Going on safari in the Serengeti National Park was a huge experience. We had such an amazing time and saw so many things along the way. If you need any convincing, or looking for inspiration, here are a few incredible experiences to have on safari in the Serengeti, Tanzania.
Spot the Big 5
Africa’s Big 5 are the leopard, elephant, cape buffalo, lion and black rhino and all live in the Serengeti National Park. Even so, there’s no guarantee you’ll see all 5 but if you do, it’s another bucket list item checked!
Witness the great migration
More than a million wildebeest and a quarter of a million zebra migrate throughout the Serengeti and a Maasai Mara each year, in search of fresh pasture. To witness the sheer numbers is mind-blowing and best understood by seeing it with your own eyes.
The Serengeti has over 1000 species of birds. From the largest to the heaviest flying birds, the incredibly colourful to the downright fascinating, there’s no shortage of birds to watch. If you’re not a twitcher, I bet you become a convert after a your safari in the Serengeti.
Visit the Ngorongoro Crater
Ok so it’s not strictly in the Serengeti but Ngorongoro Crater commutable in a day and well worth the trip. It’s a fantastic place to spot the big 5 too, especially the black rhino.
Meet the Maasai
The Ngorongoro Conservation Area is home to many Maasai and a great opportunity to visit a village and experience their way of life. For an authentic experience, try to visit a village offering a genuine view of their life rather than a pre-rehearsed routine.
Stay in a tented camp
Sleeping in a tent in the Serengeti with no fences or walls to keep the wildlife from you is an experience of a lifetime. African cape buffalo wandering around your tent and chomping at the grass behind your headboard will surely make you feel alive! And you’ll never forget the vibrations felt as the lions roar in the night close by.
Meet a pangolin and her baby
A rare sight indeed, and when we encountered the most trafficked animal in the world, we’d never even heard of it. It turned out one of the highlights of our whole safari in the Serengeti.
Watch lions hunt at dawn
You will see many lions in the Serengeti, often sleeping high up on a rock in the midday sun, or relaxing under an acacia tree. Going out on a game drive at dawn gives you the best chance to watch them hunt. Even if their hunt isn’t successful, witnessing the team work and tactics in motion is an exhilarating experience. This is nature!
Take a flight over the Serengeti
Either from a hot air balloon or by flying to the nearest airstrip, a flight over the Serengeti is breathtaking. We loved spotting animals from above and watching the herds of wildebeest running below us. It’s the only way to begin to appreciate how vast the area is.
See a hippo pool
You will encounter small pools throughout the Serengeti and no doubt see a few hippos (or maybe smell them first). Seeing a huge family of hippo, lounging together in a fast moving river is incredible though. Watching the dynamics as they jostle for position, enjoy the oxpecker’s free spa treatment and make occasional eye contact with you is a fascinating way to spend an hour or so.
Watch a cheetah and her cubs going out for lunch
Cheetah have perhaps more challenges than any of the big cats. They maybe the fastest land animal on the planet but pretty weak compared to lions, hyena and leopards. Because of this, predators often rob them of their kills. And because all predators see each other as competition, their cubs are often killed by lions and hyenas. Cheetah hedge their bets by having a few cubs. They’re not all expected to survive to adulthood so to see a mother with her 4 young cubs is very special.