The Great wildebeest migration, wildlife, the coast and Islands
When one talks about safaris, Tanzania should be among the best safari destinations. It is found in East Africa lying in the great lakes region. Most of the country’s land approximately 38% is set aside for wildlife conservation since there are over 4 million wild animals in the country. A holiday in this beautiful and vibrant country is worth it as one spend time in some of the country’s world-class national parks.
Tanzania’s way of life and what is common about it over decades has been the safaris; have a great time viewing the big game and also relaxing and swimming at the tropical sand beaches along the Indian Ocean.
The country being so vast means that the available destinations there are also classified into four recognized areas where by three of them are safari areas and one is a trip to the beaches. They include; the ‘Northern Circuit’, ‘Southern Tanzania’ wild parks, the ‘Western Tanzania’ remote safaris and the beaches at along the ‘islands and the coast’. Below is a detail of each;
The Northern Circuit
The famous and first Tanzania’s safari areas were found in the north and hence can be visited at once in case one has enough time since they are not located so much from each other, which is why they came up with the name ‘Northern Circuit’. In most cases these areas are so crowded with very many tourists especially those in need to watch the great wildebeest migration. The main National parks in this circuit are;
The Serengeti; this is famously known for the overwhelming numbers of animals and the breathtaking natural beauty. Here you can spot well the wildebeest migration especially from June to September, other animals in the park are lions, buffaloes, giraffes, cheetahs, elephants, zebras, and birds like ostriches, fish eagles, vultures among others.
Ngorongoro Conservation Area; is a world heritage site located not so far from Arusha. It is where the world’s largest volcanic caldera is found called ‘the Ngorongoro Crater’; also since this area covers a large piece of land some Serengeti plains and the Olduvai Gorge lie there. You will enjoy game viewing especially in the months of May to October and having a glance at the wildebeests would be from late February to March. It is home to lots of wildlife like 4,000 zebras, 3,000 gazelles, over 7,000 wildebeests, 3,000 elands among others as well as about 500 species of birds.
Lake Manyara National Park; this a small but an outstanding park that lies between the shallow alkaline lake called lake Manyara and the western escarpment of the great rift valley. It is easily accessible and hence can be visited by tourists on safari to Serengeti and Ngorongoro. Enjoy the birds such as storks, pink flamingos which are attracted to the lake; also tree climbing lion are a highlight in this park. Other animals like wildebeests, zebras, hippos, buffaloes, giraffes, impalas, elephants and many more are also well seen in this park.
Tarangire National Park; a very exceptional park and at its best during the dry; it has a greatly varied birdlife and abundant game season. The spectacular landscape patterned with grasslands, acacia woodlands, and baobab trees among others are amazing for the eyes to see and appreciate. Home to over 550 bird species as well as animals such as over300 herds of elephants, rhinos, gazelles, hartebeests, elands and many more.
In the southern part most parks are very good for game viewing especially in the remote areas and really cover huge areas. It is really a great experience gained from these parks such as the Selous game reserve which ranks largest game reserve in Africa offering great opportunities of viewing the big game.
Other parks include; Ruaha National Park, Mikumi and Udzungwa National Parks. It is advisable to use 4WD vehicles with pop-up roofs while in all these parks inorder to get clear views.
This side of the country has mainly two parks; Mahale Mountains and Katavi National Parks. These parks are really located in remote areas and hence have less visitors but the fact that the visitors are few; it doesn’t take away the true wilderness experienced while there.
In Katavi you will have great sightings of wild animals like the lions and buffaloes where as in Muhale Mountains you will enjoy nature walks/hikes in the mountainous and forested areas, here you can also closely watch chimpanzees.
Islands and the Coast
A safari to Tanzania without a visit to the sand beaches seems incomplete and that is why you shouldn’t miss out on the amazing experiences. The coast and the islands have beautiful, affordable, accessible and spectacular beaches.
Island’s include; Pemba, Zanzibar, Mafia, also the Ras Kutani area located a few kilometers away south of Dar es Salam. These islands have various unique cultures, amazing history especially in Zanzibar and fantastic water activities to enjoy such as snorkeling and diving especially at the Mafia archipelago.
Also about the lodging facilities on these islands; they are affordable, comfortable with great views, the beach lodges are on point with skilled stuff and great rooms in fact couples on honeymoon have a great and memorable time while here.
Then there is Dar es Salaam; this is the country’s most important and largest city; it has different historical backgrounds but also the major hub for international flights, it being the largest doesn’t make it the capital city but it’s a place worth visiting and spending a night. Most safaris to Southern Tanzania go through Dar es Salaam; remember those heading to the Western part and the Northern Circuit usually use Arusha as the gateway!