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7 Days Highlights of Great Migration Safari in Tanzania

Natron Palace Hotel, Living Stone St, Arusha, Tanzania

Incredible Safari Tanzania

On this camping safari, you will see a large number of elephants, the nice landscape of Tarangire National Park, a crater filled with wild animals in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, a large selection of animals in the Serengeti National Park, and the tree-climbing lions at Lake Manyara National Park.

Key information

  • Maximum group size: 40 persons
  • Children policy: Children are allowed on this safari starting from 6 years old
  • Starting point and ending point: Arusha
  • English speaking guide
  • All park fees are included

Highlights

  • Daily game viewing
  • Exciting encounters with wildlife
  • Witness the great wildebeest migration
  • Daily breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • 6 nights accommodation
  • Airport transfers

Styles


6 activity days
Group size: Maximum of 40 participants
Airport transfer included: Kilimanjaro International Airport
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Accommodation

Check-in Time:
15:00
Check-out Time:
10:00

During this safari, you will be provided with six nights of accommodation. On the first night, you will be staying in Natron Palace Hotel, and on the second night, you will stay in Jambo Campsite. The third and fourth nights will be spent in Serengeti Seronera Campsite, and the fifth night will be spent in Ngorongoro Simba Campsite. On the sixth night, you will stay in Jambo Campsite.

Night 1: Natron Palace Hotel

Natron Palace Hotel in Arusha accommodates you right in the city center, overlooking Central Bus Stand in the West and Arusha City Stadium (Sheikh Amri Abeid Stadium) in the North. The hotel is near almost every major point in Arusha, near shopping malls, bureau de changes, and banks with ATMs.

  • Accommodation level: Budget

Facilities

  • Business center
  • Conference center
  • Restaurant and bar

Nights 2 and 6: Jambo Campsite

%This campsite is conveniently located in the Mto Wa Mbu village, not far from the gate to Lake Manyara National Park. It features well-maintained gardens and spotless en-suite rooms in two-story houses. Each room has a television, fridge, and terrace or balcony.

There's also a swimming pool, restaurant, and baobab tree bar. The campsite has a spacious camping ground with good ablution facilities. Hot and cold showers are both available.

  • Accommodation level: Budget

Facilities

  • En-suite rooms with television
  • Fridge
  • Garden
  • Hot and cold showers
  • Spacious camping ground with good ablution facilities
  • Terrace or balcony

Nights 3 and 4: Serengeti Seronera Campsite

The public campsites which are collectively called Seronera Campsite are located in the Central Serengeti area known as the Seronera. Seronera Campsite is one of the most famed campsites in Tanzania for animal encounters. Animals will pass through the campsite at night on their nocturnal wanderings. This campsite is guarded. Tents have mats and bathrooms are outside of the tent.

  • Accommodation level: Budget

Facilities

  • Bathrooms
  • Eating area
  • Hot showers
  • Solar-powered 220V electricity

Night 5: Ngorongoro Simba Campsite

Simba Campsite lies on the very rim of Ngorongoro Crater and has an excellent view across the caldera. A fantastic sunrise over the crater rim opposite makes a fine breakfast scene. Often there are elephants wandering around the camp! This campsite is guarded.

Tents have mats and bathrooms are outside of the tent. Facilities at Simba Campsite are basic but this is more than made up for by the atmosphere of this camp in the clouds.

  • Accommodation level: Budget

Facilities

  • Eating area
  • Hot water showers
  • 220V generator power in the evening

Program

Day 1: Arrival in Arusha

Upon arrival at Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO), you will be met and transferred to Natron Palace Hotel for an overnight stay on a bed and breakfast basis. Arusha is a city in East Africa's Tanzania, located at the base of volcanic Mount Meru. It is a gateway to safari destinations and to Africa's highest peak, the 5,895-meter Mount Kilimanjaro, lying some 100 kilometers northeast.

To the west lies Serengeti National Park, home to wildlife including lions, rhinoceros, giraffes, and leopards. Annual migrations feature huge herds of wildebeests crossing its plains.

