Discover Northern Parks – 8 Days
The Discover Northern Parks safari includes the tourist destinations in the northern circuit of Tanzania: Arusha NP, Tarangire National Park, Manyara National Park and Serengeti National Park and Ngorongoro crater.
Highlights of this safari include: Recreational activities in an African village, nature walk inside the park, visit to Olduvai Gorge the archeological site that led to the Serengeti being referred to as “the birthplace of humanity,” a Serengeti game drive, a walking safari to stretch while climbing along the rim of the Ngorongoro Crater. This safari will culminate in a half-mile descent from the rim of the crater by jeep into the 100 square mile crater, home to 25,000-wildlife species you can see close up.
Day 1: Arrival – Kilimanjaro International Airport – Arusha City
Upon arrival at Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO), our representative will meet you and transfer you to your hotel for an overnight stay. Your professional safari guide will brief you during dinner on various aspects of your itinerary.
Lodging: African Tulip Hotel (Bed & Breakfast)
Day 2: Arusha City – Arusha NP (Nature Walk & Game Drive)
After breakfast depart with picnic lunch to Arusha NP; At the Momella Gate, an armed ranger will be waiting for you to accompany you on your walking safari that will give you the chance to experience the wildlife up-close. The walking safari takes 1-4 hours; the walking safari will be through rain forests and other natural vegetation in the park. The Park has an incredible variety of fauna and flora, which cannot fail to impress. Hollywood also chose this region to film the movie “Hartari” in which Hardy Kruger starred alongside the legendary John Wagne. Your trip will include a visit to the Ngurdoto Crater, often labelled as the little Ngorongoro. Buffaloes, waterbucks, giraffes, warthogs, zebras and Guereza can be seen all year round as well as many different bird species. The elephants are more shy than the elephants in the Serengeti but can also be seen at Arusha National Park. Occasionally, one may also spot a leopard. Lunch will be taken at a picnic place and in the afternoon, you will continue your tour in the safari vehicle through the Arusha National Park. After plenty of time allocated for you to observe the wildlife, we will take you back to Arusha.
Lodging: African Tulip Hotel (3 meals)
Day 3: Tarangire National Park
After breakfast, your driver-guide will pick you up from your hotel and you will enjoy the 2 hr (74 mile/120km) leisure drive south-westward to Tarangire NP. In this region in Tanzania, Hemmingway often went on big game hunting safaris. After the formation of its national parks in 1970, Tanzania turned the seasonal marshes and the endless savannah that you see today into, once again, profitable hunting grounds. Today however, cameras have thankfully replaced elephant guns.
The Tarangire National Park has the highest concentration of elephants in North – Tanzania and you can view these animals all year round where elephant herd populations can reach as many as 3,000. The Tarangire River has water all year around. During the dry season (July-October), many animals from the surrounding areas come to the river to drink. If you visit the park during the dry season, you will witness an unforgettable natural wonder as you observe exotic big mammals such as lions, giraffes, buffaloes, wildebeests, zebras and various types of antelopes such as gazelles. During the dry season, Tarangire is a haven for bird watchers with over 550 different species including the Maasai Ostrich-the world’s largest bird. Around lunchtime, you will stop at a suitable picnic place. The afternoon is dedicated to more wildlife watching.
Lodging: Maramboi Tented Lodge (3 meals)
Day 4: Mto Wa Mbu Biking Excursion – Manyara National Park
Early departure to Lake Manyara National Park, where we begin our biking excursion to Mto Wa Mbu village. After lunch, wel proceed to Manyara National Park for a game viewing drive. The park is green throughout the year because of its underground water sources. Its verdant color attracts hundreds of spectacular varieties of migratory and wetland birds flying overhead. It also attracts huge populations of flamingos because its shallow alkaline-saline (salt) soda lake creates an ideal environment for microorganisms to grow that flamingos’ feed upon. Manyara’s natural habitat also includes large troops of baboons, velvet monkeys, blue monkeys, and tree climbing lions, hippos, giraffes, zebras, buffalos, warthogs, impalas, Thomson-gazelles, and Grant gazelles. Leopards, cheetahs, rock/tree hyrax, kudus, elands, bushbucks, waterbucks, and dik-diks also live in this park.
As an alternate to biking, you can choose one of the following activities:
Forest Hike (2.5 to 3hrs)
Nature Walk (1hr to 1.5hrs)
Village Walk (2.5 to 3hrs)
Lake Manyara Canoeing (2.5 to 3hrs, weather permitting)
Later in the evening we drive to Karatu for dinner and overnight.
