Ndutu calving season.

Why Visit Ngorongoro Crater?


Ngorongoro Crater is a stunning natural wonder located in Tanzania, Africa. It’s one of the few places on earth where you can see elephants and lions living together in their natural habitat.

As you enter Ngorongoro Crater, you’ll find yourself surrounded by towering cliffs that rise up over 1,000 meters (3281 feet) above your head. These cliffs are known as kopjes–they’re made up of hard volcanic rock called rhyolite that was formed millions of years ago when lava flowed out from beneath the earth’s crust and cooled into rock formations. You’ll also see large boulders scattered across the floor of this massive crater; these are called “kopjes” too!

The name “Ngorongoro” means “big hill” or “mountain” in Maasai language–and it’s easy to see why: The whole area is covered with grasslands, shrubs and trees…but most importantly? There are plenty of animals!

Geography and Landscape

Ngorongoro Crater is a caldera, or volcanic crater, located in the Arusha Region of northern Tanzania. It’s essentially a giant hole in the ground that was created when an ancient volcano collapsed sometime between five and eight million years ago (and yes, that’s not even close to being as old as some other places we’ve visited).

The crater itself is about 19 miles wide and 12 miles long with walls ranging from 1,800 feet to 2,100 feet high–that means it could easily hold all three Grand Canyons at once! The surrounding landscape consists mostly of savannah grasslands but also includes forests and marshes where you might spot some wildlife if you’re lucky enough (more on this later).

The Wildlife

The wildlife in Ngorongoro Crater is unique and abundant. The crater is home to many species of animals, including black rhinos, lions and elephants. It also hosts a number of bird species that can be seen while on safari tours in the area.

In addition to its rich wildlife population, Ngorongoro Crater has an ecosystem unlike any other on earth. It’s one of only two places where you can find an entire ecosystem within its boundaries–the other being the Galapagos Islands off Ecuador’s coast.

the Tanzania safaris
Ndutu calving season.
Tanzania tours and safari adventure
tanzania safari


Ngorongoro Crater is a world-renowned safari destination, and it’s easy to see why. The area offers visitors an incredible variety of activities to enjoy, from hiking and game drives to camping and staying in luxury safari lodges.

Ngorongoro Crater has something for everyone: whether you’re looking for an adrenaline rush or just want to relax with a good book on the deck of your lodge while watching elephants roam nearby, there’s no better place than here!

The Maasai People

The Maasai people are one of the most well-known ethnic groups in Tanzania. They live in the Serengeti region, which lies just outside Ngorongoro Crater. The Maasai are known for their distinctive attire and lifestyle, which revolves around cattle herding.

The crater’s importance to the Maasai is reflected by their name for it: “Ngorongoro,” which means “place of many springs.” The area contains several natural springs that provide water for wildlife as well as humans–and it’s been this way since ancient times!

Getting There

There are a few ways to get to Ngorongoro Crater. The most popular way is by chartering a flight from Arusha or Dar es Salaam, which will take you directly there. If you’re not traveling with your own private plane, then flying into Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO) is your best bet. From there it’s just a short drive (or bus ride) down the road to Arusha where you can board another flight or arrange for transportation via land taxi or car rental company like Hertz.

The only downside of this option is that it may cost more than driving yourself–but if time isn’t an issue and money isn’t tight, then this might be worth considering!


There are a number of accommodation options in Ngorongoro, including camping and luxury safari lodges. The best places to stay will depend on what you’re looking for:

If you want a more authentic experience, then staying at one of the campsites inside the crater is a good option. There are three campsites here: Olduvai Gorge Campsite (which is located near Olduvai Gorge), Lake Magadi Campsite (located near Lake Magadi) and Olmoti Campsite (located near Olmoti Crater). These sites offer basic facilities such as toilets and showers but no electricity or running water; it’s possible to rent tents from them if needed.

If you want something more comfortable than camping but less expensive than staying at one of the lodges below, then consider booking yourself into one of these campsites instead!

Alternatively – if neither option appeals – there are also several luxury lodges outside Ngorongoro Crater which still offer excellent views while being closer to town than any other lodging option within its borders would allow.”

ngorongoro crater accommodation

When to Visit

The best time of year to visit Ngorongoro Crater is between October and March, when you’ll find cooler weather and fewer tourists. The climate is dry during these months, but it’s not too hot–temperatures can range from 75 degrees Fahrenheit at night to 90 degrees during the day.

The rainy season runs from April through September; this is when you’ll see the most rainfall in Tanzania. During this time, there are also more mosquitoes and animals outside of their natural habitats (such as zebras or giraffes). If you’re traveling with children who might be frightened by these changes in scenery or creatures, consider visiting another time of year instead!

Safety Tips

When visiting Ngorongoro Crater, it is important to remember that it is a wild place and you are in the company of animals. While most are harmless, there are some that can be dangerous if approached or provoked. In order to ensure your safety while visiting this national park, please follow these tips:

Bring enough water for yourself and any children who are traveling with you. There is no potable water available on site so it is best to bring enough for everyone in your party before entering the crater itself.

Wear appropriate clothing for trekking through rugged terrain (elevation changes from 2200 meters/7250 feet above sea level down into valleys as low as 1000 meters/3280 feet). This means sturdy shoes with good traction such as hiking boots or sneakers; long pants (no shorts); long-sleeved shirts; hats with wide brims that shade your face from sun exposure; sunscreen lotion applied liberally every hour throughout the day (we recommend at least SPF 30)


The Ngorongoro Crater is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an incredible place to visit. It’s home to thousands of animals, including the highest concentration of lions in the world. The crater also has some of the oldest trees on earth, which you can see during your stay at one of its luxury lodges or campsites.

If you’re looking for an adventure that will keep both adults and children entertained for hours on end, then this is definitely it!

Want to know more about Tanzania adventures?

Contact our team! We have been to all of the top destinations in this land. Our Arusha-based adventure consultants will gladly share our travel tips and help you plan the trip.

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