Southern Vs Northern Tanzania Safari Circuit: Tanzania is the thirteenth largest country in the world. Situated in the eastern region of Africa, this well-known safari destination is home to an abundance of flora, fauna, and wildlife. Its total area is 947,303 square kilometres, of which noticeably nearly 38% is designated as protected areas in order to preserve the region’s wildlife. The sixteen national parks that make up the system are separated into four distinct circuits: the northern, southern, eastern, and western regions.

Making the decision of which circuit to visit is one of the difficulties faced by travelers. To put everything in perspective, let me say that there isn’t a specific answer; instead, it depends on a number of other factors. These are the following:

We’ve covered both circuits and their respective national parks in-depth here so you can make your own decision.

Northern Circuit.

Some of Tanzania’s most fascinating national parks can be found in the “Northern Circuit,” which the name is given to the country’s northern region. The majority of these parks are not only sizable, but they also house a wide variety of animals. It is a well-known segment of the Tanzanian safari circuit with superior accommodation and tourism amenities. Additionally, the greatest number of tourists visiting Tanzania arrive in this region. The northern circuit’s parks consist of:

Serengeti National Park.

The Great Wildebeest Migration, the largest terrestrial mammal migration in the world, is hosted by the Serengeti, arguably the most well-known national park in Africa, as well as the Maasai Mara Reserve in Kenya. The name Serengeti, which means “Land That Runs Forever” in the local tongue, describes the immense size of the region. On any given day, it is easy to spot members of Africa’s Big Five here.

Ngorongoro Conservation Area.

Rather than being a national park, the Ngorongoro protected area is a conservation area. The difference is that in addition to protecting the wildlife, the Maasai people use these plains as a place for their cattle to graze. As a result, humans and wildlife coexist peacefully here. The largest intact volcanic crater, the Ngorongoro Crater Conservation Area, is its main draw. There is a vast ecosystem of endemic plants and animals inside the crater. This area surpasses the Serengeti in certain aspects due to its breathtaking landscapes and unspoiled beauty. It is also among the few locations in Tanzania where one can see the Big Five.

Lake Manyara National Park.

Situated merely 126 kilometres away from Arusha, the visually striking Lake Manyara National Park spans just 330 square kilometres. Of that, the vast lake that is the focal point of this park, Lake Manyara, takes up 220 sq. km. With over 500 different bird species to choose from, this well-known birding location is located at the foot of the River Valley Escarpment. Around the lake, you can also see creatures like the renowned tree-climbing lions of this park, as well as wildebeest, impalas, waterbucks, dik-diks, and others.

Tarangire National Park.
Tarangire National Park, Tanzania’s sixth-largest national park, is home to a diverse range of animals and lush vegetation over 2,850 square kilometres. It is blessed with the Tarangire River running through it, and the Acacia woodland, swamps, river valleys, ridges, and forests make up its vegetation. This provides the park’s animals with the ideal breeding ground. Animals like wildebeest, buffalo, hippos, giraffes, zebras, and waterbucks can be seen along the riverbanks. However, the vast elephant herds in this park set it apart. A single herd can contain more than 40 individuals at times.

Arusha National Park.

A small but significant national park. Situated in the Arusha Region, Arusha National Park includes Mount Meru, which is Mt. Kilimanjaro’s smaller sibling. This park has a varied and stunning landscape, with Mount Meru’s snow-capped summit serving as the background. It’s a great location for a single or half-day safari tour if you’re really pressed for time, and it’s easily accessible from Arusha.

Kilimanjaro National Park.

It is renowned for harboring and protecting the wildlife species found in the lower reaches of Mount Kilimanjaro, the largest freestanding mountain in the world. There are six distinct climate zones on Mount Kilimanjaro, with the lower regions being characterized by a belt of mountain forests and an abundance of verdant vegetation. This supports a wide variety of endemic and common animal species.

Southern Tanzania Safari Circuit Vs Northern Tanzania Safari Circuit
Kilimajaro Hike

Southern Circuit.

The Southern Circuit is located across from the Northern Circuit. About 1% of visitors to Tanzania travel to this relatively isolated circuit. Apart from expansive plains, savannahs, wetlands, remarkable wildlife, and breathtaking scenery, the southern circuit provides solitude and peace. This implies that you can freely explore the national parks located here without encountering other tourists, and occasionally you may even feel as though you are the only living person in the park. The southern circuit’s national parks include:

Selous Game Reserve.

The only protected area in Tanzania that is also utilized for game hunting is the 50,000 sq km Selous Game Reserve, a game-rich wilderness that is home to some of the world’s largest faunal reserves. The regulation and conduct of game hunting is achieved through several private concessions. There are many different bird species to see on the park’s well-known photography spot, located on the northern side.

Ruaha National Park.

Ruaha National Park is Tanzania’s largest national park, spanning 20,226 square kilometres. Additionally, only a small percentage of tourists actually visit it. Therefore, all that can be anticipated is a serene atmosphere. The quality of the games is also good to excellent.

Mikumi National Park.

Mikumi National Park, the nation’s fourth-largest national park, borders Selous Game Reserve. This location’s varied landscape is frequently likened to the Serengeti. Therefore, Mikumi is Serengeti’s twin if you happen to miss it for any reason.

Udzungwa National Park.

Udzungwa National Park is notable among Tanzania’s more recent national parks because it is home to several uncommon plant and animal species. Additionally, its isolation makes it the ideal environment for them to proliferate.

As previously mentioned, there is no optimal circuit to take; instead, it depends on a few variables. You should therefore be able to choose your touring circuit after keeping the information above in mind.

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