In this 12 night epic adventure, you stay under canvas in the heart of the wild African bush and if Lady Luck is on your side and you travel between July and October, you may get to witness one of the greatest wildlife phenomenons of all time - a Mara River crossing.
Having landed into Kilimanjaro Airport after an international flight, you most likely will need to rest for a few hours before embarking on a week long safari, so your first night will be spent at a lodge conveniently locatedjust 30 minutes from the international airport, where you can relax and get ready for your epic adventure to begin in the morning.
After breakfast your experienced driver-guide will collect you and drive you to Tarangire National Park - home to huge herds of elephants, giraffe, zebra and waterbuck. Your tented camp is located in a less crowded area of the Park with excellent access to the river, swamp and other regions.
You depart the following morning for a game drive in Lake Manyara - a scenic Park renowned for its excellent bird-watching opportunities as well as general game including elephant, zebra, hippo and giraffe. After spending a few hours here, it's time to leave for the short 30 minute drive to Karatu where you will find Tloma Lodge waiting to welcome you. Each cottage has its own private veranda with safari chairs where you can relax and enjoy the peace and quiet of the Tanzanian countryside.
The next day means an early start if you are to beat the crowds, as today you head into the Ngorongoro Crater. From the main gate it is about a 45-60 minute drive until you reach the crater floor itself. Over 30,000 animals live within this enormous natural bowl, making this the most densely packed concentration of wildlife in Africa. Watch out for wildebeest, elephant, lion, zebra and hyena to name a few of the species that can be found here. The crater is also home to black rhino - a rare sighting in Tanzania! Around the lake you may find flocks of pelican, ibis and flamingos. Explore the caldera floor, with a break to enjoy a picnic lunch, before heading back to Tloma Lodge mid to late afternoon for another night.
You then depart for the Serengeti National Park. You will stay in the game-rich Central Plains for 2 nights. At night you can enjoy glorious sunsets and drinks around the open fire pit with fellow guests, discussing the adventures of the day.
A long drive then has to be undertaken, but it will all be worth it, as you head to the far Northern Serengeti Plains and the Mara River. Your final safari camp is within easy distance to one of the wildebeest river crossing points, meaning that you can be one of the first to arrive should the wildebeest decide to take the plunge (literally) and cross the river, bravely dodging the sharp teeth of the waiting crocodiles.
After 7 nights of adventure, it is surely time for some true R&R and you will find it at Sultan Sands Located on the north-east coast, this is an excellent destination for those looking for stylish accommodation, a pool and an idyllic beach location to end their holiday on a high note.
Go through Immigration, collect your luggage and clear Customs, then make your way to the Arrivals Hall where you will be met by your transfer driver who will be holding a sign board with your name on it. You will then be transferred to Mount Meru Game Lodge where you can relax before beginning your safari adventure in the morning.
Set in beautiful and tranquil surroundings, the Mount Meru Game Lodge is nestled between the Usa river and a wildlife sanctuary. The sanctuary is home to zebra, ostrich, water buffalo, mongoose, duiker and a wide array of birds and monkeys, including the elusive Colobus monkey. The lodge is also equidistant from the city of Arusha and Kilimanjaro International Airport - each an easy 30 minute drive on good roads.
You will be met after breakfast by your safari driver-guide and driven to the Tarangire National Park in your private 4x4 safari vehicle, which has a pop up roof for easy game viewing and photography opportunities. The drive is about 3 hours on a tarred road. You will arrive in time for lunch at your first safari camp.
Nyikani is located in the Tarangire National Park about a 45 minute drive from the main gate. The camp's location is in a less crowded area of the Park offering excellent access to the river, swamp and other regions. The camp's design has a termite mound theme with organic features and structures found throughout the camp.
After lunch you will depart on a game drive in the Tarangire National Park. Tarangire National Park is a gem on the northern safari circuit. Teeming with wildlife, especially in the dry season, this area is a safari-goers dream.
Depart after an early breakfast for the drive to Lake Manyara. The drive will be about 2.5 hours on a tarred road. The Lake Manyara National Park is renowned for its excellent bird-watching opportunities in general, as more than 400 different bird species have been recorded. Other wildlife includes elephant, buffalo, cheetah, hippo, Masai giraffe, wildebeest, impala, zebra, warthogs, large troops of baboons and the legendary but rarely seen tree-climbing lions.
You will stop at the picnic area for a packed lunch midway through the day before continuing with your game drive to see what else you may spot amongst the trees.
You will then depart mid-afternoon for the 20-30 minute drive to Karatu, which is situated a few kilometres from the Ngorongoro Conservation Area Main Gate.
Tloma Lodge offers fantastic views over a coffee plantation and the walls of the Ngorongoro Crater which can be enjoyed from the private terraces of the rooms. It is a small and exclusive lodge and the design looks to create an atmosphere evoking the colonial plantations and farms described in many books and films.
