Mikumi was made a National Park in 1964 and is 3,230 sq. km (1,250 sq. miles) in size. This enormous area links the Julius Nyerere National Park (formerly Selous) with the forested abundance of the eastern arc mountains, and so is an important part of a huge ecosystem of rivers, flood plains, forests, and woodlands.
The northern plains that surround the Mkata River are readily accessible and are the best place to go for the wildlife. A good network of tracks means that a wide variety of wildlife including buffalo, cape hunting dog, cheetah, and lion are approachable and can be enjoyed at close quarters.
Mikumi abounds with big game, including buffalo, elephant, the big cats, hippo, crocodile, giraffe, zebra, eland as well as smaller species. Some of the more unusual species such as sable antelope, Lichtenstein’s hartebeest, and greater kudu inhabit the wooded areas surrounding the Mkata plains and are more of a challenge to find. But they’re there!
The Mikumi National Park airstrip is at Kikoboga and scheduled flights operate daily from all the main centers in Tanzania, but often routing via Dar es Salaam.
An approximate 4-hour drive, (283 km) on a well-surfaced road connects Mikumi to Dar es Salaam via Morogoro. This road also connects to Udzungwa, Iringa, and Ruaha. Its proximity to Dar es Salaam makes Mikumi a popular option for weekend visitors from the city, or for business visitors who don’t have to spend a long time on an extended safari itinerary.
Things to do
- Game drives
- Night game driving
- Guided walks
When to go
Mikumi’s dry season lasts between May and November, but despite wet spells during the remaining months, the countryside is green and beautiful and a well-established network of roads and tracks ensures enjoyable visits all year round.
Mikumi National Park has bandas where visitors can stay as well as a public and special campsite which are booked through the Headquarters in Arusha. There are also well-appointed lodges and permanent tented camps in the Park run by private companies.
Outside the Park, there are guest houses in Mikumi town on the park border.
On a safari from Dar es Salaam, Mikumi is en route to Udzungwa National Park and in the dry season a gravel road links up with Nyerere National Park (formerly the Selous) from where one can fly back to Dar es Salaam. From Mikumi one can also carry on through to Iringa and