Day 2: Arusha to Tarangire National Park

At 07:00 a.m. after breakfast, you will be picked up from the hotel by your safari guide and driven to Tarangire National Park. Get to enjoy the wildlife at the Tarangire National Park, which is almost 3000 square kilometers in size and is probably best known for its huge numbers of elephants and baobab trees.

The name of the park comes from the Tarangire River which crosses through the park. Tarangire is especially spectacular during the dry season (June to November) as wildlife concentrations rival that of the Serengeti (since enormous populations of elephants and other animals are drawn to the Tarangire River as their only source of water).

With its varied habitats and permanent water in the Tarangire River, the park is home to over 2000 elephants and 500 bird species. Dinner and overnight stay will be at Jambo Campsite.

Day 3: Tarangire National Park to Serengeti National Park

After breakfast, you will drive to Serengeti National Park and enjoy the game drives. Lunch and dinner will be provided. Two small bottles of water (500 mililiters) per person are also provided. The endless plains of Serengeti are also the setting for the world’s greatest wildlife spectacle, the 1.5 million wildebeest endless migration in search for fresh pastures.

Each year, this huge herd of wildebeest, along with over 200,000 zebra and gazelle, migrate in a clockwise direction around the Serengeti, up to the Maasai Mara in Kenya and then back down to the Serengeti to have their young (over 8,000 wildebeest are born a day between mid-Feb and mid-March).

Each year, they trek over 2,500 kilometers and are constantly threatened and followed by some of Africa’s greatest predators. Depending on the time of your visit, your driver guide will be able to share with you where the herd’s current location is. Overnight stay will be at the Serengeti Seronera Campsite.

Day 4: Serengeti Plains

Enjoy a full day game drive in the Serengeti. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner will be provided. Two small bottles of water (500 milliliters) per person are also provided. The Serengeti National Park is the world's last great wildlife refuge as it contains an estimated three million large animals, most of which take part in a seasonal migration that is one of nature's wonders.

The area covers 14,763 square kilometers, and the name Serengeti comes from the Maasai word “siringet”, meaning endless plains. Overnight stay will be at the Serengeti Seronera Campsite.

Day 5: Serengeti National Park to Ngorongoro Conservation Area

After breakfast, you will enjoy a morning game drive. After lunch, you will get back to Ngorongoro Conservation Area. The Central Serengeti offers superb game viewing all year round due to its abundance of resident animals. Specifically, the Seronera River Valley in the Central Serengeti is a must see on every safari regardless of the specific month of travel.

Game viewing in the Central Serengeti is at its best during the dry season (June to November) as resident animals are more concentrated in the immediate area due to the lack of water on the plains. Resident herbivores include impala, buffalo, hippo, warthog, topi, hartebeest, and giraffe. Resident carnivores include lion and leopard. Dinner and overnight stay will be at Ngorongoro Simba Campsite.

Day 6: Ngorongoro Crater

With picnic lunches, you will descend into the Ngorongoro Crater for a crater tour. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner will be provided. Two small bottles of water (500 milliliters) per person are also provided. Often called the eighth natural wonder of the world, the Ngorongoro Crater is the largest intact crater in the world.

About two million years ago, the Ngorongoro volcano erupted, and its walls collapsed. The volcano floor sank to create a natural enclosure with its 600-meter tall walls. Now, at over 19 kilometers wide, Ngorongoro Crater is filled with great areas of acacia forest, hippo-filled swamps and open grasslands.

These different habitats contain over 30,000 animals, including elephants, warthogs, flamingoes, magnificent birdlife, the rare black rhinoceros, and all the predatory cats. The Maasai can also be seen grazing their cattle alongside the buffalo and wildebeest. Dinner and overnight stay will be at Jambo Campsite.

Day 7: Lake Manyara National Park to Arusha

After a prepared breakfast at Jambo Campsite, you will pack everything and have a game viewing at the park until the afternoon where you will have lunch and continue your trip to the hotel at Arusha for rest or departure to your next destination. This will mark the end of the tour.

