Tanzania Safaris

Sarah Fox, Tanzania

Tanzania sets itself out as a fantastic destination, whether it’s an action packed safari or simply a relaxing first class holiday it will fulfil all your needs. With splendid views towards the amazing Mt. Kilimanjaro you can enjoy the plains of the Serengeti or the tranquillity of its palm lined beaches. Whether it's adventure, relaxation, safari or culture you want, Tanzania has it all!

  • Sarah Fox

Contact one of the experts at Mahlatini to help you plan your trip of a lifetime to Tanzania.

Sample Tanzania Safaris

Below are a set of sample itineraries to give you a flavour of each destinations highlights in terms of properties and attractions. Our travel specialists will listen to your requirements and tailor a bespoke itinerary to match your specific preferences and budget.

Dry Season Northern Circuit Tanzania Safari  image 1 Dry Season Northern Circuit Tanzania Safari  image 2

for 6 nightsfrom £1,925 pp sharing

Excludes international flights

countries visited:

  • Tanzania

This safari is designed for the dry season months of July to Oct when the Tarangire National Park comes into its own & large herds of game are attracted to the river. The trip also incorporates Lake Manyara National Park & the Ngorongoro Crater.

Nights
Location
Recommended Accommodation
1 night
Lake Manyara
2 nights
Ngorongoro Crater
3 nights
Tarangire National Park
Northern Circuit Safari with Zanzibar Extension  image 1 Northern Circuit Safari with Zanzibar Extension  image 2

for 12 nightsfrom £2,050 per adult

Excludes international flights

countries visited:

  • Tanzania

This sample trip is designed to give you a full Northern Circuit Safari Experience at a reasonable price. We have also included a tag on of 6 days in Zanzibar at the end of the trip.

Nights
Location
Recommended Accommodation
1 night
Tarangire National Park
1 night
Ngorongoro Crater
3 nights
Serengeti National Park
1 night
Ngorongoro Crater
1 night
Lake Manyara
5 nights
Zanzibar
Southern Circuit Tanzania Safari and Zanzibar Beach Extension image 1 Southern Circuit Tanzania Safari and Zanzibar Beach Extension image 2

for 11 nightsfrom £2,175 pp sharing

Excludes international flights

countries visited:

  • Tanzania

The safari portion of this trip has you exploring the wilderness regions of Southern Tanzania.  Activities include boat trips & walking safaris in addition to traditional game drives. 5 nights in Zanzibar is tagged onto the end of this exhilarating trip.

Nights
Location
Recommended Accommodation
3 nights
Selous National Park
3 nights
Ruaha
5 nights
Zanzibar
Tanzania Luxury Camping Safari with Zanzibar Extension image 1 Tanzania Luxury Camping Safari with Zanzibar Extension image 2

for 10 nightsfrom £2,685 pp sharing

Excludes international flights

countries visited:

  • Tanzania

This sample holiday takes in a northern circuit safari & a Zanzibar beach stay. In the Serengeti portion you will stay in a mobile tented camp. These move through the regions of the park every couple of months following the famous wildebeest migration.

Nights
Location
Recommended Accommodation
2 nights
Ngorongoro Crater
3 nights
Serengeti National Park
5 nights
Zanzibar
Tanzania Safari with Pemba Island Extension  image 1 Tanzania Safari with Pemba Island Extension  image 2

for 11 nightsfrom £3,530 pp sharing

Excludes international flights

countries visited:

  • Tanzania

This sample trip encompasses a Northern Circuit Safari with a beach extension on Pemba Island, a small island off the coast of Zanzibar. Accommodations are stylish and top class and will suit honeymooners or discerning travelers looking for an exclusive retreat.

 

Nights
Location
Recommended Accommodation
2 nights
Tarangire National Park
1 night
Ngorongoro Crater
3 nights
Serengeti National Park
5 nights
Pemba
Saadani, Selous Safari & Zanzibar image 1 Saadani, Selous Safari & Zanzibar image 2

for 12 nightsfrom £1,545 pp sharing

Excludes international flights

countries visited:

  • Tanzania

This holiday is something off the beaten track. Saadani is the only wildlife reserve in east Africa with an Indian Ocean beachfront. Combined with the Selous ensures a different wildlife experience. This is followed with a few days in Zanzibar for a bit of relaxation.

