Tanzania Northern Circuit Safari - 13 Days

2 nights in Arusha, 10 nights on Safari  |  Private Tour  |  Comfort  |  SPC34

TOUR INTRODUCTION

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With a thirteen-day safari trip, you would really expect to see everything that Tanzania’s Northern Circuit can possibly offer. And this Complete Circuit certainly won’t disappoint, as we tour no fewer than seven – yes, seven – fantastic highlights. Beginning at Arusha National Park, where we enjoy some great outdoor activities, we then continue first to Tarangire National Park, one of the Northern Circuit’s renowned national parks with large herds of elephants and iconic baobab trees. Lake Natron is next, a unique landscape, a shallow, shimmering alkaline lake with a population of flamingoes, before we continue to popular Lake Manyara, one of our country’s more compact parks yet full of wildlife. Magnificent Serengeti is our next stop, with a program of game-drives, letting us explore the endless plains and encountering countless wildlife along the way. We depart for another Tanzanian gem, the incomparable crater of Ngorongoro, on the lookout for a black rhino. Nearby, we take a walk down into Empakaai Crater, smaller than Ngorongoro but still spectacular. Last, but not least, we head for Lake Eyasi where we learn about some of Tanzania’s fascinating and colorful tribespeople and their ways of life.

Tour Overview

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Surprises await you! With every turn of the steering-wheel, round every bend in the road or over the next small hill, Tanzania will throw at you something new, something unusual. Perhaps it will be a flock of vultures, picking over the bones of a lion’s recent kill. Or maybe the chase and the kill itself! From strutting secretary bird to lumbering elephant, from soaring eagle to wallowing hippo, the parks you’ll visit on this epic thirteen-day marathon tour will provide you with breath-taking, awe-inspiring moments. Be dazzled by a shockingly pink mass of flamingos, struck dumb by the clatter of wildebeest hooves as they escape a would-be predator or simply enjoy the calm of watching a giraffe languidly grazing the high branches of a tree. Join your driver-guide as he scans the horizon for a cheetah or leopard. What a true ‘wildlife adventure’!

BEST TIME TO VISIT

Month Season Traffic Weather Road Trails Sky Recommendation
January Peak Medium Little to no rainfall Dry Sunny & Cloudy Highly Recommended
February Peak High No Rainfall Dry Sunny & Cloudy Highly Recommended
March High Low Short Rainfall Wet & Muddy Cloudy Highly Recommended
April Low Low Long rainfall Wet & Muddy Cloudy Recommended
May Low Low Short Rainfall Wet & Muddy Cloudy Recommended
June Peak High No Rainfall Dry Sunny & Cloudy Highly Recommended
July Peak High No Rainfall Dry Sunny Highly Recommended
August Peak High No Rainfall Dry Sunny Highly Recommended
September Peak High No Rainfall Dry Sunny Highly Recommended
October Peak High No Rainfall Dry Sunny Highly Recommended
November High Medium Little to no Rainfall Wet & Muddy Sunny & Cloudy Recommended
December High Medium Little to no Rainfall Wet & Muddy Sunny & Cloudy Recommended

Physical Level

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Moderate. Safari trips with our ‘moderate’ rating require visitors to have an average level of fitness and at times these trips will demand short periods of physical activity, such as walking or canoeing. They are best suited for those who have a sense of adventure and who are prepared to participate in such activity. Any walking or canoeing on these trips will be at an easy/moderate level. Visitors will spend some significant time in vehicles on the sometimes rough roads of Tanzania – the so-called ‘African Massage.’

Accommodation

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Accommodation on this tour is in our Comfort category, with two nights’ hotel accommodation in Arusha and ten nights out on safari in our relaxing, atmospheric camps. Our Comfort level accommodations are carefully selected by Easy Travel to provide the perfect balance between price and quality, and all offer private, en-suite facilities.