Location

This safari will be held in Tarangire National Park, Serengeti National Park, Ngorongoro Conservation Area, and Lake Manyara National Park in Tanzania.

Lake Manyara National Park

The Lake Manyara National Park,which encompasses an area of 335 square kilometers, of which 200 square kilometers is lake, was proclaimed a game reserve in 1957 and registered three years later as a national park. The park is situated between the 600-meter high escarpment of the Great Rift Valley and Lake Manyara and is 130 kilometers from Arusha.

Thus, it can be visited on a day excursion from this center. At the southern end of the park are hot Sulphur Springs known as Majimoto. Further along the forest the area opens up into woodlands, grassland, swamps and beyond, the soda lake itself.

Nestling at the base of the Great Rift Valley escarpment, the park is recognized for its incredible beauty. Wildlife at Lake Manyara is not restricted to birdlife only. Many game animals such as buffalo, elephant, giraffe, impala, hippo, and a great variety of smaller animals also inhabit the park.

Lake Manyara is also renowned for its tree-climbing lions which spend most of the day spread out along the branches of acacia trees six to seven meters above the ground. The park contains the most pachyderms per kilometer square in Tanzania. As visitors enter the gate, they pass into the lush forest, home to troops of baboons and blue monkeys.

Buffalo and hippo lurch in the adjacent Hippo Pool. The vegetation eventually merges into flat topped acacia woodland where, in the heat of the day entire prides of lion can be seen stretched on the branches of these trees, a habit prevalent to Manyara lions.

Along with these amazing tree-climbing lions there are the usual browsers and grazers, as well as the curios-looking banded mongoose. Two thirds of the park is dominated by the slightly alkaline lake which is home to a huge variety of waterbirds. More than 400 species of bird including flamingo, pelican, red billed quelea, storks, sacred ibis, cormorants, and Egyptian geese can be sighted in this area.

Other species of birds include the African spoonbill, lesser flamingo, white pelican, and white faced duck. Lake Manyara National Park is 130 kilometers west of Arusha and the drive takes about two and half hours. The entrance to the park is off to the left of the Great North Road at Makuyuni.

From here, there is a track that goes past the lake and through the village of Mto wa Mbu to the park entrance. Mto wa Mbu (meaning Mosquito Creek) is a small busy market town selling fruit and vegetables produced by the fruitful adjacent farms. The little settlement has become a temporary stop over for tourists and campers.

The dry season of July to October is the best time to visit to spot large mammals, whilst the wet season of November to June is the best time for birdwatching.

Ngorongoro Crater

In nearly three million years ago, Ngorongoro towered alongside Mount Kilimanjaro as one of the highest peaks in Africa. Forged during the tumultuous birth of the Rift Valley, its volcanic top erupted at the time that ancient man first walked the plains.

The Ngorongoro Conservation Area (NCA) covers some 8,300 square kilometers. It boasts the finest blend of landscapes, wildlife, people, and archaeological sites in Africa. It is also a pioneering experiment in multiple land use.

The concept of multiple land use in conservation perspective is a deviation from a traditional approach of regarding conservation as complete absenteeism of human interference. Rifts and volcanoes shape the landscape of Ngorongoro. A rift is a disturbance in the earth crust, which causes rise or falls of its borders.

Rifts also causes lava or melted rock to penetrate to the surface where it hardens. If lava emerges from the same penetration for a long period, it builds up into a volcano. In the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, the main rifts are north of Lake Eyasi and east of Lakes Manyara and Lake Natron, where the nine volcanoes of Ngorongoro highlands were formed during the past four million years.

Of these, only volcano Oldonyo Lengai is still active. The ash and dust from the eruptions was carried by the wind to form the fertile soils of the Serengeti plains. Today, Ngorongoro’s caldera shelters the most beautiful wildlife haven on earth. The rich pasture and permanent water of the Crater floor supports a resident population of some 20,000 to 25,000 large mammals.

