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Ernest Hemingway described this National Park’s lake as “the loveliest I have seen in Africa. It’s not difficult to understand why: a narrow strip of land separates Lake Manyara’s shore from the Great Rift Valley’s escarpment, providing amazing views of and from it. Though comparatively small, the park is, in fact, very biodiverse: the 5 vegetation zones that radiate from the lake include groundwater forest, scrub on the Rift Valley wall, scattered acacia, open grasslands and marshlands along the lakeshore.
The 125 mi² (324 km²) national park’s soda lake is a haven for all forms of wildlife. The park contains more than 450 bird species are highlighted by the park’s famous migration of lesser and greater flamingoes. Lake Manyara is also considered one of the best havens for birds of prey, as the park features over 40 different species, including the crowned eagle. Because much of the wildlife is non-migratory, Lake Manyara can be visited any time of the year, though December to March and June to October are the best times. The park features large concentrations of elephant and buffalo, while waterbuck, Maasai giraffe, zebra, and blue monkeys are also commonly seen. Lake Manyara is perhaps best known for its tree-climbing lions. However, consider them to be an unexpected bonus, as they are rare to spot.
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