The third largest park in Tanzania, Katavi National Park is also one of the country's more remote areas offering the chance to step back in time to a classic Africa of bygone days. Set in a section of the Great Rift Valley, the park is awash with natural beauty and a booming diversity of wildlife. The park is covered in brachystegia woodland and is popular with grazers such as roan antelopes and eland.
Boat trips along the Katuma River are one of the best ways to view wildlife in Katavi. During the wet season the river and seasonal lakes provide plenty of sustenance for the many animals in the park. The lakes Chada and Katavi are particularly popular with crocodile and hippo, with the area supporting the densest concentrations of these animals in all of Tanzania.
However, for the best wildlife viewing on a Katavi National Park safari visiting during the dry season is the best option. At this time of year the floodplains, river and lakes retract and the thin trickle that is left of the Katuma River is the only source of water for the thousands of animals that call the park home. Plains game along with thousands of elephant, converge on the area desperate for a drink. The main attraction though, is hippos who mass in tremendous numbers, sometimes with 200 wallowing together at once. Explore this secluded slice of Africa with thrilling walking safaris and game drives into the wilderness.
Our favourite itineraries, showcasing the best of Katavi National Park
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