The Meserani Snake Park is located in Arusha, a city situated in northern Tanzania. The Park was founded in 1993, when B.J. Lynn and Wade Bale (accompanied by their good friend, Deon Naude) settled into Meserani after having moved up from South Africa. Wade and Deon had been reptile enthusiasts for a long time, and thus together decided to construct a reptile park on one of the busiest tourist routes in the country.
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Along with the Bales, Deon purchased ten acres of land in Meserani, 25 kilometres away from Arusha. At the time of his purchase, the entire region was desolate; there was not one piece of greenery to be spotted, but the area did have access to running water. With this crucial element, the two friends went on to bring the otherwise dead and lifeless ten acres to life. They worked hard on turning the area into lush grassland that flourishes with an abundance of different trees, plants, shrubs and other vegetation.
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At present, the Meserani Snake Park provides employment for about fifty of the area’s local population. The Park supports the community in a variety of different ways, supplying a free medical clinic and a home for orphaned children. The Park is also involved in an array of other projects conducted around the community, including constructing new classrooms at a local school, and overseeing the running of an adult education centre.
The Meserani Snake Park is most certainly one of Arusha’s treasures. It is a fantastic source of enjoyment, entertainment and relaxation for both local and foreign travellers. Located on the route to the Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater, the Snake Park boasts a variety of activities, such as guided educational tours during which you will learn about some of the world’s most dangerous snakes – from the Black and Green Mamba, Egyptian Cobra, Puff Adders. There are around 48 types of different snakes to spot whilst visiting this area. One of the more thrilling things to do in the Park is to engage with the creatures when choosing to hold a live snake.
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At 3pm, the crocodile’s feeding time is displayed for the public. Here, you also have the incredible opportunity to touch and hold baby crocodiles.
In the Park, there are also exquisite tours of the Masai Cultural Museum that are offered by personal Masai guides. These guides will also help you in climbing aboard a camel’s back and embarking on a trip to the local village. During your stay, be sure to pay a visit to the Free Education Centre, where the local Masai have the chance to learn skills such as reading and writing, and the opportunity to further their education in various ways.
Other reptiles to view include Monitor Lizards, Tortoises, Crocodiles and more than 60 bird species that have been abandoned or wounded, and would not have lived had they been released back into the wild. Meserani Snake Park is also a fantastic place to learn about some of the continent’s less famous, but most effective predators.
Whether visiting the Park via an overland truck or just as a stopover on your way through to the Serengeti or Ngorongoro Crater, the Meserani Camp Site is a paradise in the middle of Masai Land, Tanzania. It is fully equipped, with hot showers, clean bathrooms and the soothing sounds of nature.