Ruaha National Park

RUAHA NATIONAL PARK
Ruaha National Park

The game viewing starts the moment the plane touches down. A giraffe races beside the airstrip, all legs and neck, yet oddly elegant in its awkwardness. A line of zebras parades across the runway in the giraffe’s wake. In the distance, beneath a bulbous baobab tree, a few representatives of Ruaha’s 10,000 elephants – the largest population of any East African national park, form a protective huddle around their young. Second only to Katavi in its aura of untrammeled wilderness, but far more accessible, Ruaha protects a vast tract of the rugged, semi-arid bush country that characterizes central Tanzania. Its lifeblood is the Great Ruaha River, which courses along the eastern boundary in a flooded torrent during the height of the rains, but dwindling thereafter to a scattering of precious pools surrounded by a blinding sweep of sand and rock.
A fine network of game-viewing roads follows the Great Ruaha and its seasonal tributaries, where, during the dry season, impala, waterbuck and other antelopes risk their life for a sip of life-sustaining water. And the risk is considerable: not only from the prides of 20-plus lion that lord over the savannah, but also from the cheetahs that stalk the open grassland and the leopards that lurk in tangled riverine thickets. This impressive array of large predators is boosted by both striped and spotted hyena, as well as several conspicuous packs of the highly endangered African wild dog.
Ruaha’s unusually high diversity of antelope is a function of its location, which is transitional to the acacia savannah of East Africa and the miombo woodland belt of Southern Africa. Grant’s gazelle and lesser kudu occur here at the very south of their range, alongside the miombo-associated sable and roan antelope, and one of East AfricaÆs largest populations of greater kudu, the park emblem, distinguished by the male’s magnificent corkscrew horns.
A similar duality is noted in the checklist of 450 birds: the likes of crested barbet, an attractive yellow-and-black bird whose persistent trilling is a characteristic sound of the southern bush, occur in Ruaha alongside central Tanzanian endemics such as the yellow-collared lovebird and ashy starling.
About Ruaha National Park
Size: 10,300 sq km (3,980 sq miles), Tanzania’s 2nd biggest park. Location: Central Tanzania, 128km (80 miles) west of Iringa.
Getting there
Scheduled and/or charter flights from Dar es Salaam, Selous, Serengeti, Arusha, Iringa and Mbeya. Year-round road access through Iringa from Dar es Salaam (about 10 hours) via Mikumi or from Arusha via Dodoma.
What to do
Day walks or hiking safaris through untouched bush. Stone age ruins at Isimila, near Iringa, 120 km (75 miles) away, one of Africa’s most important historical sites.
Best time
For predators and large mammals, dry season (mid-May-December); bird-watching, lush scenery and wildflowers, wet season (January-April). The male greater kudu is most visible in June, the breeding season.
Accommodation
Riverside lodge; three dry season tented camps; self-catering bandas, two campsites.

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COVID-19 SAFETY AND SANITARY MEASURES NOTICE

Due to the recent Covid 19 worldwide pandemic, to keep our guests and indeed our staff safe, we have made serious steps to cub the impact of the pandemic that we would like to make you aware.  We believe that with careful planning and consideration by our staff and guests we can continue to provide the best hospitality services on safari.  For now, this may be our new norm and routines.

The measures taken include the following:
  1. All our staff have received full vaccination approved by WHO
  2. All our staff have received full training in health and safety-related to the COVID-19 virus and are required to be extra vigilant with their personal hygiene and daily routines.
  3. Health condition of driver-guides will be monitored for not less than a week before being assigned to take clients on safari.
  4. City transfer and safari vehicles will be regularly disinfected before picking up clients, especially the high-touch surfaces and seats.
  5. While our vehicles are already cleaned between transfers, they will now also be disinfected between each use.
  6. To keep social distancing, safari vehicles with 4-window seats will be redesigned to take only 2 people in the passenger cabin.
  7. Safari vehicles with 6-window seats will still be available for families/group of friends wishing to travel together in one vehicle.
  8. The driver-guide will be at hand to oversee guests observe the recommended physical distancing at park entry gates, picnic sites, and while checking in at accommodation facilities.
  9. Each guest will receive their own adventure kit, which includes a Wildlife Guides' Journal, mini fan, mask and hand sanitizers, as well as a pair of binoculars – all in cleaned before each new set of guests.
  10. Guests are encouraged to come with their own masks;
  11. The driver-guide will take necessary personal protection precautions at all times which include wearing of masks and using sanitizer regularly after each physical contacts.
  12. Please be assured that all our selection of partner properties we work with have their strict COVID-19 hygiene policy in place.
  13. Tanzania wasn't Really affected by Covid 19 to the same extent as most other countries, especially those in Europe and South America. However, we will keep the above measures in place for your peace of mind.

Our meet and greet teams at airports will still be there to accompany guests into transfer vehicles.

Thank you for your understanding and we look forward to welcoming you to Tanzania for your African safari holiday of a lifetime.

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