The Serengeti National park is located at North West of Arusha city. Established as a national park in 1951, with an area of about 23,000 sq km. By then, the southern part stretched itself to Ngorongoro before it was separated in 1959 by the British colonial government to establish Ngorongoro Conservation Area. So, an area of 8250 sq km was deducted from the park. The Maasai who lived in Serengeti National park were forced to evacuate to Ngorongoro conservation Area.
Before then, this area was made a game reserve area in 1921 and was established in 1929, just after the First World War, when the British took over the Tanganyika (Tanzania mainland) from the German East africa. The German and an American had over hunted this area and the number of wildlife had abruptly decreased. In early 1920s, it is estimated that Stewart Edward and his companion (Americans) had killed 50 lions after camping in Seronera area in central Serengeti for 3 months. This made British government to reserve 3.2 sq km of this area so as to protect wildlife and the nature.
Serengeti is a name that originated from a Maasai word Siringet, which means endless plain, due to mispronunciation from other tribes, the word Serengeti arose. This park covers an area of 14,763 sq km of endless plains where famous annual wildebeest migration feed and give birth, rivers, mountains and huge rocks known as Kopjes. The park comprise of an estimated 3 million wildlife, both herbivorous and carnivorous. The distance from Arusha to Serengeti Naabi gate by road is 280 km, around 6 hours. This time include several stops for wash room, Ngorongoro Loduare entrance and Ngorongoro crater views (2 view points).
Serengeti Park has 5 entrances.
- Naabi Hill Gate, south Serengeti, borders Ngorongoro conservation area
- Ndabaka Gate, west Serengeti
- Ikoma Gate, North Serengeti
- Kleins Gate, East Serengeti
- Bologonja Gate, North Serengeti but rarely used.
Park fees are paid in Us dollars via online payment methods like Visa Cards. They don’t accept cash.
Seronera is the central park of Serengeti park. There is an information center here that provide all information about this park. Other facilities in this area are: Seronera airstrip, Gas/fuel station, camp sites, hotel, mechanical workshop and picnic site
The Serengeti Great Migration, also known as Serengeti wildebeests migration is an annual movement that comprise of around 1.7 million wildebeests, hundreds of thousands of zebras and thousands of gazelles. The Serengeti Migration moves clockwise and can be predicted by months as they migrate throughout the year.
It starts from the southern Serengeti plain and northern Ngorongoro conservation Area then head west of Serengeti national park. They then leave Tanzania and enter Kenya,Masai Mara game reserve for at most 2 months then head back to Serengeti park in Tanzania. The whole circulation is meant to search for green pasture.
In the months of January, February and March, the migration spread on the whole Southern Serengeti Plain, giving birth to calves, after a gestation period of 8.5 – 9 months. It is estimated, nearly 500,000 calves are born in February, some being attacked by lions, cheetahs and hyenas.
In May, they start heading north west in long huge lines with some diverting to central Serengeti; Seronera.
In June and July they are at the western corridor in Serengeti
In August, September and October, the graze in the northern Serengeti in bunches. The river crossing can be observed here in Mara River. Head to Kenya in late October.
In December, they come back into Tanzania through Loliondo game reserve to south Serengeti plain.
The whole Serengeti migration distance is estimated to be around 800km. Thousands of wildebeests die from being attacked by predators, thirst and exhaustion.
Size: 14,763 sq km
Distance from Arusha: 335km (208 miles) from Arusha,
How to get to Serengeti
Flight from Arusha, Lake Manyara or Mwanza.
Drive from Arusha, Lake Manyara, Tarangire or Ngorongoro Crater.
Accommodation in Serengeti Park
hotels, Lodges, camp sites and luxury tented camps.
List of Safari Programs/itineraries that has Tarangire Park
- 5 days Camping Safari: Ngorongoro, Serengeti, Lake Manyara & Tarangire
- Serengeti Tour: 7 days
All these itineraries can be tailor made to luxury, budget or mid range.