The Mkungunero Game Reserve is a natural corridor for wildlife migrating from Tarangire National Park into neighbouring reserves. The terrain of the Reserve is chiefly open grassland and swamp, acacia woodlands and sparse pockets of bushy thickets.
The landscape lends itself to being the perfect habitat for game such as elephant, buffalo, zebra, wildebeest and buffalo. Mkungunero is a relatively unknown reserve that forms part of the Tarangire ecosystem, making it attractive to visitors seeking an off-the-grid safari destination. Visitors are encouraged to look out for the famous Swamp lions in the area.
Safari-goers fly into Dar es Salaam and catch a connecting flight to Arusha or any of the airports close to the more touristy region of Tarangire National Park. Mkungunero Game Reserve borders the park in the southern region, but it’s not as accessible as Tarangire.
Mkungunero Game Reserve echos the sightings in the neighbouring Tarangire National Park. The reserve is home to plenty of dry-country antelope such as wildebeest, oryx, long-necked gerenuk, impala and others. Because of the abundant acacia trees, there are also journeys of giraffe in the reserve.
The marshy areas showcase a different type of habitat that’s largely dominated by sightings of wild dogs, lions, buffalo and elephants. In the woodland areas, it’s not uncommon to spot troupes of baboons and vervet monkeys.
A recorded 500 species of bird occur in the reserve. Species include hornbills, woodpeckers, weavers, tawny eagle and a variety of starlings.
June to October is the best time to visit the park as this is the dry season, which means wildlife congregate at available waterholes. During the dry season, it’s easier to spot game because of the sparse vegetation. This is also when the elephant migration is underway.
Most of the safari activities in Mkungunero focus on photographic tours, walking safaris and pre-arranged game drives. The neighbouring Tarangire is where the majority of the tourist activities take place. A safari to both reserves is the best option for an all-round untamed wilderness experience.
Guided walking safaris are the best way to truly take in the splendours of the Tarangire's ecosystem. There are only a few outfitters who conduct walking safaris in specific areas, so it’s always best to book in advance.
The main reason for visiting this reserve is to observe elephants migrating from neighbouring reserves.
There is no accommodation in Mkungunero Game Reserve, and visitors would need to check before arrival if camping facilities are available. Safari-goers tend to stay in neighbouring Tarangire National Park and enjoy safari experiences combining the best of both reserves.