Nights
Location
Recommended Accommodation
3 nights
Saadani National Park
3 nights
Selous National Park
6 nights
Zanzibar

Contact Mahlatini for your personalised holiday to Tanzania

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Sample Tanzania Honeymoons

Tanzania exudes a natural honeymoon environment and is one of the most romantic destinations in the African Continent. Visit the Tanzania Honeymoon section where you will find out more about travel to this country. As a Twin Centre Tanzania & Zanzibar work in harmony to create an outstanding honeymoon.

Contact Mahlatini for your personalised holiday to Tanzania

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Sample Tanzania Family Holidays

Tanzania is a fabulous location for an alternative family holiday, the Tanzania Family Holiday section will provide you with relevant information and ideas on how and when to travel as a family. If a family Safari is your ideal trip Namibia is another fantastic alternative.

Contact Mahlatini for your personalised holiday to Tanzania

Overview of Tanzania

As the largest out of all the countries in East Africa Tanzania offers a vast and varied landscape which has been carefully preserved within its national Parks. Safari is a must have experience if you are venturing to this beautiful landscape where the Wildebeest Migration is comparable to a performance across the Serengeti. Explorers can take advantage of the range of Safari’s available in Tanzania as they form part of a circuit which proceed through various parks. In the north the stark contrasts of the Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater can be brought together in one excursion over the course of several days. Alternatively those wishing for a more individual experience can go off the beaten track with the Southern Circuit route.

Tanzania’s eastern coast is met with several islands of the Indian Ocean including Zanzibar and Pemba. With the provision of pristine beaches and white sand met by the turquoise waters many travellers choose to finish off a safari along this majestic coast. Tanzania combined with Zanzibar is a fashionable choice for honeymooners as it provides a contrast of romantic activities and environments. Tanzania is a popular choice for the intrepid adventurers wishing to climb Africa’s most famous mountain, Mount Kilimanjaro, at the same time it offers plenty of exploration activities for the novice explorers. From romantic honeymoons to action packed family holiday Tanzania will not only accommodate all of your needs but leave you with lifelong memories.

Many of the specialists at Mahlatini have taken the time to personally visit and explore the lodges, camps and parks Tanzania has to offer, which has allowed them to develop a first-hand experience and knowledge of this fabulous destination. When designing your personal trip we draw from our own experience and knowledge to provide the most efficient ground staff and the most knowledgeable guides. We have hundreds of happy customers who can attest to this.

Northern Circuit

A Northern Circuit safari is a fine introduction to safari at any time of year. The parks included in the circuit are the Ngorongoro Crater, the Serengeti, the Tarangire and Lake Manyara. You can visit all or any of the parks in various combinations. We can help you choose the best location to base yourself in each park, based on seasonal game movements. When planning a trip to the Serengeti in the Northern Circuit many travellers will choose to base it around the Wildebeest Migration, a fabulous performance which takes in the natural instincts of this herd of animals. Watch in delight as they course through the “endless plains” making their way to appropriate grazing areas, our experts will ensure you get the best seats in the house.

Most people spend between 4 – 7 days on a Northern Circuit safari before spending a few days at the beach. The Northern Circuit is not only an excellent introductory safari but will draw seasoned safari travellers to its parks again and again. Honeymooners love the romance of luxury camps and the dinners under the stars; families love the safari adventure and amateur photographers find appeal in the North's incredible diversity and its prolific wildlife.

Accommodation in the Northern Circuit ranges from larger lodges to luxury tented camps, both permanent and mobile. Forget all previous notions you may have about camping. This is the ultimate in camping! Most 'tents' consist of large bedrooms and bathrooms including all the modern amenities that you would expect in a luxury hotel. You just happen to be sleeping under canvas instead of concrete, in our opinion the best way to experience Africa - up close and personal with nature.

Activities on offer in the Northern Circuit generally include game drives. Hot air balloon safaris are popular in the Serengeti and walking safaris are offered in some of the privately-owned concessions on the outskirts of the parks.

My northern circuit safari was an entirely memorable experience for me. I will never forget our vehicle being charged by an elephant in Lake Manyara, being surrounded by the wildebeest migration in the Serengeti and marvelling over the incredible views of the Ngorongoro Crater. The Northern Circuit safari in Tanzania is a wildlife experience second to none in my extensive African travels.
- Sarah Chatteris

Southern Circuit

Accommodation in the Selous and Ruaha is largely in secluded camps with outstanding personal service. The majority are the Last Word in luxury, not only in terms of food, facilities and furnishings but also due to their incomparable locations; affording a truly intimate bush experience.

