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Tanzania

Glacier capped mountains, white sandy beaches and vast terrains hosting the world’s last standing mammal migration are all experiences every traveller must encounter. As East Africa’s largest country, the most effective way to experience the variation in topography is on one of our scheduled safaris. These are most ideal as they give you the freedom to choose from a long list of departure dates yet have great flexibility in pairing more than one safari if you wish to venture further north or south for an extended holiday. Your options also range from camping to accommodated option.

Group Safaris

For many, Tanzania represents the ultimate safari destination, and joining a group tour enables you to see many of the highlights of this strikingly beautiful country. Choose from camping or 2-3* accommodation in an overland truck, or join a more luxury style tour with boutique style or larger hotels. Departures can be set dates or "upon request" to suit your own requirements depending on the tour.

07 Day Essence of Tanzania Scheduled Safari

Imagine finding yourself under the vast African sky in the middle of one of the last expanses of true wilderness left on our planet, surrounded by animals – at night listening to the haunting and mysterious sounds of night predators and their prey as the drama of their interactions unfold. This safari will allow you ample time to visit the famous wildlife areas of Tarangire, Serengeti and Ngorongoro, all world–famous icons, offering some of the best game viewing in Africa.

10 Day Tanzania Wildlife And Culture Scheduled Safari

This is a small group, no participation safari that explores both the wildlife and cultural highlights of Tanzania, with accommodation in either a lodge or permanent tented camp. Enjoy this lodge safari as youexplore the rich culture and stunning scenery that only Tanzania is known for and visit world–famous places such as the Serengeti, the Ngorongoro Crater, Tarangire National Park and many more.

10 Day Tanzania Sacred Places Private–Guided Safari

A 10day accommodated/tented camp safari taking in some of the major highlights and a few little gems of Tanzania from the migration route and game–packed Serengeti, travelling off the beaten–track of Masai land, and onward to Lake Natron and the stunning sight of pink flamingos, along with the historic and famous Olduvai Gorge.

Private-Guided Safaris

As one of our favourite destinations, Tanzania offers a huge variation from the endless plains of the Serengeti and the annual wildebeest migration, abundant game, varied landscapes, multi-cultured people and of course, beautiful white-sandy beaches - a perfect destination to combine sand and safari and to tailor a vacation to suit your dreams. There^s a range of hotels/lodges and campsites ideal to cater to a range of budgets and travel styles.

Please send us as much information as possible to allow us to understand your wishes and create a perfect holiday.

Hiking Safaris

With just a handful of operators running walking safaris, we have collaborated with the best – walk in a wilderness area inside the Serengeti surrounded by the sounds of the African bush – an unforgettable experience. Longer and shorter walks available on request.

07 Day Tanzania Serengeti Footprints Walking Safari

Tanzania has recently opened up some of its wilderness areas for fantastic walking safaris inside the national parks. Join this Serengeti tour to experience vehicle–based game viewing as well as 3days walking in this wildlife–packed region. You’ll be set up in private camps under the starry night skies among the game and listen to the haunting night sounds of the Africa bush. 

Tanzania Regions: take a closer look

The vast treeless plains of the Serengeti, famous for its Great Migration particularly of wildebeest is world-renowned, this park, and many of the surrounding reserves offer spectacular wildlife sightings. The 14,763 sq km Serengeti is split into areas and its worth bearing in mind where the majority of the game will at different times of the year. The majority of safaris will try to follow the migration as the animals seek fresh pasture but note that some overland companies will have set routes staying at popular locations in an aim to offer value for money – this may not always offer the concentration of animals the migration offers but it does give all-round experience - you, as the client need to decide what is most important to you. Several smaller operators will make use of semi-permanent camps following the migration, and ensure they try to get the best game viewing experience. Remember that there is a resident wildlife population year-round and its not just about wildebeest crossing croc-infested rivers though its fair to say the number decline significantly! There is a healthy predator population of lion (many are fitted with radio-collars), leopard, cheetah, hyena along with smaller species such as jackal, and serval. Don’t forget the zebra that often migrate with the wildebeest, gazelles, giraffe, and other antelope. Below is an indication of the migration, as well as an explanation of the areas.

