Tanzania and Zanzibar
The Serengeti, Mount Kilimanjaro, Zanzibar and luxury safaris
East Africa’s principal safari destination has the largest biodiversity on the planet and is home to abundant wildlife, legendary game reserves, Mount Kilimanjaro, the tropical spice island Zanzibar, white sand beaches, rich historical sites, and friendly people.
TANZANIA’S NORTHERN SAFARI CIRCUIT
Serengeti National Park – Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site for the biodiversity and ecological significance of the area, Tanzania’s oldest and most popular park is an endless expanse of grasslands, savannahs and forests and contains the world’s largest concentration of wildlife highlighted by the Great Wildebeest Migration.
Singita Grumeti Private Reserve – Bordering Serengeti National Park, this reserve offers exclusive privacy in three luxury safari camps with spectacular and uncrowded game viewing.
Ngorongoro Crater – The Ngorongoro Crater lies within the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, an area that serves as a pioneering experiment in multi-purpose land use by incorporating wildlife, people, forests, archeology, education and tourism into one harmonious experience. The whole area has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the Crater itself–known as “Africa’s Garden of Eden”–is the best self-contained safari destination in the world, home to an estimated 30,000 animals in 100 square miles.
Oldupai Gorge – “The Cradle of Mankind” is one of the world’s most important prehistoric sites for the study of human origins and evolution made famous by Louis and Mary Leakey’s groundbreaking discoveries.
Lake Manyara National Park – A small scenic park tucked between Lake Manyara and the Great Rift Valley Escarpment, it’s famous for its giraffes, baboons, and vast sea of pink flamingoes; it’s also conveniently located near Arusha, the Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti, making it perfect for a day trip en-route.
Tarangire National Park – A quiet and scenically beautiful park with giant baobab trees, rivers, and rolling grasslands, Tarangire also hosts huge elephant herds during the dry season from August through October.
TANZANIA’S SOUTHERN SAFARI CIRCUIT
Selous Game Reserve – Designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its diversity of wildlife and undisturbed nature, Selous is one of the largest conservation areas in the world; it’s remote, wild, and unpopulated with visitors.
Mahale Mountains National Park – The best place in Africa to see chimpanzees is home to one of the world’s most remote and visually stunning safari camps on the shore of Lake Tanganyika, accessible only by boat or charter aircraft.
Gombe Stream National Park – Tanzania’s smallest park is a dense tropical forest rising steeply out of Lake Tanganyika and the place where Jane Goodall studied the “Chimps of Gombe.”
Ruaha National Park – Off the beaten path, Ruaha is rugged and seldom visited because of its remote location, but it offers true, unspoiled African wilderness with an abundance of game to its visitors.
Katavi National Park – The ultimate remote wildlife destination is one of Africa’s best-kept secrets. Katavi is seldom visited (just 200 annual visitors compared to 120,000 in the northern parks) because of its remoteness, combined with the time and cost of getting there, but it contains excellent game viewing in considerable privacy for those who make the journey.
Mount Kilimanjaro – A UNESCO World Heritage Site. At 19,340 feet, Mount Kilimanjaro is Africa’s highest peak and the largest freestanding mountain in the world.
Arusha – The “Geneva of Africa” is a major center of Tanzanian diplomacy and international relations and is the gateway to Tanzania’s game parks in the north as well as the hub of its safari business.
Arusha National Park – This tiny park boasts outstanding scenery just a 40-minute drive from Arusha.
Zanzibar – The exotic “Spice Islands” are unique coral islands rich in history which contain a wonderful mix of Chinese, Indian, Arab, African and European cultures, all while maintaining their fame as the world leader in clove production.
Pangani – The Zanzibar of the mainland is not as well-known, but it does offer pristine beaches, tranquility, and no crowds. Pangani is a small, old, Arab slave-trading town rich in history and culture, and in essence is a quieter and cheaper alternative to Zanzibar.
TANZANIA AND ZANZIBAR ACTIVITIES
- Game drives
- Hot-air balloon safaris
- Walking safaris
- Maasai cultural interaction
- Horseback safaris
- Visit Oldupai Gorge, home to excavation sites, a museum and a gift shop
- Boating safaris
- Fishing and deep-sea fishing
- Chimpanzee trekking
- Visit Stone Age ruins at Isimila
- Climb Mount Kilimanjaro
- Visits to the Arusha Declaration Museum
- Touring the Natural History Museum
- Exploring the Meserani Snake Park
- Climb Mount Meru
- Spice tours
- Shopping in colorful markets including the famous Darajani Market in Stone Town
- Dhow sailboat cruises
- Mountain biking
- Bird watching
- Sandbar picnics
- Visits to Maziwe Island – a small sand island surrounded by Marine Reserve
- City historical tours
THE BEST TIME TO VISIT TANZANIA AND ZANZIBAR
Tanzania’s climate is tropical, pleasant and comfortable, with little difference in temperature throughout the year; wildlife viewing is excellent year-round, with the exception of the stretch from April to mid-May.
- Short Rains: from November through January
- Long Rains: from mid-March through May; April is the rainiest month of the year and some safari camps close
- Highest temperatures: from December through March; days are hot and sunny with few clouds, and temperatures range from 65F-87F
- Lowest temperatures: from June through August, temperatures range from 55F-79F
- Best game viewing in the north: from June through March
- Best game viewing in the south: from July through October
- Great Wildebeest Migration in the Serengeti: from December through June
- Tanzania is most popular from November through March with a smaller surge coming during June through September, when the migration is crossing the Serengeti. The Ngorongoro Crater is popular all year round.