This is our Big Adventure safari and just right for you if you want to experience everything that Tanzania has to offer. We’ll take you on a journey of sights and sounds and colours: a journey where you’ll witness a landscape of diversity and nature at its finest. From the golden plains of the Serengeti to the lush exclusivity of Tarangire; from the russets of Lake Natron to the pink shimmer of flamingo on Soda Lake at the Ngorongoro Crater, you’ll travel across a glorious patchwork of habitats framed eternally by deep blue skies, golden horizons and the indigo of star-filled nights. And all this, of course, with the opportunity to watch some of the most spectacular animals on the planet, including the Big Five. Adventures don’t come any bigger than this.
Your adventure will start at Moshi, a cheerful, bustling town filled with coffee houses and a lively buzz. You’ll set off to the Arusha National Park, the setting for the jewel-like Lake Momella, which you’ll glimpse through the bronze bush where the Ngurduto Crater buffalo, waterbuck, giraffe, warthogs, zebra and gazelle reside throughout the year. You’ll set out on foot, too, for a stroll that will offer you the sensation of feeling Africa’s vibrant pulse through the soles of your shoes and you’ll experience the bush in infinite detail. You’ll be safe, though, as an armed ranger will accompany you as you explore the landscape of buzzing insects and birds calling, with the cries of the savannah further off. You’ll hike through lush forest to a sparkling waterfall and, further, to a magical place famous for the antics of the black and white colobus monkeys. You’ll spend the evening gazing at the stars at a camp close to the park, while our chef prepares a delicious meal for you.
After a tasty breakfast you’ll head off to the lovely, quiet Tarangire National Park. It’s a huge park, with a diverse concentration of wildlife especially between July and October when the Tarangire River is in full flood. If you love elephants, then this is the park for you. You’ll never forget your first siting of the majestic African elephant, the largest land mammal in the world; and at Tarangire, herds of these beautiful, intelligent creatures wander at leisure, looking after their young. But you’ll also see a dizzying variety of wildlife including lions, giraffe, warthogs, ostrich, impala, cheetah, mongoose, buffalo, and baboons. The birdlife is magnificent, too, and you’ll catch the flash of a red-and-yellow barbet, or gaze on the slow circling of the tawny eagle. After a picnic lunch you’ll drive to Mto wa Mbu and reach the campsite in the late afternoon. You’ll have plenty of time to relax and enjoy the African evening while enjoying a tasty dinner.
After a yummy breakfast, you’ll depart for Lake Natron, which is famous for its salinity and the unique consequences of this. The microorganisms that prefer an alkaline environment cause the lake’s russet tone, and you’ll see salt-crust rafts scattered in the shallows. Over half the world’s lesser flamingoes are born in the lake, and you are likely to see clouds of shimmering pink as the flamingoes settle and stalk on the still waters. You’ll explore a curious terrain of salt marshes and freshwater wetlands with its unique flora, leading to sparkling waterfalls. The lake is framed by the incredible Oldoinyo Lengai (Mountain of God in Maa, the language of Maasai people), an active volcano that carves out hornitos - incredible statues made of cooled lava. (We can arrange a climb up Oldoinyo Lengai – it’s an extra day to your adventure. Just ask us when you book!) You’ll spend the evening watching the sun set pink and gold over this incredible landscape, and dinner will be served as the first stars appear.
After breakfast you’ll say goodbye to Lake Natron and hello to the world-famous Serengeti National Park. But first you’ll travel through the bustling towns of Loliondo and Wasso through Klein’s Gate at the northeast entrance to the park. This road trip takes in an array of sites: towns and villages, savannah and forest, and you’ll be able to spot animals like antelope, wildebeest and zebra. You’ll arrive at our campsite in the centre of the Serengeti where you can stretch your legs then fill up with a delicious dinner in time for a good night’s sleep, ready for your full day’s adventures tomorrow.