Central/Serenera and Southern Serengeti The central part of the plains is the most visited and easily accessible both from Arusha and the west corridor, as well as being close to the Ngorongoro boundary. The Serenera area offers incredible wildlife and is home to high densities of predators such as lion, leopard and cheetah, all snacking off the resident herbivores, thus making the region busy year-round. The vast and mainly flat, open southern plains is full of wildebeest during late November/December to April/May but can be quiet at other times, though there are still resident animals around Lake Ndutu and kopjie areas.

Western Serengeti Home to the famous wood-lined Grumeti River (wildebeest migration), the region has good game-viewing year-round including most of the cat predators along with hyena and jackal following in the wake of the herbivores. There are also colobus monkeys in the forest areas.

Northern Serengeti Bordering Kenya, the migration continues north into the Maasai Mara. There is good permanent populations of animals amongst the undulating land and small rivers.

The Migration Explained The following should be used as a guideline when planning your safari to East Africa – movement of wildlife depends on a great many aspects – but this helps to explain the seasonality of game viewing. Remember there is resident game throughout the year in the Serengeti/Ngorongoro eco-systems. Rainfall plays a significant part in the migration and below is a guideline JAN / FEB / MARCH The big herds of wildebeest are generally in the southern plains of the Serengeti eco-system, calving takes place over approximately two weeks. Lots of predators, good visibility of game, mix of open plains and some woodland. APRIL / MAY The herds start moving toward central Serengeti. This is typically the rainy season, however, game viewing is still excellent and there are some great discounts available at lodges and camps. It generally doesn’t rain all day. Photography is generally superb with moody skies and good depth of colour. JUNE / JULY / AUGUST The wildebeest move from the central area and split to the west and north, continuing their trek toward the Mara River. River crossings may be seen in both the western corridor (Grumeti area) and north (Mara River) within the Serengeti. SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER Whilst some of the wildebeest successfully reach the Masai Mara, there are still hundreds of thousands remaining in the northern region of Serengeti, offering those with patience the chance to see river crossings (the Mara River runs through the Serengeti). NOVEMBER / DECEMBER The big herds start to return from the north, to the southern plains, to start the whole process again! REMEMBER There is excellent game viewing throughout the year.

The archipelago within the warm waters of the Indian Ocean is made up of over 50 islands but the most famous is Zanzibar itself.

Stone Town is where everyone arrives! The old town has a mix of influences not only from African mainland but Indian subcontinent, Arab peninsula and Europe and there’s a huge choice of hotels and restaurants to suit all budgets. Amongst all this, you can find wonderful narrow streets with beautiful mansions, and a mix of architecture reflecting its history. Its worth spending a few days exploring the area as well as taking in a spice tour before taking in Zanzibar’s palm-lined beaches, they are perhaps some of the best you’ll find in the world, with white powder sand and turquoise waters, as well as making it great for diving and snorkeling amongst the coral, watching out for colourful fish and other marine life.

This ancient crater (about 17-20km wide) is the world’s largest intact volcanic caldera and unsurprisingly a UNESCO World Heritage site. At around 20kms across, 600m deep and 300 sq kms in area, the Ngorongoro Crater itself is a breathtaking natural wonder, and without doubt one of Africa’s most famous sites and a high density of wildlife. Sometimes described as an ‘eighth wonder of the world’ it attracts an ever-increasing number of visitors each year. You are unlikely to escape other vehicles here, but you are guaranteed great wildlife viewings! Forming a spectacular bowl, it is home to approximately 30,000 animals at any one time though they do migrate in and out of the crater. The rim is over 2,200m high and from the edge you can make out the tiny figures of wandering animals on the floor far below. Some of the many species include predators such as lion, serval, cheetah and hyena as well as vast amounts of gazelle and giraffe but perhaps highly regarded for sightings of black rhino. It’s common for swathes of cloud hang around the rim most days and it’s one of the few places in Tanzania where it can get chilly so come prepared. In the conservation area outside of the crater, visitors can visit Maasai villagers for so if not going into Kenya this is a good option and where the Maasai were diverted from the Serengeti Plains. Nearby famous Olduvai Gorge makes up a part of the conservation area and to many, an essential place to visit whilst here.

