List of Protected Areas in Tanzania

List of Protected Areas in Tanzania

An Overview of Tanzania’s Nature Reserves

The protected areas of Tanzania span from the shore to the grasslands to the peak of Africa’s tallest mountain of Kilimanjaro; about a third of the country’s territory is set aside for conservation purposes, such as in-game reserves, national parks, forest reserves, marine parks, and the like.

Below is a list of some of Tanzania’s many protected areas and brief descriptions of their primary ecosystems, animal populations, and plant communities. Species of particular interest (either because they are rare or widespread) have been put in bold.

National Parks

Extending over more than 99,306.5 square kilometers, twenty-two national parks comprise a significant portion of the country’s total protected land area (38,342.5 sq mi). This territory is under the Tanzania National Parks Authority (TANAPA) jurisdiction. Films showcasing African animals have contributed to the popularity of Arusha and the Serengeti.

S/N Flora/Fauna National Park Comments Habitat
01. sable antelope, eland, 

roan antelope, crocodile, hippopotamus, lion, elephant, zebra, leopard, waterfowl, buffalo, pelican, topi,

Katavi National Park
gazette: 1974; established:1951
area: 4,471 km²

400 bird species

floodplain, woodland, 


river, and

900 m

02 Cape buffalo, giraffe, elephant, dik-dik, zebra, hippopotamus, warthog, waterbuck, leopard, eland, klipspringer, spotted hyena, baboon, black-and-white colobus, blue monkey, greater flamingo, lesser flamingo, Maccoa duck, sacred ibis, turaco, Egyptian goose, Narina trogon, giant lobelia, red-hot poker,  Arusha National Park 

renamed: 1967

established: 1960
enlarged: 1973
area: 137 km²

400 bird species swamp,

dense forest, lakes, grassland, rocks, and

alpine highland, 

1,525 to 4,565 m

03 bushbuck, grey duiker, Abbott’s duiker, red forest duiker, eland, leopard, elephant, buffalo, blue monkey, small antelope, black-and-white colobus, Kilimanjaro tree hyrax, galago crassicaudatus, raven, Abbot’s starling, giant lobelia, moss, lichen, papilio sjoestedti, Kilimanjaro National Park 

gazetted: 1973
established: 1910s, 

world heritage: 1987
area: 753 km²

World’s tallest summit to climb without technically orientated tools, highest freestanding mountain. moorland,

montane forest, alpine desert
1,830 to 5,895 m

04 Peters’s twinspot, olive baboon, chimpanzee, red-tailed monkey, diademed monkey, red colobus, leopard, buffalo, bushbuck, waterbuck, palm-nut vulture, barbet, African fish eagle, Forbes’ plover,  Gombe Stream National Park


gazetted: 1968
area: 52 km²

Jane Goodall worked here gallery forest,

miombo woodland,
750–1,500 m

05 aloe, protea, red-hot poker, giant lobelia, pelargonium geranium, lilies, asters, Denham’s bustard, blue swallow, cisticola njombe, mountain marsh widow, Kipengere seedeater, eland, chameleon, frogs, lizards, mountain reedbuck, Kitulo National Park 

gazetted: 2002

area: 412.9 km²

45 varieties of terrestrial orchid, in the 350 species of vascular plants, many bird species montane grassland 

2,600 m

06 Cape buffalo, elephant, lion, impala, hippopotamus, giraffe, wildebeest, Ayres’s hawk-eagle, zebra, leopard, bushbuck, lesser flamingo, baboon, white pelican, greater flamingo, white-breasted cormorant, yellow-billed stork, palm-nut vulture, cobra, and Nile monitor,  Lake Manyara National Park 

established:1957; 1960

area: 325 km²
enlarged: 2009

area: 644 km²

tree-climbing lions, largest biomass density worldwide;  forest, 


lake (2/3),
960 to 1,478m

07 red-legged sun squirrel, parrots, red colobus, blue monkey, red-tailed monkey, brush-tailed porcupine, giant squirrel, bushy-tailed mongoose, Sharpe’s grysbok, Angolan black-and-white colobus, red-collared widowbird, crowned eagle, speckled mousebird, bee-eater, crested guineafowl, roller, Ross’ turaco, red-winged starling, white-browed robin-chat, violet-backed starling, chimpanzee, Mahale Mountains National Park 


