Exclusive Tanzania Wildlife Destinations You Must Visit

Tanzania is one of the most visited wildlife destinations in East Africa. The country’s size gives it an advantage of a large area size for wildlife no wonder it has some of the highest wildlife concentrations in the region. East Africa in general is a great place to visit but destination Tanzania stands out. It is highly recommended for those seeking exclusive wildlife destinations and adventures. Let us briefly look at the major exclusive wildlife destinations you must not miss out while on a visit to this beautiful country.

Lions in Selous Game Reserve Tanzania. Tanzania Wildlife destinations
Lions in Selous Game Reserve Tanzania. Courtesy Photo

The Selous

Selous game reserve also known as Nyerere national park is Tanzania’s leading exclusive wildlife destination. The park is located in the remote southern part and is also Tanzania’s and Africa largest protected area with a land area of 19,000 square kilometers. Selous has a number of wildlife species including giraffes, elephants, hippos, wild dogs, buffaloes, greater Kudus, elands and over 440 bird species. There is also unique vegetation species of the Miombo woodlands including baobab trees. It is from this basis that the park was listed among the world heritage sites by UNESCO.

Much as the biggest part of the park is used as a hunting area, about 8% of it is strictly for tourism and hunting in the tourism area is prohibited. Here adventure tourist especially wildlife photographers get to capture best moments in the park. The location of the park makes it not easily accessed by Many tourists and it therefore among the less crowded places in Tanzania. Unlike mass tourism experienced in parks like Serengeti, a safari in Nyerere national park is totally exclusive. The park can be best explored while on game drives and guided walking safaris.

The dry season from June to October is the best time to visit Selous game reserve. Here major game drive trails are dry easy to maneuver and the short grass makes it easy to spot wildlife. During the dry season some of the animals can be seen along River Rufigi as they take water. If you are seeking for exclusive wildlife safaris in Tanzania ensure to have sells as your number one destination.

The Ngorongoro Crater

This is world’s largest unfilled volcanic caldera with 610 meters deep and a floor of 260 square kilometers. It is also listed among the World heritage sites and it is one of Africa’s natural wonders. The crater is an attraction it self but has many other attractions including the various relief features within the crater. These include Rivers, lakes, vegetation varieties like forests, woodlands, grasslands all of whom are habitats to a number of wildlife species.

Notable wildlife seen on game drives on the crater floor include waterbucks, lions, elephants, rhinos, buffaloes, wildebeest and many bird species. The Ngorongoro crater being a natural enclosure makes it one of the exclusive wildlife destinations in Tanzania. It also offers a wide range of activities that once can engage in including birding, game drives, nature walks among others.

Just like many other wildlife destinations in Tanzania, the best time to visit the crater is during the dry season. Here there are minimal rainfall disturbances and game drives can easily be executed with easy wildlife viewing. The wet season from November to May is also a good time to visit and with the rains the number of guests reduce. The wet season is also a time the migratory birds from Europe set in and is the best time for birding.

Much as Uganda’s Kibale national park and Nyungwe forest Rwanda are most famous for chimpanzees, Tanzania’s Gombe national park is another beautiful chimpanzee trekking destination. The park is located near lake Tanganyika in the rugged mountainous forested landscapes that are not only home to chimpanzees but also other primates and birds.

Gombe national park has a number of steep valleys with streams. There is also a waterfall that can be seen while on a guided nature walk in this forested national park. Chimpanzee trekking is the most commonly done wildlife activity here. The chimpanzees here were made famous by Jane Goodall who started her research In the early 1960’s and has done a tremendous job in primate conservation not only in Tanzania.

The park can be mainly explored on foot on the guided primate treks, natures walks in the forest or along the shores of Lake Tanganyika Africa’s deepest lake. For exclusive primate trekking in Tanzania and East Africa in general visiting Gombe national park would be great.

Ruaha is Tanzania’s second largest national park also located in the southern part. The park covers a land area of 7,809 square kilometers and also home to a variety of wildlife species. The four of the big five mammals occur here namely elephants, buffaloes, lions and leopards. Ruaha is also a great place to see Africa’s predators and big cats. It is the best places to see lions as prides of over 20 individuals are seen in the park.

Giraffes, hippos, zebras and over 450 bird species also occur in the park and all these can be seen on game drives and guided walks. Hot air ballon safaris are incredible offering great panoramic views of the parks wildlife. The park Is totally exclusive with limited accommodation facilities. Wildlife safaris here are very classic and undisturbed best for honeymooners and those who prefer their peace and quiet.

The park can be accessed by both road and air transport though air transport is the most convenient one. The road transfer from Dar-es-salaam takes about 10 hours drive with en route stop overs for photography and a lunch break. Incase you do not want this long drive you can have a stopover at Mukumi national park for an adventure and then proceed to Ruaha the next day. Since air transport is costly the road transfer would be an option and very rewarding in terms of adventure.

Ruaha is undoubtedly one of Tanzania’s most exclusive wildlife destinations and can be visited throughout the year. For better wildlife experiences though you can visit in the dry season from May to October.

Why You should Track Mountain gorillas In Uganda

Mountain Gorillas are primates species that live in the forested mountains of Eastern Africa. They are among the rarest primates only found in three countries on the entire planet that are Uganda, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo. Mountain Gorillas are listed endangered by the IUCN and their total population is estimated at only 1000 individuals in the wild. These live in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in southwestern Uganda and in the Virunga massif a chain of dormant Volcanic mountains along the Rwanda, Uganda and Democratic Republic of Congo border.

