Kitulo National Park in Tanzania is a beautiful botanical expanse locally called Bustani ya Mungu-Garden of God while others refer to it as the Serengeti of Flowers for its vast spectacle of wild flowers! The park covers and area of 412km² on Kitulo Plateau rising to rugged peaks of 2,600m for Kipengere and Poroto in southern Tanzania district of Mbeya
The park protects Kitulo Plateau’s unique floral/ orchid species and the Livingstone Forest, the Afroal pine grasslands and its wildlife.
Flora diversity in Kitulo
Kitulo National park was gazetted in 2005 for its floral beauty thus protected Tanzania’s orchids and other unique plant species with an aim of promoting Tanzania tourism. The rains in the period of December to April will bring the grasslands and orchid to life with blooming plants and brightly colored flowers.
More than 45 different orchid species such as aster daisies, lilies, giant lobelia, yellow-orange red hot poker, aloe, protea, geraniums and other different species are recorded as endemic to southern Tanzania. A walk in the park, off the Livingstone mountains and in the forest will relieve the weary and stress of an intense Tanzania safari experience.
Birds in Kitulo
Kitulo plateau is an important birding area for Tanzania safari. Birds such as Denham Bustar, Blue swallow, lesser kestrel, Njembe cisticola, Kipengere seedeater, Pallid harrier and many others are endemic to this plateau.
Other wildlife spectacles within this Tanzania safari park include mountain reedbuck, eland, lizards, frogs, chameleon, butterflies, spiders and other small insects. The summer time from September to November is good to spot the few animals that live in this park, a comfortable time for hiking to the mountain and plateau peaks.
The temporary park headquarter are at Matamba located some 60 km from Mbeya town. The main road from Dar leads through Chimala in the south on a dusty orad called Hamsini na Saba -78km to the park gate at matamba. Reaching the plateau from Matamba park gate will take you one hour when driving with a robust 4WD.
Accommodation within this new Tanzania Park is very limited but there are several options from Mbeya town’s hotel, guesthouses and camps near Kitulo Matamba gate of near the farm. There are two church hostels near Matema beach for cheap Tanzania safari accommodation.