Serengeti National Park

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

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Serengeti Safari Lodges

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.

The Serengeti Eco-System

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. Which has led to its popular nickname of ‘The Greatest Show on Earth’.

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 Migration, Serengeti National Park

Age old question: Best time to visit the Serengeti?

  • From mid-December to March, the short grass plains of the Ndutu south  are alive with herds of wildebeest and zebra. But at other times the south is a little empty as the wildebeest migration heads north.
  • Then the long rains in April are when the plains are at their most beautiful. Vivid with wildflowers and packed with game. Also the quality of light is magical.
  • From late May to June, 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.
  • Some time in July, huge columns of wildebeest and zebra congregate at the Grumeti river. They need to cross the crocodile-infested river to the permanent water of the Masai Mara,
  • The Northern Serengeti lies between the Seronera and  Kenya. It tends to be less crowded than the Seronera. Check out Sayari Camp and Serengeti Migration Camp.

The Return

  • East of Serengeti is the Loliondo area, belonging to the Masai. This part of the Serengeti eco-system has plenty of permanent game and the migration. Between October and November you can see the migration as it returns south into Tanzania. We recommend Nduara Loliondo Camp, andBeyond Klein’s Camp and Suyan Camp.
  • The short rains begin generally in November. Then the wildebeest migration returns to the south-western Serengeti. This return is more scattered and sporadic over several weeks.

Activities

Safaris by 4×4 game vehicle are the norm in the Serengeti. But night drives and even walks are an option in the Serengeti Game Management Areas

A balloon flight over the Serengeti must be one of the most memorable ways to celebrate the African bush!

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.

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