The Mahale Mountains National Park is one of the most unusual and remote locations that Tanzania has to offer.
Accessible only by boat or small aircraft, the 1 613km2 road-free park is situated along the Lake Tanganyika shoreline in western Tanzania, about 130km north of Mahale.
Famous for its up-close-and-personal encounters with habituated chimpanzees, the Mahale Mountains National Park boasts breathtaking yet rugged forested mountains, beautiful views of the 2 462m-high Mount Nkungwe in the distance – where elephant, giraffe and lion roam, as well as Africa’s ubiquitous warthog, roan and sable antelope and porcupine roam the slopes – and pristine white sand coves lapped by the crystal-clear waters of the vast lake abounding with at least 250 species of fish as well as a number of undescribed species.
With over 1 700 chimpanzee living in the park, you are practically guaranteed your once-in-a-lifetime one-hour viewing session with these phenomenal primates. This exceptional opportunity does require some hard work and determination by way of an expert guided expedition through the forests and dense vegetation, but it is worth every second. Tracking the chimpanzees is easier in the dry season (June to October) as they are more likely to come down from the trees, which is where they spend most of their time during the wet season (November to May).
You can also expect to spot troops of red colobus, red-tailed and blue monkeys, view hippo and crocodile in the lake, and marvel at the abundance of birdlife in the forests, such as guinea fowl, hornbills, kingfishers and more. This alluring paradise is one of the most interesting destinations in Africa.
Mahale Mountains National Park