Mountain Gorillas are covered with thicker fur that enable them endure the cold temperatures of the region that fall below zero degrees. They are pure vegetarian and their diet mainly comprise of plant vegetation. They live in families headed by a dominant male gorilla called silverback. Some of the Mountain gorilla families have up to 20 individuals or more. Just like their name, mountain gorillas live in the mountainous areas. The elevation of Bwindi impenetrable forest for example ranges from 1,190 to 2,607 meters above sea level and that of the Virunga massif ranges from 2,400 to 4,507 meters above sea level.

A hike in the Virunga massif or Bwindi impenetrable forest offers an incredible encounter with the mountain gorillas. This experience has been described by many as a once in a life time experience. There are mainly Four mountain gorilla parks that include Volcanoes National Park Rwanda, Mgahinga gorilla and Bwindi impenetrable Forest national park in Uganda and Virunga national park in Democratic Republic of Congo. Let us look at the main reasons why you should track mountain gorillas in Uganda of all the 3 gorilla trekking destinations in East Africa.

Mountain Gorillas Bwindi Uganda
A mountain Gorilla Family in Bwindi. Courtesy Photo.

Diverse Gorilla Trekking Ecosystems

Uganda is blessed with 2 mountain gorilla parks. Mgahinga gorilla park is part of the Virunga massif ecosystem encompassing 3 of the Virunga mountains. These include Mount Gahinga, Mount Sabyinyo and Mount Muhabura. These mountains are covered with light bamboo forests that transcends into an Albertine rift montane forest with heath and moorlands and an alpine zone at the higher altitudes of the mountains.

The light bamboo forests are homes to the mountain gorillas and many other mammals in the park. There is only one habituated mountain gorilla family in this park called Nyakagezi that offers intimate and exclusive gorilla trekking experiences. A mountain gorilla trek is more like that in the other Virunga massif parks offering a great and unique primate trekking experience.

Bwindi impenetrable forest national park on the other hand comprises of a number of hills with altitudes ranging from 1,190 to 2,607 meters above sea level. These are covered with a dense afromontane home a to a variety of wildlife species including mountain gorillas. The vegetation and relief of Bwindi is different from the Virunga massif including Mgahinga gorilla park.

Trekking gorillas in Bwindi impenetrable forest offers a completely unique gorilla trekking experience from that of the Virunga massif. The forest is a home to many other primates including colobus monkeys, l’hoest monkeys, chimpanzees some of which seen while gorilla trekking. There are many other mammals in the park like forest elephants, buffaloes, a number of birds among others. It is from this animal and plant life diversity that Bwindi was given a status of a world heritage site by UNESCO.

Uganda has the highest of the remaining mountain gorilla population. Over 450 mountain gorillas live in Bwindi impenetrable forest which is half of the entire population on the planet.

Bwindi impenetrable national park has four major sectors with 22 habituated gorilla families. They include Buhoma the northern sector of the park with 6 habituated families namely Rushegura, Habinyanja, Mubaare, Katwe, Binyindo and Muyambi familes. Ruhija is the eastern sector with Bitukura, Mukiiza, Kyaguriro and Oruzogo families. The southern sector has Rushaga with Bweza, Mishaya, Nshongi, Kutu, Mucunguzi, Busingye, Kahungye and Bikingi families. Also in the south is Nkuringo with Christmas, Nkuringo, Bushaho and Posho families. All these are open for gorilla trekking offering more chances of gorilla trekking and a unique wildlife experience in the park.

Mgahinga gorilla park’s only one habituated gorilla family also adds on the numbers to Uganda’s grand total. If you are therefore looking for the numbers of high chances then Uganda is the right place to track mountain gorillas.

Other primate experiences

The mountain gorilla parks in Uganda are not only homes to mountain gorillas but other primates. Mgahinga gorilla park for example is also home to the golden monkeys that are endemic to the Virunga massif. Mgahinga gorilla park is one of the few places where you can track both mountain gorillas and golden monkeys. Just like their name, golden monkeys are covered with golden fur and also live in families of up to 20 individuals.  

You can arrange a golden monkey trek after your mountain gorilla trekking expedition. It also starts with an early morning briefing at the park headquarters from where you are led to the forest where you will meet the golden monkeys amidst sighting of other wildlife species especially birds.

 Bwindi impenetrable national park is a sanctuary for chimpanzee and colobus monkeys plus other primates. Much as trails to explore these primates are not fully developed you can spot some of them while on hikes to the gorillas. You can also take guided nature walks in the park where you will get to see a number of the primates.

Tracking gorillas in Uganda generally gives you an opportunity to to see a number of these primates and more wildlife species.

The mountain gorilla parks are surrounded by local communities where you can enjoy authentic community and cultural experiences. The Batwa trail in Mgahinga gorilla park is highly recommended as the Batwa take you back the forest demonstrating their hunting and gathering skills. There are also some Batwa communities near Bwindi impenetrable forest as well as the Bakiga. You can visit any of these communities after the gorilla trek to get to know more about the local people’s ways of life.

Best time to Visit

You can have a mountain gorilla trek in Uganda any time of the year but for best experiences it is better to visit in the dry season. This stretches from June to September and from December to March. During these months there is minimal rainfall disturbances which makes hiking through the different trails a little easy.

During the wet season you can still enjoy your gorilla trek in Uganda. It is also a great time for birding as migratory birds set in from as far as Europe.

The Wildebeest Migration Adventure

The great wildebeest migration is an annual animal migration between Serengeti and Masai mara ecosystems in Kenya and Tanzania. It features vast numbers of wildebeest, zebras, gazelles and other antelope species moving over the plains of Serengeti and Masai mara for fresh pasture. This natural phenomenon happens month per month gradually transitioning into the other as the grazers move facing deadly predators especially the big cats.

