Ngorongoro conservation area
Ngorongoro conservation area-Tanzania : the Ngorongoro conservation area covers 8,292 square kilometers and the world’s largest inactive unfilled caldera is found at this destination which is found in the northern part of Tanzania. The big 5 which includes elephants, lions, leopards, buffalos and rhinos are among the wildlife species which can be seen while on a safari around the Ngorongoro conservation area. This destination in Tanzania is also home to a large concentration of wildlife species.
Some of the amazing facts about the Ngorongoro conservation area include that before the eruption of the volcano over 2 million years ago leading to formation of the Ngorongoro crater, the volcano was almost as high as Mount Kilimanjaro.
Another interesting fact about the Ngorongoro crater is that giraffes are not among the numerous wildlife species at the destination. This is due to the steep sides of the crater therefore giraffes cannot be seen during safaris around the Ngorongoro crater.
Ngorongoro conservation area is also home to the Maasai people who can be seen in the highlands and around the grassy plains as they graze their livestock such as cows, goats and sheep.
The Maasai are known for their unique culture and way of life and during safaris around the Ngorongoro conservation area, interactions with the Maasai are part of the experience which also involves visiting the Maasai villages and homes which are built using mud, watching traditional dances, seeing local art and crafts, getting to know more about the culture of the Maasai.
Ngorongoro conservation area is also a UNESCO world heritage site and is made up of beautiful scenery and consists of savannah plains, woodlands, and also forests. The Ngorongoro crater also has an alkaline lake in the center of the crater where flocks of flamingos and many other bird species can be seen.
Park entrance fees of about 71 USD and crater fees of 295 USD are among the costs incurred during safaris to the Ngorongoro conservation area.
Activities carried out around the Ngorongoro conservation area
Different activities are carried out during safaris around the Ngorongoro conservation area and they include the following;
Visiting Maasai villages
The Ngorongoro conservation area is also home to the Maasai people who live along with the numerous wildlife species in the savannah of Ngorongoro.
The Maasai make up a big percentage of the local community in the Ngorongoro conservation area which is also home to the Datoga and the Hadzabe. During safaris, tourists can also interact with these locals as they learn more about their cultures.
The Maasai practice nomadism and are known for their dependence on their livestock. However, the Maasai living around the Ngorongoro conservation area also practice agriculture. The Maasai play an important role in tourism around Ngorongoro and are also employed as guides and also work in the lodges around the destination.
An interesting fact about the Maasai people is that wealth among the Maasai people is measured according to the number of cattle that one has.
Game drives are among the activities which are carried out during safaris around the Ngorongoro conservation area.
The activity involves descending about 600 meters into the Ngorongoro crater where wildlife species of a variety can be seen. wildlife species which can be spotted during game drives around the Ngorongoro conservation area include elephants, buffalos, lions, leopards, black rhinos, zebras, wildebeests, hippos, antelopes, waterbucks, hartebeests, kudu, hyenas, warthogs among others.
Game viewing around the Ngorongoro conservation area can be carried out at different times of the year. The dry season around June to October is recommended for wildlife viewing at the destination.
Crater rim experience
Exploring the crater rim of Ngorongoro is another experience during safaris around the Ngorongoro conservation area.
Guided nature walks are carried out around the crater rim where tourists can enjoy amazing views of the crater and also see various wildlife species during the safari experience. This activity can be carried out in the morning or in the evening and is done in the company of a ranger guide.
Safaris around the Ngorongoro conservation area also involve hiking around the Ngorongoro highlands.
This activity can also be carried out around the craters which are found in the neighboring areas such as the Empakaai crater which is found north east of the Ngorongoro crater. The Empakaai crater was also formed as a result of volcanic activity.
Another activity which is carried out during safaris around the Ngorongoro conservation area is bird watching. Numerous wildlife species can be seen around the crater area and they include flamingos, starlings, black winged lapwings, vultures, the Livingstone turracos, rufous tailed weavers, secretary birds, ostriches and many others.
Visiting Ol duvai gorge
The Ol duvai gorge is an attraction which is found around the Ngorongoro conservation area and is also referred to as the cradle of mankind.
Ol duvai gorge is an archaeological site in the northern part of Tanzania where discoveries of evidence of evolution of mankind such as fossils and stone tools were found. These discoveries were made by Dr Louis and Mary Leakey.
During safaris, tourists can also visit the Ol duvai museum where some of the discoveries are displayed and more information about these discoveries is given during the tour around the museum.
How to get to the Ngorongoro conservation area
The Ngorongoro conservation area can be accessed by using road from Arusha town and also by flight from Kilimanjaro international airport.
During safaris around the Ngorongoro conservation area-Tanzania, there are different accommodation facilities where tourists can stay and they include luxury lodges, midrange lodges and budget lodges that are found also in the neighboring towns like Karatu.
The lodges and tented camps around the Ngorongoro conservation area include Ngorongoro Serena safari lodge, Ngorongoro wildlife lodge, andbeyond Ngorongoro crater lodge, Ngorongoro Sopa lodge, Rhino lodge Ngorongoro, Elewana the manor at Ngorongoro, Neptune Ngorongoro luxury lodge, Lemala Ngorongoro tented camp, Ngorongoro crater camp, Eileen’s tree inn, Hhando coffee lodge among others.
Visit Tanzania and enjoy a wildlife safari experience as you explore the Ngorongoro conservation area