If you are looking for the ultimate safari experience in Africa, then Tanzania is the right destination to explore. Tanzania is the largest country in East Africa as well as one of the best wildlife viewing destinations in the world. Here, you can explore famous reserves and game parks, pristine African wilderness of the Ngorongoro crater and witness the greatest wildlife migration on the endless plains of Serengeti. At Lake Manyara you can observe over 300 migratory birds, including flamingos, long-crested eagles and grey-headed kingfishers and enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding. Serengeti is undoubtedly the best- known wildlife sanctuary and home to an incredible wildlife and natural beauty.
Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa, is also located in Tanzania, with its bulk looming 4800m above an undulating plain.
After a long flight and evening arrival your body needs a comfortable bed and a good night’s sleep. You are met by your SENE safari guide and whisked away to Rivertrees Country Inn, nestled between Kilimanjaro and Mount Meru and set in natural gardens along the Usa River, outside of Arusha Town.
Your safari guide will meet you after breakfast to take you to your first destination, Tarangire National Park, a gem of a park often overlooked on the standard tour routes. Here you will see magnificent baobab trees and can observe the numerous herds of elephant that are resident in the park, as well as impala, gazelle, zebra, wildebeest, warthog, baboon, buffalo, and lion. Picnic lunch and overnight camp in the park.
Lake Manyara National Park
Daybreak game drive along the Tarangire River to see the park come to life. Return to camp for a hot breakfast before setting off for Lake Manyara National Park, a small and beautiful park famous for its treeclimbing lions and soda lake tinted pink with huge flocks of flamingoes. You will see hippopotamus floating in the lake or grazing at its edge. In the parks varied environments of groundwater forest, acacia woodland, and grassy flatland you can observe giraffe, buffalo, large troops of baboons, zebra, and monkeys. Manyara is also one of the best parks for bird watching as it boasts a profusion of more than 380 species. Camp is at a private campground in the small town of Mto wa Mbu.
Drive up the Rift Valley escarpment to the Ngorongoro Highlands, where we stop to stretch our legs with a guided two hour hike through the forested highlands inside the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, where a majestic 150-meter waterfall awaits. Along the way, visit the elephant caves, so-called because the deep recesses in the valley wall are created by elephants digging up the earth to ingest the mineral-rich soil. This rich soil also attracts buffalo, bushbuck, waterbuck, and baboons to the area.
Continue southwest to Lake Eyasi. Walking paths carved through the lakeshore forest allow visitors the opportunity to experience this beautiful and unique environment on foot, where you may spot dik dik, bushbuck, vervet moneys, and hippopotamus in the lake’s environs. The area is also known for its abundant bird life. We set our camp in the forest along Lake Eyasi for the next two nights.
The Lake Eyasi area is home to the Hadzabe, the last remaining hunter-gatherers in Tanzania, and the Datoga, a proud pastoralist people who in an earlier time were fierce enemies of the Maasai. Spend the morning with an experienced guide and interpreter of the Hadzabe, where you will learn about their fascinating culture and survival skills in their harsh environment and have the opportunity to have a bush walk and small game hunt. An afternoon visit to a Datoga compound to share their lifestyle is another unforgettable experience.
After an early breakfast drive to the Ngorongoro Crater rim and descend nearly 3,000 feet to the crater floor, where the 100 square mile extinct caldera teems with wildlife in such density and abundance thatit is almost too hard to believe. Every game animal – both predator and prey – in East Africa can be found here, with the exception of giraffe and impala. The crater is the best place to spot the rare and elusive black rhino and old bull elephants who come there to “retire” and enjoy the sweet swamp grasses. Picnic lunch in the crater. In the late afternoon ascend to the crater rim and Simba camp. Simba (Swahili for lion) camp sits at 7,000 feet on the rim of the Ngorongoro Crater with incredible views down to the floor of the caldera.
Drive west out of the cool and green crater rim to the hot and dry Serengeti, Tanzania’s largest national park. The 5,700 square mile park consists of treeless plains, savannah dotted with acacia and granite outcroppings called kopjes, and riverine bush and forest. Across its boundless expanse animals extend as far as the eye can see in a scene that exists nowhere else in the world and one that is quintessentially African. The Serengeti contains a staggering amount of wildlife – about 4 million animals– and is home toa million and a half wildebeest, a quarter million zebra, twice that many gazelle, and tens of thousands of the their predators (lion, leopard, cheetah, hyena, jackals, crocodiles, and others). Game drive deep into the central Serengeti, where we set up our camp for two nights. On these days, your SENE guide, a trained expert in East African wildlife and ecology, will explore with you the vast Serengeti Plain in search of the best game-viewing opportunities, dependent on the seasonal and daily migration patterns. You may take early morning pre-dawn game drives and late afternoon game drives at dusk – the times of the day at which the animals are most active – with a rest at camp for lunch. Or, take a full day game drive with a picnic lunch to explore a greater range of the Serengeti. The Seronera Camp site is located in the heart of the Serengeti wilderness with its famed plains and wildlife stretching for miles in all directions. This is an ideal base from which to explore the park and seek
the best wildlife viewing.
Take a final morning game drive through the magical Serengeti. On our return east, stop along the way to visit Olduvai Gorge, site of Louis and Mary Leakey’s archeological discoveries of early human ancestors, and enjoy a picnic lunch. Continue on to Karatu, the town at the base of the Ngorongoro Crater. Enjoy the mild temperatures as you explore this highland town and the nearby coffee farms. Overnight at Kudu Camp, a modern camp site set in landscaped gardens and with a lively bar with darts, billiards, and a huge fire place to keep you warm on cool evenings.
Mbahe Village Kilimanjaro
Today we return through Arusha Town, the bustling commercial capital of northern Tanzania. There will be time for shopping and to tour this colorful town. We arrive in the late afternoon at SENE’s Mbahe Farm House cottages in the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro. It is located in the village of Marangu Mbahe, nestled among the lush tropical forests near the border of Kilimanjaro National Park. The farm consists of 15 acres of land on which Simon Mtuy’s ancestors raised cattle and today is used as a small ecologically sustainable farm. A climate which allows for a year-round growing season, rich volcanic soil, and irrigation directly from the mountain streams makes it an ideal environment for farming. The completely organic farm produces coffee (processed and roasted on-site) and contains gardens of organic vegetables, bananas, and honey, which provide most of the ingredients in the fresh home-cooked meals. Enjoy the sights and sounds of the farm, warm up next to the fireplace in the living room, or sit and enjoy sweeping views of
the valley on the verandah of your cottage. While staying at the Mbahe Farm House you can go for a refreshing swim below the Moonjo River waterfall that sits on the property, take guided walks through the village, visit the local primary school, learn about the area flora, or just sit on your veranda with a cup
of freshly brewed coffee.
Day at Mbahe to relax with the physical and cultural activities available there, including light hiking, swimming, exploring the farm and village, visiting with the neighbors, drumming, or tasting homemade banana beer. Afternoon or evening transfer to the Kilimanjaro International Airport in time to catch your flight home or onward to your next adventure.
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