The Southern Circuit (or indeed a visit to one of the parks) can be a fantastic first-time safari and seasoned safari travellers will appreciate the difference from the more beaten track safaris. There are generally far fewer vehicles than in the Northern Circuit which to many is an added advantage allowing for game sightings to be largely private. Activities on offer are diverse from traditional game drives and walking safaris to boat trips and fishing excursions.

The Southern Circuit Safari can also easily be combined with beach time on Zanzibar or the Tanzanian mainland coast in the Ras Kutani area. Another interesting combination offered is a twin centre luxury safari and beach holiday in exotic Mozambique.

The Selous, Ruaha and Saadani reserves are the most popular of the parks situated along the southern circuit and it is recommended to visit between June and November to get the most out of your Safari. These parks are much more remote than those in the North and are generally more suitable for those wishing to have an individual experience or perhaps the more seasoned explorers who have previously visited parks along the Northern Circuit.
- Sarah Chatteris

When to travel

Due to its varied landscape and range of wildlife/ game attractions Tanzania is a suitable destination almost any time of the year and your time of visit will depend on individual interests. During the wet season the plains of the Serengeti bloom with lush plant life and buzz with the sounds of new life as it is the climate for new wildebeest calves. The birdlife is also at its highpoint with plenty of opportunity to observe the various species.

The dry season in Tanzania provides plentiful opportunities to spot animals as the grasses are much lower in the aris atmosphere and the game flock around available water pools and streams in large numbers. This time of year is much more popular for those wishing to observe a vast range of wildlife as they are much easier to locate.

Although Tanzania has two rainy seasons during November to December and March to the end of May it does not become impassable at any stage. As the wet season brings the abundance of new life along with fertile landscapes you will still be provided with many amazing sights. Many people who choose to travel at this time will find they are met with a more intimate safari experience and travel at a significantly lower price. For more information on the wildlife highlights throughout the year view our safari calendar.

Contact us about your specific interests and we will advise you on the best time of year to travel to the region which suits you best.

How to travel

There are four main areas of interest that visitors to Tanzania would explore: The Northern Circuit parks, the Southern Circuit parks, Mount Kilimanjaro and the beaches of Zanzibar and the surrounding islands. We will help and advise you on which area would best suit your requirements. You will either fly into Kilimanjaro Airport for a Northern Circuit Safari, Dar es Salaam Airport for a Southern Circuit Safari or Zanzibar Airport if you are heading straight to the beach.

Wildlife is the biggest attraction in Tanzania and you can easily visit a couple of national parks/reserves during the course of a few days or a week. The parks in the Northern Circuit are incredibly diverse in their scenery allowing you to move from one to the other and see hugely different terrain and wildlife. You can spend a week or more on safari in Tanzania and never feel like you have seen enough. Our safaris in the Northern Circuit are generally private tailor-made trips where you will have your own driver guide to escort you for the duration of your trip.

The Southern Circuit safari begins in Dar es Salaam and can include one or more of the more remote southern parks. Usually these safaris are fly-in safaris and game viewing activities are usually shared with other guests, unless private vehicles are specifically requested.

Following a safari, most visitors will then add some beach time in Zanzibar, its surrounding islands or one of the other coastal locations along East Africa such as the Ras Kutani area. These twin centre holidays allow you to combine an action-packed safari adventure with a relaxing beach stay and are particulary popular with honeymooners.

Sometimes there are large distances involved to travel from region to region. These journeys are usually overcome with light aircraft flights which allow you to see the incredible Tanzanian scenery from a bird's eye view. Equally, any drives in Tanzania are an adventure in their own right. There is so much to see along the journey from an abundance of wildlife to the Masai herdsmen tending their cattle, as well as endless vistas and stunning sunsets. Your camera will never be out of your hand!