Wildebeest Migration Visit East Africa. 3 Days Masai Mara
Wildebeest Migration Maasai Mara. Photo by Thomas Vijayan

The Wildebeest Migration Annual Road Map

In January at the beginning of the year the migration is often in Southern Serengeti. Here they evenly spread throughout the Ndutu conservation area and part of the Ngorongoro Crater. They would have returned from Kenya’s Masai Mara around mid October spreading through out Northern Serengeti.

The wildebeest stay in southern Serengeti throughout the months of February and March that also double as a calving period. The young ones are a great addition to the wildebeest population that eagerly await to take on their journey up north once again. The calves are however targeted by the predators like lions, leopards, cheetahs that often hide in the lush grasses ready to take down their prey.

In April and May, the wildebeest steadily start moving towards northern Serengeti as the wet season ends. This ushers in the dry season in June as the animals spread further west. Here they encounter River Grumeti their first major obstacle on their journey. The high water levels from the rains in the wet season discourage the wildebeest from quickly crossing over. The River banks are also graced with some of the deadliest Nile crocodiles that the wildebeest have to look out for.

In July and August at the peak of the dry season quite a number of them would have crossed Grumeti River. They move further north towards Masai Mara crossing the Mara River that has a number of predator crocodiles that take advantage of the wildebeest numbers. The Nile crocodiles feast big time on the herbivores that also fight hard to continue on course northwards. The wildebeest move over the Masai Mara Ecosystem till around mid October when they start crossing back to Serengeti.

The Migration cycle then starts allover again a journey that wildlife enthusiasts often want to be part of.

The Big cats

Serengeti and Masai are among the few places in East Africa with highest concentrations of big cats. These have large prides of lions whose survival is directly linked to the wildebeest and the many herbivores that they prey on. The wildebeest migration is among the few places where you can catch live action hunting in the wild.

Apart from the lions, the wilds’ most stealth predators the leopards are also many in Serengeti and Mara ecosystem. These also take advantage of even the calving period to hunt prey for their survival. Cheetahs are also present here and use their speed advantage to race out herbivores. The big cats are often accompanied by hyenas that like to steal some of the already hunted prey.

Hyenas are also deadly predators that are evenly distributed in the region. These attack in groups to easily maximize their chances of a kill.

The wildebeest Migration Experience

The best way to enjoy the wildebeest migration is on a day game drives in the parks and the respective conservancies. Luckily the migration can be easily predicated month per month which enables travelers to plan accordingly on where to visit at a particular time. Early morning game drives are highly recommended for those who would like to catch up with the early risers.

Evening game drives are ideal for you to see the wild animals retire from a busy hunting and grazing day. You are also able to catch up with the African sunset while on evening game drives. The nocturnal wildlife then start heading out as they are most active at night including the big cats.


Hot air ballon safaris are also highly recommended as they offer a panoramic view of the wildlife. It is always refreshing to observe wildlife from an elevated point of view and in the masai mara and Serengeti it is even more spectacular. The best time for ballon safaris are early mornings and late evenings. For the early morning expeditions, you can have bush breakfast that is prepared and served in the wilderness offering you uninterrupted views of the game.

Accommodation

There are a number of accommodation facilities that are strategically located within and at the outskirts of the parks. Staying at one of these beautiful Wild places ahead of your wildebeest safari expedition is very ideal. You can start your game drives right from your lodge or tented camp and occasionally have wildlife visitors like lions and other big five mammals including elephants.

It is very important to book the appropriate accommodation depending on the wildebeest migration movements. There are temporary safari camps that move with the migration throughout the year. Before you book your tour it is better to be certain where the wildebeest are for you to book the most convenient accommodation option.

The dry season from June to September doubles as the peak tourist season a time when accommodation facilities get fully booked. Incase you plan to travel during this Time it is highly recommended for you to book your accommodation in advance. October is a transition month from the dry to wet season but still busy and features River crossings of the wildebeest from Masai Mara to Serengeti. You would still need to book your accommodation in advance a year or couple months before to avoid missing out.

During the wet season mainly in November, March, April and May, there are high chances of rainfall which makes some game drive trails impassable. This however does not prevent one from enjoying the migration especially with the calving period. A number of lodges also offer discounted rates during this time of the year and could ideal to travel if you want to save some money.

Birding

For birders, the wet season is the best time to visit as the migratory birds set in coming from as far as Europe. General wildlife viewing is also great including the big cats that are spotted hiding in the lush vegetation.

Now that we are in the middle of the peak tourist season, you can plan your safari now and visit towards the end of year or book for the next season come 2023. Visit East Africa for these and much more wildlife adventures.

Congo the Ultimate Primate Trekking Destination

The Democratic Republic of Congo is no doubt the ultimate primate trekking destination all thanks to the country’s wildlife diversity. Congo remains one of the less explored wildlife destination offering virgin and authentic wildlife experiences. The country is home to East Africa’s leading primates including endemics found in no other place on the planet.

Much as the country is disturbed by security issues, tourism activity is still ongoing in the Kahuzi Biega national park area. Virunga national park is still closed since the Mount Nyiragongo Erupted but we hope it will eventually be opened.

Let us briefly look at Congo’s major primates trekking experiences that make the country an ultimate primate trekking destination.

Chimpanzee at Lwiro Sanctuary. Congo Primate expeditions
Chimpanzee at Lwiro Sanctuary. Courtesy Photo

Democratic Republic of Congo is among the 3 countries on the planet with the remaining populations of mountain gorillas. These rare primate have over 95% DNA similar to humans and their total population is currently estimated at 1100. They in live in the Virunga massif a chain of volcanic mountains along the Uganda, Rwanda and DRC border and in Bwindi impenetrable forest.

