If this is your first visit, you’ll probably want to head north. This way lies the Serengeti’s short grass plains, a vast stage where the greatest animal migration on earth plays out each year. This is also where you will find the Ngorongoro Crater and Mount Kilimanjaro. As you’d expect from such big-ticket destinations, they can get rather busy. Luckily, we know how best to avoid the crowds and yet see the very best of the wildlife.
Serengeti means ‘endless plains’ in Swahili, and this they are. Between the Rift Valley in the east to Lake Victoria in the west, these grasslands seem to stretch to the ends of the earth. Lion, zebra, cheetah, impala and jackal roam free. It’s one of the best places on the planet for ticking the big five off your list.
There are so many different options when it comes to accommodation, from simple mobile camps to swish safari lodges. You can trek to see chimpanzee in Mahale, cruise the remote rivers in Selous, experience the wilderness of Ruaha – home to some of our favourite camps in the whole country – scale the heights of Mount Kilimanjaro, or explore the exotic Zanzibar Archipelago, just 20 miles off the coast.
When to go
Timing is key. The migration moves around the Serengeti and Masai Mara ecosystem year-round. The short rains bring humidity during late November and early December until the long rains of April and May clear the air. Game viewing is, arguably, at its best between June and November and again from January until April.