Swahili is spoken in Tanzania and from this language we get the word ‘safari’. In Tanzania the word safari simply means journey. Tanzania is home to the Serengeti and in the Serengeti National Park it is possible to take the best safaris Africa has to offer. These vast African plains are where huge herds of wildebeest, zebra and gazelles ‘safari’ in the constant search of water in a never ending migration – these great herds of grazers are ever followed by the predators such as lions, leopards, cheetah and hyena. Tanzania is also elephant and giraffe country, boasting some of the largest populations in the world.
A ideal safari itinerary would take about twelve days – starting in Kenya and them moving into the idyllic Tanzania. The itinerary should take in a selection of National Parks famous throughout the world – such as the Amboseli in Kenya with its back drop of Kilimanjaro, the highest Mountain in Africa. Kilimanjaro sits just across the border in Tanzania.
Many itineraries include a stop over in Arusha town and if you have the time a day at Arusha National Park is well worth a visit. This park is close to the town and lays between the peaks of Mt. Kilimanjaro and Mt. Meru; it is an outstandingly beautiful area. The park has a wide range of habitats, from the string of crater lakes where many water birds can be watched, through the highland montane forest. The forests are quiet and still and if you are lucky you will see the black and white Colobus monkeys climbing along the branches of ancient cedar trees and as they back there haunting calls through the cool forest you will know [although so close to Arusha town that you are also in the deep wilds of Africa.
After Arusha you will move north towards the vast Serengeti, Ngorongoro Crater and the Tarangire National Parks. The Tarangire has the highest concentration of wildlife during the dry season. I would recommend you book into one of the very few camps that are located in the south or the middle of Tarangire’s unspoilt wilderness area. There are only a very few camps and they are ideally placed to access the yearly migrations of wildlife throughout the ecosystem, and to view the impressive concentrations at waterholes for a 6-7 month season each year. Tarangire wilderness area offers the visitors a rare treat, excursions into the bush on foot. Off road driving is another privilege of this area, something that is not available in any other National Parks in Tanzania.
No place in the world compares with Serengeti – and its neighbouring wildlife havens – for the sheer exhilaration of its wildlife experience. It is so spectacular that it deserves more time to explore and absorb its full-blown beauty. This is the kingdom of predators, while the huge herds of the Migration thunder across the plains in countless numbers. Thon is a highlight of any safari and the Serengeti is a wonderful place to observe these majestic animals. The Serengeti should be visited for at least five days. Most visitors visit the central Serengeti as this has the highest concentration of Animals however if you have time it advisable to visit the south or the north of this vast National Park to appreciate its beauty.
A safari itinerary should be carefully planned. Try not to see too much too quickly. Slowly slowly is a great way to see more and to truly experience Africa to the full.