NGORONGORO CRATER

The Biosphere Reserve of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area covers 8 300 square km (3 204 square miles) in Northern Tanzania. This reserve was specifically planned to accommodate both the traditional Maasai communities and tourists. The original volcano which may have been higher than Kilimanjaro, collapsed in on itself and now forms a perfect basin. The caldera, measuring 18km (11miles) in diameter, lies 500m (1640 feet) below the rim, which towers above it at about 2 200meters (7 217 feet) above sea level.

Ngorongoro Lake Magadi

LAKE MAGADI

Witness thousands of pink flamingos preening and reflecting in the still waters – a fantastic sight. A blue-green algae flourishes in the alkaline waters and is the sole source of food for the thousands of flamingos that can be found here. The flamingos travel in and out of the crater at night, and you may hear them honking like geese as they fly overhead. Many different animals can be found along the lakeshore including rhino, eland and lion. The lakeshore is also a good place to spot golden jackals which regularly hunt the flamingos.

Ngorongoro Central Plains

CENTRAL PLAINS

The central plain is an ideal game viewing area. Cheetahs can occasionally be seen but often fall prey to lions and hyenas, which the nervous and fragile cheetah is no match for. You’ll probably see at least one pride of bloated lions lying on their backs, paws in the air, stuffed and totally damaging their noble image as the King of the Beasts.

Ngorongoro Elerai Forest

ELERAI FOREST

The magical Elerai Forest is a special refuge for many different species of animals. Look for sly leopards perched high in the tree boughs, hiding in the leaves and dappled light. Also, watch for massive bull elephants ambling through shady thickets. Elerai is a Maasai word referring to the tall yellow barked acacias. These beautiful trees are old, gnarled by years of growing back the bark stripped off by elephants. The forest is also a special bird habitat, providing food and nesting sites for hoopoes, cuckoos and weavers.

Ngoitokitok Springs

NGOITOKITOK SPRINGS

Stretch your safari legs and listen to the grunts of the local hippos at this scenic spot. Ngoitokitok is the name for the springs that bubble forth is such abundance that a small lake has formed before spreading into the nearby Gorigor Swamp. A small rocky outcrop with a single fig tree adorns the lake edge and offers a wonderful photographic backdrop. The grassy strip around the lake is a popular resting area and a lovely spot for a bush picnic, but beware of the large brown hawks that swoop down to snatch unattended food.

Ngorongoro Gorigor Swamp

GORIGOR SWAMP

Gorigor Swamp is a refuge for elephants and hippos, as well as a profusion of water birds. The swamp is a vast area that is fed by Ngoitokitok Springs and runoff from the crater walls. The area is a regular haunt for serval cats and also for lions and hyenas which use the thick cover to ambush other animals when they come to drink. The area to the northwest of the swamp is favoured by the crater’s black rhino population, and it is a particularly good location to get close-up photographs of this critically endangered species.

Ngorongoro Munge Stream

MUNGE STREAM

This scenic and meandering stream provides water and forage for a host of animals. The Munge stream cuts through the crater wall and wanders across the floor of the crater before emptying into Lake Magadi. Leopards are very elusive, but the best place to see them is in the trees that line the stream. Further upstream where the stream flows through the Rumbe Hills, there are large herds of buffalo and flocks of crowned cranes. Beautiful fig trees mark the border of the stream offering scenic backdrops for photography.

Tripadvisor Reviews

  • star rating  Wow! Just got home from our amazing trip to Tanzania. Beyond expectations! We booked with Long Way Expeditions because 1) The 10 day safari appealed to us and 2) their... Read more

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    2 November 2023
  • star rating  A life-changing experience in so many ways. - My partner & I just returned from a 7 day safari with Long Way Expeditions & could not recommend them more highly. Our time with them provided an experience far... Read more

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    10 July 2023
  • star rating  If I could, I'd go back and do it all over again! I had so much fun!! - OH MY GOSH, WOW! I cannot say enough wonderful things about Ann and Abu. Both were very accommodating, kind and so loving. They took me in as a parent would... Read more

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    29 June 2023
  • star rating  The entire experience was great! Within our budget, well-planned, and most importantly, really fun and interesting. Ann and Abu were both very kind and helpful. We saw many animals of... Read more

    Martín d
    18 April 2023
  • star rating  This is my 2nd individually tailored trip with Long way expeditions. I cannot praise enough the professionalism and care that Ann takes in planing safaris according to ones wishes... Read more

    mariacamilo43
    6 March 2023
  • star rating  Brilliant, safari experience - What an amazing adventure, superb safari, exceeded all our expectations, Ann is very attentive, patient, and accommodating, Frank our guide was brilliant, nothing was too difficult, he’s extremely knowledgeable, very... Read more

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    11 October 2022
  • star rating  Couldn't Be Happier With Our Choice! - We found Long Way Expeditions via Responsible Travel. From the moment we approached them for our Safari trip, communications with Ann were always extremely prompt and detailed. We had many... Read more

    7Gab2021
    27 September 2022
  • star rating  A memorable Tanzania, were one becomes in awe of Humans and Wildlife - Myself and my son+partner wanted to experience the Big 5 in Tanzania , if at all around (and they complied!!). I was lucky to receive Ann´s contact, the knowledgeable pragmatic... Read more

    mariacamilo43
    13 September 2022