Quick Facts

Flights:
Flights from Europe to Dar es Salaam, Kilimanjaro and Zanzibar take about 9 hours, often with a brief stopover en route. Main airlines include Kenya Airways, KLM and British Airways.
Vaccinations:
Malaria prophylactics are essential. Yellow Fever injection is required if arriving from an infected area. Diptheria, Tetanus, Polio, Hepatitis A, B and Typhoid are recommended.
When to travel:
Tanzania is a year round destination with each season having its own advantages and highlights. See our safari calendar.
Visas:
Travel visas can be obtained on arrival. Please seek our advice on the latest information for your nationality.

Sample Tanzania Beach Holidays

Below are a set of sample itineraries to give you a flavour of each destinations highlights in terms of properties and attractions. Our travel specialists will listen to your requirements and tailor a bespoke itinerary to match your specific preferences and budget.

Zanzibar Beach Extension  image 1 Zanzibar Beach Extension  image 2

for 7 nightsfrom £650 per adult

Excludes international flights

countries visited:

  • Tanzania

This sample trip is an extension designed to be added onto the start or the end of a safari in Tanzania.  The chosen accommodations to feature are simply ideas; there are plenty of options to explore.

 

Nights
Location
Recommended Accommodation
6 nights
Zanzibar
1 night
Stonetown

Contact Mahlatini for your personalised holiday to Tanzania

Every year countless numbers of journalists, filmmakers and tourists camp out paparazzi style on the banks of the Grumeti and Mara rivers eager to witness what must surely be one of nature's most documented spectacles, the annual migration. Here, up to two million wildebeest face a ravenous and prolific crocodile population as they embark on the hazardous river crossing, mention the migration and it is this image that springs to mind.
- Sarah Chatteris

Wildebeest Migration

There is little that has not been previously written about the region and this remarkable phenomenon. Yet ask a few friends where the Great Migration takes place and you will undoubtedly receive a few blank stares or vague mumbled replies, 'Africa' or 'Kenya'. Despite all the hype very little is actually known about this incredible spectacle. So here is a brief guide to the greatest show on earth.

Tanzania's Serengeti National Park and Kenya's Maasai Mara are all part of the same ecosystem. In the Maasai language Serengeti means endless plain and this classic landscape can be found in the southern part of the region but the Serengeti offers a range of habitats. As you journey in a clockwise direction you will pass through moist wooded savannah, lush riparian woodland interspersed with huge granite boulders before arriving at the rich rolling grasslands of the Mara Plains. A fine setting for the big event when up to 2 million wildebeest herd together and are joined by thousands of zebras and gazelles to form super herds which follow the rains in search of lush new grass.

Zebra and Wildebeest are found together often as the Zebra tend to feed on long tough grass stems preparing them for the broad muzzle of the wildebeest more suited to close short grasses. The wildebeest of this territory seem to be ruled by the widely varied seasons by heading towards the south-east of the Serengeti during wet season and taking up residence in the more plentiful grounds of the woodlands in the north east during the dry months. As the migrations move in such large herds it is clearly apparent that the wildebeest themselves shape their chosen environments to their specific needs.

Although the migration is often portrayed as an intense phase of activity the 800 km pilgrimage is actually an ongoing cycle of movement and dispersal. Lions and other carnivores do not migrate with the grazing animals but feast on them when their paths cross. Each year over 250,000 wildebeest alone will die as a result of injury, exhaustion or predation.

The Migration is not a continually forward motion. As the wildebeest need to drink daily their movement is very much dominated by the accessibility of water and they seem to have a sixth sense in following the storms.

Planning your trip

There is never really a right or wrong time to visit as each season offers its own highlights but it is important to be in the right area according to season. Dependent on rainfall, the timing of the cycle is never totally predictable, but generally around April/May prompted by vanishing water the migration sets off North West to the Masai Mara. Between June and July the migration splits and one column passes west to Lake Victoria, another passes north through Lobo before crossing the Grumeti River before finally dispersing on the Mara Plains.

One of the most popular times to visit is late January to early March when the wildebeest calves are born over a 3-5 week period. Most calves are born within a 'calving area' before midday. They quickly gain their feet and begin nursing within 3 - 8 minutes. If the mother moves away at this time, it will run beside her. The defenseless young provide easy picking for lions, hyenas, and other predators but because so many calves are born in such a short time the predators do not have time to eat them all. Ndutu Safari Lodge and Kusini Camp provide the best viewing for this but due to the popularity you really need to book a year in advance.