14 June 1985 

area: 1,613 km²

adapted savanna and forest species, 

The lake’s 90% of 193 fish species are endemic

montane rainforest,

miombo forest, (lowland) Kasoge forest,
773 to 2,460m

08 Waterbirds, greater kudu, vervet monkey, serval, yellow baboon, sable antelope, zebra, lion, hippopotamus, wildebeest, buffalo, impala, giraffe, lilac-breasted roller, elephant, yellow-throated longclaw, eland, bateleur eagle, Mikumi National Park


area: 3,230 km²

extended: 1975


400 bird species


floodplain, wooded savanna, miombo 

covered hills
550 to 1,257m

09 Mount Meru 

Arusha National Park

Partly – Arusha National Park
10 African wild dog, oryx, black rhinoceros, kudu,  and big mammals  Mkomazi National Park

established in 2006
Occupying an area: 3,254 km²

Populous for black rhinoceros and African wild dog Semi-Arid Savanna
11 Hyena, elephant, African wild dog, cheetah, hippopotamus, giraffe, buffalo, white rhinoceros, crocodile, wildebeest,  Nyerere National Park

gazetted: 2019

area: 30,893 km²

Tanzania’s largest national park; 

previously a northern part of Selous Game Reserve



miombo woodland, grassland, riverine 

80 to 1,300m

12 yellow-collared lovebird,

hornbill, elephant, kingfisher, white stork, sunbird, African wild dog, greater kudu, sable antelope, crested barbet, 

Ruaha National Park

area: 20,226 km²


400 bird species, and high diversity 

of antelopes


Miombo woodland,

750 to 1,830m

13 Nile perch, spoonbills, African fish eagle, vervet monkey, hippopotamus, genet, bushbuck, mongoose, sitatunga, malachite kingfisher, grey parrot, paradise flycatcher, storks, herons, yellow-spotted otter, Rubondo Island National Park

Established in the year 1977

Covering an area: 240 km²

lakeside papyrus beds,

humid forest, open grassland, 

1,134 to 1,381 m

14 buffalo, giraffe, warthog, reedbuck, waterbuck, hartebeest, red forest duiker, wildebeest, eland, greater kudu, sable antelope, vervet monkey, yellow baboon, elephant, leopard, lion, spotted hyena, hippopotamus, black-backed jackal, crocodile, lesser, mangrove kingfisher, green turtle, flamingo, Saadani National Park

Gazetted: 2002

Area: 1,062 km²

It’s a sanctuary bordering the sea river, coast, savanna, forest,
15 Saanane Island National Park

Gazetted: 2013

Area: 2.18 km²

In the city
16 Black eagle, zebra, wildebeest, lion, elephant, leopard, rhinoceros, cheetah, buffalo, gazelle, spotted hyena, giraffe, jackal, serval, aardwolf, agama lizard, secretary bird, rock hyrax, ostrich, Serengeti National Park


World Heritage: 1981
Occupied area: 14,763 km²

Tanzania’s most toured park; populous for massive migration of ungulates; 

Over 500 bird species

savanna, grassland plains, 


riverine forest,

920 to1,850m

17 Red-and-yellow barbet, gerenuk, oryx, elephant, lesser kudu, baobab, African wild dog, ground hornbill, lion kori bustard, ostrich, rufous-tailed weaver, yellow-collared lovebird, ashy starling, dwarf mongoose, Tarangire National Park


Occupied area: 2,850 km²

Having the most significant concentration of wildlife, only behind Serengeti, and a varieties 550 bird species; savanna;


