Serengeti National Park
Serengeti national park was established in 1951 and is one of the largest national park in Serengeti Ecosystem covering an area of 14,750km2 with in the northern circuit with other Tanzania national parks including Lake Manyara national park, Tarangire national park, and Ngorongoro crater. Serengeti national park is famously known for the existence of seasonally wildebeest migration where a huge population of mammals including over 1.5millions of wildebeests alongside over 250,000 zebras are seen crossing on a movement from Serengeti national park to Masai Mara national reserve in Kenya while the crocodiles target their fresh meal. Apart from the wildebeests and zebras, Serengeti national park is also a home to other several mammals such as the big 5 game (Lions, Giraffes, Hippos, Elephants, Rhinos), Gazelles, Impalas, duikers, Dik dik, antelopes, Hyenas, Mongooses, baboons, Patas monkeys, jackals, and several species of birds such as Crowned cranes, Martial eagles, Vultures, secretary birds, Ostrich etc. History has it that Serengeti national park obtained its name from the local word used by the Masai people as “Siringet” that is referred to as the place where land runs forever.
The park comprises of 3 parts which include the Serengeti plains (land of endless plains), the Northern region (Lobo area), and the western region (western corridor).
The Serengeti plains: Serengeti plains are found in the southern part of Serengeti national park known as “land of endless plains or an area where land goes on forever” which is covered with shot savanna grassland with almost no trees at all and is the most scenic part of the park which offers the breeding grounds for the wildebeests. Serengeti plains also is a home to large population of mammals such as Zebras, Impalas, Gazelles, Hippos, buffaloes, elephants, Wildebeests, and different predators which normally parade with in Kopjes as they target mammals to feast on.
The northern Serengeti (Lobo area): the northern part of Serengeti national park is mainly filled with the rolling hills and woodland stranding from the Seronera towards Masai Mara national reserve where the migration of wildebeests is also witnessed as they cross over Mara River in months of July, August, and November. Other mammals found in the northern part of Serengeti national park include; Dik dik, Elephants and many more.
The western corridor: This corridor is also known as western Serengeti filled with acacia trees, marshy vegetation cover, and grassy plains. However, this corridor is one of the least visited area by tourists but is also known for existence of the black clay and river Grumeti crossing during the months of May to July while Wildebeests are on migration. This western Serengeti park is a home to some wildlife such as Patas monkeys, Crocodiles, Hippos, Wildebeests, giraffes, Topis and different aquatic wildlife including water birds.
Top tourist activities in Serengeti national park
Wildebeest migration experience: this is the topmost activity enjoyed annually by several tourists. The migration of wildebeests is a long process and it starts with breeding session which occur in the months of January and February with in Serengeti plains in southern parts of Serengeti then during the dry months of March and April, the wildebeest are seen moving to western corridor in search of food and wildebeest proceed their movement towards the northern Serengeti area where they stay up to the month of August and finally they start crossing over the Mara river where several of them fall into hungry crocodiles and hippos with in the water and the ones that survive proceed the movement to Masai Mara national reserve situated in Kenya where they also encounter with the hungry lions awaiting. And the months of November to December the wildebeest start their journey back to the park as the park starts to experience rains again. This really a breathtaking moment to watch especially in the months of July, August, September and October.
Game drive in Serengeti national park: Apart from the great Wildebeest migration, the park is yet the best destination for game drive safaris especially in the southern part (Serengeti plains) which offers best sighting of wildlife species. Taking a morning game drive opens the door to encountering with the nocturnal mammals and the hunters which are always active in the night and hiding during the day. However, afternoon and evening game drive safaris bring you closer to several grazing mammals especially in the plains of Serengeti. Amongst the mammals seen during the game drive include Elephants, rhinos, lions, buffaloes, wildebeests, Mongoose, zebras, gazelles, impalas, Leopards to mention but a few.
Hot air balloon in Serengeti national park: this is the best way to explore the Serengeti plains from above. A hot air balloon safari in Serengeti national park is such a fascinating and adventurous activities offering a clear view of the entire land scape of Serengeti national park and observing different species of mammals as they graze on the most beautiful savanna of Tanzania. The most fascinating thing that makes this hot air balloon safari even sweeter is the fact that it comes with a bust breakfast and a bottle of Champaign and a brief game drive as tourists on board return to their lodges thus creating ample time to encounter and sight out several wildlife with in the park.
Birding in Serengeti national park: Serengeti national park thrills with over 500 species of birds which make it the best birding destination in East Africa with most of the bird species being seen while on a game drive.
Community tours: A visit to the local Masai people who reside in neighborhood of Serengeti national park is yet a rewarding activity that several tourists on a safari in the park usually add on their travel bucket. The Masai people are known as the pastoralists and visit to their homesteads enable tourists to learn more about the culture of the Masai.
Other tourist activities to enjoy while on a safari to Serengeti national park include; Nature walks, camping, visiting Seronera river valley, Hippo pool relaxation, a visit to Kopjes, a visit to Olduvai Gorge and many more. Checkout our Tanzania safari in Serengeti to explore the unbeatable East Africa safari.
Best time to visit Serengeti national park
Regarding to the climatic conditions in Africa, the park can be visited at any given period of time all year round but dry months are always the best time to visit almost all the national parks in East Africa on a wildlife viewing safari due to the fact the driving trails in the park are dry and the savanna vegetation is slightly shorter for easy viewing of mammals. However, for the case of tourists whose target is to have a scenic view of wildebeest migration then the best months are June and July when the wildebeests are seen in the western Corridor on a movement and the months of August to October when wildebeests are crossing Mara river and finally the months of January and February which is the best time for wildebeest breeding which is also worth a visit in Serengeti plains.