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At 8500 mi² (22,000 km²), Ruaha is Tanzania’s largest national park and also one of its best. But because of its remoteness, it is also one of Tanzania’s least visited. Ruaha is unique in that numerous plant, bird and mammal species from both Southern and Eastern Africa inhabit it simultaneously. Among the miombo woodland, scattered rocky hills and baobab trees, and riverbeds reside great populations of elephant, buffalo, greater and lesser kudu, hippo and crocodiles. Additionally, impala, eland, sable and roan antelope, Defassa waterbuck, ostrich, giraffe, lion, leopard, spotted and striped hyena, black-backed jackal, bat-eared fox, and African wild dog are commonly seen. A whopping 573 bird species have been recorded.
Ruaha is arguably one of the best parks in all of East Africa for guided walks, especially along the Great Ruaha River’s. During the dry season (June October), wildlife moves to and fro the river’s impressive gorges, deep pools and rapids. The black riverbed rocks photogenically contrast with the golden grasses and baobab trees lining the riverbank, providing an excellent, unique backdrop for photographs of wildlife.
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