As a spectacle, the Migration offers so many varied views but perhaps the most poignant image is the famous crossing at the Grumeti and Mara Rivers. This spectacle has been well documented by some excellent photography from the likes of the BBC and National Geographic. Forced on by the power of the herd the wildebeest have no choice but to take a suicidal plunge into the crocodile infested waters often drowning in their thousands. One report from the migration this year estimated between 5 and 10 thousand died at one place, amazingly this natural tragedy was simply attributed to a poor choice of crossing.

Kirawira Tented Camp and Grumeti River Camp are excellent locations for viewing the Grumeti crossing but luck has to be on your side to choose the right dates as the crossing is over quite quickly.

From August to October the migration is usually in Kenya's Maasai Mara before returning south across the Tanzanian border in November and usually by December the wildebeest disperse on the southern plains of the Serengeti.

In general East Africa is busiest and therefore most expensive in the dry season (July – October). As the water dries the animals flock to the remaining water holes and rivers, the foliage is less dense and game viewing is made much easier with more frequent sightings. The Migration during these months is usually found in the Northern Serengeti in Tanzania and the Mara in Kenya. Early booking for these locations is essential as accommodation is limited.

The wet season, sometimes called green season due to the abundance of life offers value for money with sometimes 40% difference in price compared to peak season. Although the green season is offered at a much lower rate than peak season some visitors would consider it a better time to visit with an abundance of bird life, lush green vegetation and healthy looking wildlife. The long rains usually fall between mid-March through to May, these tropical thunderstorms tend to arrive in the afternoon and usually disperse after a couple of hours so travel at this time is possible and offers excellent value for money.

Kenya and Tanzania offer a daunting selection of accommodation styles and Mahlatini can offer everything from luxury lodges and classic tented camps to simple bush camping. Generally, lodges are much larger and not as personal as the other options but offer more amenities such as swimming pools, shops and perhaps a choice of restaurants, just like a large hotel. One of the most important considerations is location, for example the Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge has superb views of the Crater and the Mara Serena Lodge has a prime setting for the wildebeest crossing of the Mara River. These lodges offer good value and an abundance of scenery and game viewing which is especially important for families and groups.

Tented camps are the perfect way to experience the African bush and this is the most popular choice with Mahlatini's discerning clients! Sleeping under canvas reminds you that you are in Africa, but there is no need to compromise on comfort. Indeed most of our luxury options are tented, for example Kirawira Tented Camp and Kleins Camp in the Serengeti. The Masai Mara is famous for its luxury camping options. The Governors Camps are synonymous with this Hemingway inspired tented safari and along with Elephant Pepper, Cottars 1920's and Saruni Camp offer unparalleled exclusivity and tranquility. Luxury is just as much about experience as material extravagance. In these camps you are guaranteed personal friendly service from people with a passion for the surrounding wilderness and wildlife.

Mobile safaris enable you to get into the heart of the African bush.All of the mobile camps we recommend boast luxury and privacy for each individual guest with rustic or luxury options available throughout. Camps are moved from location to location and facilities will depend of which end of the pricing scale you have chosen. The more luxurious options will offer amenities such as hot showers, a personal chef, luxurious beds and a mobile bar. The more basic camps will still provide many of the previously mentioned facilities on a shared basis along with comfortable mattresses and opportunity to dine under the stars depending on season. Travellers embarking on this style of safari can gain a much more eventful experience as they move with the tide and flow of the migration and become immersed in the shared habitat of the wildebeest themselves. A favourite of Mahlatini experts are the Asilia camps such as Olakira and Sayari in the Serengeti.

Flights between London Heathrow and Nairobi are daily and take about 8 hours.

Tanzania Holidays

Overall Rating 5 star rating

Latest Review

Highlights: Watching the full mating ritual of Ostritch, almost being about to touch a Lion cub, the balloon ride on the Serengeti. Being about to hear a lion lapping water from a puddle by our truck. Just generally watching the animals in their native surroundings. A thoroughly enjoyable experien...

Signed:

Anonymous, United Kingdom

Tanzania Factfile

Timezone:
EAT (UTC+3)
Language:
English, Swahili
Currency:
Tanzanian Shilling
Best time:
Year round destination
Flights:
9 hours from Europe
Visas:
Required, call for info

Sample Itineraries

Destinations:
Holiday Type:
Budget pp:
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