Encounter the breathtaking landscapes of Tanzania, from savannas that teem with zebras and wildebeests to the deep caldera of Ngorongoro Crater, where an incredible range of species coexist. Go on safari away from the crowds at Tarangire National Park, home to a large concentration of elephants, and join excellent guides to track lions, leopards, and so much more. Then enjoy an intimate safari experience at Sayari Camp, a National Geographic Unique Lodge located in the remote northern Serengeti, and observe wildlife on a private game drive arranged exclusively for National Geographic guests.
Pay a visit to Noloholo Environmental Center*, the brainchild of National Geographic Explorer Laly Lichtenfeld, and learn about the center’s conservation projects, run in partnership with the local Maasai.
Picnic on the floor of the massive Ngorongoro Crater and seek out resident zebras, flamingos, lions, and more.
Enjoy a privately catered breakfast in the wilds of the Serengeti.
Itinerary - 9 Days
Day 1 — Arrive Arusha, Tanzania
Land at Kilimanjaro International Airport and transfer to your hotel in Arusha. Spend the rest of the day relaxing at your lodge, located on the leafy grounds of Tanzania’s largest coffee plantation. Arusha Coffee Lodge
Day 2 — Tarangire National Park
Travel to Tarangire National Park. If your trip is between June and September, stop for a visit to the Noloholo Environmental Center, located just beyond the borders of Tarangire.* Directed by National Geographic Explorer Laly Lichtenfeld, Noloholo runs educational programs for local Maasai people in wildlife conservation and natural resource management. Attend a presentation on these initiatives and enjoy a rare opportunity to visit one of the projects in the field. After settling into your bungalow tent in the heart of the park, enjoy sundowner cocktails while taking in views over the savanna. Oliver’s Camp (B, L, D)
Day 3 — Tarangire National Park
Spend the day exploring Tarangire National Park on game drives. Tarangire’s grassy plains are dotted with massive baobab trees and home to a high concentration of area wildlife. Elephants are especially abundant here, with some herds numbering up to 300 strong. Due to its low volume of visitors, the reserve offers a serene and intimate wildlife-viewing experience. Seek out large herds of zebras, giraffes, and wildebeest, as well as the skulking leopards and cheetahs that prey on them. The park is also home to around 550 species of birds, including dazzling yellow-collared lovebirds and the world’s largest avian species, the stocking-thighed ostrich. Oliver’s Camp (B, L, D)
Days 4 & 5 — Tarangire National Park/Ngorongoro Crater
Travel to the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, a UNESCO World Heritage site, to your lodge, perched on the rim of the Ngorongoro Crater. More than 12 miles in diameter, the Ngorongoro Crater is the largest non-flooded caldera in the world and is inhabited by some 25,000 animals. Descend 2,000 feet to the crater floor for an unforgettable picnic breakfast, grazing against a backdrop of soaring volcanic slopes. Then embark on a safari through this green-walled wildlife paradise. Ride past herds of zebra grazing next to flamingos and crowned cranes, look for lionesses stalking their prey, and try to spot the rare black rhino. Return to the lodge for an afternoon at leisure and catch a dazzling sunset over the caldera. This afternoon, settle into your lodge, perched on the rim of the Ngorongoro Crater. Ngorongoro Serena Safari Lodge (2B, 2L, 2D)
Fly to the vast plains of the Serengeti and check into your tented suite at Sayari Camp, one of the National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World. Sayari is located a short distance from the Mara River, which runs directly through the path of the great wildebeest migration (July to October). Here, it’s not uncommon to see an elephant or lion saunter past your bedroom window. This afternoon, set out on safari and take in the sunset on the savanna. Sayari Camp (B, L, D)
Day 7 — Serengeti National Park
Watch the Serengeti spring to life on an early morning game drive. Or see the majesty of the plains from the sky on an optional hot air balloon ride. As the sun breaks over the horizon, spot wildlife on the sweeping landscapes of the Serengeti before touching down for breakfast under the shade of an acacia tree. On an afternoon safari, delve even deeper into this remote wilderness as you travel along the banks of the Mara in search of crocodiles and hippos peeking above the water’s surface. Sayari Camp (B, L, D)
Day 8 — Serengeti National Park
Rise early this morning for a special treat: an elegant catered breakfast in the bush followed by a private game drive—an excursion offered exclusively to National Geographic guests at the lodge. After time at leisure, head out on a final afternoon safari on the lookout for jackals, wildebeests, zebras, and big cats. Sayari Camp (B, L, D)
Day 9 — Arusha/Depart
Fly to Arusha and relax at your hotel before catching your flight home this evening. Rivertrees Country Inn (B, L)
About Private Expeditions
National Geographic Private Expeditions are specially crafted itineraries designed for independent travelers that combine guided excursions, fascinating insights into culture and wildlife, and top accommodations. Simply select a trip and decide whom you'd like to travel with and when you want to travel. We'll take care of the rest.
Prices are per person, double occupancy and are subject to availability. Single traveler prices are available upon request.
Internal flights within Tanzania are $640 (subject to change). International airfare to and from Arusha is not included in the expedition cost.
Surcharges may apply to certain travel dates based upon international or local holidays, as well as local events and festivals.
*Visit to the Noloholo Environment Center only available between the months of June and September. Travelers in all other months will travel directly to Tarangire National Park and enjoy an additional game drive.
Travelers should be in good health and comfortable walking or standing for extended periods of time. Daily activities may include city walking tours, visits to sites, game drives on bumpy roads, or easy hikes.
Click here for a description of all activity levels.
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Other Important Details
This trip is available to children age 6 and older; please contact our reservations specialists for details or to customize this trip if your children are under 6 years.