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Serengeti National Park

Explore the most celebrated ecosystem in the world; Serengeti National Park.  Within this diverse and stunning area, enjoy game drives in seldom visited parts of the park where you can see the Great Wildebeest Migration and wildebeest calving in season.

Location & size:

The Serengeti is situated in Northern Tanzania, to the East of Lake Victoria and West of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area.  The Serengeti is Tanzania’s largest national park, covering almost 15,000km2, and takes its name from the Maasai word Siringet, meaning ‘extended place’.

Landscapes & vegetation:

The vast, seemingly endless grass plains of the Serengeti, are punctuated by twisted, solitary acacia trees and large kopjes.  However, the Serengeti National Park contains a diverse array of habitats often overlooked; in the north the terrain is hilly and rocky whilst to the west there are plains, hills, valleys, rivers and associated riverine vegetation and forest.  

Mammals:

The sheer profusion of life supported by the Serengeti Plains is beyond belief.  The Serengeti is most famous as being home to millions of animals, including 1 million wildebeest, half a million zebras and a quarter of a million Thompsons gazelles.

The annual wildebeest migration which occurs within the Serengeti Ecosystem is the largest mass movement of terrestrial mammals on the planet, with over a million wildebeest and countless zebras making the journey.  The rut (wildebeest mating) usually commences around June to July.   The following February, over 8000 wildebeest calves are born everyday, making for an amazing spectacle.  A large number of predators benefit from the annual migration, including lion, vultures and crocodiles.  Depending when you Safari you will be able to witness the awe-inspiring wildebeest rut, calving or Great Migration.

The plains is home to many other species of mammals – leopards, cheetah, hyena, rhino, families of elephant, herds of cape buffalo, the elegant giraffe, eland, various species of antelope and gazelle, monkey, families of warthog and a host of others. 

Birds:

Often overlooked is the abundance of bird-life in the Serengeti.  The Serengeti National Park is an internationally recognised Important Bird Area (IBA) and is home to over 500 species.  Ostrich and secretary birds can be seen wandering through the grass, whilst black crested snake eagles and African fish eagles hunt from the air.  Flocks of the bizarre-looking and large marabou stork can be seen sitting in trees.   Ruppell's Griffon vultures and Egyptian vultures follow the Great Migration, gorging themselves on carcasses left behind on the Serengeti Plains.

Birding in Serengeti - more info

Reptiles & fish:

The reptiles of the Serengeti are often overlooked, however there is plenty to keep the herper occupied. The most visible of the Serengeti reptiles is undoubtedly the nile crocodile, which you will see probably in the Grumeti River.  If the timing is right, you may even see a crocodile make a kill during the famous wildebeest river crossings.

There is also a large variety of snakes in the Serengeti (including huge African rock pythons, black-necked spitting cobras and puff adders), lizards such as the enigmatic red-headed rock agamas and chameleons, and the well-respected leopard tortoises (sometimes called mzee kope by locals).

Herping in Serengeti - more info

 

Grumeti Game Reserve

Part of the Serengeti Ecosystem is Grumeti Game Reserve - a remote valley in the western corridor of the Serengeti.   During the annual animal migration, you can view hundreds of thousands of wildebeest & zebra congregate on the banks of the crocodile-infested river, before attempting the famous river crossings.  

At other times of the year and in other parts of the river and Grumeti reserve, active monitor lizards live amongst the reeds and bushes, growing to 1.5m long.  You can get close (but not too close!) to large pods of hippo as they grunt & cool off in the lily-carpeted river, coming ashore at night to feed.   striated herons and water thick-knees (stone curlews) often rest in dense thickets beside the river whilst in shallower parts of the river, Egyptian geese, yellow-billed storks and goliath herons can be found.  Prides of lion and packs of hyena can be heard during the night.  Leopard, and some of the highest densities of cheetah in Africa can be found in this area.

 
  • World's most celebrated ecosystem.

  • Home to over 2 million animals.
  • The Great Migration.
  • Over 8000 wildebeest calves born each day.
  • Photographer's paradise.
  • Over 500 bird species.
  • Home to the BIG 5, Small 5 and everything in between.

 

  • Remote valley in western corridor.
  • Famous Wildebeest river crossing.
  • Large pods of hippos.

Visit Serengeti National Park on our Tanzania Safaris:

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