Serengeti National Park, Tanzania: where it is, when to go and what to see

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Joel Fulleda

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Tanzania certainly is among the best places in Africa and the world to experience the exciting safari experience.

Among its large parks, one of the best is the Serengeti National Park, for completeness of flora and fauna, variety of landscapes and the possibility of seeing all the Big Five and the great migrations of herbivores at the right times. Not surprisingly it is it has also been declared a World Heritage Site entering the UNESCO lists.

At this point the questions are many: what is the best period? How much? How to visit it? Here's one guide to the Serengeti National park: where is it, when to go and what to see!


  1. Where it is
  2. When to go? Info on climate and best time
  3. What to bring: recommended clothing and equipment
  4. 10 things to see in the Serengeti
  5. Excursions and guided tours in the Serengeti Park
  6. How much does it cost to visit the Serengeti? Prices, offers and advice
  7. User questions and comments

Where it is

The Serengeti National Park it is located in Tanzania and is among the most famous parks in the country to experience the thrill of a safari in the wilderness. Precisely it is located in the north-east area, on the border with Kenya and 10 hours away from the capital Dodoma and 20 from Zanzibar.

How to reach us

  • From the main European capitals: you can reach Kilimanjaro Airport directly and without stopping from Amsterdam with KLM and from Zurich with Swissair - Compare flights to Serengeti National Park

How to reach the Serengeti Park

To get to the park, from the airport you must first move towards Arusha, where most tours depart from, located 50 kilometers from Kilimanjaro Airport, but not connected to it by public transport, therefore a taxi or private transfer will be required. Arusha is then another 320 kilometers from the park, to be traveled on unpaved roads in at least 5 hours of travel, but the possibilities are different: rent a jeep, book a domestic flight from the small Arusha airport to the Seronera Airstrip park airport (served from this type of connection only), or choose a safari tour with a local guide.

Rental is the least recommended option for high costs and security issues, while flying is the most expensive and least practical solution. It costs 310,00 TZS (about € 122,00) each way and once in the park you will have to spend more money on a jeep, a guide and accommodation and make do with everything. The tour option with an expert guide is therefore the best choice as it includes everything. The solutions at local agencies are endless, with group tours, private, 2 or more days, one or more parks and many others. The costs are between € 350,00 and € 1.000,00 depending on the package chosen (compare online).

When to go? Info on climate and best time

  • Weather: subtropical, due to its height between 1.100 and 2.000 meters; characterized by hot days and cool nights with temperatures between 16 ° and 28 °; rainfall is frequent and abundant between October and May, while from June to September it is more scarce but still present
  • Best time: from June to September it rains little and the temperatures are warm but still livable; from December to July the spectacle of the great migration of wildebeest takes place towards the savannah of the Masai Mara park
  • Period to avoid: in general the rainy season, but especially the months of November, March and April as they are more rainy

What to bring: recommended clothing and equipment

  • Clothing: comfortable shoes, during the day shorts and t-shirt, in the evening long trousers and long-sleeved shirt with jacket or sweatshirt
  • Equipment: backpack, binoculars, camera, sunscreen, sunglasses, repellent, hat, lots of water plus cool drinks and energy snacks in case it gets too hot

10 things to see in the Serengeti

  1. Ngoro Ngoro crater: about 50 km from the Serengeti, in the conservation area, is a crater of about 25 km in diameter usually inserted as a stop on safaris in Northern Tanzania. Unesco heritage, it is famous for the presence of lions, buffaloes and elephants with large tusks
  2. Olduvai Gorges: about 20 km away, it is an important archaeological site where remains of hominids have been found which represent an extraordinary resource in the study of the origin of our species
  3. Ol Doinyo Lengai volcano: a stratovolcano in the Rift Valley, near Lake Natron. It emits a very fluid and dark colored lava which turns white upon contact with water. This is why its top seems to be covered in snow
  4. Natron's Lake: just outside the Serengeti, it is the habitat of pink flamingos and famous for the phenomenon of animal embalming. Its very high pH and high water temperatures "calcify" the carcass which appears to be stuffed
  5. All the Big Five: that's right, in the Serengeti National Park all the five great African species coexist, so lions, buffaloes, elephants, leopards and rhinos
  6. Herbivore migration: occurs between December and July, especially gnu and zebras, encountering mass movements of very large herds
  7. Puddle of hippos and crocodiles in which live many specimens that offer the beautiful vision of their natural daily behaviors such as hunting, mating and fighting
  8. Over 500 species of birds including the most common pink flamingos, vultures, eagles, pelicans, geese and ibises
  9. Reptiles such as chameleons, turtles, vipers, cobras, monitor lizards, black mambas and green mambas
  10. Masai villages, many villages consisting of mud and wooden huts where the Masai live, one of the most widespread ethnic groups, recognizable by their red clothes and large colored beaded jewels

Excursions and guided tours in the Serengeti Park

How much does it cost to visit the Serengeti? Prices, offers and advice

As anticipated, the best choice is an organized tour by contacting a local agency that provides vehicle, driver and guide, also taking care of entry, accommodation, meals and travel, so that you just have to enjoy the safari without worrying about the organization. The advice is to find the agency in advance so you can calmly evaluate reviews and various packages rather than bargaining with anyone on the spot.

For a safari in the Seregeti National Park, the costs are relatively high, for example, the return flight costs around € 460,00, admission € 45,00, jeep rental € 200,00 per day and finally the accommodations have prices around € 200,00 per night with full board. These factors exclude autonomous safaris but also increase the prices of the tours, which start from a minimum of € 350,00 and even reach € 1.000,00.

To save something and therefore remain on the basic amount, if you do not have particular needs and requirements, it would be better to prefer a group tour rather than a private one so that the cost is shared between the various participants. Other factors affecting prices are the mode (jeep or balloon), the duration of 1 or more days, and the combination of the Serengeti with other parks. For those wishing to book the classic package flight + hotel and stay in the park for the entire holiday, in a week of mid season the cost is around € 1.300,00 for basic accommodation and without meals included, but as already mentioned this is limiting as, once you reach your destination, you will have to pay everything else for the safari (entrance, jeep, guide).

As for general costs, such as food and souvenirs, Tanzania has low prices but, when compared with those of other African states, here definitely exceed the standard given the high tourist flow.

  • Hotel and b & b starting from € 266,00 per room -
  • starting from € 460,00 -
  • 7 days starting from € 1.040,00 per person -
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Travel informed: useful information

  • Languages: Kiswahili and English
  • Local currency: Tanzanian Shilling (TZS) / € 1,00 = 2.546,60 TZS
  • Weather: tropical, with two seasons, one dry and one rainy; the driest and coolest period is from June to August; average temperatures range between 23 ° and 30 °
  • vaccinations: vaccination against yellow fever mandatory for travelers from countries at risk of transmission even in the case of airport transit only if more than 12 hours
  • Entry requirements: a passport with a residual validity of 6 months and a visa (both for tourism and business) are required to be requested in advance at the Tanzanian Embassy in Rome, at the Honorary Consulate in Milan, online or directly at the airport
  • Travel / health insurance: recommended.

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