They are not confined by the Crater walls, and can leave freely; they stay because conditions are favorable. Since most of the Crater floor is grassland, grazing animals predominate: gnu, zebra, gazelles, buffalo, eland and kongoni (Coke’s hartebeest) and warthogs.

The swamp and forest provide additional resources for hippos, some of Tanzania’s last remaining black rhinos, giant-tusked elephants, waterbucks, reedbucks and bushbucks, baboons and vervets. The steep inner slopes provide a habitat for dikdiks and the rare mountain reedbuck.

Towering euphorbias cling to the crater walls and on the floor, Fever tree and Fig tree forests give shade to an awe-inspiring array of creatures. All these animals in turn support large predators such as Lion and Leopard, and scavengers such as Hyena and Jackals. For the best viewing and photography, approach the animals slowly and quietly and stay on the official tracks.

What you can see of birdlife depends greatly on the season of the year, because there are resident birds and migrant birds. You are certain to see many residents, like ostriches, bustards and plovers all year round. In wet season they share the Crater with European migrants such as White Storks, Yellow Wagtails, swallows, and many more.

The migrants pass through from November through May, coinciding with the rains in Africa and the winter in Eurasia. There are also local migrants such as flamingos, storks and ducks which come and go depending on the state of the lake and ponds. Other birds you can see are Stonechat, Anteater Chat, Schalow’s Wheatear, Fiscal Shrike. Augur Buzzards, Verreaux’s Eagle and other raptors live in the Crater.

Ngorongoro safari lodges are situated on the rim of the crater, which is 2,235 metres (7,264 feet) above sea level. It can get quite fresh up here, and gets very cold at night in the winter months of June to August, but is opposingly hot down in the crater during the day. The weather is usually dry from June to November. July is the coldest month and highland temperatures may fall below freezing.

It rains anytime from November to May, with the longer rains in April to May. The amount and pattern of rainfall varies and a dry period in January and February may split the rainy season into short and long rains.

The forested eastern slopes get much more rain due to their elevation than the arid country to the west. The rain arrives in stormy showers usually during afternoons and nights, which cleanses the air to reveal clear views. Interpretive game drives through the emerald plains and forests of the crater floor engender guests with a respect for the people and wildlife of this world wonder.

A sheer dirt road descends from Malanja Depression on the crater rim to the crater floor. At the top of the road, Maasai women and children allow you to photograph them for a small fee.

The Malanja depression is grassy and open and is a good place to spot typical highland antelope such as mountain reedbuck and Kirks dik-dik, and birds such as the striking auger buzzard and Schalows wheatear. The dominant feature of the crater floor is Lake Magadi, a shallow soda lake that supports large flocks of flamingo.

Much of the crater floor is open grassland, making animal spotting relatively easy: black rhino, lion, hyena, gazelle, wildebeest and zebra are all commonly seen. The hippo pool near Mandusi Swamp is a popular picnic spot.

Serengeti National Park

A million wildebeest, each one driven by the same ancient rhythm, fulfilling its instinctive role in the inescapable cycle of life: a frenzied three-week bout of territorial conquests and mating; survival of the fittest as 40 kilometers (25 mile) long columns plunge through crocodile-infested waters on the annual exodus north, replenishing the species in a brief population explosion that produces more than 8,000 calves daily before the 1,000 kilometer (600 mile) pilgrimage begins again.

Tanzania’s oldest and most popular national park, also a world heritage site and recently proclaimed a 7th world wide wonder, the Serengeti is famed for its annual migration, when some six million hooves pound the open plains, as more than 200,000 zebra and 300,000 Thomson’s gazelle join the wildebeest’s trek for fresh grazing.

Yet even when the migration is quiet, the Serengeti offers arguably the most scintillating game-viewing in Africa: great herds of buffalo, smaller groups of elephant and giraffe, and thousands upon thousands of eland, topi, kongoni, impala, and Grant’s gazelle. The spectacle of predator versus prey dominates Tanzania’s greatest park.

