The Ngorongoro Conservation Crater was formed a few million years ago when a huge volcano exploded and collapsed. With walls rising from 400 to 600 meters, the 16 – 19 km area was allowed to develop without the interference of man. This means that the Ngorongoro Crater hosts an unparalleled collection of flora and fauna, making it ...

56 Trips in Ngorongoro Conservation Area with 28 Reviews

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4 Days Serengeti, Manyara, Ngorongoro Safari Tour

of 7 reviews
  • Free cancellation
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Incredible experience! My wife and I just got back from our trip to East Africa. For the first leg ...
  • Tour Type Group Tour
  • Activities Wildlife safaris and game drives
  • Accommodation Camping, Tent & Hotel
  • Transport 4WD Jeep
  • Age Range 5-99 yrs
days04 From US$ 990 View Tour
Next Departures
  • Feb 03
  • Feb 04
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Serengeti Trail

of 1 review
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8 day road trip to Nairobi, Kisii and 4 other destinations in Kenya, Tanzania and Argentina. Read More
  • Tour Type Group Tour
  • Activities Road trips & Wildlife +1 more
  • Accommodation Hotel, Camping & Sleeper Bus
  • Transport Overland Vehicle & 4WD Jeep
  • Age Range 15-99 yrs
days08 From US$ 2,420 US$ 2,057
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  • Feb 11 Only 10 seats left
  • Apr 15 10+ seats left
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4 Days Tarangire, Serengeti & Ngorongoro Crater

of 3 reviews
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The trip was very well organised. All the essentials were catered for, so very little effort was nee ...
  • Tour Type Group Tour
  • Activities Wildlife safaris and game drives
  • Accommodation Camping & Hotel
  • Transport 4WD Jeep
  • Age Range 5-79 yrs
days04 From US$ 900 View Tour
Next Departures
  • Feb 05
  • Feb 06
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4 Days Northern Circuit

of 2 reviews
  • Free cancellation
  • Trip customizable
Great experience, we saw a lot of animals on a 4 day safari. Staff is really great, helpful and pric ...
  • Tour Type Private Tour
  • Activities Wildlife safaris and game drives
  • Accommodation Camping & Hotel
  • Transport 4WD Jeep
  • Age Range 5-79 yrs
days04 From US$ 1,230 View Tour
Next Departures
  • Feb 03
  • Feb 04
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4 Days Safari in Lake Manyara, Serengeti, & Ngoro Crater

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4 day wildlife safaris and game drives trip in Tanzania, visiting Lake Manyara National Park, Serengeti National Park and Arusha. Read More
  • Activities Wildlife safaris and game drives
  • Accommodation Camping & Hotel
  • Transport 4WD Jeep
  • Age Range 5-79 yrs
days04 From US$ 1,050 View Tour
Next Departures
  • Feb 03
  • Feb 04
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2 Day Safari Tarangire & Ngorongoro

of 4 reviews
  • Free cancellation
  • Trip customizable
Amazing experience allowing to watch wildlife in the natural environment surrounded by wonderful lan ...
  • Tour Type Group Tour
  • Activities Wildlife safaris and game drives
  • Accommodation Camping, Hotel & Tent
  • Transport Private Vehicle & 4WD Jeep
  • Age Range 2-79 yrs
days02 From US$ 540 View Tour
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  • Feb 03
  • Feb 04
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6 Days Affordable Safari

  • Free cancellation
  • Trip customizable
6 day wildlife safaris and game drives trip in Tanzania, visiting Tarangire National Park, Lake Manyara and Serengeti National Park. Read More
  • Activities Wildlife safaris and game drives
  • Accommodation Camping, Hut, Hotel & Sleeping Hut
  • Transport 4WD Jeep
  • Age Range 5-79 yrs
days06 From US$ 1,770 View Tour
Next Departures
  • Feb 03
  • Feb 04
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5-days Tarangire-Serengeti-Ngorongoro Safari

  • Trip customizable
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5 day wildlife safaris and game drives tour in Tanzania, visiting Tarangire National Park, Serengeti National Park and Ngorongoro Conservation Area. Read More
  • Tour Type Private Tour
  • Activities Wildlife safaris and game drives
  • Accommodation Hotel & Lodge
  • Transport 4WD Jeep
  • Age Range 5-79 yrs
days05 From US$ 1,999 View Tour
Next Departures
  • Feb 03
  • Feb 04
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Serengeti & Ngorongoro Safari

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  • No booking fees
4 day getaways and short breaks trip in Tanzania, visiting Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Serengeti National Park and Arusha. Read More
  • Tour Type Small Group Tour
  • Activities Getaways and short breaks & Wildlife +1 more
  • Accommodation Lodge, Hotel & Sleeper Bus
  • Transport Overland Vehicle & 4WD Jeep
  • Age Range 15-99 yrs
days04 From US$ 3,623 View Tour
Next Departures
  • Feb 10 10+ seats left
  • Feb 11 10+ seats left
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Best of Wildebeast Migration (8 days)