Tour Summary

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13 Days, 12 Nights 2 night in Arusha, 2 nights in Tarangire, 1 night in Lake Natron, 1 night in Lake Manyara, 3 nights in Serengeti, 2 nights in Ngorongoro, 1 night in Lake Eyasi
  • Day 1 – Arrival Day: Kilimanjaro International Airport – Arusha
  • Day 2 – Arusha – Arusha National Park – Arusha
  • Day 3 – Arusha – Tarangire
  • Day 4 – Tarangire
  • Day 5 – Tarangire – Lake Natron
  • Day 6 – Lake Natron – Lake Manyara
  • Day 7 – Lake Manyara – Serengeti
  • Day 8 – Serengeti
  • Day 9 – Serengeti
  • Day 10 – Serengeti – Ngorongoro
  • Day 11– Ngorongoro: Empakaai Walking Safari
  • Day 12 – Ngorongoro – Lake Eyasi
  • Day 13 –Lake Eyasi – Kilimanjaro International Airport

Tour Map

Tour Itinerary

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Welcome to Tanzania
Whatever your arrival time at Kilimanjaro International Airport, your Easy Travel driver-guide will be waiting for you with a warm welcoming smile. Kick back and relax in your comfortable vehicle as he takes you to your hotel in Arusha, Tanzania’s self-styled ‘safari capital.’ On your one-hour journey to the hotel, you will get a brief impression of this large, bustling, commercial city. Depending on your arrival time, you may have your pre-safari briefing today; if not, it will take place early tomorrow morning.
Accommodation

A compact hotel choice in central Arusha, the Kibo Palace Hotel oozes comfort and draws inspiration from its artistic décor from Tanzania and its captivating natural environment.

Here is the perfect place to relax, either before or after your safari, with comfortable and spacious rooms and suites, a popular bar, and an inviting swimming pool to cool you down after a hot day. Moreover, the excellent Kilimanjaro restaurant offers truly international cuisine, with influences from Tanzania and the wider world – there’s something tasty to please everyone.

Best of all, you are assured of a warm, Tanzanian welcome from the Kibo Palace hotel team, dedicated to making your stay here as comfortable as possible.

Meal Plan

Dinner at your hotel.

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Tour Briefing

Unless your arrival time yesterday allowed time for your safari briefing, then this will take place after breakfast. We will provide you with all the essential information, before we set off to our first safari destination, the nearby Arusha National Park, where we will enjoy a walking safari before lunch, then first taking to the water for our canoeing safari and then an afternoon game drive. In the evening, we will return to your Arusha accommodation (see above) for your dinner, and to spend the night.

Journey: Arusha to Arusha National Park

From your Arusha accommodation, the journey to Arusha National Park will take around 1 ½ hours (40km).

Walking Safari in Arusha National Park

Accompanied by a park ranger, we will choose from a number of routes, depending on what this small but beautiful park has to offer today and how far you might want to walk. Your park ranger might show you the deep holes dug by aardvarks, or explain how an acacia tree emits a warning scent to other acacias! Be on the lookout for zebra, duiker, giraffe and hippo. The black-and-white colobus monkey is a favorite in this park, while in the skies, egrets and sacred ibis can often be observed. Even the trees have a story to tell. You might meet the aptly named strangler fig, which sucks the life out of other trees. pends years sucking the life out of its victim – perhaps an unsuspecting juniper. You might encounter warthog and buffalo, often seen together, with the former possessing a good sense of sight and hearing, while the buffalo relies on smell to alert to impending danger. A perfect symbiosis.

You might also have the chance to visit one of the park’s picturesque waterfalls, such as Talulusia, as it plummets 30 metres down to a rocky base.

After our walking safari, we will enjoy our well-earned lunch, before our afternoon activities.

Canoeing Safari in Arusha National Park

As colorful dragonflies buzz around this small lake, a birdwatcher’s paradise, you will take to the water for a different type of adventure. But it’s not insects, but hippos which are the big attraction here. Very territorial, they will let you know with a threatening bellow if your canoe gets too close! In the distance, magnificent Mount Meru might show its summit above the clouds. Perhaps a few flamingos might put on a little air display, taking off, circling seemingly pointlessly and then returning to the water surface. Everywhere, a sense of calm prevails…yet the thought of the giant three-tonne hippos being out there, somewhere, leaves us with a sense of nervousness

Afternoon Game Drive in Arusha National Park

It may be small, but Arusha National Park can boast a number of highlights, which your morning activities will have demonstrated! But this afternoon, we will relax in our vehicle as your driver-guide shows you the rest of what this little gem has to offer.

