Perfect for the wildlife enthusiast on the hunt for Africa's "Big 5", this trip includes visits to some of the country's best big game reserves, including Serengeti and Tarangire National Parks. Visit the big cat capital of Africa, walk with flamingos at dawn, and enjoy sunsets with views of baobab trees and volcanos while giraffes, elephants, and zebra graze in the distance. Take a break from wildlife by joining a traditional hunt with the Hadzabe Tribe and learning how to make brass with the friendly blacksmith of the Datoga Tribe.

Highlights

  • Visit Africa's big cat capital and search for cheetahs
  • Join a traditional hunt with the Hadzabe Tribe
  • Go for a morning flamingo walk at Lake Eyasi
  • Tour the homes of the Datoga Tribe and learn how to make brass
  • Find the Big 5 in Serengeti National Park

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Tanzania Usa River
Day 2 Transfer to Tarangire National Park Tarangire National Park
Day 3 Safari in Tarangire National Park Tarangire National Park
Day 4 Search for Elephants and Other Big Game in Tarangire Tarangire National Park
Day 5 Picnic Lunch at Lake Manyara National Park Mto Wa Mbu
Day 6 Lake Eyasi - Visit to the Datoga Tribe Mangola
Day 7 Hunting and Gathering With the Hadzabe Tribe Ngorongoro
Day 8 Morning Flamingo Walk - Visit to Ngare Sero Village Ngorongoro
Day 9 Transfer to Rhino Lodge in Ngorongoro Conservation Area Ngorongoro
Day 10 Game Drive and Lunch at Ngorongoro Crater Ngorongoro
Day 11 Safari in Serengeti National Park Serengeti National Park
Day 12 Visit the Big Cat Capital in Central Serengeti Serengeti National Park
Day 13 Track Cheetahs on the Serengeti Plains Serengeti National Park
Day 14 Wildlife in Northern Serengeti Serengeti National Park
Day 15 The Great Migration in Northern Serengeti Serengeti National Park
Day 16 Final Safari - Star Gaze in the Serengeti Serengeti National Park
Day 17 Kogatende Airstrip Transfer  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Tanzania

Rivertrees
Rivertrees Country Inn

Welcome to beautiful Tanzania! When you arrive at Kilimanjaro International Airport, your driver will take you to the Rivertrees Country Inn. Rivertrees is a historical coffee farm in the foothills of Mt. Meru, with cottages and gardens spanning over 10 acres. Bright and airy rooms welcome a sense of relaxation, as does the stream running through the property. The Inn is a perfect place for spotting birds and small mammals.

In the evening, enjoy one of the following relaxing activities to help combat any jet lag:

  • Soak in your own private tub
  • Relax by the pool
  • Stroll through the gardens
  • Enjoy a drink or meal in the on-site traditional restaurant

Day 2: Transfer to Tarangire National Park

Elephants and Buffalo in the Savanna

After breakfast, you'll meet your private guide. You guide will join you on your trip for 14 days, introducing you to the beauty of Tanzania. Enjoy adventures with a local in-the-know with insider information and stories from the savanna. 

Your first stop is your accommodation at Kichuguu Camp. Here you will spend three all-inclusive nights relaxing in your own private tent. Tents are meant to blend in with the natural surroundings, increasing your chances of seeing wildlife from your own private deck. Enjoy your first (of many) safaris before heading back to the camp for a relaxing dinner, a drink in the lounge, and/or star gazing by the fire pits.

Day 3: Safari in Tarangire National Park

Zebra Along the Tarangire River

Tarangire National Park is one of the lesser-known game reserves in Tanzania, rivaling the Serengeti in its diversity of wildlife. It's an excellent option if you wish to encounter more animals and less tourists while on safari. The Park is also known as an exceptional birding destination. Your chances of seeing more wildlife is increased in the dry season, when the Tarangire River is the only source of water in the area. The landscape is of particular interest too, due to the high number of scenic baobab trees.

Enjoy a full day of safaris, with elephant, giraffe, and zebra sightings, amongst other big game. Watch animals graze across the savanna, slipping in and out of view as they meander around the baobab trees. Relax back at your accommodation, watching the sunset from your private deck. Sip African wine in the lounge or reminisce about your safari while sitting around the outdoor fire.

