Iringa is a beautiful looking small town in the Southern Highlands of Tanzania. In your travels across the country you can get to this place through the official Iringa bus. The best out of these is probably the JM luxury located at Dar es Salaam, but there are other modes as well, which you can pick out according to what suits your budget.
There are so many things to do in Iringa. The entire place is considered a gateway to the southern part of the country. If you are planning on visiting the highlands of Zambia and Malawi, or going the other way from Dar, this is a much better place to stop at owing to all the things to do in Iringa. If you don’t take a detour to this place it will simply pass you by as you sip the complementary soda on your tour bus. Iringa is a historically rich area, and you would need at least an entire day or two to explore the place. The place was also an epicenter of resistance to the German army during the war. Iringa is also the place where you will find the crown jewel of the country’s game parks, called Ruaha. Among other things to do in Iringa, visitors can avail the safari and guided tours here. The bus and taxi to the village is 15 km from the gate of the park that take you to the different options of accommodations this town has to offer. We are talking camps and lodges around the perimeter of the park which can arrange game drives to the park.
There are a lot of places to visit in Iringa. What you may see now is the New Iringa; inside this town there are still structures from the pre war era, like the original market, the military station, hospitals, and houses that remain standing. An interesting attraction in Iringa is the talking stone, a large rock that gives a great view from the top. To get to it, you have to walk through the well off suburb of Gangilonga, the spot that was used to serve as a lookout spot for the military. Other historical sites and things to do in Iringa include checking out the Isimila site, which goes back to the Acheulean era, which is around a million and half years old. You will find historical artifacts dug from the sites on display here. But this spot does not make up the house of relics for the town. The village and museum at Kalenga is where you can view the Mkwawa’s skull, the ruins of the fort, and so many other sites. Don’t forget to get souvenirs from the crafts shop while you are indulging in all things to do in Iringa.
Situated in Central Tanzania about 130 kilometers west of Iringa, Ruaha National Park is the country’s largest park spreading over an area of about 45,000 square kilometers. The park is home to several rare and endangered animal species, such as wild dogs, antelopes, and elephants. The park’s history dates back to 1910 when Germany started the Saba Game Reserve. Later on, the name was changed by the British in 1946 to the Rungwa Game Reserve. In 1974, the park was officially named as Ruaha National Park by the Tanzanian government. The name ‘Ruaha’ originates from the word ‘Ruvaha’ meaning ‘river’.
In addition to game viewing, tourism activities in Ruaha National Park include bird watching, bush meals, and walking safaris. Since Ruaha is a dry season park, the best time to visit the park is during May to December when water holes and rivers have dried up. The wet season (January to April) is suitable for bird watching. If you’re interested in exploring the magical scenery and wildlife of Ruaha National Park, you can get a flight from Dar es Salam or Arusha. Just make sure to set aside as much time as possible as Ruaha is not a place to be discovered on a quick trip.