Northern Circuit & Chimps of Mahale

Safari in renowned Northern Circuit Safari Parks and tracking Chimps in Mahale
Overview

overview

This safari combines the gems of Tanzania's Northern Safari circuit - the sublime Serengeti, World Heritage Ngorongoro Crater and the Tarangire National Park - with the opportunity to track some of the last wild chimpanzees in Africa in the Mahale Mountains National Park.    A visit to the Mto Wa Mbu Market or a local school deepens the safari experience.

This itinerary is best underaken between June and October.

itinerary

itinerary

  • Day 1: Arrive in Tanzania

    Upon arrival at the Kilimanjaro International Airport, you will be met and transferred to the Mt. Meru Game Lodge, or similar, for your overnight.

    Meals
    None
    Lodging
    Mount Meru Game Lodge
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  • Day 2: Lake Manyara National Park
    Visit a local shool

    After lunch and a safari briefing, you will depart for Lake Manyara, nestled on the floor of the Great Rift Valley. Enjoy an afternoon walk in the area, with the option of stopping in the market town of Mto Wa Mbu or visit a local school for Maasai children, en route.

    Meals
    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging
    Rift Valley Photographic Lodge
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  • Day 3: Ngorongoro Highlands/Serengeti
    See cheetahs and other predators

    After an early breakfast, drive through the forested slopes of the Ngorongoro Highlands, en route to the Serengeti. From here, the predator-rich plains of the Serengeti unfurl before settling into your accomadations for the night.

    Meals
    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging
    Serengeti Simba Lodge or Ang'ata Camp
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  • Days 4-5: Serengeti National Park
    Enjoy comfortable bush camps

    Spend two full days exploring the Serengeti, the most famous National Park in Africa. Your driver-guide will choose your route based on his extensive knowledge of the park and local conditions, but the Serengeti rarely disappoints. You will have a packed lunch to eat during the safari, so as to make the most of the day. Your trip might include a trail along the banks of the Grumeti River in search of basking lions, tracking cheetah through the Gol Kopjes or hunting leopard (with cameras) along the Seronera River.

    Meals
    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging
    Serengeti Simba or Ang'ata Camp
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  • Day 6: Serengeti/Ngorongoro Crater
    Rhinos

    Depart for the Ngorongoro Crater, with a final Serengeti game drive en route. Stop at Olduvai Gorge to visit the site where Mary and Louis Leakey first discovered the remains of Zinjanthropus Bosei, a distant ancestor of man believed to be 1.8 million years old, Australopithecus Bosei, the ‘Nutcracker Man’, a species that became extinct about 1 million years ago and fossilized footprints that date back 3.6 million years. Enjoy a packed lunch, then descend down the 2000-ft walls of the crater, a World Heritage Site and home to nearly 25,000 animals, for a game drive. Here you have a very real chance of spotting the big five: lion, elephant, endangered black rhino, buffalo and leopard plus countless other African mammal species.

    Meals
    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging
    Ngorongoro Farm House
    Show on a map
  • Day 7: Ngorongoro Crater
    Look out the roof of your vehicle

    Enjoy another day in the Ngorongoro Crater. A picnic lunch will give you time to explore the details of this fascinating wildlife amphitheater. This caldera, formed from a sunken volcano, hosts a unique cross-section of eco-systems, from soda lake to savannah, and is home to almost every major species of African mammal. Your presence does not threaten the wildlife creating an exhilarating proximity to the game that you rarely encounter elsewhere.

    Meals
    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging
    Ngorongoro Farm House
    Show on a map
  • Day 8: Tarangire National Park

    After breakfast, leave for Tarangire National Park. This is the classic Africa of lore with shimmering acacia stands, old baobab trees, and herds of elephant. Enjoy a game drive through the park, en route to the Tarangire Safari Lodge, beautifully sited on a bluff over-looking the Tarangire River. After lunch at the lodge, spend an afternoon of game viewing, exploring Tarangire National Park in a 4WD safari vehicle.