Lodging: Karatu Country Lodge (3 meals)
Day 5: Olduvai Gorge – Serengeti National Park
After breakfast, you depart to the Serengeti plains by way of the lush Ngorongoro Crater Highlands where fertile soils grow crops such as wheat, corn and coffee. En route to the Serengeti, you will visit Olduvai Gorge where the famous archaeologists Louis and Mary Leakey discovered evidence of the oldest prehistoric human civilization and a human skull dating back 1.8 million years ago. There is also a small museum that documents their work. Afterwards, we proceed further into to the Serengeti.
The name “Serengeti” comes from the Maasai word siringitu, meaning “endless plains”, and you will see why once you see its “ocean” of grassland savannas stretching to the horizon. The Serengeti ecosystem is one of the oldest and most well-preserved on earth. The essential features of climate, vegetation, fauna and flora have barely changed over the past million years. The patterns of life, death, adaptation and migration are as old as the hills themselves.
After game viewing, we return to our lodging for dinner and overnight.
Lodging: Kati Kati Tented Camp (3 meals)
Day 6: Serengeti National Park
Before breakfast, we depart for a game viewing drive. After returning to the lodge for a hot breakfast, we depart with a picnic lunch for another game viewing drive. The Serengeti plains are only interrupted by the Kopjes, bizarre rock formations formed by the weathering of granite outcrops. This is often where leopards and the other big cats can be found, and where you will most likely have the opportunity to view these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat. We return to our lodging for dinner and an evening at leisure.
One of the greatest natural phenomenon on earth that takes place in the Serengeti is the “Great Migration,” for which the Serengeti is perhaps most famous. The Great Migrations includes more than 2.5 million wildebeest driven by ancient rhythms and natural instincts following water sources in a clockwise rotation traveling 1,800 miles per year. The Serengeti is also the best destination for viewing big cats and other wildlife species.
We return to our lodging for dinner and an evening at leisure.
Lodging: Kati Kati Tented Camp (3 meals)
Day 7: Serengeti NP – Ngorongoro Crater Rim Walking Safari
Before breakfast, we depart for early morning game. We return for breakfast, then depart with a picnic lunch for our final game viewing drive in Serengeti National Park. After lunch, we proceed to the Ngorongoro Crater. As soon as you have reached the edge of the crater rim, and view it’s bottom a half-mile below, and view its 100 square mile expanse, you will be transfixed by this jaw-dropping natural wonder.
We will be getting out of the safari jeep to enjoy the view while walking along the crater rim for an hour. Afterwards, you will proceed to Karatu for evening leisure and hot dinner.
Lodging: Ngorongoro Farm House (3 meals)
Day 8: Ngorongoro Crater – Kilimanjaro International Airport
After breakfast, we return to the Ngorongoro Crater and descend into it for a day of game viewing. The crater has a unique ecosystem that is inhabited by more than 25,000 animals. In the grass steppes and acacia forest you can encounter almost every animal species of the East African savanna, including the “Big Five” (rhino, elephant, Cape buffalo, lion, leopard) and most of the species found in the Serengeti, including zebra, hippos, wildebeest, and cheetahs.
Later in the day, you will be driven to Kilimanjaro International Airport for your flight to your next destination or back home.
What the Price Includes:
- Medical Evacuation Insurance (covering Emergency Ground Flying Doctors).
- 7-nights accommodation in hotels and other lodgings, as specified in the itinerary
- Meals as specified for each day of the itinerary
- Transportation by private FWD vehicle, equipped with roof hatches, VHF radio, and GSM contact with our base in Arusha
- The services of a professional safari guide
- Park and Crater entry fees
- Airport transfers upon arrival and departure
- Mto Wa Mbu Cultural Activity and local lunch
- Olduvai Gorge Visit
- Ngorongoro Crater Rim Walking Safari
- One (1) bottle of pure drinking water per day throughout the safari
What the Price Does not Include:
- International airfare and other travel costs such as visas and vaccination fees, and additional travel insurance.
- Optional Serengeti balloon safari (USD $539 per person), and any other optional activities such as cultural experiences with tribal-based communities in the Serengeti-Rift Valley region.
- Any increase in government taxes prior to the start of your trip
- All items of a personal nature (e.g. beverages, laundry, etc.)
- Gratitude for the safari guides (at your discretion)
NOTE: The cost to make any requested itinerary modifications or terminate the safari while in progress will be payable by the passengers concerned.