Mahale Mountains National Park
|Mahale Mountains National Park|
|Visitors||1,074 (in 2012)|
|Governing body||Tanzania National Parks Authority|
Mahale Mountains National Park lies on the shores of Lake Tanganyika in Kigoma Region, Tanzania. Named after the Mahale Mountains range that is within its borders, the park has several unusual characteristics. First, it is one of only two protected areas for chimpanzees in the country. (The other is nearby Gombe Stream National Park made famous by the researcher Jane Goodall.) The chimpanzee population in Mahale Mountains National Park is the largest known and due to its size and remoteness, the chimpanzees flourish. It also the only place where chimpanzees and lions co-exist. Another unusual feature of the park is that it is one of the very few in Africa that must be experienced by foot. There are no roads or other infrastructure within the park boundaries, and the only way in and out of the park is via boat on the lake.
The Mahale mountains were traditionally inhabited by the Batongwe and Holoholo people, with populations in 1987 of 22,000 and 12,500 respectively. When the Mahale Mountains Wildlife Research Center was established in 1979 these people were expelled from the mountains to make way for the park, which opened in 1985. The people had been highly attuned to the natural environment, living with virtually no impact on the ecology.
Tourism in Mahale
Mbali Mbali Mahale Lodge is located inside the Mahale Mountains National Park. The lodge is equipped with 10 rooms and ensuite bathrooms to accommodate 20 guests at a time. The minimum participating age for chimpanzee trekking as determined by TANAPA is 12 years old. Chimp Viewing is limited to a maximum of 6 people per group for 1 hour at a time. The lodge can arrange all services from vehicles transfers from Kigoma, boat transfers from Mahale Airstrip on Lake Tanganyika, and guided trekking experiences in Mahale Mountains National Park.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Mahale.|
- Mahale Mountains National Park Official website (in English)
- Chimp Trekking Mahale Mountains National Park
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