The Virunga massif has over 600 mountain gorillas and rest of the population is in Bwindi impenetrable forest. The Virunga massif has 3 major gorilla parks Virunga national park included which is also Africa’s oldest national park.

Virunga national park has a number of habituated mountain gorillas families that are open to tourist visitation. Mountain gorilla trekking here is very enjoyable as you get to meet some of man’s wild relatives. Much the park is currently closed, it will open again with time when it is safe for visitation giving way to the much desired primate trekking expeditions.

Eastern lowland gorillas live in the forest mountains of Kahuzi Biega national park. These are the largest of the all the gorilla subspecies and also live in families headed by a dominant male called Silverback. Just like the mountain gorillas, eastern lowland gorillas are also vegetarian and depend on plant vegetation and wild fruits.

Eastern lowland gorilla offers a great primate trekking experience and an opportunity to see other wildlife species in the park. Kahuzi Biega national park is home other primates including chimpanzees, Colobus monkeys, L’hoest monkeys among others. There are also birding opportunities here as the park is home to over 400 bird species.

There are however lowland gorilla trekking regulations to be followed while in the park. Only tourists are allowed to track a gorilla family staying in their presence for a minimus of 1 hour. This is to limit behavioural change among the mountain gorillas which results from the long hours of human and mountain gorilla exposure. Since they have over 95% DNA similar to human beings they can easily adapt human behaviour.

One is also required to keep a distance of about 7 meters away from them as they can easily charge when they feel threatened. Flash photography is strictly not allowed and one is advised to wear clothes that blend with nature colours.

Lwiro Sanctuary is a rehabilitation centre for chimpanzees but it is also home to other wildlife species. The sanctuary is located just 4 kilometres from Kahuzi Biega national park in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. Despite its wildlife diversity and abundance, the country has the highest rates of poaching in the region. Many wildlife species are poached to be sold for food in local markets while others are hunted for medicine.

The Lwiro sanctuary was therefore set up as home to look after primates especially chimpanzees that are rescued from the poachers. There are currently over 107 chimpanzees, various monkey species including red tailed monkeys, Patas monkeys, Blue monkeys among others. Other wildlife at Lwiro include porcupines, parrots that are highly poached in the Congo.

A visit to the Lwiro Sanctuary is highly recommended for more exciting primate expeditions. The sanctuary can be visited after gorilla trekking in Kahuzi Biega national park.

Senkwekwe Gorilla Sanctuary Experience

Senkwekwe Mountain Gorilla Sanctuary is the only facility for orphaned mountain gorillas. It was set up in 2009 and now acts as home to mountain and lowland gorillas rescued from poaching or traps (snares) in the park.

A visit to the centre gives one more insight about mountain gorillas offering exclusive primate experiences. Looking after the gorillas here follows a routine that must be maintained for the safety and well being of the gorillas. They are given early morning breakfast and then left to go out and play. Later in the evening they are lured back into their sleeping area with food where they stay until the next morning.

While seeking for more intimate primate trekking experiences in Virunga national park ensure to add Senkwekwe Mountain Gorilla Sanctuary to your itinerary.

Golden Monkey trekking experiences

Golden monkeys are other rare primates species endemic to the Virunga massif. Just like their name golden monkeys are covered with golden fur and also live in families like other major primates. Congo is one of the few places where you can experience golden monkey trekking.

Other places with golden monkeys include Rwanda’s Volcanoes national park and Uganda’s Maghinga gorilla park. These are all part of the great Virunga massif.

Golden monkey experiences can be enjoyed in Virunga national park as you get to know more about these least explored primate species of the Virungas’.

As the security situation is slowly getting back to normal, many primate adventure travellers would love to Visit the Congo. For now Kahuzi Biega national park is open for those interested in Eastern Lowland gorillas. The Lwiro sanctuary is also currently open for Visitation. Virunga national park the most famous of all the primate parks will eventually open.

Visit East Africa’s other leading primate destinations that include Rwanda and Uganda. In Rwanda Nyungwe forest in the south western part of the country is home to 13 primates including the chimpanzees. For Mountain gorilla trekking then a visit to Volcanoes national park is very ideal. In Uganda, Kibale national park is popularly known as the primate capital of the world because of the parks high chimpanzee population as well as other primates.

Other popular chimpanzee trekking destinations in Uganda include Budongo forest, Kyambura forest, Kalinzu forest among others. For Mountain gorilla trekking, Uganda has 2 gorilla parks that are Bwindi impenetrable and Mgahinga Gorilla park.

Kenya Wildlife Adventures To Do This July

Kenya is a renown destination for epic wildlife adventures thanks to its wildlife diversity. The country offers by far some of the most enjoyable classic African safaris experienced in over 20 national parks. Aside from the usual savanna parks and game reserves, Kenya has marine national parks along the coast. These gives one opportunity to enjoy marine wildlife adventures featuring dolphins, sea turtles among others.

Let us briefly look at the leading Kenya wildlife adventures you must not miss this July.

Kenya Wildlife Adventures
Zebras in Kenya. Courtesy Photo

The wildebeest migration is an annual animal mass migration over the Serengeti and Masai Mara ecosystems. It involves over 1 millions wildebeests, Thompson gazelles, zebras and other major grazers. These move in search for fresh pastures and are often times guided by rains.

The great wildebeest migration is a true life cycle that involves every stage of life with births, survival and deaths. It attracts the lands most feared predators that readily take down their prey. They include larges prides of lions, leopards, cheetahs, hyenas and many scavengers.

