There are differing explanations for how Lake Manyara got its name. The name Manyara may come from the Maasai word emanyara, which is the spiky, protective enclosure around a family homestead (boma). Another theory is that the Mbugwe tribe, who live in the Lake Manyara area, may have given the lake its name based on the Mbugwe word manyero, meaning a trough or place where animals drink water
Lake Manyara is the seventh-largest lake of Tanzania by surface area. The northwest quadrant of the lake (about 200 sq, km.) is included within Lake Manyara National Park and it is part of the Lake Manyara Biosphere Reserve, established in 1981 by UNESCO as part of its Man and the Biosphere Programme.
Lake Manyara National Park is known for flocks of thousands of flamingos that feed along the edge of the lake in the wet season. In all, more than 390 species of birds have been documented in the national park, although in the dry season, flamingos and other water birds are usually found only in small numbers. Populations of large migratory mammals that are concentrated primarily in Tarangire National Park, but also move through Lake Manyara National Park include wildebeest, zebra, Thomson's gazelle, and Grant's gazelle. Large herds of wildebeest and other plains game from the Mto wa Mbu Game Controlled Area enter the park from the north for short periods.
There are various activities to enjoy which include birdwatching, canoeing on the lake or day and night game drives. You can also see the world from above on the Lake Manyara Treetop Walkway.