The Ngorongoro conservation area boasts with the Ngorongoro Crater lake which is the world’s largest intact, inactive, unflooded and unbroken caldera , some people have referred to this area as garden of Eden due to it’s incredible beauty. Ngorongoro conservation area was established in 1959 as a multiple land use area as the local Masai people used to graze their cattle, the Ngorongoro conservation area covers 8,292 kilometers squared. This crater is one of the most common destinations to go to on Tanzania safaris.
The conservation area derives its name from the splendid volcanic caldera Ngorongoro whose name comes from the Masai word to mean “El- Nkoronkoro “meaning Gift of life. In 1879 the Ngorongoro Crater was made a UNESCO world heritage site, more reason as to why you should visit it on your Tanzania vacations & holidays.
The Ngorongoro conservation area was restricted from human settlement and subsistence farming leading to the displacement of the Masai pastoralists in 2009.
The Ngorongoro is endowed with true African wilderness boasting with over 400 species of birds, endangered species of black rhinos and countless other wildlife it’s also said to be having the highest density of lions in the whole world.
Ngorongoro conservation area has also been voted as one of the seven natural wonders of Africa. The crater covers 259 kilometers squared with walls of about 600 meters in height,
The Ngorongoro conservation area has got a number of tourists activities visitors can engage in some of this can be seen below;
Ngorongoro conservation area is one of the most beautiful places on earth and a natural wonder, animals to expect while on a game drive are; lions, elephants, Buffalos, leopards, black rhinos, hyenas, wildebeests, zebras, cheetahs, jakal, serval cat, gazelles to mention a few. The game drives are always done at day time this experience is very thrilling as you view predators hunting and pursing their prey along the way.
Ngorongoro conservation area boasts with over 400 species of birds some of this are residential while others are migratory birds examples are golden winged birds, white eyed slaty flycatcher, African cytrill, mountain buzzard, flamingoes, Kori bustard, black kite, crowned eagles, grey headed negro Finch, barred tailed trogon, steppe eagle and many more.
The Ngorongoro conversation used to be a place where nomadic pastoralists used to graze their cattle, the parks name is derived from a local Masai word, this people are very rich in culture that is very unique in Africa, tourists can visit the Masai homesteads known as manyattas or bomas and experience culture by being entertained with local traditional dances or even join the herds men in grazing cattle or acquire outstanding handmade jewelry. There is a lot to learn from the people and must be included in your itinerary.
Guided nature walks at Ngorongoro conservation area can be done at various walking trails however, tourists must be accompanied by an armed game ranger and be very keen with instructions, visitors to the park can slope to the Empaakai soda lake with spectacular views of numerous flamingoes at the shorelines. One of the best walking trails is a walk on the western rim of the crater. A walk to lake Eyasi is also rewarding as you come across bush men with untouched culture and breathtaking views.
One of the best ways to make your safari memorable at Ngorongoro conservation area is by hiking to the Olmoti volcano and have striking views of the whole crater. The hike will provide you with a very thrilling experience of rocky out drops, mountain forests and grasslands as well as come along birdlife and various butterflies. This trail was formerly used by the Masai warriors as a cattle trail.
Olduvai Gorge contains one of the earliest remains of Homo sapiens, it’s a wondrous archeological and historical site you must not miss on your safari to the conservation area then tourists can continue to the crescent shaped volcanic dunes known as shifting sands.
The Ngorongoro conservation area can be visited all year round but the best time of the year is from June to October then December and January. During this time the rains are less hence vegetation shorter and not thick making it easy to view wildlife
The Ngorongoro conservation area can be accessed from Arusha by car and this can take up to three hours drive. There are also various domestic chattered flights that operate daily to Kilimanjaro international airport where you can picked by a tour company vehicle or hired taxi.