Every month features a unique wildebeest migration wildlife adventures transitioning to the other. In this month, the River crossings have started from Serengeti to Masai Mara and the wildebeest have to over come the deadly Nile crocodiles in the Mara River. Those that make it alive sweep across the Mara ecosystem until late September when they start going back to Serengeti.

While on a visit to Kenya ensure to visit Masai Mara to be part of the great wildebeest migration. Look out for other wildlife in the park and reserves including elephants plus a number of bird species.

Amboseli African elephants

Amboseli national park is among Kenya’s most famous national parks. It is the best place to see African elephants as they freely roam the open savanna of the park. Mount Kilimanjaro Africa’s highest mountain can be best seen in Amboseli national park. Wildlife safari adventures in Amboseli are a great deal with the magnificent background view of the Kilimanjaro.

Apart from elephants, you can see other wildlife species in the park like giraffes, buffaloes, zebras among others. The park is also home to over 400 bird species including flamingos that are present in the wet season. Given that the park has diverse ecosystems of grasslands, woodlands and swamp vegetation, it attracts different bird species.

The park can be visited any time of the year but the best time is in the dry season. This ranges from December to February and June to September. A visit to this park can be done in additional to a wildebeest migration safari in 6 to 7 days for better chances and maximisation of wildlife.

Nairobi City Safari escapes

Nairobi is Kenya’s capital city and it is the only city in the world in the proximity of a national park. Nairobi national park is situated just a 40 minutes drive from the city centre. This gives nature lovers an opportunity to go for short wildlife adventures with ease and convenience.

The park is home to various wildlife species including Rhinos, giraffes, lions, zebras, wildebeest and a number of antelope species. Even in a day trip to the park you will be able to enjoy game drives and later return to the city for an overnight.

Birders are also well catered for here as the park is home to over 500 bird species. Notable birds here include black-headed heron, Ostriches, blacksmith lapwing, kori bustard among others. The migratory birds also set from November to April coming from as far as Europe.

For those with little time in Kenya but would love to enjoy African Wildlife adventures this is the place to be.

Mombasa is Kenya’s biggest sea port and city. It is strategically borders the Indian Ocean and is a one stop centre for Marine wildlife experiences. Mombasa has beautiful white sand beaches where one can relax and enjoy the African sun with uninterrupted ocean view. Leading beaches in Mombasa include Diani beach, watamu beach, Tiwi beach, Nyali beach, Kalifi beach among others.

All the beaches have accommodation facilities where one can stay incase they are visiting for more than a day.

The key wildlife attraction in Mombasa are the aquatic wildlife that are not found in any place in Kenya. They include sea turtles, dolphins, fish species among others. Diving is a major activity done giving one an opportunity to see the aquatic wildlife and enjoy the adventures in the Indian Ocean.

A visit to Mambasa is a great supplement to the classic wildlife adventures on the mainland. It also enables one explore the ocean side and get to relax at the beach. Other activities one can engage in include beach football, volleyball, wind surfing, boat rides on the ocean.

The great rift Valley adventures.

The eastern arm of the great Rift Valley in Kenya is a wonder it self and the Rift Valley floor is home to a number of wildlife species. They are a number of Rift Valley lakes in Kenya including lake Nakuru that was gazetted into a national park. Lake Nakuru national park’s location not only offers a great Rift Valley experience but also incredible wildlife adventures.

Lake Nakuru is famous for flamingos and was one of the best places to see flamingos. Due to climate change and weather conditions, flamingos migrated but still occur in smaller numbers. Great white pelicans though occur in large numbers making the lake a birders haven. Other notable birds here include grey crowned cranes, shining sun bird, crab-plovers, Kenya rufous sparrow among others.

For those interested in the big five there are four of the big five mammals present here. These include White and black rhinos, buffaloes, leopards and lions. Other wildlife species present include giraffes, hippos, zebras, that are often sighted while on game drives in the park.

Kenya is no doubt a safari giant and a must visit for those seeking incredible wildlife adventures in East Africa. Safaris here are possible all year round though for best experiences it is often recommended to visit in the dry season when there are minimal rainfall disturbances. The dry season stretches from June to September and from December to January. 

Wildebeest Migration Safari Diaries

The wildebeest migration safari is an annual mass animal migration in the Masai mara and Serengeti Eco system. The migration involves a movement of millions of wildebeest, Thompson gazelles, zebras across the open plains searching for fresh pastures. The wildebeest migration safari is a wildlife wonder to look out for when visiting Kenya and Tanzania for a classic African wildlife experience.

The annual animal movement features the mating, calving and growth stages that keeps the crowds alive. A number of these are also targeted by the deadly predators the ecosystem has from Lions to the deadly crocodiles in the River Grumeti and Mara. Despite all these challenges, the births along the trail keeps the animals in the migration going year in year out.

All these happen in a particular month transcending into another. This helps travellers to know the best month or stage to catch up with the migration.

Wildebeest Migration Safari. African Safaris
Wildebeest Migration. Courtesy Photo

Wildebeest Migration safari Month by Month

The wildebeest migration being an annual migration gives a unique experience each month or quarter. The calving period is a great time to view the newly borns and how they adopt with the deadly open savanna’s. The River Crossings are the most anticipated as wildebeest struggle crossing the paths of the deadly crocodiles. Let is briefly look the the wildebeest migration safari activity month per month. For anyone planning a safari featuring the migration this would help to know when to visit or what to expect at a particular month.

December to February

The rains in November favours growth of pasture that the wildebeest continue to feed on as they slowly drift south of Serengeti. From mid November throughout January Southern Serengeti is the best place to catch up with the migration. More wildebeest continue calving reaching the peak in February.

