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Kilimanjaro

Tanzanian Safari: the parks

 

 

         Overview                   Types & accommodation                    The parks                    Itineraries                   F.A.Q.       

The parks

Tanzania offers the best and best known parks but is less crowded than Kenya. From the lions and the wildebeest migration of the of the Serengeti to the Elephants of the Ngorongoro crater 7summits will give you the perfect opportunity to spot the "big 5".

We organize safaris to all of the mayor parks in Tanzania:

Please see the trip page for the latest prices

 

See the itineraries page for example itineraries

 

 

The parks

Arusha National Park

The Arusha National Park covers 137 square kilometers. This is not a large area, but this park does contain a variety of landscapes from miniature volcano crater to mountain rain forests. A number of beautiful crater lakes can be seen with an abundance of hippos enjoying the cool clear mountain water coming from the slopes of Mount Meru. Traveling through the treed savannas, we reach the Gnurdoto Crater where many herds of buffalo reside. Many other game can be seen in the small park including the very rare Colobus Ape. This has been a popular park with filmmakers, including "Hatari" made in the 1950's with John Wayne and "the Snows of Kilimanjaro" with Gregory Peck and Ava Gardner.

Olduvai Gorge -- the Cradle of Mankind

Olduvai Gorge is locally called "Oldupai", a name given by the Maasai for the Sisal growing in the Gorge. Known the world over for the fantastic archeological discoveries made by Doctors Louis and Mary Leakey, including the skull of a humanoid, which is believed to be 1.75 million years old. The cradle of mankind lies on the short grass plains of the Serengeti. Not only have fossils of humanoid origin been found but also fossils from prehistoric animals that lived around them.

The latest and probably greatest findings were made in 1986 by and American and Tanzanian archaeological team. They discovered human fossils including 302 bones and teeth belonging to a female some 1.8 million years old.

Excavations still continue in the Gorge during the dry season. It is possible to enter the Gorge with a special guide. There is also a small museum showing some of the finds and a resting place suitable for a picnic lunch.

Lake Manyara National Park

Lake Manyara covers 330 square kilometers, 230 of which are lake. Along its western boundaries is the Rift Valley's western wall.

The park is famous for the bird life -- almost 400 different species. It is also famous for the elephant population and the tree-climbing lions. There is a large variety of tree species within the park.

Ngorongoro Crater, conservation area and crater highlands

One of nature's true wonders and a photographer's paradise! Ngorongoro is the largest intact crater in the world, covering 265 square kilometers. From the rim to the crater floor is 600 meters.

The Crater is home to an abundance of wild game including elephants, rhinos, cheetahs, lions, leopards, hyenas, serval cats, jackals, bushbucks, elands, waterbucks, wildebeest, many antelope, and a large variety of birds. This is a sight that you will always remember!

 

This is a picture taken from the space shuttle, click for a large version with more details of the Crater area and geological history.

 

Note that from 2006 there are no longer full day trips possible, only half day trips in the crater. The other half will be used to see local villages or a short hiking safari in nearby Olmoti crater.

 

 

The conservation are is larger than the crater itself. There are more, smaller craters to the north east of the Ngorongoro crater: Olmoti and Empakai craters are seldom visited but very beautiful. You can do a walking safari through this area (see itineraries), including a climb of the Volcano Ol Donyo Longai.

 

Tarangire National Park

Tarangire covers 2600 square miles and includes two large plains and a seasonal swamp in the south. This is a beautiful park filled with Baobabs and Acacias with a large variety of game such as zebras, elephants, giraffes, and waterbuck. All the animals can enjoy the water coming from the Tarangire River. The animals are best viewed during the dry season, including elephant herds, elands, orynx, lesser kudo, rhino, leopards, lions, and cheetah. The birdlife is varied and plentiful. The very rare Roam Antelope can also be seen in this park.

Serengeti National Park

The largest national park in Tanzania and one of the most spectacular parks in the world, the Serengeti covers some 14,763 square kilometers including large plains, short grass plains, kopjes, and lakes.

The name "Serengeti" is derived from the Maasai language meaning "endless plain". Every year, more than 1 million wildebeest travel in long caravans across the plains of the mighty Serengeti, all in search of better feeding grounds, followed by a large variety of other animals. Not far behind follow the hungry lions, cheetahs, and hyenas Other predators such as leopards, serval cats, and jackals watch the wandering game with interest, and elephants, rhinos, and buffalo continue their grazing.

 

If you sleep in the Serengeti, then we can organize a balloon flight for you, starting at dawn, with champagne breakfast in the field!

Serengeti camp

Defender on safari

Hippo from the air

Wildebeest in Serengeti

Giraffes in the Serengeti

Wildebeast

Buffalo

buffalo

Elephants Serengeti

lion 2