After breakfast, we have a morning game drive through the park as we look for its abundant game and enjoy the beautiful scenery. The wild game you are likely to see includes hundred-strong baboon troops, Blue Monkey, Bushbuck, Buffalo, Wildebeest, Zebra, Giraffes, tree climbing Lion, Gazelle, Impala, Hyena, etc. Avid birders may also be rewarded with views of large flocks of Flamingos and other bird species. Thereafter we drive through the agricultural and fresh produce market town of Mto Wa Mbu just at the entrance of Lake Manyara national park. Mto Wa Mbu is a souvenir hunter’s paradise. We have lunch on our way to Serengeti Plains via the scenic high landing farmland of Karatu and the Ngorongoro Crater area. As we leave the highlands behind, we descend into the heart of wild Africa with endless plains rolling as far as the eye can see. We have 3 wildebeest-filled days with early morning and late afternoon game drives in the vast Serengeti plains. We may also have balloon safaris. The term Serengeti means endless plains in the Maasai language. In the central plains, there are carnivores like leopard, lion, hyena, and cheetah. Tanzania’s oldest and most popular national park, also a world heritage site, the Serengeti is famed for its annual migration when some 6 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, 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, Kongoni, Topi, Impala, and Grant’s gazelle. Other resident wildlife in the park includes pride of golden-maned Lion, Leopard, Cheetah, African Jackal, Spotted Hyena, Aardwolf, Serval Cat, Agama Lizard, Rock Hyrax, Dung beetle, and abundant bird species like the outsized Ostrich and the bizarre Secretary Bird.
This park is where the annual migration of wildebeest and zebra begins in June as they travel to the Kenyan Masai Mara usually arriving there by July. Varied bird species can be seen here including Eagles, Ducks, Geese, Egrets, Vultures, Secretary birds, Ibis, Storks, Herons, Kites, Pelicans, Cranes and Guinea fowl. We also drive along the Sogore River Circuit which loops into the plains south of Seronera River. This area is good for Lion (if we are very lucky), Thomson’s gazelle, Topi, Ostrich, and Cheetah sightings. Another circuit that can be followed in the afternoons is the Kopjes Circuit. It goes anti-clockwise around the Masai Kopjes which usually attract a number of Lion and some formidable large Cobras. Kopjes are weathered granite outcrops, scattered along the Plains most of which are miniature ecosystems, providing shade and drinking water in the pools left in the rock after the rains. Hence the Kopjes are particularly good for spotting wildlife in the dry season including Lions which like to lie in wait for animals coming to drink! This scenic park also offers you a chance to do unforgettable hot air balloon safaris.