Enjoy the beach or steamy jungle, whales or lions, water or land at the beautiful Saadani National Park located on Tanzania’s Indian Ocean coast. As one of the newest parks, it represents the combination of the former Saadani game reserve, the former Mkwaja ranch area, the Wami River as well as the Zaraninge Forest. Portions of the park were once managed by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), which passed the park back to Tanzania well preserved for its botanical diversity and as one of the last coastal rain forests in Tanzania. As the only national park bordering the sea, you’re sure to enjoy this preserved sanctuary.
Along the coast, beaches expand up top 100 meters at low tide, exposing an array of sea life. Saadani’s beaches are home to sea turtles that still come to lay eggs, including the green turtle which is the largest of the hard-shelled sea turtles. The turtles are threatened by commercial fishing and pollution so the marine extension of the park covers the Mafui sandbanks. The banks include colorful coral reefs that are important breeding sites for many fish species.
The neighboring forest extends nearly 1100 km and provides cover to a wide degree of biodiversity. Elephants often hide during the day in woody parts of the park, along with Leopards that can be found in dense bushes and trees. Seldom seen, these animals are mainly nocturnal. Daytime animals often live in woody areas and can include the greater kudu and smaller antelopes such as suni and duiker. Look up and you may see that the tree tops are inhabited by leaf eating Colubus monkeys, strictly nocturnal bush babies as well as many fruit eating bird species, insects and butterflies.
The park also encompasses savanna and river systems which you are sure to love.
- Established in 2005.
- 11,000 Sq. Km (424 Sq. Miles).
- Most of the land is low level.
- Borders the Indian Ocean.
- Dry season from late May to October/November; Wet season from October/November to May.