Resting at the foot of Mount Meru, the sprawling city of Arusha is known as the safari capital of northern Tanzania. It serves as an excellent base from which to explore the remarkably scenic surrounding area which includes majestic Mount Kilimanjaro, as well as the Manyara, Tarangire and Ngorongoro National Parks. Arusha is a good spot to take a day or two off from the safari circuit as it features a temperate climate and lush surrounds. Visitors can look forward to exploring the wildlife-abundant Serengeti National Park; the magnificent Arusha National Park; and taking on the challenge of climbing Mount Meru, Africa’s fifth highest mountain.
Situated in northeastern Tanzania, the Arusha National Park is set against the spectacular backdrop of Mount Kilimanjaro. This 552 square kilometre park is renowned for its other-worldly scenery and excellent choice of trekking possibilities. This beautiful area is divided into three parts: Mt. Meru, a spectacular volcanic cone; the Ngurdoto Crater, with its lost-world feel; and the multi-hued Momela Lakes. The park features a wide range of habitats that provide a home to an array of wildlife and plant species. Commonly spotted animals include Cape buffalo, giraffe, zebra, warthog, monkey, flamingo, lion and elephant.
Fringed by the lush green hills and flourishing acacias of Arusha National Park, Lake Momela, also referred to as the Momella Lakes, is a group of seven lakes formed as a result of Mount Meru’s prehistoric eruption. Each wondrous lake has a separate source of spring water and algae growth; this results in beautifully unique and brightly coloured lakes. A bird and animal watching haven, Lake Momela is a wondrous habitat for aquatic birds, attracting pink flamingos, African fish eagle, and African jacanas in the hundreds. At the same time, its banks are an excellent grazing point for giraffes, zebras, and buffaloes. The true beauty of the lakes and their remarkable landscapes are best enjoyed during a leisurely canoe trip.
Tarangire National Park, situated within Tanzania’s spectacular Manyara Region, is an awe-inspiring national park comprising of granite ridges, river valleys, mixed vegetative landscapes, and free-roaming wildlife. During the annual dry season, the Tarangire River is a magnet for thirsty wildlife. Large herds of elephants and migratory wildebeest, zebra, buffalo, impala, gazelle, hartebeest and eland gather and not surprisingly the predators follow. With lion being among the most commonly spotted animal, it is a rare day that a visitor does not spot this majestic animal prowling or grazing. Tarangire is also the one place in Tanzania where dry-country antelope such as oryx and gerenuk are seen regularly. This expansive area is also known for its spectacular baobab trees, its breathtaking views of the Masaai Steppe and the wondrous mountains to the south.
The village of Karatu is located in Tanzania’s northern highlands, amid the verdant hills that lead to the Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater. This small, vibrant town, dominated by the imposing Ol Deani Volcano, is a well-liked overnight stop for travellers exploring the region’s numerous wildlife parks. Visit a traditional homestead, browse the crowded market, sample some beer at a nearby brewery, or go on a guided walk through the Ngorongoro Forest in search of waterfalls and caves, just to name a few of the activities available in the town. This underappreciated town has a lot to offer, whether you’re searching for cultural excursions, hiking and bicycling options, the ability to see rural Tanzanian life firsthand, or simply a break in between safari game drives.
The Seronera district in the centre of the Serengeti is situated right on the path of the Great Migration and provides superb sight of this amazing yearly phenomena, when numerous wildebeest flood the area and migrate over the plains. Seronera is remains a wildlife hotspot at other times of the year, protecting the Big Five in addition to many other species, even if migratory game numbers vary seasonally. Numerous little campsites offer lodging, and guests can partake in guided game drives, walking safaris, and hot air balloon excursions.
Located in Northern Tanzania, the Ngorongoro Crater is best known for its natural beauty and abundance of diverse wildlife; which makes it one of Africa’s most popular safari destinations. Surrounded by Tanzania’s highlands, this UNESCO-listed crater is said to be the world’s largest intact volcanic caldera. Visitors can look forward to spotting the world-renowned Big Five and a host of other wildlife species including large herds of zebra and wildebeest. It is famed as one of Tanzania’s best tourist attractions offering visitors an array of wonderful activities including excellent bird watching, trekking, wildlife viewing, mountain biking and visiting a local Maasai village. Don’t miss the opportunity to jump on an excursion to the magnificent Olduvai Gorge.
