Spend 7 memorable days in Tanzania on this easy-paced small-group tour. Explore the famed savannah of the Serengeti National Park, visit the Ngorongoro Crater in search of the Big 5, and spot tree-climbing lions around Lake Manyara. This program is an ideal introduction to a Tanzania safari, featuring the highlights of the Northern Circuit while maximizing time for adventure and wildlife viewing. This is a scheduled tour that departs every Saturday.
Day 1: Arrive in Tanzania | Arusha
Arrive in Arusha, Tanzania on the flight of your choice today. Arusha is a lively, bustling town and operates as a major base for those headed out to safari or to hike Kilimanjaro. After clearing customs you will meet your transfer and make your way to the scenic Mount Meru Game Lodge. Enjoy a restful evening and dinner on your own. We embark for the Northern Safari Circuit first thing in the morning!
Day 2: Tarangire National Park
Rise early for breakfast, taking in the beautiful views of Mount Meru before meeting your driver and guide and setting out for Tarangire National Park. After the Serengeti, Tarangire boasts the greatest concentration of wildlife in Tanzania, including large herds of elephant, migratory wildebeest, zebra, buffalo, impala and predators. Tarangire is likely most famous for its spectacular baobab trees, which dominate the expansive landscape. Stop along the way to Honeyguide Tarangire Camp for a picnic lunch in a scenic location.
Your first day on safari concludes at the Honeyguide Tarangire Camp, set high above the Great Rift Valley. Settle in for the evening and enjoy a good night’s rest before the Serengeti tomorrow.
Day 3: Central Serengeti
Set out early for the famous Serengeti National Park. Situated in the heart of Tanzania, the Serengeti is home to the renowned Seronera Valley and is widely recognized for its prime wildlife viewing opportunities. This impressive landscape is characterized by endless stretches of savannah, interspersed with rocky outcrops, acacia woodlands and covered by a network of rivers, streams and waterholes. The great wildebeest migration passes through the Central Serengeti, which is home to giraffe, impala, waterbuck, hippo, elephant, buffalo, lion, leopard, hyena, jackal, serval and much more. The Serengeti also offers popular activities such as cultural tours, horse riding safaris and hot air ballooning (please inquire if interested).
Arrive at your traditional tented camp just before dinner. Enjoy the solitude of the camp’s location, relaxing under the starry sky.
Day 4: Central Serengeti
Today we spend a full day exploring the vast wonders of the Central Serengeti. After your morning and evening game drives, return to your tented camp to spend a quiet evening in the African bush, a memorable experience for even the most seasoned of travelers. Sit around the campfire, sharing stories of your game drive and connecting with your guide or other travelers from around the world.
Day 5: Ngorongoro Conservation Area
This morning we leave the Serengeti for the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. Stop along the way at the Olduvai Gorge, one of the world’s most important prehistoric sites. Here we will learn the fascinating story of the gorge’s significance to the origin of humankind, and why it’s called the “Cradle of Mankind”. We then proceed to the Ngorongoro Conservation area, where a stunning first view of the crater awaits (weather depending). We soon arrive at our lodge, situated in a lush area just outside the lively town of Karatu. Karatu is a popular stopover for the safari circuit, boasting a bustling marketplace, local brewery and small tours to homesteads or into the Ngorongoro Forest. Enjoy an evening in town before settling in to your comfortable country lodge.
Day 6: Ngorongoro Crater
Rise early to make the most of your day in the Ngorongoro Crater. Known for its natural beauty and abundance of diverse wildlife, the Ngorongoro Crater is one of Africa’s most popular safari destinations. You will quickly see why! This UNESCO site is said to be the world’s largest intact volcanic caldera, and the scenery is absolutely stunning. Perhaps more notably, the Ngorongoro is home to the famed Big Five and a host of other wildlife species. Spend a full day exploring the crater before returning to our lodge in Karatu.
Day 7: Departure from Arusha
Today is our last day of safari, and we will spend it exploring the beautiful Lake Manyara National Park. This small yet lively park supports 400 species of birds and the largest concentration of baboons anywhere in the world. Other species include giraffe, zebra, wildebeest, impala, waterbuck, warthog, the Cape clawless otter, and Egyptian mongoose. Highlights include sitings of thousands of flamingos gathered on the lake, the renowned tree-climbing lions and large families of elephants roaming through the forest.
Return to Arusha on time to catch your flight home (please note: transfer included to Arusha Airport, additional cost if going to JRO). Or, opt to extend with a relaxing beach vacation to Zanzibar!