Olduvai Gorge

This historically fascinating site in Tanzania holds the some of the earliest evidence of the existence of human ancestors. Paleoanthropologists have found hundreds of fossilized bones and stone tools in the area dating back millions of years, and for years believed that humans evolved in Africa, recent findings challenge and update continually but without doubt it is worth a visit to see where ancestors trod their path. The gorge is about 48km long and 90m deep. A river cuts through several layers to form four individual beds, estimated at about 2 million years old. West of the Ngorongoro Crater at Laetoli, hominid footprints estimated to be 3.6million years old are preserved in volcanic rock and represent some of the earliest signs of mankind in the world, these three separate tracks are believed to be from a small-brained upright-walking early hominid and imprints are displayed in the museum. For anyone interested in how humans developed this is considered a must-see destination easily combined into a safari to the crater.

Just 90 minutes’ drive from Arusha and an hour from Ngorongoro Crater, this popular but small park of just 330 sq km can get busy particularly in the northern section but remains in the perfect location to include in an itinerary for Northern Tanzania. Situated beneath the cliffs of the Manyara Escarpment, and sitting on the edge of the Rift Valley, there is a range of ecosystems, incredible bird life, and breathtaking views. You’ll find elephant, buffalo and wildebeest as well as plenty of plains game such as zebra, buck, impala and warthogs, all of which try to avoid the leopards and rather famous tree-climbing lions!

Is located in one of the most remote locations in Tanzania, on the western border with the Congo, against the shores of Lake Tanganyika. The park covers an area of 1,613 sq kms and can only be reached by boat or small aircraft and is home to a large chimpanzee population that is well acclimatized to human contact and no doubt remains one of the best experiences though you need to allow at least 2 days tracking as though they are habituated as with all wild animals sightings are not guaranteed and it’s a long way to come to not experience them. If you want guaranteed sightings perhaps consider another park. Naturally, due to its location it means limited visitor numbers but a great location to returning visitors or those seeking something out of the mainstream. There are no roads in the park, only tracks and trails. While hiking through the forest is a fantastic experience you must be prepared for a tough hike and a level of fitness is required. Watch out for some of the other species species of monkey including red colobus and an array of colourful forest birds as you hike through the forest.

The mountains rise from the shores of the lake with vegetation ranging from grass steppe, acacia savanna and baobabs to montane forest and bamboo bushland. Within the park is Lake Tanganyika is the world’s longest, second-deepest and least polluted fresh water lake – with an estimated 1,000 fish species. Swim, snorkel and fish in the lake. Perhaps the best time to visit is May to October although forest walks are no problem in the light rain of October/November. The park was originally habited by the local Tongwe people who hold the highest peak, Nkungwe, sacred.

As the second-largest national park, Ruaha is situated west of Selous and a remote place of spectacular wilderness, undisturbed wildlife, and jaw-dropping scenery. Add that to few visitors it encompasses 10,300sq km and together with the adjoining Rungwa-Kisigo Reserve form an ecosystem covering an area of 45,000 sq kms.  The Ruaha covers a transition zone where Eastern and Southern African species of both fauna and flora meet.  With more than 10,000 elephants, along with vast concentrations of buffalo, gazelle, and over 400 bird species. The mighty Ruaha River is one of the main features, on its banks, the game viewing is spectacular, whether done by land or by water, huge herds of elephant browse, hippos grunt and crocodiles lie lazily along the banks. Boating safaris are starting to gain in popularity, and provide a popular alternative to viewing the area by car. During the rainy seasons, dry river beds swell with the biannual deluge and within days, a thin coat of green covers all the land in sight.  Because of its rather remote location, Ruaha National Park is largely unexplored and a safari to the national park often has the feel of a private adventure and unique experience. For wilderness lovers and those seeking out of the way and unspoilt destinations, a trip to Ruaha is a uniquely rewarding place to visit .