Golden-maned lion prides feast on the abundance of plain grazers. Solitary leopards haunt the acacia trees lining the Seronera River, while a high density of cheetahs prowls the southeastern plains. Almost uniquely, all three African jackal species occur here, alongside the spotted hyena and a host of more elusive small predators, ranging from the insectivorous aardwolf to the beautiful serval cat.

But there is more to Serengeti than large mammals. Gaudy agama lizards and rock hyraxes scuffle around the surfaces of the park’s isolated granite koppies. A full 100 varieties of dung beetle have been recorded, as have 500-plus bird species, ranging from the outsized ostrich and bizarre secretary bird of the open grassland, to the black eagles that soar effortlessly above the Lobo Hills.

As enduring as the game-viewing is the liberating sense of space that characterizes the Serengeti Plains, stretching across sunburnt savannah to a shimmering golden horizon at the end of the earth. Yet, after the rains, this golden expanse of grass is transformed into an endless green carpet flecked with wildflowers.

And there are also wooded hills and towering termite mounds, rivers lined with fig trees and acacia woodland stained orange by dust. Popular the Serengeti might be, but it remains so vast that you may be the only human audience when a pride of lions masterminds a siege, focused unswervingly on its next meal.

Tarangire National Park

It is the vast number of baobabs that first capture the eye as you enter Tarangire National Park. The gently rolling countryside is dotted with these majestic trees, which seem to dwarf the animals that feed beneath them.

It is 120 kilometers from Arusha, bordered with Tarangire Wildlife conservation area to the northeast, an area set apart by the government, to cater for the needs of the local people as a grazing ground for their herds. The park owes its name to Tarangire River, which flows across the area.

It is characterized by dense vegetation of acacia and mixed woodland, the area around Tarangire River, however, is dominated by huge baobab trees and old doum palm trees to a lesser prominence, as well as black cotton grass. Though it is not as famous as other parks in the north, Tarangire offers the same attractions as other parks in the north.

Its unique aspect is the annual animal immigration that takes place during the dry season. While Serengeti’s animal migration has attained mundane fame, for many tourists, little is known of Tarangire annual migration.

The difference with Serengeti, however, is that, in Serengeti, animals migrate away from the park during the dry season (June to October), the opposite happens in Tarangire; animals migrate from Maasai Steppe to the park during the dry season. They migrate to the park in search for water, which is provided by Tarangire River, and predators migrate along in search for preys.

During this period the park has the largest concentration of animals than in any park in the northern Tanzania. June to October is the best time to see large number of wildebeest, elephants, zebras, and hartebeest.

Not all animals are migratory though, other animals such as giraffes, impala, eland, lesser kudu, waterbuck, gazelle, and sometimes rhinos or leopards can be seen throughout the year. More people are attracted by the giant pythons and large herds of elephants. the park is also famous for migrant birds.

Food

The cost of the safari includes three meals per day. All kinds of food can be catered. Two bottles of water per day will also be provided. To avoid health problems, use only bottled or filtered water for drinking and brushing your teeth. Bottled water is cheap and readily available in Tanzania, and all lodges and restaurants will have it available.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
  • Drinks

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
  • Other dietary requirements on request
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

What's included

  • Transportation in a 4 × 4 safari vehicle
  • Services of a professional, English-speaking guide
  • Services of a professional, English-speaking safari cook
  • 6 nights accommodation
  • Camping equipment (tents, sleeping mats, chairs, tables)
  • Meals according to the itinerary
  • Mineral water
  • All mentioned activities
  • All national park fees
  • Flying Doctors insurance (AMREF) during the safari

What's not included

  • Sleeping bag
  • Flights
  • Optional activities
  • Alcoholic and soft drinks
  • Visa fees
  • Tips
  • Personal spending money for souvenirs
  • Travel insurance

How to get there

Recommended Airports

Arrival by airplane

Please book your flight to arrive at Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO) or at Julius Nyerere International Airport (DAR). Transfer from and to the airport is included. Kiliholidays Tours & Safaris will pick you up from the airport.

Airport: Kilimanjaro International Airport Airport transfer included: Kilimanjaro International Airport No additional charges. You can request this in the next step.

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 15% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid on arrival.

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