Contrasting with the intimacy of the forest is the grassy floodplain and its expansive views eastward, across the alkaline lake, to the jagged blue volcanic peaks that rise from the endless Maasai Steppes. Herds of Wildebeests, zebra and large buffalo congregate on these grassy plains, as do giraffes – some so dark in coloration that they appear to be black from a distance. Heading inland of the floodplain, you can find Manyara's famous tree-climbing lions, and elephants within the acacia woodland.
The variety of bird life at Lake Manyara National Park is staggering. There has been over 400 species recorded in the park with diversity ranging from Flamingos wading in the lake, to the Long-crested Eagle soaring effortlessly above, and the Grey-headed Kingfisher perched on a branch waiting patiently for the next passing insect. It is entirely possible to see a hundred species in one day, even for a first time visitor.