African Safari Tanzania – Track The Big Five in the Ngorongoro Crater ✈
The Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania is one of the most popular African Safari destinations in East Africa. The estimated 25,000 animals that live in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area include the Big Five: the leopard, the lion, the African elephant, the rhinoceros and the African buffalo.
Wildlife in the Crater
The Ngorongoro crater is located between the Great Rift Valley and the Serengeti plains, where millions of years ago a volcano exploded and collapsed on itself. The deep volcanic caldera includes lakes, marshes, grasslands, forests and swamps. The crater is 20 km wide and is surrounded by a rim that is around 600 metres high.
In addition to the Big Five, the conservation area is home to zebras, wildebeest, cheetahs, jackals and hyenas. The annual wildebeest migration passes through Ngorongoro in February and March. The diverse birdlife includes flamingos, white storks, ostriches, vultures and eagles. Hippos live in the Magadi Lake in the middle of the crater, and cattle owned by the local Maasai come to the crater to graze.
The Ngorongoro Crater is a breathtakingly beautiful setting and the best place in Tanzania to see the Big Five.
The Best Time to Visit
The best time to visit Ngorongoro is during the dry season between May and October. The dry season is the ideal time for an African safari in East Africa because, the lack of water forces animals to concentrate around water sources and makes them easier to spot.
The rainy season from November to April is divided into two parts. The short rains fall during November and December, and the long rains from February to April. Although fewer visitors come to Ngorongoro during the rainy season, February and March are a good time to catch the wildebeest migration that arrives from the Serengeti National Park.
Annual Wildebeest Migration
Around 1.5 million wildebeest in East Africa move continuously around in search of food. The massive herds move in a clockwise circle that covers almost 3000 kilometres and passes through several national parks including the Serengeti, the Maasai Mara and the Ngorongoro. The wildebeest spend late February and much of March in Ngorongoro grazing and calving.
“Africa changes you forever, like no place else on earth. Once you have been there, you will never be the same.”
How to Book an African Safari
Total Advantage Travel experts will organize your African Safari using the top tour operators and local guides. We also plan small group tours and private safaris. All visitors to the crater must be accompanied by a licensed safari guide. Most of our groups travel in jeeps, but we also arrange guided walking safaris.
There are lodges inside the conservation area, in addition, accommodation is also available in the nearby town Arusha. However, accommodation outside the park is usually more affordable than in the lodges inside the conservation area. Contact us for more information and let us help you plan your experience of a lifetime!■
Hero Photo: Robert Townshend
Content Photos: iStock
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African Safari Tanzania – Ngorongoro Crater
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