Short & Long Grass Plains, Savannahs, Open Woodlands, Riverine Areas, Wetlands, Mountains
Over 10,000 square miles
Lion, Wildebeest, Zebra, Gazelle, Impala, Buffalo, Topi, Giraffe, Warthog, Ostrich, Baboon, Elephant, Rhino, Hippo, Hyena, Leopard, Cheetah, Jackal
The Endless plains….. the Vastness…. the scent and the wild voices of nature whispering at you. It’s traveling back in time…Serengeti National Park probably the most famous wildlife refuge in the world. Its eco-system is one of the oldest on earth. The essential features of climate, vegetation and fauna have barely changed in the past million years. Early man himself made an appearance in Olduvai Gorge about two million years ago. Some patterns of life, death, adaptation and migration are as old as the hills themselves. The eco-system extends over a much larger area and includes the Maasai Mara in Kenya and the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, linking over 25,000 km2 of land in which animals can move freely. Much of this is nutritious grassland which acts as a magnet for wildebeest, zebra, impala and Thomson’s gazelle.
Serengeti is the oldest and most popular national park, also a world heritage site and recently proclaimed a 7th world wide wonder, the Serengeti is famed for its annual migration, when some six million hooves pound the open plains, as more than 200,000 zebra and 300,000 Thomson’s gazelle join the wildebeest’s trek for fresh grazing. Yet even when the migration is quiet, the Serengeti offers arguably the most scintillating game-viewing in Africa: great herds of buffalo, smaller groups of elephant and giraffe, and thousands upon thousands of eland, topi, kongoni, impala and Grant’s gazelle.The Serengeti National Park has four separate sections, each with its own unique features and landscapes: the Southern Plains, Seronera (Central), Western Corridor, and Northern Serengeti.
The Southern Plains might be described as the “classic Serengeti” with its flat, open expanses of short grass plains. Just north of the short grass plains lies Seronera, or Central Serengeti, famous for its open plains, kopjes, and resident game, including large numbers of lions, cheetahs, and leopards. Stretching west to Lake Victoria is the Western Corridor, home to the Grumeti and Mbalageti Rivers, which support evergreen riparian forest and dense vegetation. From the Seronera area all the way to Kenya is the Northern Serengeti, an area of gently rolling country dotted with occasional hills and kopjes, broken by small rivers. This is where visitors might be at the right place at the right time to view the migration river crossings of the Mara River, made famous by National Geographic documentaries.
The climate in Serengeti is usually moderate and pleasant. The average temperatures are quite uniform throughout the year. It never gets very hot, but it is consistently cool to cold at night and in the early mornings. It is advisable to take warm clothing for early morning game drives. The altitude in the Serengeti varies widely from 1,140 to 2,099m (3,740 to 6,886 ft). Temperatures drop by about 6.5°C for every 1,000m you climb (or 3.5°F per 1,000ft), so even within the park, there are wide climatic variations.
Serengeti’s Dry season is from June to October. There are two Wet seasons. The ‘short rains’ are from November to December, and the ‘long rains’ are from March to May. During the Wet season, it rarely rains all day, but afternoon thundershowers can be expected.
Dry season –June to October
June, July, August, September & October – Afternoon temperatures are usually around 25°C/77°F. Most days have a fine, clear sky. It is possible for the short rains to begin in October, should they start early. It gets cold at night with minimum temperatures around 14°C/57°F. Occasional cold fronts are possible, with temperatures close to freezing. It’s usually cold early in the morning.
Wet season –November to May
As in the Dry season, temperatures are moderate during the Wet season. Afternoon temperatures are usually around 26°C/79°F, and night temperatures are around 15°C/59°F.
November & December – ‘Short rains’ – An unpredictable period of about a month of rains occurs sometime between October and December. The rains will be unlikely to interfere with your safari. Daytime temperatures are usually around 27°C/80°F while night and early morning are around 15°C/59°F.
January & February – There tends to be a dry spell between the short and long rains. The exact timing is unpredictable.
March, April & May – ‘Long rains’ – These are the wettest months. It tends to rain most days, although seldom for the whole day. It is often cloudy. The average maximum and minimum temperatures are 26°C/79°F and 16°C/61°F respectively. In April and May, cold fronts might bring colder peak temperatures.
Size: 14,763 sq km (5,700 sq miles). 14% of the country’s land area.(size of Northern Ireland) Location: 335km (208 miles) from Arusha, stretching north to Kenya and bordering Lake Victoria to the west.
There are Scheduled and charter flights from Arusha, Lake Manyara, Karatu, Moshi and Mwanza. Access by Driving from Arusha, Moshi, Lake Manyara, Tarangire or Ngorongoro Crater.
Game drive for wildlife viewing, Hot air balloon safaris, walking safaris, picnicking, Camping, Lodging, Cultural tourism,Visit neighbouring Ngorongoro Crater, Olduvai Gorge, Ol Doinyo Lengai volcano and Lake Natron’s flamingos.
There are so many different species in the Serengeti that this list could go on forever. The Serengeti’s main attraction is the Great Migration, consisting of up to 2 million wildebeest, 200,000 zebras and 350,000 Thompson, impala and grant’s gazelles. The predator viewing here is exceptional with approximately 3-4,000 lion and huge numbers of cheetah, leopard and hyena. Other game found in the park include Topi, Eland, Hartebeest, Buffalo, Elephant, Caracal, Serval, Bat-eared fox, Hyrax, Genet, Hares, Porcupine, Aardvark, Giraffe, Jackal, Mongoose, Crocodile, Monitor Lizard, Aardwolf, many kinds of primates including baboons, velvet and Colobus monkeys, and over more than 500 species of birds.