Serengeti National Park

Gaze for miles over the African plains, green or gold according to the season but always full of life.

Overview

The Serengeti National Park is one of the most famous safari destinations in the world. Its vast open savanna plains allow wildlife to move according to the commands of the seasonal rains. Here they are untroubled by park boundaries. Below is our guide to the Serengeti safari lodges through the park. With the Serengeti National Park at its heart, the Serengeti eco-system comprises much of northern Tanzania. This includes the Ngorongoro Crater and the Masai Mara National Reserve and its associated game conservancies.

More than other safari destinations, the best place to stay in the Serengeti depends on when you are travelling. You’ll also need to consider your tolerance towards seeing other safari vehicles. As the Serengeti is very busy when the wildebeest migration peaks.

The Wildebeest Migration

Up to two million wildebeest and half a million zebra live in the Serengeti National Park. Combined with thousands of impala and other antelope, it is the largest concentration of wildlife in the world. Naturally this attracts the predators. Life on the Serengeti is a complex cycle defined by the rains. The Wildebeest migration is the continual circular movement of animals as they trek up to 800 km. They trek north through the Serengeti National Park into the Masai Mara National Park in Kenya in search of new grazing lands. And then back down again. On the way the wildlife migration spills out into buffer game management zones beside the park where wild animals co-exist alongside the local Masai.

Serengeti safari - Lion Cubs

Seasonal and Mobile Camps in the Serengeti

Several Tanzania safari operators have focused on luxury mobile camps. These all have the comforts of permanent camps. So perhaps it is wrong to even call them mobile. They are pitched in locations carefully chosen many months in advance. But the whole camp does relocate two or three times a year. So they can follow the migration as it heads north. Nomad Tanzania are masters at this and their Serengeti Safari Camp was the original. But it is now joined by Serengeti under Canvas and Asilia’s Olakira.

Features

Why you may love it

  • The Wildebeest Migration, known as The Greatest Show on Earth.
  • Safaris by 4×4 game vehicle.
  • Night drives and even walks are an option in the Serengeti Game Management Areas.
  • Hot Air Ballooning.
  • Seasonal Camps for best game viewing locations.

Explore the Serengeti National Park map

When to visit Serengeti National Park

Mid-December to mid-March

Summer in Serengeti National Park

The Serengeti lies on the inland plateau at 1500m (5,000ft). So, it’s noticeably warmer than the Ngorongoro Highlands but cooler than the coast. The summer is warm at 26-27C in the day and cool nights. Occasional afternoon showers cool it down. It rains every month (at least 100mm) From mid-December to March, the short grass plains of the Ndutu in the south are alive with herds of wildebeest and zebra.
AVG RAINFALL 91 mm
MAX TEMP 29 ℃ / 84 ℉
MIN TEMP 15 ℃ / 59 ℉

Mid-March to May

Long Rains in Serengeti National Park

The long rains here take the form of afternoon hard showers and they make park roads – with their notorious black-cotton soil more tricky to navigate. But this is when the plains are at their most beautiful. Vivid with wildflowers and packed with game. Also the quality of light is magical.
AVG RAINFALL 112 mm
MAX TEMP 27 ℃ / 81 ℉
MIN TEMP 15 ℃ / 58 ℉

June to mid-August

Most impressive season in Serengeti National Park

From late May, the Serengeti National Park is the theatre for the most impressive wildlife show on earth: the wildebeest migration. Hundreds of thousands of plains game begin moving north-westwards to the Seronera. This spectacular moving feast is trailed by predators: lion, cheetah, leopard and hyena. Given the Seronera’s centrality, you can stay here and still travel north or to the Western Corridor. So Seronera stays busy throughout the migration. Sometime in July, huge columns of wildebeest and zebra congregate at the Grumeti river in the northern Serengeti. They need to cross the crocodile-infested river to the permanent water of the Masai Mara which they start to do in late July or August.
AVG RAINFALL 16 mm
MAX TEMP 26 ℃ / 79 ℉
MIN TEMP 13.5 ℃ / 56 ℉

Mid-August to mid-October

Good game-viewing in Serengeti National Park

This continues to be a superb time for game-viewing as most wildlife is territorial and thus stays in the Serengeti.
AVG RAINFALL 28 mm
MAX TEMP 28 ℃ / 82 ℉
MIN TEMP 15 ℃ / 59 ℉

Mid-October to mid-December

Short rains in Serengeti

Late October & November is the time of the less intense short rains. However the rain comes as afternoon or night showers so there’s plenty of sunshine as well. The short rains herald the start of the return of the migration as it returns south into Tanzania, mainly into the Loliondo region of the Serengeti. But it tends to be more spread out and sporadic. The migration continues south to return to the Ndutu plains by the start of the summer dry season.
AVG RAINFALL 102mm
MAX TEMP 28 ℃ / 82 ℉
MIN TEMP 16 ℃ / 61 ℉

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Ginny Russell

Co-founder & Director

Hi I'm Ginny, I'm here to help you plan your ideal holiday experience
Did you know
  • NameSerengeti means 'endless plains'
  • Great MigrationWorld’s largest movement of animals

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