Day 4: Search for Elephants and Other Big Game in Tarangire

Find one of the Largest Herds of Elephants

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before heading out on another game drive. Today the focus is elephants. Tarangire National Park is famous for having herds of up to 300 elephants, making it superb for game viewing, particularly in the winter months of the peak season. Its marshes—which dry out into verdant grassy fields during the dry season—draw great herds of elephant, buffalo, antelope, and lion.

The park is home to over 500 species of birds, including some species endemic to Tanzania. Away from the busier north, the southern end of the park is home to many walking safaris, allowing your to immerse your senses in the experience of exploring the African bush on foot.

Day 5: Picnic Lunch at Lake Manyara National Park

Finding Zebra on Safari

Today, you and your guide will make your way towards Lake Manyara. The lake attracts wildlife of all kinds, making it a perfect place for an afternoon safari. In particular, it's known for its large population of bright-pink flamingo. Watch the famous bird search for lunch in the lake's shallow waters while giraffes relax on the grassy shores. First enjoy a picnic lunch in Lake Manyara National Park before setting off in search of more game, such as buffalo, zebra, rhino, and hippo.

End your day at your accommodation, Kirurumu Manyara. Enjoy nights in thatched-roofed tents with private decks. Relax in the lounge for views across the savanna.

Day 6: Lake Eyasi - Visit to the Datoga Tribe

Wildlife Adventures on African Safaris

Relax at a leisurely pace this morning before joining your guide and heading towards Lake Eyasi. Settle into your accommodation at Kisima Ngeda, a tented camp with tranquil views of the savanna. 

In the afternoon, you'll visit the Datoga tribe. Traditionally pastoralists, the women of the tribe are famously dressed and ornamented with brass. Some still have mask-like tattoos around their eyes. They are very friendly and welcoming. You can also visit a blacksmith from Datoga, who makes the brass jewelry for the women and tools for the local market. He also makes arrowheads that the neighboring Hadzabe tribe buys or exchanges for honey. Enjoy this cultural tour as tribe members invite you into their homes and teach you the methods of making brass.

Day 7: Hunting and Gathering With the Hadzabe Tribe

Sunrise Drive to Hadzabe Tribe

Awake with the sun for an early cultural experience visiting the Hadzabe, a tribe of traditional hunter-gatherers. You can choose between a 4-hour hunt or a more a leisurely gathering walk. The Hadzabe are extremely friendly and welcoming to all guests regardless of physical abilities. Try your luck tracking and hunting game, harvesting wild honey, and gathering wild food and vegetation. 

After lunch, you'll leave Lake Eyasi and head towards Lake Natron.

Arrive at your next accommodation, Lake Natron Camp, where you'll receive a refreshing face towel and fruit drink. After a tour of the camp and its facilities, you'll meet your private guide to discuss your personalized itinerary for the stay. Check into your room and relax in the natural pool with a drink of your choice. Watch the sun set behind the Masonic Mountain with a cocktail while the chef prepares a lovely 3-course meal for you.

After dinner, sip complimentary wine in the comfort of your room or in the poolside lounge. Gaze up at the stars as the sky darkens and listen to the sounds of the savanna.

Day 8: Morning Flamingo Walk - Visit to Ngare Sero Village

Morning Flamingo Walk

Enjoy a little pampering this morning as your butler brings you fresh tea or coffee and homemade cookies to your room. Sip your treats while watching the sun rise from the comfort of your bed. Head to the lake for an sunrise flamingo walk before heading to a tasty breakfast. After breakfast, visit the local village Ngare Sero before hiking to the spectacular waterfalls. Head back to camp for lunch and to relax in pool to beat the heat. In the late afternoon, visit the hominid footprints and join a simulated hunt. Before dinner at the camp, enjoy a cocktail and gaze up at the stars.

Day 9: Transfer to Rhino Lodge in Ngorongoro Conservation Area

Photo taken by Jonathan G
Ngorongoro Conservation Area

Get your camera ready and watch the sun rising behind the Gelai Volcano. Track the sky as it dramatically changes from purple to pink to orange. Continue your sunrise with a relaxing breakfast in the restaurant and enjoy the grounds of the camp before your departure.

Head back in the direction of Lake Eyasi and detour to your next accommodation, the Rhino Lodge in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. Here you'll enjoy quaint decor, peaceful grounds full of wild vegetation and palm trees, a lounge with a large deck, and wild game drives.