And its areas are impressively different, with Mount Meru towering above the Momela Lakes, the montane forest area and the perfectly formed crater of Ngurdoto. In some ways, this is a Tanzania in miniature!

  • Accommodation

    After our day’s activities in Arusha National Park, we will return you to your Arusha accommodation (see above) so you can relax, enjoy your dinner and get a good night’s rest.
  • Meal Plan Breakfast is enjoyed at the Kibo Palace Hotel. Lunch will be a nutritious and balanced meal, also provided by the hotel for you to take out on safari. Your dinner will be a delicious meal at the Kibo Palace Hotel.
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Tour Briefing Unless your arrival time yesterday allowed time for your safari briefing, then this will take place after breakfast. We will provide you with all the essential information, before we set off westwards then south to our first safari destination, Tarangire National Park. On arrival at the park we will take our first game drive, then lunch, then further explore the park with our afternoon game drive.
Journey: Arusha to Tarangire National Park Our two-hour (120km) journey first takes us westwards from Arusha. Along the route, your eyes will be opened to all the colours and character of Tanzania: perhaps some Maasai herdsmen driving their flocks of goats to new pastures. You’ll get to know your driver-guide, amazed at his depth of knowledge as he effortlessly answers all your questions.
Day’s Highlight Your afternoon game drive in Tarangire, with its incredible diversity, massive baobab trees and herds of elephants.
Safari (Game Drive) in Tarangire National Park

Tarangire is huge. As you stand at the park gate and look south, it stretches as far as the eye can see. Known as the ‘Elephant Playground,’ this phenomenal park contains huge herds of these mighty mammals. But Tarangire is also home to buffalo, lion, wildebeest, zebra and gazelle and the park can rival Serengeti for sheer animal densities. What might you see today? Perhaps a solitary male lion stretched out beneath a tree, perhaps a trio of male cheetah enjoying some lazy bonding-time in the sun. Maybe some graceful Grant’s gazelle or zebra bounding away from the road or a couple of giraffe munching happily from the choicest acacia branches. For Tarangire specialities, look out for kudu and oryx.

Here as in other parks, it pays not to ignore the small animals. It’s so easy to be mesmerized by the power and majesty of an elephant or the elegance of the giraffe. Ask your guide to find you an agama lizard, especially a male one who changes colour in front of you according to the temperature! Or a hyrax, known as pimpi, an insignificant-looking creature of around 30cm in length…who astonishingly is related to elephant

Not many trees will pass you by without something of avian interest catching your eye. A memorable flash of colour might be a lilac-breasted roller or blue-eared starling. Ostrich are plentiful and it’s hard not to chuckle at the sighting of the well-named, studious-looking secretary bird as it awkwardly pads across the grasslands.

The park is also famous for its splendid baobab trees, rolling savannah and acacia woodland. It can be dusty – wear a scarf over your mouth – but this is a minor inconvenience for sighting wildlife in such abundance.

  • Accommodation

    Our accommodation tonight will be at the Tarangire Tortilis Camp. Off the beaten track, and far from the park’s other camps and lodges, this is a great wilderness experience. The nearby Gursi swamplands ensure that warthog, zebra and other mammals are attracted to this area as they come to drink. After a long day, you can kick back, take a drink yourself and watch an unforgettable sunset.

    Tarangire Tortilis is located around four magnificent specimen of the iconic baobab tree, which is characteristic of Tarangire National Park. Away from the noise of the busy park gates, this safari camp combines comfort with tranqullity, a sense of freedom and being at one with nature.

    You can be assured that you will be warmly welcomed by an enthusiastic team, keen to turn your stay here into something rather special. You’ll enjoy dinner tonight at the camp.

