Tarangire National Park

Tarangire National Park

Tarangire National Park is scenic region with the Tarangire River at its heart. This provides a year-round water source which is especially valuable in the dry season (July to October) when it attracts wildlife from a wide radius. During these months you can see large populations of game and vast herds of elephants.

That having been said, Tarangire has many resident game so is a good safari destination all year. The terrain is varied, too, with floodplains, grasslands, hills and giant baobab trees. You’ll be reaching for your camera time and time again. And it’s just a 2-hour drive from Arusha, ideal if you have limited time..

Things to do in Tarangire

  • Game drives – perennially popular, the 4×4 game drive remains one of the best ways to observe wildlife in the vast expanse of Tarangire. All camps and lodges offer this option, and you can expect to see zebra, giraffe, impala and buffalo as well as elephant, and predators such as lion and leopard.
  • Meet the locals – at many camps you have the chance to accompany a guide to a village to spend time with the local people. There are different tribal groups in the region including the Maasai, and it’s fascinating to learn how they have adapted to life in this environment.
  • Guided walks – although usually not permitted within a national park these are possible from certain Tarangire properties such as Oliver’s Camp and Swala Camp, as well as camps just outside the park. Walking with a specialist guide is a great opportunity to see the bush at close quarters and is an immersive experience.
  • Elephant viewing – Tarangire is justifiably known for its elephants. During the dry season herds up to 300 strong are common, gathering by the river alongside the other game. Even outside these months there are resident herds to be seen, and they are sure to be among the stars on your Tarangire safari.
  • Watch that tree! – Like nearby Manyara, lions in Tarangire are known to climb trees. The reason for this behaviour may be to survey their surroundings, escape flies or try to catch a breeze. Whatever their motives, lions in trees make for good photos. And it’s not just lions, leopards and pythons get in on the act, too, so watching the trees may prove interesting.
  • Bush meals and sundowners – dining out in the wilderness is all part of a safari in Tarangire. This is a great way to soak up the atmosphere and enjoy the scenery, while savouring tasty food. Sundowners, too, are a staple of the safari tradition, whether by the camp fire or in a special location selected by your guide.

When to visit Tarangire

The dry season, roughly July to October, is when game is most plentiful, but wildlife can be seen all year and most camps and lodges are open year-round. Being less famous than the Serengeti, Manyara and Ngorongoro Crater, Tarangire has the added benefit of fewer vehicles, even in the dry season.

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  • This is classed as the dry season and is also peak season
  • Vegetation is sparse making wildlife easier to spot
  • Animals congregate at waterholes and rivers
  • The sun shines every day
  • This is peak season so the park will be busy
  • Peak season usually means higher prices
  • Concentrations of animals at the beginning and end of season can vary depending on the rains
  • Early mornings and evenings can be cold. Wearing layers is the key


  • Low season usually means lower rates for accommodation
  • You will have more choice of accommodation when it is less busy
  • Many migratory birds will be in the park at this time
  • Vegetation is lush and green, perfect for photography
  • Wildlife viewing is not as good, with plenty of water available, the wildlife disperses
  • March to May sees the peak of the rainy season and tsetse fly can be an issue

Tarangire holidays

Below you will find some Tarangire itineraries that we’ve put together as recommended suggestions. You might find one of these is perfect for your needs as we’ve put a lot of thought into including some wonderful experiences in each of these safaris, and we really love what they offer. However, if none of these quite fit the bill for you, do call us and let us know what you’d like. We ready to help you plan your perfect Tanzania safari holiday..

Luxury Serengeti & Crater Safari

Prices from £5,320 pp for 9 days
(exc. intl flights)

This safari is not about watching the pennies, it’s about some of the best quality game-viewing and a few of our absolute favourite places to stay…

Elephants, Birds & Big Cats

Prices from £3,035 pp for 8 days
(exc. intl flights)

From Arusha to the Serengeti, via Tarangire, Lake Manyara and the Ngorongoro Crater, this is an unforgettable Tanzanian safari…

Tanzania Family Safari & Beach

Prices from £3,200 pp for 10 days
(exc. intl flights)

Animals and beaches are the two main ingredients of this holiday, both holding an appeal that crosses generations.

Simba Safari

Prices from £2,495 pp for 8 days
(exc. intl flights)

An exciting safari in the famous northern circuit offering excellent value money and thrills a-plenty.

Chimps, Serengeti and Spice

Prices from £6,495 pp for 11 days
(exc. intl flights)

Experience two days of chimp trekking, Serengeti safari and four wonderfully relaxing nights in Zanzibar….

Mara, Crater & Zanzibar

Prices from £POA pp for 13 days
(exc. intl flights)

Spectacular wildlife viewing in a private Kenyan conservancy bordering the Masai Mara, in the Masai Mara reserve itself and in Tanzania’s Tarangire and Ngorongoro.

Where to stay in Tarangire

Tarangire has a host of different types and levels of accommodation, so there is something to suit all tastes and budgets. There are lots of options in town but if you prefer, you could opt to stay on one of the coffee plantations about 30 minutes away.