Karatu is a bustling town that doubles as the gateway to the Ngorongoro highlands. The place may look like uninteresting from afar but it is the restless explorer’s paradise once you get there. The wide streets are crowded with people and have a lively vibe about them. Along these streets you will find souvenir sellers amongst shacks that sell everything from spices to oxcarts.
There are plenty of things to do in Karatu for every kind of traveler. The rolling hills that you see in the distance make up the Ngorongoro highlands. The mountainsides here are cloaked in thick shrubbery, and the landscape is a contrast of these thick forests along with cultivated areas that grow coffee mainly. Farming is the common occupation of the village dwellers who live here. But don’t let this mislead you; there are people whose craft is to simply offer tourists like you different things to do in Karatu. Strolling away from the beaten path you will find waterfalls that tumble on top of rocks, sunbirds, and the most interesting are the buffalos and elephants that live here. You might even stumble across ancient paths through the plantation that lead to rivers with old caves that harbor minerals and salt. If you are travelling to east Africa it is important that you also see Karatu. Things to do in Karatu include enjoying a walk by the countryside, exploring the market place while you collect trinkets that serve as souvenirs, and strolling along the coffee farms. These are only a few things to do in Karatu.
Visitors can avail the guided tours that are offered in Karatu. This is where you can learn about the way of living of the locals as well, for instance their brick making industry. There is also a local brewery that is open to the general public. There are many places to visit in Karatu. If you want more insight into the area, you can always take up the cultural tours. These also offer biking and hiking activities as you are required to travel out to the waterfalls, and animal caves. If you get fed up of the daily hiking and walking you can also take a day off and simply enjoy the peaceful Tanzania in the rural side of Karatu. Whatever you may feel like there are always things to do in Karatu for everyone. Even though Tanzanian coffee is not as popular as the one from Kenya or Ethiopia, what most people don’t know is that the largest export of Tanzania is worth having a go at, if you are around one of the farms. Your local lodge will readily offer the brew if you request it, so you don’t have to venture for the day and relax.
Located at about 90 minutes drive from Arusha, Lake Manyara National Park is a Tanzanian national park with the largest concentration of baboons in the world. The park which covers an area of 330 square kilometers was officially given the status of a national park by the Tanzanian government in 1960. Due to its variety of habitats, the park is home to a great variety of animal and bird species. Lake Manyara National Park is famous for its significant concentration of elephants, tree-climbing lions, buffaloes, hippopotamuses, waterbucks, giraffes, zebra and impalas. Besides these animals, the game in Lake Manyara includes flamingoes, ducks, geese, ibis, and egrets. The park offers plenty of activities and adventure for the whole family. On your visit to Lake Manyara National Park, you can enjoy day and night game drives, bicycling, canoeing, guided walks, and bird watching. A visit to the park during November to June is perfect for bird watching and canoeing. On the other hand, if you’re interested in game watching, you should consider visiting the park in dry season (July to October). The park offers luxury tree-style accommodation for the visitors. In addition to this, several guesthouses are also located in the close proximity of Lake Manayara. The park can be accessed by road or via flight from Arusha.