13 days, 12 nights - Northern Circuit
You will be met at the International Airport of Kilimanjaro by your Driver/Guide and our representative. We will take you to Kigongoni Lodge, This charming Lodge is situated at the banks of picturesque Tengeru on an old German coffee estate and offers stunning views towards Mt. Meru and Mt Kilimanjaro. Alternative accommodation is at Mount Meru Game Lodge with an animal sanctuary attached. Our safari manager will come to meet you and to provide you with a briefing on the great safari circuit Tanzania.
The driver/guide will pick you up at 8 am, then you’ll drive across the floor of the Great Rift Valley to Lake Manyara National Park for a game drive. This beautiful park with it’s lush vegetation and tropical forests of giant fig and mahogany trees, takes its name from the Maasai word for “euphorbia tirucalli”, a bush which is used to make a thorny hedge to protect their cattle.
Elephant, giraffe, buffalo, zebra and a variety of antelope inhabit the park as well as a variety of monkeys and a large population of hippos. If you are lucky you may see Manyara lions, well known for their tree climbing habits, lazily resting on the branches of an “Acacia tortilis” tree. The bird life is also abundant, with flamingos, pelicans, hornbills and plenty of forest species.
Overnight at OlMesera Tented Camp. All meals included.
Day 3 – 4
In the morning you drive via Engaruka Town towards Lake Natron on a partly bumpy and dusty road. En route you see many Masai villages, termite mounds, gazelle, giraffe, zebra, baboons, bee boxes, and birds such as vultures, ostrich, starlings, Cory Bustards, and kites. The transfer takes you some 4 hours. After checking in at your lodge and some lunch you go in the afternoon on a guided walk around Lake Natron the lowest point of the Great Rift Valley in Tanzania (600m / 2000 ft) and famous for a vast numbers of flamingos and other water birds due to a high concentrate of sodium carbonate, algae, and zooplankton. You can go for a hike up the NgareSero River which flows in the Lake Natron In contrast to the surrounding dry landscape, here you can find a small paradise. After a strenuous walk up the stream, we reach the source of the river, in cascading waterfalls the river gushes out of the mountains. It is an excellent swim in the river and under the waterfalls for a nice cool-down from the hot sun. There may be baboons or other wildlife in the gorge.
2 x overnight at Lake Natron Tented Camp. All meals included.
NB – swimming depends on weather and water level conditions and may not be possible all the time.
Lake Natron – Serengeti
After breakfast you visit Lake Natron to see the flamingos Lake Natron is famous for. If you wish, you can walk at the lake shore in salty water. Afterwards you start your way towards Serengeti with some wildlife and many Maasai villages to see along the way. You cross Loliondo Area, a concession bordering Serengeti National Park and drive further towards the Western Corridor where the Great Migration is expected to pass through in June/July. After stopping for your picnic lunch on a kopje (rock outcropping) at Serengeti you will continue further into the park and go on a game drive on your way to Ikoma or Central Serengeti.
Overnight at Ikoma Tented Camp or Kati Kati Tented Camp in the Serengeti. All meals included.
Early morning game drive to see also nocturnal predators returning from hunting and animals waking up in early morning light followed by full day of game drives around Serengeti. Depending on the time of year and the migration of the herds you can expect to see wildebeest, lions, elephants, giraffes, zebras, monkeys, baboons, hippos, rhinos, antelopes and many birds and other species. Your Driver/Guide will be in contact with other Safari drivers and will amaze you with his skill at locating the hidden animals.
Overnight at Ikoma Tented Camp or Kati Kati Tented Camp. All meals included.
In the morning proceed with Game-drives at Serengeti on the way to Lake Victoria. In the afternoon drive into the nearby hills to take a look at rural Africa, passing through the small villages of the Sukuma people, who grow cotton, ground nuts, sorghum and cassava as well as keeping livestock. Life carries on simply as it has done for centuries, but with a few poignant reminders of the 20th Century!
See the local school and take a stroll to the top of a small kopje.
Overnight at Speke Bay Lodge. All meals included.
In the morning traditional fishing canoe trip to a fishing village. Local fishermen will paddle the canoes and, on the way, the scene is typical of the lakeshore with women toiling in the fields and men fishing. The paddlers sing as they work taking one back in time as they sing traditional songs of home, of cattle and of life. In the distance can be seen the white lateen sails of fishing boats or dhows, returning from a night of fishing far out on the Lake. In the afternoon you proceed with village visits around Lake Victoria. Another Highlight of the day is the visit at a traditional healer in one of the Sukuma villages.
Overnight at Speke Bay Lodge. All meals included.
Return to the Serengeti. Depending on the time of year and the location of the migration herds, you can expect to see wildebeest, lions, elephants, giraffes, zebras, monkeys, baboons, hippos, rhinos, antelopes and many birds and other species. Your driver/guide will be in contact with other safari drivers and will amaze you with his skill at locating the hidden animals.
Overnight at Ndutu Safari Lodge . All meals included.
After breakfast we depart for Ngorongoro Conservation Area. Upon arrival at late morning, you will spend the day game driving in the crater. As very few animals migrate in and out of the crater with its 2000 ft. high walls, you can expect to see lions, elephants, zebras, hippos, flamingos, jackals, rhinos, antelopes, many birds and many other species.
Overnight at Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge or Ngorongoro Wildlife Lodge. All meals included.
Ngoronogoro – Lake Eyasi
From Ngorongoro you proceed to Lake Eyasi – home to the hunter-gathers, an ethnic group of the Hadzabe Bushmen bearing similar characteristics to those of Bushmen in Southern Africa. The small people of this indigenous tribe are probably the last living in true harmony with nature and have a wealth of Flora and Fauna knowledge to share with us. The two days are filled with tours and game walks guided by bushmen taking you on their traditional hunting tracks.
Overnight at a KisimaNgeda Tented Camp. All meals included.
After breakfast we depart for Tarangire, Tanzania’s sixth largest national park and sanctuary for an unusually large elephant population. Majestic baobab trees are an interesting feature of the park, dwarfing the animals that feed beneath them. Animals concentrate along the Tarangire River, which provides the only permanent water supply in the area. There is a great diversity of wildlife including lion, leopard, cheetah and up to six thousand elephant.
Overnight at Maramboi Tented Lodge. All meals included.
One final morning game drive before leaving. In the afternoon we will reach Arusha and you will stay in a day room at Kigongoni or Mount Meru Game Lodge or similar. This is where your Explore Northern circuit safari in Tanzania tour ends. Departure transfer to airport for your onwards journey. Breakfast and lunch included.
This safari is also available as a camping safari, or if you like we can extend your holiday with a stay in Zanzibar