatus

Habitat:

Grassland & woodland

IUCN status:

Vulnerable

Adult weight:

50–70kg

Cheetah

Quick facts about Wild dog

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Scientific name:

Lycaon pictus

Habitat:

Savannah & woodland

IUCN status:

Endangered

Adult weight:

20–36kg

Wild dog

Quick facts about Spotted Hyena

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Scientific name:

Crocuta crocuta

Habitat:

Semi-desert, forest, savannah

IUCN status:

Least Concern

Adult weight:

40–80kg

Spotted Hyena

Quick facts about Wildebeest

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Scientific name:

Connochaetes sp.

Habitat:

Open savannah & grasslands

IUCN status:

Least concern

Adult weight:

250–290kg

Wildebeest

Quick facts about Buffalo

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Scientific name:

Syncerus caffer

Habitat:

Floodplains, mixed bush & moist grasslands

IUCN status:

Near-threatened

Adult weight:

500–950kg

Buffalo

Quick facts about Chimpanzee

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Scientific name:

Pan troglodytes

Habitat:

Tropical forest & wooded savanna

IUCN status:

Endangered

Adult weight:

28–70kg

Chimpanzee

Quick facts about Eland

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Scientific name:

Taurotragus oryx

Habitat:

Open savanna & grasslands

IUCN status:

Least concern

Adult weight:

340–940kg

Eland

Quick facts about Elephant

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Scientific name:

Loxodonta africana

Habitat:

Woodland and savanna

IUCN status:

Vulnerable

Adult weight:

2,500–6,500kg

Elephant

Quick facts about Oryx

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Scientific name:

Oryx beisa and Oryx gazella

Habitat:

Arid savannah

IUCN status:

Endangered (O.b) /Least Concern (O.g)

Adult weight:

120–210kg (O.b) /180–240kg (O.g)

Oryx

Quick facts about Giraffe

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Scientific name:

Giraffa camelopardalis

Habitat:

Woodland savanna

IUCN status:

Vulnerable

Adult weight:

800–1,200kg

Giraffe

Quick facts about Hippo

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Scientific name:

Hippopotamus amphibius

Habitat:

Freshwater rivers & wetlands

IUCN status:

Vulnerable

Adult weight:

1,300–2,600kg

Hippo

Quick facts about Roan antelope

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Scientific name:

Hippotragus equinus

Habitat:

Savannah woodland

IUCN status:

Least Concern

Adult weight:

180–300kg

Roan antelope

Quick facts about Sable antelope

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Scientific name:

Hippotragus niger

Habitat:

Savannah woodland

IUCN status:

Least Concern

Adult weight:

220–235kg

Sable antelope

Quick facts about Sitatunga

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Scientific name:

Tragelaphus spekeii

Habitat:

Swamps and swamp forest

IUCN status:

Least Concern

Adult weight:

24–119kg

Sitatunga

Quick facts about Striped Hyena

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Scientific name:

Hyaena hyaena

Habitat:

Semi-desert, savannah

IUCN status:

Near Threatened

Adult weight:

22–55kg

Striped Hyena

Quick facts about Zebra

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Scientific name:

Equus quagga

Habitat:

Woodland and savannah

IUCN status:

Near Threatened

Adult weight:

155–322kg

Zebra

Quick facts about Aardvark

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Scientific name:

Orycteropus afer

Habitat:

Grassland & woodland

IUCN status:

Least Concern

Adult weight:

60–80kg

Aardvark

Quick facts about Pangolin

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Scientific name:

Smutsia temminkii

Habitat:

Savannah woodland

IUCN status:

Vulnerable

Adult weight:

5–27kg

Pangolin

Quick facts about Black Rhino

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Scientific name:

Diceros bicornis

Habitat:

Scrub & open woodland

IUCN status:

Critically Endangered

Adult weight:

800–1,400kg

Black Rhino

Tanzania's wildlife specialities

East Africa’s great migration is the biggest herd movement of large mammals on earth and Tanzania’s best known wildlife spectacle. Witnessing it can be the experience of a lifetime.


Extraordinary moments

As the megaherd passes through on its year-round cycle, the eyes of lions are always on the wildebeest: Tanzania is home to roughly half of Africa’s lions. You might watch a pride with cubs frolicking on a rocky kopje in the Serengeti, or witness the aftermath of a hunt in Ruaha National Park.

In Tanzania, these extraordinary wildlife moments are often combined with the most amazing scenic spectacles – the sheer-walled wildlife arena of the Ngorongoro Crater, for example, shared by black rhinos and dozens of other species, or the deep waters of Lake Tanganyika, echoing with the hoots of chimpanzees from the forests above.

And when you’re not looking far and wide, closer encounters are to be had on every walk or game drive – with birds, chameleons, fabulous butterflies and other insects, and mysterious creatures like the ant-lion that your guide will tell you all about.

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Wildlife

Other top destinations for wildlife

To understand more about the the wildlife in our other key destinations in Africa, click on the countries below.


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