Lake Manyara beckons as our Tanzania photo safari begins.
The vehicle is stocked; our camera equipment ready; and the dusty road blows by. Lake Manyara is not too long a drive. It’s just 126 km from Arusha, about an hour and a half.
This particular road is paved and passes groups of houses here and there. Don’t let this lead you to false expectations. Dusty two lane washboard roads with no amenities in sight are the norm.
We breezed through regular police checkpoints along the route, undoubtedly due to our tourist status.
And that day, on my Tanznaia photo safari, I started my habit that I called my drive-bys.
There were so many interesting people and sites along the road. But our mission was wildlife photography, not local culture. So I set my camera on a high shutter speed, and hoped I’d capture some images of life along the way.
Lake Manyara National Park is a wildlife refuge in western Tanzania and the seventh largest lake in the country. The origin of its name is uncertain. The Maasai word emanyara refers to the enclosure around a home, which is mimicked in nature by a 600 meter rift escarpment that surrounds the Lake. Or perhaps the Mbugwe word manyero which refers to a place where animals drink water is the source of the name.
Baboons, flamingos and tree climbing lions in habit the area, as well as hundreds of other species. It’s a perfect introduction to a Tanzania photo safari.
More Reading on a Tanzania Photo Safari
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