Visit the incredible Ngorongoro Crater Conservation Area, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in northern Tanzania. The focal point of this stunning 8292 km2 space is the magnificent Ngorongoro Crater. It is hard to believe that the actual rim of the crater is an astounding 2286m above sea level – a veritable mountain.
A magnificent landmark because it covers an astounding area of 265 square kilometres. Magnificent because it is more than 600m deep and 19 km wide. But best of all, magnificent because this is the most intensive game viewing experience on Earth! View about 30 000 different wild animals living on the crater floor around a small soda lake.
Once part of the Serengeti National Park, the Ngorongoro Crater conservation area now encompasses a huge expanse of grassy plains on the southern side of the Serengeti Plain. This includes the Ngorongoro Highlands, a range of largely extinct ancient volcanoes on the west side of the Great Rift Valley.
Ngorongoro spans immense highland plains, savannas, savanna woodlands and forests. The crater formed its own ecosystem thanks to its enclosed nature.
The Lerai Forest comprises yellow fever trees (part of the acacia family) while the Gorigor Swamp and Ngoitokitok Springs provide the perfect habitat for hippos.
Observe an extraordinary variety of wild animals at the mind-boggling Ngorongoro Crater. Enjoy some explosive wildlife encounters – giant-tusked elephants, black-manned lions and about 6 000 resident wildebeest roam the plains. The Crater’s lions are known for their complete disregard of vehicles – they will hunt within yards of a vehicle, and, when exhausted, even seek shade beside them.
Ngorongoro receives many visitors during peak season so it is better to visit during low season. If you want to see huge flocks of flamingo, visit Lake Magadi when it has more water.
Experience the famous Olduvai Gorge within the Ngorongoro Crater Conservation Area – where Dr Louis Leakey and family discovered the remains of Homo Habilis or “handy man”. This historical find is regarded as mankind’s first step on the ladder of human evolution and proves Leakey’s theory that man had his origins in Africa.
Take a safari to the Olduvai Gorge to visit the fascinating museum to see fossils and some actual artefacts found on site. There are even early hominid footprints dating back 3.6 million years. Other fossils discovered here include those of prehistoric elephants, giant horned sheep, and enormous ostriches.