At around 50,000 sq km Selous is the largest wildlife reserve in Africa and covers more than 5% of Tanzania. Historically, there have been several events that set it apart, including the finding of stone implements belonging to prehistoric man, along with being a route with slave and ivory traders, the history of German East Africa played out in this area. Despite its size, the Selous has remained one of the untouched gems of East Africa’s wildlife reserve due to its remote location and therefore there are less visitors making it more appealing to those who make the effort. The area, much of which is inaccessible, includes brachystegia woodland with grassy flood-plains, ground water forest patches and a number of rocky outcrops whilst the Rufiji River provides the lifeline, and as such, is home to a plethora of birdlife. The ancient migration of elephants during the dry season takes place between the Selous and Mozambique’s Niassa Game Reserves. At the last count it was estimated that 64,000 elephants roam between the two parks and the Selous reportedly has the world’s largest concentration of hippopotamuses and crocodiles. Other animals include leopard, wild dogs, greater kudu, sickle horned sable antelopes, waterbuck, reed buck to name just a few. The Selous is unique among Tanzania’s more well-known wildlife areas because it is a reserve, not a national park, and therefore a larger range of activities are permitted. Boating safaris, escorted walks and hiking safaris all add a bit of adventure in addition to the game drives.

Has some of the highest population density of elephants to anywhere in Tanzania, and sightings are generally guaranteed, its sparse vegetation, strewn with baobab and acacia trees, makes it a beautiful and distinctive location to visit and a contrast to many other parks in East Africa. With up to 300 elephants intermittently scratching through the dry river bed searching for pools of underground water and browsing amongst the savannah, you’ll also see migratory wildebeest, zebra, buffalo, impala, gazelle, hartebeest and eland crowd the shrinking lagoons. It’s the greatest concentration of wildlife outside the Serengeti ecosystem - a smorgasbord for predators – and the one place in Tanzania where dry-country antelope such as the stately fringe-eared oryx and strange but elegantly long-necked gerenuk are regularly observed.  During the rainy season, the seasonal 4-legged visitors scatter over a 20,000 sq km range until they exhaust the plains and the river calls once again. The year-round green-tinted swamps, provide home for 550 bird varieties, the most breeding species in one habitat anywhere in the world.  Take part in walking safaris as well as day trips to Maasai and Barabaig villages.

This untouched pristine park in the south-west is the third largest in the country covering 4471sq km and has great biodiversity yet remains largely unvisited by tourists. It’s home to large numbers of antelopes including roan, sable and eland along with the rare puku. Elephant wander through the grass plains and large populations of hippo and crocodiles can be found along the rivers, while lion and leopard are found lying in wait amongst the antelopes.  One of the best sightings is often the huge herds of buffalo where a 1,000 animals can be seen.

Gombe Stream National Park, found on the western border of Tanzania and the Congo, is unsurprisingly most famous for the protected chimpanzee families living within the park boundaries and the work carried out by Jane Goodall, the resident primatologist who spent many years in its forests studying the behaviour of this endangered species. Sharing about 98% of their genes with humans their behaviour is like looking in a mirror! Located on the wild shores of Lake Tanganyika, it is an untamed place of lush forests and clear lake views. Visitors can take part in walks heading deep into the forest to observe and sit with the extraordinary primates for an entire morning and is, without doubt, an incredible experience and one that is the highlight of many visitors’ trips to Africa. Besides chimpanzee viewing, many other species of primates live in Gombe Stream’s tropical forests. Vervet and colobus monkeys, baboons, forest pigs and small antelopes inhabit the dense forest, along with a wide variety of tropical birdlife. The park is just 52km sq north of Kigoma on the shore of Lake Tanganyika in western Tanzania. Hiking and swimming are also popular activities, once the day’s expedition to see the chimpanzees is over.

Arusha National Park: located just 45mins from Arusha town, this gem of a national park has a variety of eco systems and spectacular views of Mt. Meru, the second highest mountain in Tanzania (4566m) though it can also be climbed (4-5days) it is technically harder than Kili. Enjoy game drives and experience volcanic craters with great forest scenery, canoeing on Momela Lakes and guided walking safaris (4hours). Just 137 sq km there is surprisingly rich variety of animals and almost 400 species of birds.

Many trips will start from here or Arusha and there are plenty of international flights (though many will also come in via Kilimanjaro Airport between Arusha and Mosi), along with a wide choice of accommodation.  Dar, as it is fondly known, is the main coastal city and Zanzibar just a short ferry trip or flight away.  There are a number of interesting historical buildings but there’s not a huge amount for the tourist visitor to see, generally just a night or two is sufficient and used as a base to head to beaches in the north, or other destinations.

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