The park is made up of three particular features; lush swamps of the Ngurdodo Crater, changing colours of Momela Lakes and rugged alpine peaks of Mt Meru. Habitat ranges from highland montane forest to lowland swamp.
The major peaks of Mt Kilimanjaro and Mt Meru surround the park, with Kili (as this grand mountain is often called),
ruling the distant horizon, and Mt Meru dominating the immediate vicinity. Mt Meru is a dormant volcano 14,990 feet (4,566m) high which last erupted 100 years ago.
It can be climbed in a couple of days and although you don’t have to be a mountaineer, you should be a keen hiker.
The climb takes you through startling patches of red hot pokers, zones of dripping moss with soft clover underfoot, rising to open heath spiked with giant lobelias several metres high. From Mt. Meru’s craggy summit, you look towards Mt Kilimanjaro looming tall and impressive with its glacial sides and snowy peak glinting in the sun.
ANIMALS AND BIRDS
Arusha National Park contains all the wildlife you have come to expect, (except for rhino and lions). The beautiful black and white colobus monkey is the park’s mascot and these graceful canopy dwellers swan-dive from branch to branch with their long tails billowing. The park also contains blue monkeys and lots of olive baboons. Other species in evidence are elephants, giraffe, hippo, leopard, hyena, zebra and a wide range antelopes.
The park is famous for its 400 species of birds, both migrant and resident.
The best time to climb Mt Meru is from June to February, avoiding November when it may rain. The clearest views of Mt Kilimanjaro are from December to February.
Rainy Season: Short rains are November and December when it gets hot and humid, and the long rains are from March to June.
Dry Season: typically it is dry in the cooler winter months of July to October, which is the best time to view game.
• Black and white colobus monkeys
• Views of Mt Meru and Mt Kilimanjaro
• Close proximity to Arusha town – gateway to northern safari circuit
The park covers an area about 53 miles² (137km²)