A Serengeti Safari around February is humbling as you might get to see wildebeest births in the wilderness. The predators use this time attacking the young and  isolated wildebeest as the crowd slowly moves towards Central Serengeti.

March to April

These months are wet and high chances of rainfall. This however does not deter the wildebeest migration journey in Central and western Serengeti. There is often plenty of pastures to feed on and much it is a low tourist season, the migratory birds set in making a wildebeest migration safari even more enjoyable.

While in Tanzania ensure to book your accommodation strategically to catch up with the live a action wildebeest migration.

May to June

As May sets in, the wildebeest move towards Northern Serengeti always driven by the need for fresher grazing grounds. May is also a transition month from the wet to the dry season and a great time for wildlife viewing.

The wildebeest plus other major herbivores continue sweeping across the north as they prepare for their adventure in the Masai Mara. The rains in March and April increase the water levels of Grumeti River but by June it starts reducing and the wildebeest start their River crossing quest. At the Grumeti River you can spot some crocodiles but River crossings are not as enjoyable as the Mara River crossings. Nevertheless, it is always fascinating to see the bold wildebeests that take the first jump leading the whole group.  

July to September

The July to September period doubles as the peak tourist season and it is very significant time for a wildebeest migration safari. It features the migration River crossings in the Serengeti and Masai Mara Ecosystems. Two major Rivers are Grumeti and Mara. These are home to some of world’s deadliest Nile crocodiles that the Wildebeest have to overcome on their journey northwards to the great Masai Mara.

The wildebeest River crossings start in July as the wildebeest would have reached Western Serengeti. The major first River Crossing obstacle they meet is River Grumeti and tense but quite a sight to see for adventure lovers. Towards the end of July, the surviving herds of the wildebeest continue to northern Serengeti. From early to mid August, the crowds proceed through northern Serengeti into Masai Mara and cross the Mara River yet another obstacle on their journey.

In the Mara region they get to enjoy the lush grasses that act as hiding places for worlds’ fierce predators especially the lions. While in the Mara ecosystem, the wildebeest traverse the northern Mara conservancies before starting their journey back to the Serengeti. Here they once again Cross the Mara River an event that attracts a number of tourists.

For those interested in the River Crossing, the best time to catch up these in Serengeti is early July. From Mid July to September Masai Mara would be place to be.

October to November

By this time the wildebeest start slowly drifting towards northern Serengeti. Those visiting Tanzania during this time of the year the best place to catch up with the migration is the Serengeti Lobo Area. The month of October being a transition month from the dry to wet season, the rains set in especially towards the end. This gives a boost to vegetation growth enabling the wildebeest enough pastures for grazing.

The calving period also starts and with the young ones coming in it reboots and rejuvenates the wildebeest population. The lush vegetation however attracts a number of predators that sometimes target the young ones. Survival in the Serengeti is by chance but many survival despite the attacks from the predators.

Plan your visit to magical Kenya and Tanzania to be part of the never ending Wildebeest migration safari adventures. Remember these feature classic African encounters of major wildlife species including birds and predators.

There are a number of tented camps and lodges where one can stay to enjoy the wildebeest migration. Some tented camps are temporary and change to new locations depending on the movement of wildebeest. Now that the peak season has set in it is time to book your bucket list adventure to either Serengeti or Masai mara. The best time for these safaris are early mornings as you get to see the early risers some returning from hunting. 

Tanzania Safari Tips With What To Know Before You Visit Tanzania

Serengeti National Park. Tanzania Safari Tips
Wildebeest Migration in Serengeti National Park. Courtesy Photo

Tanzania Safari tips are very vital as the country features on top bucket lists of adventure travellers visiting East Africa. It is home to diverse wildlife species with over 20% of Africa’ largest mammal population. A Tanzania safari featuring savanna’s finest wildlife is everyones’ dream but there some information you need to know before you travel to Tanzania. Below are key Tanzania safari tips you Must take note of while preparing your visit to the country.

Visa Requirements

Tanzania has a provision for Visa on arrival as well as an eVisa system where one is required to apply in advance. There are however a number of countries with Tanzania visa exemption. To enter the country one must have valid identification like a passport or a National Identity card.

American citizens entering Tanzania must apply for a Multiple entry visa that has a 1 year Validity. This costs USD 100 per person however holders of this Visa are required to at least leave the country every 3 months.

The ordinary or single entry visa cost USD 50 per person and its validity does not exceed 90 days. Adventure lovers seeking to visit the country for a safari must ensure to apply for the correct visa. You can now apply for an online Visa before visiting Tanzania.

Wildlife

A Tanzania safari is possible because of the country’s wildlife with over 4 million wild animals. There are over 430 mammal and 1100 bird species, amphibians and reptiles often seen on game drives in the country. Tanzania has 17 national parks covering a land area of about 16,000 square miles representing about 40% of Tanzania.

With this, Tanzania stands out as a leading wildlife destination with natural wildlife wonders like the great wildebeest migration. While on a Tanzania safari you can engage in a number of activities to fully what the country has to offer. These include game drives, guided nature walks, ballon safaris, boat cruise, birding expeditions among others.

The great wildebeest migration in Serengeti National park is a must watch along with the big cats and five 5 mammals. The Ngorongoro crater is extraordinary offering great scenic views and is also home to a variety of wildlife. Giraffes, rhinos, buffaloes, wildebeests, gazelles, elands, waterbucks, crocodiles are some of the wildlife seen on a Tanzania safari.

Accommodation

There are a number of safari lodges in Tanzania where one can stay while on a Tanzania safari. These range from Budget, deluxe and luxury facilities giving on a wide range of options to choose from.