  • Free cancellation
  • Trip customizable
8 day wildlife safaris and game drives tour through Arusha National Park, Lake Manyara National Park, Lake Eyasi and 4 other destinations in Tanzania. Read More
  • Tour Type Private Tour
  • Activities Wildlife safaris and game drives & Adventure
  • Accommodation Camping, Lodge, Eco Lodge & Hotel
  • Transport 4WD Jeep
  • Age Range 5-79 yrs
days08 From US$ 2,150 View Tour
Next Departures
  • Feb 03
  • Feb 04
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6 Day Safari Extravaganza in Tanzania

of 1 review
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Wow - not even sure where to begin. We did a 5-night 6 day safari with the local tour operator
  • Tour Type Private Tour
  • Activities Wildlife safaris and game drives & Adventure
  • Accommodation Hotel & Camping
  • Transport 4WD Jeep
  • Age Range 5-79 yrs
days06 From US$ 1,720 View Tour
Next Departures
  • Feb 03
  • Feb 04
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7-day Serengeti Great Migration Safari

  • Free cancellation
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8 day wildlife safaris and game drives tour in Tanzania, visiting Arusha, Ngorongoro Conservation Area and Serengeti National Park. Read More
  • Tour Type Private Tour
  • Activities Wildlife safaris and game drives
  • Accommodation Hotel, Lodge & Luxury Hotel
  • Transport 4WD Jeep
  • Age Range 5-79 yrs
days08 From US$ 3,015 View Tour
Next Departures
  • Feb 03
  • Feb 04
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4 Day Budget Camping Safari in Tanzania

  • Free cancellation
  • Trip customizable
4 day wildlife safaris and game drives trip in Tanzania, visiting Lake Manyara National Park, Serengeti National Park and Ngorongoro Crater. Read More
  • Tour Type Private Tour
  • Activities Wildlife safaris and game drives & Adventure
  • Accommodation Camping, Hotel & Lodge
  • Transport Private Vehicle & 4WD Jeep
  • Age Range 5-79 yrs
days04 From US$ 800 View Tour
Next Departures
  • Feb 03
  • Feb 04
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2 Days Budget safari L Manyara and Ngorongoro

  • Free cancellation
  • Trip customizable
2 day wildlife safaris and game drives trip in Tanzania, visiting Lake Manyara National Park, Ngorongoro Crater and Manyara. Read More
  • Tour Type Private Tour
  • Activities Wildlife safaris and game drives
  • Accommodation Camping & Hotel
  • Transport 4WD Jeep & Private Vehicle
  • Age Range 5-79 yrs
days02 From US$ 455 View Tour
Next Departures
  • Feb 03
  • Feb 04
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Ngorongoro Conservation Area Tour Reviews

5 - Excellent
Based on 28 customer reviews
thrilled with our safari!!
5 - Excellent
  • Simeon Bland
“3 wonder safaris totally exceeded our expectations! we spent 4 comfortable, happy days. our guide, henry, was very professional, always informative, and thanks to his talent we spotted so many animals (listed below). thank you, 3 wonder safaris! elephant lion buffalo thompson's gazelle impala hippo black rhino waterbuck hartebeest warthog (pumba) banded lemur cory bustard ostrich giraffe wildebeest hyena cheetah vulture sand grue dik dik antelope grey heron zebra helmeted guinea fowl crested francolin babboon tawny eagle weaver bird topi agama agama hornbill leopard secretary bird flamingos red billed stork blacksmith plover swifty cattle agate sacred ibis brown jackal”
All-in excellent Safari
5 - Excellent
  • Remco Wiggers
“Very well organized trip. We saw the big5 and much more. Highly recommended! The local travel expert took good care of us. We also slept two nights in a tent on the serengeti. Really cool!”
Low Budget 4 Day Safari -
4 - Very Good
  • Anne Normandin
“Memorable experience visiting Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti National Park. Amazing landscape and plenty of game. Lake Manyara was a bit of a disappointment and spending more time in the Serengeti would have been nicer.”

