MAHALE NATIONAL PARK
Mahale is both, one of the most remote and most beautiful national parks in Tanzania. Mahale National Park encompasses a large mountainous forest rising from the white sandy shores of Lake Tanganyika, which is where you will find our favourite lodges. It is most famous for its chimp tracking and is arguably the best place in the world to see man's closest relative. The park was originally established to protect the large population of over 1000 chimpanzees and other primates. Over the decades since its establishment, researches have managed to habituate one group of 50+ chimpanzees, meaning that you are able to get very closer to the chimps for extended periods of time.
The hike to reach the Mahale chimpanzees can vary from a short stroll of 20 minutes to a more strenuous hike lasting up to three hours. The easiest time to see the chimps is during the dry season (August to October) as the paths are less slippery and the chimps tend to stay closer to the shores of Lake Tanganyika.
Getting to Mahale National Park is expensive, due to the distance from Tanzania's main airports and the fact that only very few people travel on this route. The flights takes 4-5 hours from Arusha or Dar es Salaam and only go twice a week. On the positive side, this is the reason why Mahale has remained so untouched, which makes it a real off the beaten track adventure experience.