Day 10: Game Drive and Lunch at Ngorongoro Crater

Ngorongoro Crater
Ngorongoro Crater

Enjoy an exciting game drive in Ngorongoro Conservation Area. With scenes of vast savanna and grasslands, you are primed to see a variety of wild game. Enjoy a picnic lunch in Ngorongoro Crater as animals graze in the distance. Snag views of elephants, lions, zebra, and hippos bathing in lakes. Return to your accommodation for dinner and a relaxing evening.

Day 11: Safari in Serengeti National Park

Finding Elephants in the Serengeti

Visit the famous Serengeti National Park. The word Serengeti (or Siringitu) means "the place where the land moves on forever". Serengeti National Park—a vast and beautiful expanse of nearly 6,000 square miles—is perhaps the world’s most famous wildlife sanctuary. A World Heritage Site and Biosphere Reserve, the Serengeti supports the largest concentration of plains-based game in the world. The Serengeti ecosystem is famous for its large cats and the wildebeest migration.

Today you will embark on game drives in the park, catching glimpses of some of the continent's most famous wildlife, including elephants, giraffes, lions, and buffalo. In the evening, you'll retire back to your accommodation, Kiota Camp, for dinner and relaxation.

Day 12: Visit the Big Cat Capital in Central Serengeti

Lions Relaxing in the Big Cat Capital of Africa

The Seronera River Valley—located in the south-central region of the park—is one of the most popular areas in the entire reserve. Known as the "big cat capital of Africa", the Seronera is rich in lion, leopard, and cheetah sightings. Visitors often spot all three in one day on game drives. Look for leopard around the Seronera River, which is home to one of Africa’s densest populations of the big cats; lions can often be seen on the kopjes (rocky outcrops).

Perched on a hilltop, your accommodation at Kiota Camp offers a birds-eye view of the Seronera River Valley's abundance. Airy rooms are housed in tents that match the muted tones of the savanna. Enjoy dinner in the open-air dining area or watch the sunset as you warm yourself by the fire.

Day 13: Track Cheetahs on the Serengeti Plains

Find Cheetahs in the Serengeti

The Serengeti Plains—the open savanna south of the Seronera River—are prime cheetah territory. With the area’s varied habitats of rivers, swamps, kopjes, and grasslands, you can spot many different animals including elephants, hippos, and crocodiles in the rivers, plus buffaloes, impala, topi, jackals, and bat-eared foxes.

After a long and exciting day on the plains for the Serengeti, retire to your accommodation for a leisurely dinner and a nightcap around the fire.

Day 14: Wildlife in Northern Serengeti

Buffalo Migration in the Northern Serengeti

Today is the final full day of game drives in Northern Serengeti. You'll enjoy a morning and afternoon safari, both in search of vast wildlife. The northern region of the park remains less visited by tourists, so you can escape the crowds and relax in the serenity. You'll find dense woodlands dotting the savanna, as well as granite outcrops and vibrant green hillsides. You can find the highest concentration of elephants in this region, as well as crocodiles in the Mara River.

End your day in the lounge with a glass of wine, retelling stories of the marvels of the Mara River.

Day 15: The Great Migration in Northern Serengeti

The Great Migration, Serengeti National Park

Enjoy another full day of safaris in the Serengeti and make your way to the northern region of the park. Your afternoon game drive will include the Mara River—famous for its large population of crocodiles—in the Northern Serengeti.

Each year, nearly two million wildebeest, zebra, and other antelope gather their young and trek north from Tanzania's Serengeti National Park to Kenya's Maasai Mara National Park in search of greener pastures and rainfall. The Great Migration is a unique event; no other migration features such a high number of wildlife, except perhaps butterflies and smaller birds.

When you return to your accommodation, you can relax in the comfort of your room or sip a glass of wine in the open-air lounge. After dinner, you can sit by the fire as the sky turns colors and night falls.

Day 16: Final Safari - Star Gaze in the Serengeti

Final Safari of the Trip

Today is your final game drive in the beautiful Sergenti National Park. Your guide will help you find any animals you haven't seen yet, unless they are sleeping, of course. Relax out on safari, enjoy lunch on the savanna, and spend your last night relaxing at your accommodation. Enjoy the dark sky at night and gaze as the stars make their way across the sky. Sip wine as the last embers of the fire fade before calling it a night.

Day 17: Kogatende Airstrip Transfer

Goodbye Tanzania!

After a leisurely morning, it's time to say goodbye to beautiful Tanzania. Your guide will transfer you to Kogatende Airstrip. Here, a small plane will take you to a larger airport for your flight home or to your next adventure.