Ngorongoro Conservation Area - Overview and Facts

The Ngorongoro Conservation Crater was formed a few million years ago when a huge volcano exploded and collapsed. With walls rising from 400 to 600 meters, the 16 – 19 km area was allowed to develop without the interference of man. This means that the Ngorongoro Crater hosts an unparalleled collection of flora and fauna, making it one of the greatest natural wonders on the planet. The Ngorongoro Conservation Crater was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the year 1978, and its borders host some of the densest mammal populations on the continent. And since the crater is located at an altitude that varies from 1,009 meters to 3,645 meters, you get to see a variety of plants and animals here. The northern part of the crater is dry and offers vast grasslands which host most of the game animals. The southwest hosts the Lerai Forest, home to thousands of yellow fever trees. The Ngoitokitok Springs and the Gorigor Swamp lies to the east and these places are ideal for checking out hundreds of hippos lazing in the water. Ngorongoro Conservation Area gets the following relevant safari ratings:

  • Wildlife Rating: 5 stars out of 5
  • Scenery Rating: 5 stars out of 5
  • Bush Vibe: 3 stars out of 5

Getting a chance to watch a lot of game is a given on any trip to the Ngorongoro. Much of the floor is flat and this offers grand views of the wildebeests and zebras who graze here. The plains are also home to gazelle, elephants, topi, and buffalo. Some of the largest tuskers can be seen here. Other animals found in the Ngorongoro Conservation Crater include cheetahs, black rhinos, lions, spotted hyenas, leopards, golden jackals and bat-eared foxes. The lions completely disregard the vehicles around them and often hunt or seek shade within yards of your vehicle. This means that you get to see some of the best and most exciting predator sightings here. Moreover, it is entirely possible to see the Big 5 in a single day.

The Ngorongoro isn’t just about its wildlife and safaris. It also hosts the Olduvai Gorge, an area having the most extensive history on the planet. A number of hominid species lived in the gorge for millions of years, and countless fossils which date back 3.6 million years have been discovered. The gorge is now considered to rank among the most important and best prehistoric sites and its fossils have been integral in understanding the evolution of man.

Activities within the crater are limited to game drives and getting out of your vehicle is strictly limited, but there are a few picnic spots where tourists can relax their muscles and breathe in the scenery without being restricted to the confines of a vehicle. However, a wide range of activities such as walking, trekking, exploring the Olduvai Gorge and interacting with the Maasai can be found in the greater conservation area.

Pros and Cons of Ngorongoro Conservation Area

The Ngorongoro tends to attract as many as 50% of the tourists visiting Tanzania and this means that roughly 400,000 visitors explore the crater each year. After all, a place that offers year-round wildlife spotting opportunities, presents excellent accommodation options and grand views, hosts the endangered black rhino and also boasts of authentic Maasai villages is sure to attract so many visitors! That said, the large number of tourists also means that the sheer number of vehicles in such a small and restricted area often tends to destroy any bush vibe and leave the place feeling busy and crowded. Sure, the majestic predator sightings make up for most issues, but the crater always misses out when it comes to offering an ‘authentic safari experience’.

Accommodation in Ngorongoro Conservation Area

While there are no accommodations within the crater itself, one does have a choice between the Rift Valley Escarpment and the phenomenal Crater rim. The accommodations found in Rift Valley Escarpment may not offer similar views or easy access to the floor, but they are far cheaper than those Crater rim lodges. The best options include Ngorongoro Farmhouse Lodge, Plantation Lodge and Gibb’s Farm. The Crater rim overlooks the floor and hosts a few luxury lodges that boast of having mind-blowing views as well as easy access to the floor. The best lodges here are the Ngorongoro Crater Lodge, Ngorongoro Serena Safari Lodge and the Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge.

Best Time to Visit Ngorongoro Conservation Area

Since there is no escape for the wildlife living within the crater, you can enjoy fascinating experiences throughout the year. However, it always feels pleasant to visit the Ngorongoro Crater during low season (April – May) as the high number of tourists can often leave a bitter aftertaste, particularly during peak season. However,the low season also coincides with the wet season, and most of the rainfall takes place between the months of March and April. That said, the higher water levels in the Lake Magadi also mean that you get to see more flamingos during the low season.

Extend Your Vacation from Ngorongoro

There are a number of sights and attractions close to the Ngorongoro Conservation Center. Extending your vacation is easy, and a number of holiday packages already include these destinations and more.

  • Serengeti: The first and most obvious attraction is the Serengeti, home to the Great Migration phenomenon. Considered to be one of the top national parks of Africa, the Serengeti hosts some of its most authentic safari experiences as well as a huge animal population. Click here to find out more about the Serengeti National Park.
  • Empakaai Crater: Located at a distance of 90 minutes from the Ngorongoro Center, the Empakaai Crater is home to thousands of flamingos who constantly soak in its emerald lake, giving it a beautifully pinkish color. Don’t miss out on walking up to the rim of the crater to check out views of Ol Doinyo Lengai as these views rank among the best that Africa has on offer.
  • Mount Kilimanjaro: The highest summit of Africa is one of the most recognizable as well as one of the most visited sites of Tanzania. Hiking the Mount Kilimanjaro presents a journey of a lifetime because of its breathtaking views, stunning sunrises and sunsets and exhilarating experiences.
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