  • Meal Plan Breakfast is provided at The African Tulip. Lunch will be a nutritious and balanced meal, also provided by the camp for you to take out on safari. Your dinner will be a full, cooked meal created by the team at the Tarangire Tortilis Camp.
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Day’s Highlight The chance to get close to the wildlife on a morning walking safari will surely stay in your memory for ever. After our lunch, we will climb aboard our vehicle to explore the many wonders of this diverse park.
Walking Safari in Tarangire Up close and personal: that could be the motto for a walking safari, and Tarangire is a fantastic location to again leave the comfort of your safari vehicle and enjoy the landscape on foot. With a Park Ranger for safety and accompanied by your expert driver-guide, you will be amazed at how much more you can learn from a couple of hours walking in the bush. The great unknown, of course, is what you will see…and who you might meet! Your senses are challenged and heightened, with unfamiliar sounds and smells meeting you throughout your journey. You’ll find out about animal tracks and dung, learn what to do if you get too close to a grazing elephant and discover who lives in those emblematic, strange-shaped termite mounds (and it’s not just termites, far from it!) Being this close to nature may be a whole new experience for you, but the memories will stay with you forever – of that we are sure.
Safari in Tarangire National Park

You may have thought that you have seen all that Tarangire has to offer, but you will certainly enjoy some new experiences as we explore the park further in our morning game-drive.

The varied terrain in itself could be considered a wonder, with riverine woodlands and grasslands, acacia and baobab. Amazingly, some 550 bird species have been recorded here, and it won’t be long before an air-bound blaze of colour alerts you to something interesting. You might recognise an ostrich or a stork, but if you can’t identify the smaller species, there’s no need to worry – that is what your expert driver-guide is here for!

The birds are exotic and so are the names: what about the ‘white-bellied go-away bird’ or the ‘Madagascar bee-eater’ for example? But of course, we will also see plenty more large mammals this afternoon.

  • Accommodation After our afternoon game drive, we will return you to your Tarangire accommodation to relax, have dinner and spend another night.
  • Meal Plan Breakfast is enjoyed at the Tarangire Tortilis Camp. Lunch will be a nutritious and balanced meal, also provided by the camp for you to take out on safari. Your dinner will be a delicious meal at the Tarangire Tortilis Camp.
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Journey: Tarangire to Lake Natron Our journey today will take us northwards, skirting the side of the Great Rift Valley to Lake Natron, with an expected time of 5 ½ hours (259km).
Day’s Highlight The scenery today, as we head north past volcanic landscapes, will be stunning, but after a long journey, your chance to escape from the heat of Lake Natron with a dip in cool, fresh water might prove to be the highlight.
Waterfall Walk Only a short distance from Lake Natron itself, we follow a narrow gorge that carves its way through the escarpment wall, crossing and re-crossing the rushing stream that carries waters down into the valley. At times, we will have to wade across. Such is the incline that at times, waterfalls cascade down. Our reward comes after about 45 minutes, when we have the chance to cool off (and yes, it really is cold, despite the high air temperatures!) and swim in a pool beneath one of the falls. From above, we may be observed by a mountain goat or two, precariously perched on the seemingly inaccessible rocks! Delightful!
  • Accommodation

    A unique, privately owned camp, in a unique setting… Lake Natron Camp is a located just back from the shores of the famous soda lake, with the towering volcano of Ol Doinyo Lengai as a backdrop. In true Maasai country, teeming with wildlife and discreetly located in its environment, this is a great place to stay on a safari adventure. Small and intimate, this camp consists of just ten tents, all en suite, tastefully furnished and with a porch and spacious bedroom. Be aware that this camp has only cold water…but with the sweltering climate here, that is more than enough!

    Guests here can take advantage of the natural pool, fed by a stream, a perfect place to cool off under the shimmering heat. A dedicated team of staff, drawn from the local Maasai community, will look after you here!