Each national park has a number of facilities within or nearby the premises from where one can easily access the park. A number of these feature in worlds leading travel magazines as number safari lodges and Hotels. Notable safari Lodges in Tanzania include
andBeyond Ngorongoro Crater Lodge, The Highlands Ngorongoro, Sanctuary Kichakani Serengeti Camp among others.

Important to note that in the peak tourist season the lodges get fully booked and its advisable to book in advance. Lodges in the low season from March to May offer discounted rates but it’s a rainy season.

Best time to Visit

Tanzania safari adventures can be enjoyed any time of the year. For best savanna wildlife experiences though it’s always better to visit in the dry season. This ranges from June to Late October and from Mid December to Early March. 

In the dry season you get to see a variety of wildlife with minimal rainfall disturbances. The game drives trails are also dry making it easy to do game drives as opposed to the wet season when some trails are impassable. 

Kindly however note that the dry season is the peak tourist season and some camps or lodges charge highly during this time of the year. 

The wet season from November, April, May and great times to visit for those interested in birding. It’s around this time of the year that migratory birds are in the region. With the rains, the vegetation is often lush great and one doesn’t have to drive far to spot wildlife especially the grazers that naturally attract the predators. 

With the limited numbers during the wet season, safari experiences are very exclusive and intimate. Visit Tanzania today and explore the country’s rich and diverse wildlife, culture and heritage. The discussed Tanzania Safari tips are enough to guide in the tour planning process. You can contact us for more information about the different destinations in Tanzania. 

Kenya Safari Experiences to Part of This March

Kenya Safari Experiences
Wildebeest Migration along Mara River. Courtesy Photo

Kenya safari experiences form a great part of an African safari and its the reason why Kenya is a leading safari destination. The country has diverse wildlife and physical attractions that leave many adventurous tourists wanting more. The coming month is a transition one from the dry to the wet season that will last till May. The wet season comes in handy with the rains making safari activities not as enjoyable like in the dry season. However there are a number of adventurous Kenya safari experiences one can still be apart of. They include the following;

Birding Safari

Much as March is part of the low season its a great time for a birding safari in Kenya. From March to May, there are a number of migratory birds in Kenya. A number of them come all away from Europe and a combination of these and then natives make birding very enjoyable. Notable birds to see on a Kenya birding safari include the southern ground hornbill, crowned hornbill, Amani sunbird, Jackson’s hornbill among others. There are also a number of birds endemic to Kenya including Clarke’s Weaver, Taita thrush, Williams’ lark most of which while on game drives.

Big Cats Safari Experiences

Big cats will forever form a great part of a Kenya Safari experiences. The country is home savannah’s major big cats and leading predators. These include lions, leopards, cheetahs and hyenas. Prides of lions are often seen in Masai Mara National reserve and other national parks and conservancies.

Some of these caught in action hunting their prey. Leopards the strongest of all the cats even like to climb with their prey up the tree. Here they can feast in comfort without any disturbances especially the hyenas that like to eat already hunted prey.

Game drives featuring any of the big cats are very enjoyable. At least major national parks and conservancies in Kenya have 2 or all the big cats. Because there are a number of newly borns, predators are very active hunting taking advantage of the young ones.

Big Five Mammal safari experiences

The fact that March is not so crowded it makes it a perfect month for big five mammal safari experiences. Savannas’ big five include elephants, lions, buffaloes, leopards and Rhinos. These are seen while on game drives in beautiful places like Amboseli National Park. This park has the best views of Mount Kilimanjaro and the best place in Kenya to see Elephants.

These are complemented by the major herbivores including antelopes, zebras, giraffes that are easy to spot because with the rains there is plenty of grass. Most times the predators hide in the lush and relatively tall grasses to slowly take down their prey.

The other major benefit of having Kenya safari experiences march included is that some lodges reduce on rates.

Must Do Congo Safari Adventures

Congo Safari Adventures have over the recent years featured on adventure lovers bucket lists. Democratic Republic of Congo is one of the World’s less discovered wildlife safari destinations yet with a lot to offer. The country is the second largest country in Africa and with its vast size comes with more diversity and opportunities for wildlife.

Unfortunately Congo has had several insecurities related emanating from rebel attacks that hinder tourism and wildlife conservation. Despite the attacks and insecurity issues in the country, the beauty and tourism potential keeps on attracting a number of tourists from different parts of the world.

Eastern Congo has a number of key attractions including Virunga National Park Africa’s oldest national park. The park team has security protocol it follows to ensure that all visiting tourists are safe. They monitor the park and ensure to inform the public whenever they suspect any insecurity and go ahead to refund payments made by the visitors.

Let’s see the top Must do Congo safari adventures one should be apart of especially while visiting the Eastern part of the country.

Mountain Gorilla trekking

Democratic Republic of Congo is one of the 3 countries with the remaining mountain gorilla population on the entire planet. They live in Virunga national park and are the main tourist attractions. Mountain gorillas are apes with over 95% DNA similar to humans making them among man’s closest primates species.

Mountain gorillas live in families ranging from 2 to 20 or more each family headed by a dominant gorilla called Silverback. Congo safari adventures featuring gorilla trekking are very amazing and offer a once in a lifetime experience. Trek one of the habituated mountain gorilla families in Virunga National Park for of the the ultimate primates adventures.

The gorilla trekking experience starts with a briefing early morning at the park headquarters. You are then led to the forested mountains in a 2 to 4 hours trek. Once you get to the mountain gorillas you will be allowed in their presence for an hour and later be brought back to the park headquarters.

Lowland Gorilla Trekking

Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo is blessed with another gorilla species, the eastern lowland gorillas. These Inhabit the forested mountains of Kahuzi Beiga National park in the Bukavu region.

