Arusha National Park
Arusha National Park is one Tanzania’s smallest (552 sq km) but most beautiful and topographically varied northern circuit parks. It’s dominated by Mt Meru, an almost perfect cone with a spectacular crater. Also notable is Ngurdoto Crater (often dubbed Little Ngorongoro) with its swamp-filled floor. Wildlife is present, but for the most part it’s a sideshow to the scenery and the trekking and climbing possibilities.
Climbing Mt Meru Trekking the Momella Route to the summit of Mt Meru is one of the country’s most underrated activities..
Just north of Ngongongare gate is Serengeti Ndogo (Little Serengeti), a small patch of open grassland that almost always has zebras and other plains animals. Here the road divides: Outer Rd, to the west, has great Meru views, but the eastern Park Rd is the better route for wildlife. Both are good all-year roads passable in 2WD cars, as are most other tracks through the park. Park Rd leads past the road up Ngurdoto Crater and then to Momella Lakes, both beautiful attractions as well as good wildlife-spotting areas. The park’s altitude, which varies from 1400m to more than 4500m, has a variety of vegetation zones but most of the park is forested and the dense vegetation reduces visibility. Animal life is also far less abundant than in other northern Tanzanian parks.
Nevertheless you can be fairly certain sighting of zebras, giraffes, waterbucks, bush-bucks, klipspringers, hippos, dik-diks, buffaloes, red duikers and black-and-white colobus (most often sighted near the Ngurdoto Museum). There are no lions or rhinos due to poaching