Attractions & Activities in Katavi National Park

Attractions & Activities in Katavi National Park: Established as a national park in 1974, Katavi national park in Tanzania offers visitors unspoiled hotspots for wildlife viewing during your safari. Explore over 4,471 square kilometers vast savannah grasslands and view a wide range of wildlife in the national park. 

Attractions & Activities in Katavi National Park

Attractions in Katavi National Park.

Some of the tourist attractions in Katavi national park include; 


The park has a variety of wildlife species which include large wildlife animal herds like; Cape Buffaloes, Zebras, Wildebeest, giraffes, elephants, cheetahs, wild dogs, hyenas, leopards, lions, and even crocodiles and hippopotami which can be found long the Katuma River.

The Katavi plains are famous for their stunning wildlife numbers which can be best viewed during the dry season. During this period, wildlife in the park converges in large numbers near the water pools of lakes and rivers such as Katavi, Katuma and Chada.

These plains and park in general are excellent places for bird-watching safaris, with a wide variety of bird species including the saddle-billed stork, yellow-billed stork, Herons, Plovers, and Black cuckoo-shrikes to mention but a few. Other interesting birding spots include the Chada Plains and the Katsunga plains.

katavi wildlife national wildlife

Lake Katavi: 

Lake Katavi is one of the best wildlife viewing spots in the national park. Visitors exploring the lake also have a chance to pay a visit to the renowned sacred tamarind tree, which is also known as ‘the tree of the spirit’ by the local Bende and Pimbwe communities. Lake Katavi is a seasonal lake which covers about 100 to150 kilometers depending on its water levels.

Katuma River: 

The Katuma River gives life to the national Park. The river plays a very important role in sustaining the wildlife living with in the national park. The river pours its waters into Lake Katavi and flows  through the Chada and Kavuu plains, which are home to a large number of wildlife species especially crocodiles and hippos. 

Katsunga Plains: 

The Katsunga Plains are rich with an extensive wildlife base. The plains are one of the best wildlife viewing destinations in Tanzania and in the East African Region. The plains feature scrub and savannah woodlands on its outskirts and a river that runs through it. The Katsunga plains encompass various seasonal pools and lakes, with over 600 hippos that grace its river banks. The area is also ideal for sighting unique wildlife species such as the roan and sable antelopes during a game drive.

Other areas of interest in Katavi national park include the Chada plains.

Activities in Katavi National Park in Tanzania.

There are quite a variety of activities that visitor in the national park can do such as;

Game Drives:

Game drives the national park are ideal for wildlife viewing in the park. Guided game drives in the national park are even a plus because with the help of a park guide, you will be able to sight particular wildlife species that you wish to see in the park. 

Game drives in Katavi national park are best conducted around the Katuma River, Lakes Katavi and Chada, and in floodplains such as Chada and Katsunga. The national park is believed to have an estimated 4,000 elephants, over 1,000 buffaloes and up to 200 hippos in Lake Katavi alone. Other wildlife species that can be sighted in the national park include; giraffes, zebras, impalas, and reedbucks to mention but a few. The national park offers visitors both day and night game drives, although it no longer hires out 4×4 wheel drive safari vehicles to tourists on a game drive. Morning game drives in the park start as early as 6:30am till 6:30pm, while the night game drive commence at 8pm till 11pm. The night game drives can take about 2 to 3 hours.


Katavi national park is home to more than 400 bird species making it one of the best destinations for bird watching safaris in Tanzania. Some species of birds commonly sighted in the park include; the African fishing eagle, Lilac breasted rollers, Paradise flycatchers and so many more.

Guided Nature Walks:

 Visitors can embark on nature walks in the park accompanied by trained, knowledgeable and experienced park rangers. Guided nature walks in the park are the best way for visitors to explore the park on foot. The park offers both short and long guided nature walks, with long walks taking visitors on the Chorangwa hiking trail. The trail is about 17 kilometers long and offers visitors over five hours of walking/hiking expeditions with stunning views of Chorangwa, Lukima and Ndido waterfalls. Short nature walks in the park are conducted along the Sitalike hiking trail, which is about 9 kilometers long and takes about 3 hours of hiking.

Visit to Historical Sites in the park.

The national park offers visitors tours to interesting historical sites that date back as far as the Stone Age period during the ninetieth century. Get an opportunity to learn more about the diverse cultures in Tanzania, its people and their history. Some of the interested historical sites frequented by visitors in Katavi national park include the Kabora-Iyonga slave trade route, and old towns.

Camping in Katavi National Park:

Katavi national park in Tanzania offers visitors both lazy and wilderness camping.  Camping in the park is ideal for visitors who love nature and it is a great activity for visitors looking to spend quality time with loved ones. Public camping sites in the national park are equipped with facilities like toilets, bathrooms, kitchen, and dining area.

Visitors looking to explore the beautiful scenery, landscape and wildlife in Katavi national park should book a trip through a trusted tour operator company like Explore Rwanda Tours. This will save you the tedious process of planning, organizing and coordinating a safari to the park since this will all be taken care of by the tour company.

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