The northern safari circuit Tanzania is by far the most popular safari circuit in Tanzania, comprising most of the must-see destinations in the country including the Serengeti, Ngorongoro Crater, Kilimanjaro National Park, Lake Manyara, Tarangire National Park, Arusha National Park, Olduvai Gorge, and Mkomazi National Park. If you’re a first-time visitor to Tanzania, this is where you want to be.

The circuit starts in Arusha and includes, from east to west: Arusha National Park at the foot of Mount Meru, Tarangire National Park 110km southwest of the town of Arusha, Manyara Ranch between Tarangire National Park and Lake Manyara National Park, Lake Manyara National Park at the bottom of the Gregory Rift, the Ngorongoro Conservation Area (which includes the Ngorongoro caldera, the Empakaai Crater and the southern Serengeti plains of Lake Ndutu), and the Serengeti National Park that stretches north to the Tanzania/Kenya border.

The main gateway to the Northern safari circuit Tanzania is the city of Arusha, which is served by Kilimanjaro International Airport. Unfortunately, not a lot of direct flights to Kilimanjaro are available. Tourists coming from the UK, the US, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia usually fly directly into JRO from Amsterdam via KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. Other options are connecting flights via Nairobi in Kenya, Addis Ababa in Ethiopia, or Dar es Salaam.

Why Northern Safari Circuit?

The great thing about the Northern safari circuit Tanzania is, parks are accessible by roads and so it’s easy to drive from one park to another. Since visitors usually spend a lot of time on the road during their game drives and some roads can be dusty or muddy, closed vehicles with pop-up roofs are typically used in this area. The pop-up roofs and large windows allow excellent game viewing while maintaining safety and comfort throughout the trip.

The world-famous Big Five is also a common sighting all year-round, and a lot of accommodation options ranging from budget camps to luxury lodges and exclusive tented camps are widely offered. Also, adventurous travelers who aim to take their once-in-a-lifetime trip to greater heights can easily trek the world-famous Mount Kilimanjaro or the crater of Mount Meru.

Northern Safari Circuit Tanzania National Parks:

Serengeti National Park

Home to the Great Wildebeest Migration which has been consistently named “the greatest show on earth” and the World Cup of Wildlife, Serengeti National Park is one of the major attractions in Tanzania. It displays the breathtaking scenery of a wildlife-ridden Africa all year round and visitors never go zero when it comes to game viewing.

The prime Serengeti plains spread all the way to the north onto Kenya’s Masai Mara, the prime scene of the epic gnu migration. Predators such as lions, hyenas, cheetahs, and leopards trail the thirsty hordes which cover the plains, while giant crocodiles lie in wait at hazardous Mara and Grumeti Rivers crossings. In between Serengeti and Ngorongoro is where prehistoric man, his tracks, bones, and tools revealed in over three million-year-old rocks at Olduvai Gorge and Laetoli, began his ascent to civilization. The plains have been home to successive tribes, of whom the Maasai are the last to arrive and claim the area as their homeland, where they are now heading the sustainable integration of human settlements with wildlife conservation and ecotourism.


Ngorongoro Conservation Area

Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Africa’s Garden of Eden, is where you can find the famous Ngorongoro Crater, the world’s largest unbroken, inactive volcanic caldera. It is another UNESCO World Heritage Site that promises sightings of the Big Five and all other wildlife including about 25,000 large mammals. The crater rim sits around 7,500m above sea level and is covered in ancient forests draped in lichen, making it a unique site to spot such incredible diversity and concentration of animals and birds.

Lake Manyara National Park

Imagine a vast soda lake filled with massive herds of vibrant pink flamingoes, white rhinos, zebras, and other wildlife. In Lake Manyara National Park, you get to see this before your very eyes. Aside from such a sight to behold. The main attractions in this park include the tree-climbing lions and the prolific elephant population. An amazing additional park to your Northern safari circuit Tanzania Adventure.

Manyara tree climbing lion-Interesting Facts About Tanzania-tanzania-northern-safari-circuit

Mount Kilimanjaro National Park 

Also offers access to the harder and more varied splendid routes to climb the majestic snow-capped mountain. It rears its lone head to 5895 meters as the highest stand-alone mountain in the world. Read more about mount Kilimanjaro. A Northern safari circuit Tanzania Classic in Moshi close to its twin Mount Meru.

Arusha National Park 

Contains a fascinating diversity of habitats, surprisingly neglected by visitors on a well-rounded tour in Tanzania with Northern lagoon travels. The montane forest shelters playful black and white Colobus monkeys. It encloses the steep walls of the Ngurdoto Crater with its marsh floor.

The beautiful green and blue Momella Lakes are ideal for canoeing. Teaming with pink flamingos while lyre-horned waterbuck, butt circle waterbuck, elegant giraffe, and agile dik-diks roam the shores and plains. There are few elephants and no lions here, but spotted hyenas and leopards have been spotted but infrequent. Read more about Arusha National Park

Mount Meru

Central Mount Meru is a smaller version of Kilimanjaro. It can be seen to advantage from slopes where the glorious tropical forest gives way to heathland studded with giant lobelia and carpeted with white everlasting daisies. Found in the Northern safari circuit Tanzania.


Tarangire National Park

Tarangire National Park, in the northern safari circuit Tanzania ecosystem. It is the site of a spectacular dry season elephant migration as mobs of behemoths dig up dry river beds in search of underground water, attended by thirsty buffalo, impala, eland, and gazelle with hundreds of thousands of migratory hoofed and horned relatives, all prey to numerous predators, including tree-climbing lions and pythons. Rare straight-necked gerenuk and patch-faced oryx roam the dry grassland. An avian expedition of Tarangire in the wet is a birdwatcher’s dream, with the world’s largest number of breeding species.

From here, like-minded Northern Lagoon Travels guests can visit Barabaig and Maasai communities. Also view the stone paintings at Kolo Rocks in the Kondoa highlands caves.

Lake Natron

The most alkaline of the Rift Valley lakes. This makes it perfect for more than two million lesser flamingos to build mud platform nests. Protected from predators by toxic waters bright red with phytoplankton which feeds the flamingos and provides their deep pink-red hues.

Lake Victoria

On a Tanzanian aquatic holiday off the shores of Lake Victoria, delightful beaches hold fascinating anthropological sites. Visit Rubondo Island National Park or the formerly gazetted island wildlife sanctuary, the tiny new Saanane Island National Park. The area is a major breeding ground for Tilapia, Nile perch, and other fish species. Also, migratory birds, hippos, and crocodiles, and is especially known for their African fish eagles and papyrus swamps.

After spending the dry, cool season in the north. Uncountable herds of wildebeest return to calve on the southern Ndutu plains, synchronously dropping over a three-week period. Half a million joyous bundles of new life to outface ever-hungry predators and ensure the survival of a new generation. It is impossible to take in the amazing scenic diversity of the Northern Safari Circuit Tanzania in one visit. However, a Tarangire or Serengeti balloon safari could give you a good overview. Whatever you want to see on your safari vacation in the Northern safari circuit of Tanzania, Northern Lagoon Travels can arrange a seamless and flawless customized itinerary, especially for you. Read more on Tanzania destinations

Open chat
Northern Lagoon Travels
Looking for an adventure?