Udzugwa Highlands National Park is a wildlife refuge in central Tanzania, between the Iringa and Morogoro areas of the eastern arc mountains, 60 kilometers south of Mikumi National Park on the Mikumi Ifakara road. The national park was established in 1992 by Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands, the founder of the World Wide Fund, and covers a total area of 1,990 square kilometers, with vegetation types such as Miombo woodland, grassland, tropical rainforest, and mountain forest serving as habitats for abundant wildlife such as elephants, bushbucks, palm civets, leopards, duikers, Miombo genets, hyenas, and over 400 bird species.
Wasungwa, a Kihehe term that meaning “those who dwell on the edges of the mountains,” inspired the creation of Udzugwa Mountains National Park.
Attractions at the Udzungwa Mountains
Wildlife, the national park is renowned as a wildlife sanctuary because it is home to a diverse range of animals, including elephants, hunting dogs, leopards, duikers, buffaloes, bushbucks, and six primate species, including the unique Iringa red colobus and Sanje mangabey.
Birds, the Udzugwa Mountains national park is home to approximately 400 bird species, including eastern arc endemics and forest bird species, making it one of Tanzania’s best birding destinations. Green-headed oriole, marabou stork, crowned eagle, woodland kingfisher, ruppells vultures, and silvery checkered hornbill are among the bird species that may be seen.
Udzungwa Mountains National Park Safaris
Udzungwa Mountains National Park is one of Tanzania’s best bird-watching places, with over 400 kinds of birds including forest, aquatic, and unique species. Bird watching in the park can be done early in the morning or late in the evening with an experienced bird guide who will assist you in spotting various bird species such as the rufous winged sunbird, African marabou, crowned eagle, kilombero weaver, white-tailed cisticola, uluguru violet backed sunbird, retzs helmet shrike, black and white shrike flycatcher, Livingstone’s flycatcher, Livingstone’s tura
Because there are no roads in the Udzungwa Mountains National Park, hiking is one of the most popular pastimes. Hiking safaris in the park begin with a briefing at the park headquarters, following which you will be assigned an armed park ranger who will safeguard you from harm and explain you how to use the different routes. There are a variety of hiking trails in the park, ranging from short 20-minute strolls to 5-day hikes to Lumemo trail, the most popular of which is the Sonje waterfalls trail, which takes about 4 hours and allows you to see a stunning 170-meter waterfall, see monkeys, and swim in waterfall plunge pools.