Mkomazi National Park located on the northern safari circuit of Tanzania is tucked away under the slopes of the striking Usambara Mountains and the Pare Mountains, which gives a dramatic backdrop to the park. You can also view the snow-capped peaks of Kilimanjaro from the park.
It bordered by Kenya's Tsavo National Park to the north, during the wet season it forms a common ground for migratory herds of elephant, oryx and zebra. Mkomazi with Tsavo forms one of the largest and most important protected ecosystems on earth. Umba River forms the southeastern border of Mkomazi which is the only permanent and reliable water source.
The Mkomazi Game Reserve derived its name from an ethnic language of the Pare tribes meaning ‘where the water comes from’.
Mkomazi forms the southern tip of the Sahel zone. It is predominantly lined with dry savannah grasslands, nyika bush, giant baobab trees, scattered rocky outcrops, acacia trees with umbrella-like features are some the picturesque landscape of the park.
Mkomazi National Park is home varied flora and fauna. It contains 90% of all plant species found in Tanzania, with one third classified as unique in the whole world.
You can spot around 78 different species of mammals with various other animals in the park, offering one of the most thrilling game view experiences. Mkomazi National Park also boasts of 450 aviary species, making it one of the important stops for bird watchers.
However, the most famed inhabitants of the park are the endangered black rhinos and the African wild dogs. It is one of the few places in Tanzania where you can spot the black rhinos. The park’s semi-arid conditions make it a great place to spot the regal oryx in large herds. Along with these Mkomazi is also home to the African Big Five, leopards, cheetahs, hyenas, jackals, buffaloes, hartebeests, giraffes and warthogs.
Mkomazi National Park is open throughout the year for visitors, however, the dry season is the best time to visit the park.
Mkomazi is well-known for its Black Rihnos and African Wild dog. It is one of the few places in Tanzania where you can spot this endangered species of rhinos. You can easily spot large herds oryx and Gerenuk. You can also spot African Big Five, leopards, cheetahs, hyenas, jackals, buffaloes, hartebeests giraffes, zebras, wildebeests, dik-diks, Grant's gazelles, topi, eland and warthogs.
Apart from the large wildlife population, you can spot some rare species of aviary fauna and exotic plant species. Some birds that can be spotted at the park include doves, hornbills, weavers and guinea-fowl, martial eagle and violet woodhoopoe. Mkomazi is home to some of the 3,500 species of butterflies and a far greater variety of moth.
Mkomazi National Park located on the Kilimanjaro and Tanga region of Tanzania bordering Kenya. It is easily reachable by roadways and airways.
Mkomazi situated in the middle of Arusha and Moshi. It takes about 2-3 hours to drive away from Arusha and Moshi to reach Mkomazi.
Tourist travelling outside Tanzania can reach Kilimanjaro International Airport or Arusha Airport and then take a car ride to reach Mkomazi. You can also opt for chartered flight services from Arusha Airport and Kilimanjaro International Airport to Mkomazi airstrip.