Sharing a common border and ecosystem with Selous Game Reserve to the south, Mikumi National Park is only a three to four-hour drive from Dar es Salaam, lying astride the main highway to Zambia, and is also the main route to the National Parks of Udzungwa Mountains, Ruaha and Kitulo. The main feature of the park is the Mikumi flood plain, along with the mountain ranges that border the park on two sides. Open grasslands dominate in the flood plain, eventually merging with the miombo woodland covering the lower hills.
More than 400 bird species have been recorded, with such colorful common residents as the lilac-breasted roller, yellow-throated longclaw and bateleur eagle joined by a host of European migrants during the rainy season. Hippos are the star attraction of the pair of pools situated 3 miles (5 km) north of the main entrance gate, supported by an ever-changing cast of water birds. Other animals in the park are elephant, zebra, impala, eland, kudu, black antelope, baboon, wildebeest and buffalo.