Located at the heart of Tanzania, Ruaha is the ‘other park’ on the Southern circuit. Ruaha’s relative inaccessibility means it gets far fewer tourists than the Selous and less than any comparable park in the Northern circuit. The rewards of travelling this far are a wild landscape with baobab studded hills and rocky escarpments, with superb wildlife; Ruaha safaris have reliably exciting predator concentrations, it is home to 10% of the world’s lion population, contains one of four cheetah populations in East Africa and has the third largest wild dog population in the world. This is accompanied by huge elephant and buffalo herds and a cross-over of game from southern and Eastern Africa.
Tanzania’s largest National Park, Ruaha is a wilder and more remote park than its southern neighbour Selous Game Reserve and ultimately has the better wildlife, albeit without boating safaris. We love this park! Safaris here are some of the best you will find in the country and are superb value for money. It is a wild and authentic environment that remains relatively untouched.
One of Tanzania’s best-kept (and more affordable) secrets, Ruaha is a particularly good complement and contrast to the Selous, although it would be a great addition to any Tanzania safari. The lion viewing around the Mwagusi area is especially rewarding and general predator concentrations across the park are better than many of the other parks in the country. Overall it is an absolutely excellent safari destination.
Ruaha National Park – The Game
Ruaha has all the predators on show, with very good lion, leopard and cheetah as well as wild dog and hyena. Buffalo and elephant herds are found throughout the park but it is the park’s crazy combinations of species from east and southern Africa that excites wildlife and birdwatching enthusiasts.
It is not uncommon to see sable antelope, Grant’s gazelle, greater kudu and lesser kudu in the same area as east Africa’s common species such as zebra, defassa waterbuck, impala and giraffe. Put in the hours and travel across the park to find sable, roan, hartebeest and over 500 species of bird!