1,000 to 1,500m

18 Udzungwa partridge, sanje crested mangabey, rungwecerbus kipunji, Iringa red colobus, matundu dwarf galago, amphibians and reptiles, mountain dwarf galago, rufous-winged sunbird, hyrax, squirrel, including big mammals, Udzungwa Mountains National Park

Covering an area of 1,990 km²

2,500 plant species; 

Over 400 bird species, endemics constitute (25% of plant species, 5 primates); 

2nd-largest biodiversity in Africa

2,500 plant species; 

Above 400 bird species, 25% of plant species, 5 primates are endemics; second-largest biodiversity in Africa

Other Tanzania Protected Areas and Game Reserves

The Ngorongoro Conservation
The Ngorongoro Conservation
S/N Flora/Fauna National Park Comments Habitat
01 zebra, puku, topi, elephant, buffalo, Uwanda Game 


Established in 1971
Occupying an area of 5,000 km²


floodplain, woodland


02 papilio sjoestedti, zebra, wildebeest, gazelle, lion, black rhinoceros, hartebeest, hippopotamus, spotted hyena, buffalo, mountain reedbuck, elephant, leopard, ostrich, serval, kori bustard, The Ngorongoro Conservation

world heritage: 1979 

established: 1959

area: 8,288 km²

A lot of paleontological and archeological sites: 

Olduvai Gorge, Lake Ndutu, Laetoli,

lakes, grassland, swamp, heath, woodland, 

dense mountain forest 

1,500 to 3,648 m

03 elephant, African wild dog, cheetah, hippopotamus, giraffe, buffalo, white rhinoceros, crocodile, Selous Game Reserve was established in1922
A world heritage in 1982

Covering an area of 44,800 km²

open wooded

miombo woodland, 

riverine swamps, and grassland, 

80 to 1,300m

The largest game reserve in Africa;

With about 350 bird species

Reserves & Marine Parks

S/N Flora/Fauna National Park Comments Habitat
01 Terrapin, whale, coral, dolphin, hippopotamus, crocodile,  Ruvumba’s Mnazi Bay; 

An Estuary Marine Park established on 1st July 2000,
Occupying an area of 650 km²

Having above 400 fish species sand dunes, mangroves, river,

sea, and 

coastal forest,

02 mongoose, gold-striped fusilier, queen coris, cigar wrasse, goldbar wrasse, barracuda, grouper, rainbow runner, blue-spotted ribbontail ray, black-spotted ribbontail ray, eagle ray, yellowfin tuna, manta ray, giant trevally, bonito, mackerel, cobia, green turtle, reef shark, hawksbill turtle, duiker, Comoros lesser flying fox, bush pig, elephant shrew, dugong, Mafia Island Marine Park

Established on 1st July, 1995

Covering an area of 882 km²

coastal forest, 

sea grass beds, coral reefs, inter-tidal flats, mangroves, 

Forestry’s Nature Reserves

NFRs are designated the highest level of protection under the National Forest Act of Tanzania. The Tanzania Forest Services (TFS) Agency is responsible for the upkeep of all state-owned NFRs. Forest nature reserves typically allow for non-commercial scientific study, environmental education, and ecotourism.

  • Uzungwa Scarp Nature Forest Reserve
  • Chome Nature Forest Reserve
  • Amani Nature Forest Reserve
  • Kipo Forest Reserve
  • Kilombero Nature Forest Reserve
  • Magamba Nature Forest Reserve
  • Mkingu Nature Forest Reserve
  • Mount Hanang Nature Forest Reserve
  • Minziro Nature Forest Reserve
  • Mount Rungwe Nature Forest Reserve
  • Rondo Nature Forest Reserve
  • Nilo Nature Forest Reserve
  • Uluguru Nature Forest Reserve

Controlled Game Areas

  • Handeni Game Controlled Area
  • Masailand Game Controlled Area
  • Kalimawe Game Controlled Area
  • Kitwai Game Controlled Area
  • Endulen Game Controlled Area

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