     

    In the dry-season of July-October, Tarangire National Park surpasses the Serengeti in terms of animal concentration as big herds begin to congregate around the permanent water of the Tarangire River. It is not uncommon to see herds of 50+ elephant as well as many other mammal species including the rare Kudu and Oryx. The park is also noted for its prolific bird life and the occasional sighting of cheetah and the rare African Hunting Dog.

     

    Meals
    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging
    Tarangire Safari Lodge
    Show on a map
  • Day 9: Arusha / Ruaha
    Lions roar farewell

    You will have a final early morning game drive before returning to Arusha for lunch at Shanga River house.  After lunch you will be transferred to Arusha Airport for your flight to Ruaha. You will overnight at Ruaha River Lodge to enable you to catch a flight to Mahale departing from Ruaha early the next morning.

     

    Upon Arrival in Ruaha you will be met by Ruaha River Lodge driver who will transfer you to the hotel for check-in followed by an afternoon game drive.

     

    Flight:  ETD 13h30 / ETA 15h40

    Meals
    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging
    Kwihala Camp (www.tanzaniasafaris.info)
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  • Days 10-12: Ruaha / Mahale

    You will fly from Ruaha to Mahale Mountains National Park, located south of Kigoma Town in northwestern Tanzania along the shores of Lake Tanganyika. Gazetted in 1985, the park contains some of the last remaining wild chimpanzees in Africa.

     

    Here you will have three full day activities, tracking the chimpanzees through their forested and rugged homelands, enjoying the birds, butterflies and unique plants of the park along the way.  The last evening offers sundowners and a beach dinner.

     

    Swimming, fishing and kayaking can also be arranged while at Mahale.

     

    For more information about the Mahale National Park, visit: http://www.tanzaniaparks.com/mahale.html.

    Meals
    Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
    Lodging
    Greystoke Mahale Camp (www.nomad-tanzania.com)
  • Day 13: Mahale / Homeward bound

    Today you will fly from Mahale to Dar es Salaam and homeward bound.

     

    Alternately, choose to go on to exotic Zanzibar to relax and explore the territory of former sultanates or visit the nearby Chumbe Island, a private marine and forest reserve offering some of the best snorkeling in Tanzania, island hikes and the nightly spectacle of the tree-climbing coconut crabs, the largest living arthropods in the world.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Meals
    Breakfast
Price and Date Details

Price and Date Details

Privately on Request
Land Cost:
$8,150
Children must be at least 12 years old to participate in the Chimpanzee tracking Holiday surcharges apply Dec. 24-26 & Dec 31-Jan 1
Single Supplement:
$1350
The single supplement is applicable if a roommate is not available or if single accommodation is specifically requested. While single accommodation is not available on all trips, we will try and honor this request whenever possible.
Need to Know

Need to Know

Day-rooms are available on request, for an additional fee.

Duration:
13 days
The number of days, or duration, in a destination corresponds with the itinerary as published. This is the time period covered by the land cost. The total number of days includes the time required to travel between the USA and the destination country.
Comfort Level:
2
lodges, luxury mobile camps, & permanent tented camps
Group Size:
2
per 4x4 vehicle
Activity Level:
3
lodges, luxury mobile camps, & permanent tented camps

Resources

Trip Extensions

Trip Extensions

Tribal Cultural Visits

Duration: 1 days

Combine your safari with an intimate experience of contemporary Tanzanian tribal cultures. Visit with the villagers of Ng’iresi, or members of the Wa-arusha tribe, on the slopes of Mount Meru. You may choose to spend time with the Maasai of Longido... read more

Daybreak Balloon Lift

Duration: 1 days

Add a dawn ballooning experience to any Kenya or Tanzania safari.

Exotic Zanzibar

Duration: 5 days

Escape to Zanzibar, the “Spice Island”. This tiny African island offers great contrast to the mainland: beaches ideal for snorkeling, rich history and Muslim culture. Experience town and village life, the reefs and the inner natural forest.

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