After Serengeti, we headed to the Ngorongoro crater. This is a large volcanic area, where you can spot lots of animals. We spend there just one night and one day. If I would go now, I would definitely spend more time there. It’s very beautiful there.
The name “Ngorongoro” comes from the language of the maasai tribe. They call it the sound of the bells they use for cows, goats and sheep.
1. Giraffes on the way to Ngorongoro.
2. White-naped raven.
3. Big baobab tree at the campsite. It was pretty cold there, especially during the night, so bring some warm clothes with you.
No need to tell you about Central Serengeti. I think I’m not mistaken if I say that everyone who is traveling to Tanzania visits this national park. And it’s truly a gem! Huge territory with lots of animals and beautiful landscapes and numerous birds. I just show you how lucky we were to see so many animals busy with their things like hunting or having an afternoon nap!
1. This lonely lioness was smelling the air and thinking about where to go for hunting.
2. Then we were so lucky to spot this spotted hyena with a head of wildebeest! The head was very heavy and our hyena made a few stops while carrying her precious cargo!
3. This is a typical african landscape: it’s a party time for some vultures, jackals and hyenas to have a good meal!
Ok, after my posts about Tarangire NP, Lake Manyara and Lake Natron (1, 2, 3), i’m going to continue with my Tanzanian journey and switch now to the Serengeti national park. This park is one of the most famous national parks in the world. It’s famous for its huge diversity and for the wildebeest migration together with other herds of cloven-hoofed animals like zebras, gazelles and impalas. It’s really an amazing and spectacular sight, but i was not lucky enough to watch it. The problem is that the animals migrate in the very northern part of the park which is quite far away from the northern entrance. So if you visit the Northern Serengeti, give yourself at least one full day and two nights to surely visit the migration at the river spot. The best time to see it in the Northern part is September.
We arrived there from the lake Natron, the road was astoundingly beautiful, but extremely bumpy. A good idea was to bring some radio or iPod dock station so you can entertain yourself a little bit. I also had a gauze bandage, since it’s really dusty! In total, it took us about 8 hours to get there and we saw a few jeeps got stuck on the way, basically in the middle of nowhere. So be sure that your driver is experienced enough and be prepared for some “unexpected” adventures 🙂
So, on our day 5 very late afternoon we arrived at the Northern Serengeti and on the way did some safari in the park till we got to the overnight stay spot. The spot is really amazing. Since not so many people visit this northern area, it’s quite empty, just a few tents. And the most exiting thing is that animals can visit you along the night. Well, i mean here buffalos, leopards, lions can walk around the tents during the night time. It was really a good idea to bring a disposable urine pack, so we could use right in the tent 🙂
Then in the early morning we continued with safari in the northern part of the park till lunch time. And afterwards we proceeded to the Central Serengeti. It takes about 2-3 hours to get there, but since it’s inside the park you still can see lots of animals on the way, so it may take a bit longer.
1. An Agama lizard right at the entrance.
2. Baby Coke’s hartebeest was just lying at the road.
3. A Black-backed jackal at the dawn.
Continuing with Lake Natron, you can find there one of the most beautiful creatures – flamingos. After I saw these amazing pictures by photographer Nick Brandt, I so badly wanted to go there and just walk around and enjoy the atmosphere. Lots of flamingos around you, beautiful landscape, what else one would need?
The reality turned to be a bit different, though as always 🙂 Flamingos are very shy birds. So as long as you try to sneak around, they’re slowly moving away from you or simply fly away! They’re very hard to photograph… On top of that, they basically stay in a very muddy area, which is very wet and slippery. So be prepared to get really dirty 🙂 Anyway, they are truly beautiful creatures and I really enjoyed walking around. Hope, you’ll like some of my photos.
0. If you want to see these “frozen” dead birds, like Nick Brandt did, you should go there in April. We were there in September, so I found only a baby bird.
Ok, let’s begin this journey!
From your starting point (usually, it’s either Kilimanjaro airport or Arusha airport or Arusha town), it takes about 2-3 hours to get there.
1. On the way to Tarangire National Park, view from the window
I really recommend not to skip this park, since Tarangire National Park is definitely worth visiting. You can see herds of elephants and lots of baobab trees. You can see various types of antelopes, even maybe a lion, if lucky. Since we were there during dry season, all the trees were without leaves, but anyway the landscape is really beautiful there.
2. Baobab tree
I would say that this park looked very quiet and relaxed, all the animals were a bit of lazy, and for the first day in Africa it was exactly what we needed. Just to get used to the surroundings and feel comfortable about safari.
3. A herd of Wildebeests