  • Meal Plan Breakfast is served at Tarangire Tortilis Camp. Lunch will be a nutritious and balanced meal, also provided by the camp for you to take out on safari. Your dinner will be a full, cooked meal created by the team at the Lake Natron Camp.
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Journey: Lake Natron to Lake Manyara Between these two lakes, set in very different surroundings, is a journey of around 3-hour (120km).
Day’s Highlight A chance to get close to the shimmering, alkaline waters of Lake Natron, with its incredible natural surroundings, will provide you with a very different experience.
Lakeside Walk

This morning, accompanied by a guide, we take the opportunity to walk along the lakeshore of Natron. To the north of this shallow lake lies Kenya, while away to the south is the brooding shape of Ol Doinyo Lengai, a still-active volcano. The heat here is hostile, but there’s still wildlife to be found! The highlight has to be the lesser flamingos, with their distinctive pinkish hue – caused, of course, by the pigment of the algae on which they feed. Other migrant water birds can be seen, mainly during the winter months. Nearby, you might catch sight of a zebra, gazelle or wildebeest, though the densities of large mammals cannot compete with the national parks.

We will have an early cooked lunch before leaving Lake Natron, and on reaching Lake Manyara we will set out on our afternoon game drive.

Safari (Game Drive) in Lake Manyara National Park Set against the rugged Rift Valley escarpment, and characterised by its shimmering lake, Manyara is rich in vegetation and the wildlife that thrives here. Enjoy the tranquillity as majestic pink flamingos wade elegantly, picking out a meal of algae from the shallow, alkaline waters. On land, Manyara’s terrain is compact, yet boasts differing environments such as diverse forests fed by waters seeping from the nearby escarpment. Monkeys are abundant, but look out too for the lions, giraffe, warthog and grumpy Cape buffalo who all call this park ‘home’. Hold your nose when we reach the hippo pool, because these big lumps smell!
  • Accommodation

    Set high above the lake, and below the escarpment, ‘glamping’ at Lake Manyara Tortilis Camp will provide you with a night to remember. Unlike many accommodations in this area, this unique camp is located actually inside the National Park, and it’s also perfectly placed for spectacular sunrises. Small and intimate, it is staffed by a team of warm and welcoming personnel, eager to ensure you enjoy your stay here. Wildlife roam freely amongst the tents, there’s an atmospheric ‘fireplace’ for you to take a drink, and the tents themselves will surprise you with their levels of comfort.

  • Meal Plan Breakfast is served at Lake Natron Camp. Lunch will be a nutritious and balanced meal, also provided by the camp for you to take out on safari. Your dinner will be a full, cooked meal created by the team at the Lake Manyara Tortilis Camp.
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Journey: Lake Manyara to Serengeti National Park With Serengeti as our destination, and with your head full of magical memories of Manyara, we set off to the north and west, a 5-hour journey of around 222km, following the famous Rift Valley. On the journey, you will be enchanted by the colors of everyday Tanzanian life, the different faces of the tribesmen, their herds, the bustle of the transport, the vibrant roadside stalls and markets. Soon, however, the human habitation gives way to the Serengeti plains.
Day’s Highlight Perhaps our morning yoga session will be your best memory today, but Serengeti is a National Park which will offer you a whole variety of wildlife surprises over the next few days. Perhaps today’s highlight – certainly for first-time visitors – will simply be the Serengeti terrain itself. The sheer vastness, as the plains roll away in front of you into eternity, will leave you with a sense of awe.
Lake Manyara Yoga Session If you are already a practitioner of yoga, or a complete beginner who is keen to try something new on your holiday, you will appreciate the calm surroundings of Lake Manyara National Park. It’s difficult to think of a better way to start the day while out on safari: just breathe in the pure African air and relax. Afterwards, we set off for Serengeti, where we will take lunch and get to know the park with our afternoon game-drive.
Safari in Serengeti National Park At last! Serengeti, the incomparable wonder of Tanzania, will be the stage for the natural animal theatrics which will be performed over the next few days. Your game drive here combines the known with the unknown, the certainty that you will be amazed with the uncertainty of exactly what you will see and when. Changing light, a changing cast of animal actors, ensuring that at every turn there is a new experience. Snap off some memorable photos, but don’t forget to simply take a deep breath and enjoy nature in its real-time, raw beauty.
  • Accommodation