After a nourishing breakfast, you’ll continue into the vast plains of the magnificent Serengeti, home to a diverse array of hundreds of species of animal and bird. Each moment of today’s adventure will stimulate your senses; your eyes alert for each new siting, your ears feasting on the calls, screeches and buzz of life – or the still, dead silence of the hot noonday. The Serengeti is world famous for its diversity – you’ll likely see lions, leopard, elephant, cheetahs and water buffalo - and all within a few feet of your jeep. There’s nowhere like it. It’s also home to one of the natural wonders of the world – the Great Migration of zebra and wildebeest as they traverse the plains in their thousands, risking their lives with the predators they attract, who are also just trying to stay alive. It’s humbling to watch. You’ll also spot some of the park’s lesser known, but equally beautiful creatures including eland, hyenas, gazelle, crocodile, giraffe, zebra, monkeys, baboons, hippo and rhino. The hundreds of bird species, both endemic and migrating from the Eurasia, are a special bonus for bird-watchers. The day’s delights will continue with a freshly cooked and delicious dinner at our campsite in Seronera, under the stars.
You’ll be up and about after breakfast for another drive through the sights and sounds of the Serengeti: the golden grasslands dotted with acacia, the endless blue of the skies and the ever-changing sites: over here you might see a rare tree-climbing lion – not as graceful as the leopard who is a lithe, natural climber – and towards the horizon a mixed herd of zebra and wildebeest grazing gently. After lunch you’ll set off for your next adventure, which is an exploration of the unique Ngorongoro Crater, and we’ll spend overnight at Simba Camp, which is on the very rim of the Crater itself. This is an ideal place to rest and relax, as you’ll enjoy a drink watching the incredible colours of the sunset range over the savannah, and the shadow of night creep into the caldera below. You’ll enjoy a delicious dinner by starlight.
You’ll be up early in a world etched in the pink and apricot rays of an African dawn because early mornings are the best time to spot the animals – especially the Big Five. But don’t worry; you’ll have a filling, healthy breakfast before you set off! The volcanic landscape is rich and fertile and attracts thousands of grazing animals – and their predators. The high walls of the crater form a protective shelter for many animals and prevent migration, so the diversity is dizzying and you’ll spot zebra, wildebeest and cackling hyenas, amongst others. After a busy morning you’ll enjoy a leisurely picnic lunch near a pond full of hippos and then gaze on the sites at Soda Lake: the flocks of graceful flamingos as well as stork, ibis, and crane. Circling in the indigo blue sky are vultures and hawks eagerly in search of a discarded carcases. In the afternoon you’ll set off for Lake Eyasi, in time for a peaceful sunset walk at the lakeshore before a well-deserved rest at the Lake Eyasi campsite.
Lake Eyasi is a special place; it’s the home of one of the world’s last tribe of hunter- gatherers. The Hadzabe bushpeople grow no food, raise no livestock, and live without rules or calendars. They live a hunter-gatherer existence that is little changed in 10,000 years. You’ll be able to watch the Hadzabe traditional methods of survival, including how they hunt; and you can be sure nothing is hunted that is not used in its entirety. The Hadzabe way respects the land and all of its inhabitants and you’ll find a beauty and peace in their way of life. After lunch you’ll journey to Mto wa Mbu, which is very close to the gate of our next national park, the Lake Manyara National Park. You’ll spend the evening reflecting on your adventures so far, and relaxing with a drink as you listen to the calls of the evening.
Another early start – fuelled by a decent breakfast – to spot the wildlife as they are starting their day. Lake Manyara National Park nestles at the foot of the Great Rift Valley escarpment, and is a patchwork of diverse landscapes: the shrubby expanse of the golden savannah, the narrow shores teeming with wildlife and the still waters of Lake Manyara itself. This park is famous for elephant and for its tribes of baboons, who swoop and call to each other and never seem to stop for breath. It’s also home to the legendary tree-climbing lions as well as powerful water buffalo, the majestic African elephant, and giraffe, impala and hippo. With over four hundred species of dazzling birds, some of which are migratory, it’s a birdwatcher's paradise. You’ll enjoy a picnic lunch in the heart of the park, to the calls of the birds and the buzzing of insects while the sun turns everything to gold. After more wildlife spotting, you’ll say goodbye to the Lake and drive through Maasai bomas, baobab forest and rolling savannah plains en route to Moshi, where your safari adventure will end. If you’re too stunned by the beauty of what you have witnessed to move, we’ll be happy to take you to the airport or Arusha.