Eastern lowland gorillas to differ from other gorillas sub species are relatively bigger in size. Just like other gorillas, they are vegetarian and feed to a plant and fruit diet. They also live in families led by a dominant male gorillas.

Lowland gorillas trekking is not as prominent as mountain gorilla trekking but also offers exclusive primate trekking experience. These gorillas are also endemic to Kahuzi Beiga national park and its therefore the only place where you can see Eastern lowland gorillas in the wild.

Lowland Gorilla in Kahuzi Biega National Park. Congo Safari Adventures
Juveline Lowland Gorilla in Kahuzi Biega National Park. Photo by Shannon

Mount Nyiragongo Hike

Mount Nyiragongo is one of the worlds’ active volcanic mountains located in Eastern DRC. The mountain has a lava lake on its summit and last erupted in May 2020 displacing thousands of families as lava spread allover burning people’s homes and gardens.

Since its eruption, tourism was halted temporarily. Hiking will be open again once the park officials are sure that the mountain is safe to hike. The Nyiragongo Hike takes 2 days with the first day ascending the mountain to its summit. The night and early mornings are the best times to see the hot lava Lake. The 2nd day is for descending the mountain an activity that offers great scenic views of the surrounding Great Lakes region and the chains of the Virunga massif mountains.

Once it’s open again for tourism, Mount Nyiragongo will still offer amazing and exclusive Congo safari adventures.

The Best of A Uganda Safari Adventure

Popularly Known as the Pearl of Africa, Uganda is one of the best East African safari destinations. Having a Uganda Safari Adventure this new year is highly recommended as you would get to explore the country’s major wildlife. As the world is slowly opening up after the COVID 19 lockdowns, tourists numbers are few making it a great time to have intimate safari experiences.

For a successful Uganda Safari adventure, there are some bucket list places and experiences you must be apart of. They include the following

Mountain Gorilla Bwindi Uganda Safari Adventure
Baby Mountain gorilla Bwindi. Courtesy Photo

Gorilla trekking is among the top desired Uganda safari adventure experiences. Mountain gorillas are apes with over 95% DNA similar to humans. On the entire planet, mountain gorillas can only be found in 3 countries that are Uganda, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo.

Mountain gorillas are endangered with their total population estimated at around 1000 gorillas. Almost half of that population live in Uganda’s Bwindi impenetrable national park. The park is located in southwestern Uganda and has 22 habituated gorilla families that are open to tourism.

While taking a Uganda safari adventure, gorilla trekking should be your number one safari activity to do. The trek enables you enjoy great scenic views as well as seeing other wildlife in the park especially birds.

Batwa Trail Experiences

The Batwa are pygmies and one of the native tribes of the Great Lakes region. They were initially living in the forest and only relied on the forest for food and survival. They were hunter gatherers however their activities were a threat to wildlife because of poaching. With the gazetting of the parks to conserve and protect wildlife, the Batwa were pushed at the edge of the forest and are occasionally allowed to go to the forest again.

The Batwa trail experience is one of the authentic cultural experiences while on a Uganda safari experience. The Batwa on this experience take you through their initial ways of life. They demonstrate their hunting and gathering skills, making fire using stones and perform folks about their culture.

The trails goes through the forest to the Ngarama cave that was once a home for the Batwa King. The Batwa trail is done in Mgahinga gorilla park another home for mountain gorillas.

Chimpanzee Trekking adventures

Uganda’s is one of the leading chimpanzee trekking destination worldwide. The country is home to the largest chimpanzee population in world. These live in the primate capital of the world Kibale forest national park.

Chimpanzee trekking here is exclusive and offers an opportunity to see other primates including red tailed and Colobus monkeys among others. Chimpanzees in Kibale National park can be explored by a normal chimpanzee trek with the first shift starting in the morning till mid day and the afternoon session starting at 2:00 pm. The morning and afternoon chimpanzee trekking sessions take 2 to 4 hours of trekking. Once you get to the chimpanzees you will be allowed in their presence for an hour. 

The chimpanzee habituation experience is the other activity in which chimpanzees in the park can be explored. This is a full day activity that starts in the morning and gives you 4 hours in the presence of the chimpanzees. In the habituation experience you follow the chimpanzee’s days’ routine and activities. The experience is a great opportunity to explore mans’ closest primates.

Uganda has a variety of savanna wildlife and majority of the country’s national parks and game reserves have a savanna ecosystem. Savanna’s big five mammals that include lions, leopards, rhinos, elephants and buffaloes can be seen while on a Uganda Safari adventure.

Uganda’s most isolated national park Kidepo Valley National Park offers one of the most exclusive and classic game drives on the African continent. The park is located north east of Uganda near the border with South Sudan. Game drives here are very rewarding with wildlife including cheetahs, lions, leopards, giraffes, elephants, buffaloes, zebras among others.

Murchison falls National park is another great place to enjoy a Uganda safari adventure featuring the big cats and big five mammals. Most game drives here are done in the northern sector of the park with the highest concentration of wildlife.

All these can be done throughout the year with best experiences and photography happening in the dry season.

Birding Journeys

Uganda is a birders haven and a Uganda safari adventure is usually incomplete without a birding safari experience. Some of the worlds’ rarest and endemic bird species are found in Uganda.

The country has a number of ramsar sites that are ideal of a birding safari adventure. Major national parks’ ecosystems are also habitats for the various bird species. The Mabamba swamp in Entebbe is among the leading birding destinations in Uganda. It’s home to the rare shoebill stork and many other bird species.

Visit Uganda and be a part of the never ending safari adventures in the Pearl of Africa.