Tanzania Wildlife SafariItinerary
Note: Locations selected for this safari promise excellent viewing of wildlife, however, spotting specific wildlife cannot be guaranteed. Some activities are dependent on weather and seasonal conditions.
Day 1: En Route from U.S.
Day 2: Arrive in Arusha, Tanzania
After an evening arrival to the Kilimanjaro Airport, you will be met by an Orbridge representative who will assist with the transfer to your hotel.
Overnight: Arusha Serena Hotel, Resort & Spa
Days 3-4: Tarangire National Park
- Following breakfast and a welcome briefing by your Orbridge Expedition Leader, depart Arusha to enjoy two days exploring Tarangire National Park. Morning and afternoon game drives provide your first look at Africa's natural beauty, power, and wonder. This seasonal park has the second highest concentration of wildlife (after the Serengeti), including diverse habitats such as dry open woodlands, thorny Acacia thickets, rolling hills, rocky outcrops, extensive swamps, the Tarangire River, and many huge, iconic Baobab trees.
Tarangire, known for elephants, reportedly has the largest elephant concentration in the world during the dry season. Witness in sheer awe the commanding presence of these majestic creatures in close proximity as they roam the surrounding landscape.
In addition, the park boasts hundreds of bird species—the highest of any Tanzanian park. Notable common birds include the ashy starling, red-and-yellow barbet, red-bellied parrot, speckle-fronted weaver, little bee-eater, and tawny eagle. Bird lovers should keep an eye open for flocks of the dazzlingly colorful yellow-collared lovebird and the equally striking lilac-breasted roller—with its greenish head, lilac throat and breast, blue belly, and bright wing feathers.
This ecosystem is also home to lions, as well as elusive cheetahs and leopards, all sustained by herds of zebras, wildebeest, giraffes, and more.
Between thrilling experiences of wildlife viewing, savor delightful moments to reflect, including a welcome cocktail, a bush lunch inside the park, and educational presentations by the camp fire.
Overnight: Tarangire Sopa Lodge (B,L,D daily)
Day 5: Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Today's journey includes a game drive en route to the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Next, drive to Gibb's Farm for a guided farm walk and lunch. This award-winning sanctuary, established in the early 1900s as a coffee plantation, offers a welcome respite for travelers. Replenish with inspired organic cuisine, fresh from the farm’s gardens, bakery, and dairy, and enjoy the beauty and tradition of the surroundings. An immersive experience, Gibb's Farm provides opportunities for interested guests to partake in a variety of activities, including the daily vegetable harvest, cow milking, pig feeding, and egg collecting.
Later, continue to tonight's lodge for dinner and an evening at leisure.
Overnight: Ngorongoro Serena Safari Lodge (B,L,D)
Day 6: Ngorongoro Crater
This morning, descend some 2,000 feet to the floor of the Ngorongoro Crater, the largest inactive and intact volcanic caldera in the world. The crater was thought to have developed millions of years ago when the cone of a large active volcano collapsed after eruption. It is considered one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Africa, and its unique ecosystem is often called a "Garden of Eden" due to the wide range and ever-present abundance of wildlife attracted by the year-round water supply on the crater floor.
A thrilling full-day game drive provides ample wildlife-viewing opportunities, including, but not limited to: buffaloes, zebras, warthogs, wildebeests, Grant’s and Thomson’s gazelles, leopards, the densest population of lions in the world, and the best place in East Africa to spot black rhinoceroses.
Overnight: Ngorongoro Serena Safari Lodge (B,L,D)
Days 7-8: Olduvai Gorge | Serengeti National Park - Seronera Valley
- Navigate around the crater’s rim, descending to Olduvai Gorge, one of the most important prehistoric archaeological sites on Earth. It was here in the 1950s that Louis and Mary Leakey first uncovered the fossilized teeth and skull of one of man's earliest ancestors.
After an interpretive presentation, continue to the Serengeti—Tanzania's oldest and most popular national park—to experience its vastness and beauty. Spanning 12,000 square miles, this ecosystem’s name is appropriately derived from the Maasai language meaning “endless plains.”
Daily morning and afternoon game drives reveal the best of East Africa's natural beauty as we traverse the savanna's golden fields underneath an endless expanse of blue sky. Experience moments of tranquility and pulse-racing action during breathtaking opportunities to observe life in the wild.
Overnight: Serengeti Serena Safari Lodge (B,L,D daily)
While in Tanzania, you can opt to take a once-in-a-lifetime hot air balloon safari. Guests choosing to reserve this excursion will enjoy a dawn ascent over the southern Serengeti. Experience incredible birds-eye views over the wildlife and vast landscape. Afterward, enjoy a champagne breakfast and a game drive before rejoining the group. (Note: This excursion must be purchased in advance to guarantee availability and is non-refundable inside 90 days to departure.)
Days 9-10: Western Serengeti | Grumeti
- Traveling west beyond the Seronera Valley, enter the western corridor of the Serengeti and the Grumeti River region. This relatively narrow corridor—made up of open savanna, woodlands, and floodplains—follows the path of the crocodile-infested Grumeti River all the way to Lake Victoria. It's home to abundant wildlife, including rare Colobus monkeys.
Daily morning and afternoon game drives afford plenty of opportunities to observe, explore, and learn about these reserves and their diversity of bird and mammal species.
Bid a fond farewell to the sights, sounds and magic of the Serengeti with a memorable bush dinner.
Overnight: Mbalageti Serengeti Tented Chalets (B,L,D daily)
Day 11: Serengeti | Flight to Arusha | Depart for U.S.
From Grumeti, take the short, scenic flight back to Arusha. On arrival, enjoy lunch and finish any last-minute shopping for woodcarvings or art at the Cultural Heritage Center. Day rooms at the hotel provide comfort and downtime until your transfer to the airport this evening.
Day Room: Arusha Serena Hotel, Resort & Spa (B,L)
Day 12: En Route | Arrive in U.S.
B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner
This safari program requires an ability to walk safely over uneven and slippery ground without assistance, transport luggage a short distance, get in and out of a 4 x 4 Land Cruiser, and physically tolerate vehicle motion on oftentimes bumpy Serengeti roads.
Average elevation: 5,000 feet