Wildlife Safaris

While it is not required for safari goers to have any knowledge of the geography of Northern Tanzania in order to book and participate in a safari with SAS, those who are interested in the locations of the various safari venues, will enjoy perusing our Google Map below.

Please click here to open this facility in full screen.

Arusha National Park

On entering the park, you will become enveloped by the thick highland forests that surround the 3 km wide Ngurdoto Crater, which is a steep sided bowl with a crater floor of lush swamps. While passing through the forest many visitors stop to search for troupes of rare colubus monkeys playing in the canopy. The crater with its many visible animal trails, has provided a natural haven to elephant, buffalo, warthog, baboon, reedbuck and duikers as well as birds like hamerkop, spur-winged geese and herons. Mosses, ferns, lichens and orchids thrive in the damp atmosphere of the crater, giving way to huge mahogany, olive and date palm trees on the drier crater walls. You will then move on through the rolling grassy hills which enclose the peaceful beauty of the shallow Momela Lakes which get their water from underground streams. Due to the varying mineral content of these underground sources, each lake supports a different type of algae growth, resulting in uniquely differently coloured lakes. Because these lakes are alkaline, the water is not utilized by animals for drinking, but they do however attract a wide variety of bird life, and sometimes thousands of flamingos.

Tarangire National Park

Ancient baobab trees, large family herds of elephants and prolific bird life makes Tarangire the classic Africa that history describes. Second only to Ngorongoro Crater, the park has some of the highest concentration of wildlife during the dry season (June – October), as the Tarangire River is one of the few sources of permanent water left in the area and consequently attracts large numbers of wildebeest, zebras, elephants, eland and oryx which gather to stay until the onset of the rains when the ongoing migration sees them disperse again to adjoining grazing areas. Elephant herds of over 300 hundred have been spotted along the river. Wildlife often relies on the nearby baobab trees that become hollow and fill with rainwater. In fact, the game numbers overall are staggering: 30,000 zebra, 25,000 wildebeest, 5,000 buffalo, 3,000 elephant, 2,500 Maasai giraffe and over 1,000 fringe-eared oryx (gemsbok). Predators include lion (prone to tree-climbing just like their Lake Manyara cousins), cheetah and leopard. The swamps, tinged green year round, are the focus for 550 bird varieties, the most breeding species in one habitat anywhere in the world.

Lake Manyara

Contrasting with the character of the forest is the grassy floodplain that surrounds the lake, and its expansive views eastward, to the jagged blue volcanic peaks that rise from the endless Maasai Steppes. Large buffalo, elephant, wildebeest and zebra herds gather on these grassy plains, as do giraffes – some so dark in coloration that they appear to be black from a distance. Many animals can be seen grazing the new shoots on the floodplain and wallowing in the shallows of the lake, while further out pods of hippos bob. The park’s incredible fauna and flora have qualified it as a World Biosphere Reserve.

Ngorongoro Crater

Called the eighth wonder of the world and stretching across some 8,300 sq km, the Ngorongoro Conservation Area boasts a blend of landscapes, wildlife, people and archaeology that is unsurpassed in Africa. The volcanoes, grasslands, waterfalls and mountain forests are home to an abundance of animals and to the Maasai. The Ngorongoro Crater, feeling in many ways akin to Conan-Doyle’s Lost World (minus the dinosaurs), is a huge draw for visitors embarking on a Safari on the Northern Circuit, and virtually all safaris of three days or more will incorporate it. It is an amazing place to visit not only because of its magical setting, but also because the steep walls and favourable conditions ensure that it serves as a natural sanctuary for some of Africa’s densest populations of large mammals.

Serengeti National Park

Serengeti National Park is reputed to be Africa’s most famous game reserve, known for its dense predator population and annual Wildebeest Migration. Created in 1951 and covering some 14,763 sq km, this National Park consists mainly of vast open plains occupied by the range of different species of animals that the plains support. Tanzania’s oldest and most popular national park, the Serengeti (derived from the Maasai word meaning endless plain) is famed for its annual migration, when some six million hooves pound the open plains, as more than 200,000 zebra and 300,000 Thomson’s gazelle join the wildebeest’s trek for fresh grazing, caused by the fact that there is little permanent water to be found.