    Serengeti Tortilis Camp is superbly situated, a wilderness experience like no other. This is what some call ‘glamping,’ with a high degree of comfort in the heart of this famous National Park. The team here is totally dedicated to your enjoyment, providing the warmest of welcomes which might include a bit of singing and dancing: bring your sense of rhythm! You may not be alone here, as the wildlife like to roam freely amongst the tents. But don’t worry, our staff will keep you safe. Enjoy a drink at our outdoor ‘fireplace’ while listening to the calls of the wild.

    Then, feast yourselves on a truly superb dinner and your driver-guide will discuss the plans for the next day’s itinerary in the Serengeti. Afterwards, review the photos that have captured the day’s highlights, before falling asleep to get ready for another day of adventure.

  • Meal Plan Breakfast is served at Lake Manyara Tortilis Camp. Lunch will be a nutritious and balanced meal, also provided by the camp for you to take out on safari. Your dinner will be a full, cooked meal created by the team at the Serengeti Tortilis Camp.
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Day’s Highlight Wildlife is abundant: sometimes you may think it has come to find you, rather than the other way around. Today’s highlight is unknown, as the animals don’t publish their schedule (!) What we see also depends on the season, but we may find some ‘big cats,’ on the prowl and looking for prey. Cheetah, leopard and lions are all possibilities!
Safari in Serengeti National Park

Today is a full day of discovery, a chance to enjoy the varied landscapes of the Central Serengeti. The Seronera River weaves its way through the Serengeti, providing waters for all species of wildlife. You will also see the distinctive rocky outcrops, the famous kopjes which characterize the Serengeti landscape. Kopjes are very hard and often granite. They have been aged at maybe 600 million years old and created even before the earth’s surface was pushed up from the ocean. Lions and other cats frequent these stony places and they are also home to snakes and hyraxes. Slowly weathering in wind and rain, they are peeling off in layers, which you may see on close inspection.

Everything here varies with the seasons, but in May, November and December migrating herds join the already rich population of resident animals which live here year-round. (In the rainy season, the landscape turns black with hundreds of thousands of wildebeest – a simply incredible sight.)

  • Accommodation After your day of thrilling game drives, your driver will return you safely for another relaxing night at your Serengeti accommodation (see above). Drink, relax, dine and sleep, all out in the wilderness of the Serengeti. What could be better?
  • Meal Plan Breakfast is enjoyed at the Serengeti Tortilis Camp. Lunch will be a nutritious and balanced meal, also provided by the camp for you to take out on safari. Your dinner will be a delicious meal at the Serengeti Tortilis Camp.
Note: for those who have booked the Balloon Safari for today, you will be picked up from the lodge at 05.00 hours for a 06.00 hours departure. After your 60 – 90-minute aerial adventure, bush breakfast and champagne, your driver will pick you up for your full-day game drive.
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Day’s Highlight Again, our highlight is waiting to reveal itself. But do look out for the magnificent sight of the world’s heaviest bird capable of flight, the Kori Bustard. The avian equivalent of a lumbering cargo plane, it can weigh up to 15kg and has a wingspan of nearly three metres!
Safari in Serengeti National Park With its informative visitor centre, the Seronera area of Central Serengeti is the national park’s most popular area. And it is very popular with the wildlife, too. The Seronera river enjoys year-round waterflow, so there is always something of interest to observe. Several game drives can be undertaken here and might reveal lions in sizeable prides, hippo or herds of elephants, whose populations in the park have risen in recent times. Depending on animal movements and sightings, we may choose to call in at the Serengeti Visitor Centre, where there is an excellent explanation of the park’s eco-system and a chance to understand the history of conservation in this area. In particular, you will find out about the work of the Frankfurt Zoological Society and of Bernhard Grzimek who had the foresight and vision of preserving the Serengeti’s eco-system. Even at this center, you may well find wildlife: populations of hyrax and mongoose, as well as many small bird species.
  • Accommodation After your day of thrilling game drives, your driver will return you safely for another relaxing night at your Serengeti accommodation (see above). Drink, relax, dine and sleep, all out in the wilderness of the Serengeti.
  • Meal PlanBreakfast is enjoyed at the Serengeti Tortilis Camp. Lunch will be a nutritious and balanced meal, also provided by the camp for you to take out on safari. Your dinner will be a delicious meal at the Serengeti Tortilis Camp.
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Journey: Serengeti National Park to Ngorongoro Conservation Area After a morning game drive and lunch, this afternoon we will head south-east towards Ngorongoro, a journey of 145 km which will take us around 3 ½ hours.
Day’s Highlight Today, we will get our first sight of the spectacular, incomparable Ngorongoro Crater, the world’s largest intact volcanic caldera and the heart of the Conservation Area of the same name. But before that, we have another morning game drive in amazing Serengeti, marveling at its animal inhabitants. Another day of adventure, another day to enjoy the wildlife.
Safari in Serengeti National Park After our morning game drive, perhaps trying to find any animal that has – until now – been elusive enough to evade your eagle-eyed driver-guide, we head south-east towards Ngorongoro. If it has not already struck you with its vastness, Serengeti’s ‘endless plains’ will certainly now make a deep impression on you as we take the long, straight road which passes Simba Kopjes (famous from ‘The Lion King’) to reach Naabi Hill Gate, close to the divide between Serengeti and Ngorongoro. Here you can gather information at the gate’s visitor center, clamber up the hill for superb views back over the plains, or look out for a colorful agama lizard among the rocks.
  • Accommodation