Situated in the Crater Highlands in Northern Tanzania, the Ngorongoro Conservation Area is best known for its archaeological and geological significance, rich wildlife, and beautiful scenery. The conservation area encompasses the famous Crater, the renowned Olduvai Gorge and vast plains of grasslands, forests and mountains extending to the Serengeti. This 8000-square-kilometre protected area is recognised for its natural beauty and has been placed on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Visitors flock here to soak up the spectacular views of the Ngorongoro Crater, voted as one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Africa, it is famed for its natural beauty and abundant wildlife. Popular activities include: mountain biking, hiking, game drives, bush walks, and visiting a local Maasai village.
The Serengeti, together with Kenya’s Masai Mara Game Park, constitute Africa’s most famous wildlife park, spread over the enthralling landscapes of northern Tanzania. This is a precious ecosystem, supporting the annual wildebeest migration through the Serengeti and the Masai Mara. The largest mass movement of land mammals on the planet involves more than a million animals following the rains, including more than 1.5 million white-bearded wildebeest and 250 000 zebras. Prides of lions, as well as groups of elephants, giraffes, gazelles, and eland, roam among the photogenic vast grass plains between weird-and-wonderful-looking acacia trees. Aside from traditional vehicle safaris, hot-air ballooning over the Serengeti plains and horse riding safaris are on offer.
Situated in the heart of Tanzania, the Central Serengeti encompasses the world-famous Seronera Valley which is known for its prime wildlife-viewing opportunities. This picture-perfect landscape is characterised by endless stretches of savannah-covered open plains interspersed by rocky outcrops of granite and scattered with acacia woodlands and covered in a network of rivers and streams. The Central Serengeti forms part of the great wildebeest and zebra migration and provides an ideal habitat for a variety of wildlife such as giraffe, impala, waterbuck, hippo, elephant, buffalo, lion, leopard, hyena, jackal, serval and much more. Popular activities include: game viewing, cultural tours, horse riding safaris, and hot air ballooning over the spectacularly scenic terrain.
The rich acacia-dotted plains of the Eastern Serengeti are home to abundant wildlife. Visitors flock here to view the world-renowned wildebeest migration. Some of the best game-viewing can be enjoyed from Lobo on the eastern edge of the Serengeti National Park along the Grumeti River. Popular activities include: taking a guided walk through the spectacularly scenic terrain of the wild Serengeti, jumping on a hot air balloon safari, picnics in the bush, and learning about Maasai culture and history. Don’t miss the opportunity to visit the world famous Gol Kopjes for the best cheetah viewing in Africa.
Situated on the western coast of Zanzibar’s Unguja Island, UNESCO-listed Stone Town is the oldest part of Zanzibar City and is the cultural heart of the island. The town’s photogenic winding alleys are fringed by grand historic buildings, bustling bazaars, a glorious sultan’s palace, and the intriguing House of Wonders – named as such for exhibiting running water and electricity as never before in 1883. Stone Town also boasts numerous sacred buildings – over fifty mosques, six Hindu Temples, a Catholic, and an Anglican Cathedral – all of which are beautiful in unique ways. Other highlights include sunset dhow cruises; spice tours to aromatic distilleries; and neighbouring Changuu Island, home to stunning sandy beaches, a historic prison, and dozens of giant, ancient tortoises.
Resting approximately 40 kilometres from the Tanzanian coast, this idyllic archipelago consists of Zanzibar and Pemba islands as well as numerous smaller islets. Zanzibar Island is characterized by exquisite white-sand beaches fringed by palm trees, and the turquoise waters and reefs here brim with an abundance of exotic marine life. This is a great mecca for waterspout enthusiasts, who flock here for excellent scuba diving, snorkeling, deep-sea fishing, kayaking, and kite surfing opportunities. Visitors can even go sailing on traditional dhows. The island’s old city, Stone Town, features a maze of narrow alleyways lined with boutiques, bars, restaurants, bazaars, mosques and ornate Arab houses. Don’t miss the chance to relax in the lap of luxury on the exclusive private island of Mnemba, lying just 3 kilometres off the coast of the main island.
Uroa is a small, rural, seaside village on the central eastern coast of Unguja, the largest and most populated island of the Zanzibar archipelago. The village sits approximately halfway between the villages of Kiwengwa and Chwaka, 35 kilometres north of the capital, Zanzibar City. Uroans mostly live on fishing and seaweed farming and visitors can enjoy the wonderfully authentic experience of haggling for fish from the local fishermen at a traditional fish market on the beach. The village shares the magnificent Uroa Bay with a number of exceptional resorts offering a range of exhilarating activities including, kite-boarding, diving, snorkelling and tours of the island.