Depart after an early breakfast for the 20-30 minute drive to the Ngorongoro Conservation Area Main Gate. Your driver will need to fill in some paperwork, so while you wait for him you can visit the small information centre. You then drive up the narrow, winding road through magnificent trees and foliage to the Crater rim itself, stopping at the view point to take in the most amazing view across the entire Crater. The road continues around the Crater rim to the descent road down into the Crater and within 90 minutes you will be on the Crater floor itself. The Ngorongoro Crater is on many peoples bucket list of places to see and visit. This natural wonder is the largest unflooded, intact volcanic caldera in the world. The actual crater is about 20 km across, 600 meters deep and covers 300 sq km. Within the rim there are an estimated 30,000 animals, making this one of the densest concentration of wildlife within Africa. Stopping for a packed lunch midway through the day, you will explore the crater floor before departing tired but happy back to your lodge.
After an early breakfast you will depart for the long drive to your next safari camp in the Serengeti National Park. You will firstly cross the Ngorongoro Conservation Area and your driver-guide will need to stop to fill in paperwork again at the Main Gate. The drive from here onwards is long, dusty and bumpy, as the roads are not paved - they are more 'corrugated' which means the ride sometimes is not very smooth.
You will also stop at the Serengeti Gate while your driver completes more paperwork, so you may have time to take the walking trail up the hill to view the surrounding plains. You will then continue with the drive to your camp, arriving in time for a late lunch. If you see anything of interest along the way your guide will stop so that you can take a photo.
Once fully rested you can go out with your driver-guide to see what wildlife you can spot near the lodge. The Central Serengeti is home to the beautiful Seronera Valley where several rivers run through it enabling many resident animals to thrive year-round. The combination of location and resident prey attracts the largest populations of predators in Africa including lions, cheetahs, leopards and hyenas. Since many of these carnivores are themselves residents (lions maintain their territories throughout the year), excellent encounters are available year-round regardless of the season.
Depart with a packed lunch box on a full day game drive. The Serengeti is probably one of the most famous safari destinations in the world and offers what many people consider to be some of the best game viewing in Africa.
After breakfast, you will depart for the 5 hour drive up through the Serengeti to your next camp, arriving in time for lunch. Large herds of buffalo, antelope such as eland, impala, gazelles, topi and kongoni, rhino and family groups of giraffe may be spotted along the way. If you see anything of interest your guide will stop so that you can take a photo and you should arrive at your next camp in time for lunch. This tented camp offers quick access to viewing the spectacular drama of the wildebeest river crossings during the long dry season months of July through to October.
After a siesta you will depart for an afternoon game drive across the Northern Serengeti Plains. All year long the Mara River attracts numerous resident wildlife big and small such as large herds of elephant, eland and buffalo. Antelopes of many kinds also enjoy the grazing, and lions, leopards and cheetah maintain their territories here throughout the year too.
Depart with a packed lunch box and head to the Mara River, where if you are patient you may be lucky to witness a river crossing, where literally thousands and thousands of wildebeest surge through the waters in a continuous line. The lucky ones make the crossing unscathed, the not-so-lucky ones encounter one of the huge crocodiles who lie in wait for an unsuspecting wildebeest to stray out of the line.
After breakfast you will be driven to the Kogatende Airstrip where you will board your flight to Zanzibar.
Light Aircraft Transfer Seat in Plane Rate (Light Aircraft): Fly from Kogatende Airstrip to Zanzibar (ZNZ) - arrival and departure times to be confirmed
Upon arrival into Zanzibar Airport and having collected your luggage, make your way through the Arrivals Hall and exit the terminal building. You will be met outside by your driver holding a sign with your name - there is normally a mass of drivers waiting so be prepared to search for the right sign board. You will then be transferred to your beach hotel.
Sultan Sands Island Resort is situated on the wide, sparkling beaches of Kiwengwa on the east coast of the island. An inspired blend of Swahili and Arab architecture and decor creates a relaxed ambience, while first-class amenities and facilities ensure complete comfort.
You will need to check out of your room this morning but you can remain at the hotel and use all the facilities until you are collected for your transfer back to the airport. Alternatively, if you have an evening flight, the hotel may be able to arrange a late check out for you (additional cost and payable directly to the hotel) subject to the availability of the room.
Holiday Destination: Holiday to Tanzania for 12 nights
Passengers: 2 Adults
Example Cost for 2 Adults: * per person sharing.
*Excludes international flights from your home country - please ask us if you would like us to include these for you.
All monies paid by UK customers for the air package holiday shown are ATOL protected by the Civil Aviation Authority. Our ATOL number is 10245.
When you buy an ATOL protected flight or flight inclusive holiday from us you will receive an ATOL Certificate. This lists what is financially protected, where you can get information on what this means for you and who to contact if things go wrong.
All the flights and flight inclusive holidays on this websiteare financially protected either by ABTOT or the ATOL scheme.
When you pay for something protected by the ATOL scheme you will be supplied with an ATOL Certificate. Please ask for it and check to ensure that everything you booked (flights, hotels and other services) is listed on it.