    Our Ngorongoro Tortilis Camp is only a 20km drive from the crater itself (around 40 minutes), set beneath an atmospheric acacia ‘umbrella,’ located in dense, sloping woodland and adjacent to a traditional Maasai community. Some will call the set-up here ‘glamping’, and it certainly offers a great level of comfort, considering the wilderness location. The nearby Ol Mote and Makarot mountains give it an added dimension, but it is the warm welcome of the staff which is the highlight for many of the visitors here. You’ll enjoy the team’s singing and dancing, perhaps you will even be tempted to join in. You can relax, have a drink, sit in front of the camp fire, and listen to the sounds of the noisy tree hyrax who live nearby. Then, enjoy dinner – and fall asleep, dreaming of the day’s highlights.

  • Meal Plan Breakfast is served at Serengeti Tortilis Camp. Lunch will be a nutritious and balanced meal, also provided by the camp for you to take out on safari. Your dinner will be a full, cooked meal created by the team at the Ngorongoro Tortilis Camp.
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Journey: (morning) Ngorongoro to Empakaai Crater After breakfast, we drive to the trailhead on the rim of Empakaai Crater, a 3-hour journey (80km). We will walk down to the crater lake to see flamingos, then back up the path to the vehicle for our hamper lunch, before returning in the late afternoon to camp.
Day’s Highlight The view from the rim of Empakaai Crater, down to the crater lake with its population of flamingos, is justifiably regarded as one of the finest in Africa.
Walking Safari at Empakaai Crater From our safari camp, we set off after breakfast, an early departure to pick up our armed park ranger and then reach the Empakaai Crater rim. From there, we walk down to the crater lake, keeping our eyes peeled for points of natural interest along the way. In the background, you will see some of Tanzania’s many volcanoes. The crater lake here is around 80 metres deep, much deeper than the lake in Ngorongoro. This is a peaceful place, with chatter of the flamingos and the distant clatter of cowbells often being the only sounds to disturb the silence.
  • Accommodation After your walking safari, you will return to your Ngorongoro accommodation (see above) for some relaxation, your evening meal and a welcome sleep.
  • Meal Plan Breakfast is enjoyed at the Ngorongoro Tortilis Camp. Lunch will be a nutritious and balanced meal, also provided by the camp for you to take out on your trek and enjoyed after trekking. Your dinner will be a delicious meal at the Ngorongoro Tortilis Camp.