Expedition Overview

Expedition Overview

  • Experience the thrill of a wildlife safari during five days in the Serengeti and the Ngorongoro Crater and discover lions, leopards, elephants, zebras, and colorful birds with local guides.
  • Get immersed in Maasai culture on visits with warriors, artisans, and schoolchildren, and explore a traditional Maasai boma.
  • Examine fossils at the Olduvai Gorge, where Homo habilis remains were discovered on a National Geographic-sponsored expedition.
  • Hike through the wilderness of a private nature reserve with rangers for an optional night of authentic bush camping.

Itinerary

Itinerary

Venture into the wilds of Tanzania on a family safari and encounter a mind-boggling array of wildlife. Here, humans are but tiny dots on a sweeping savanna, surrounded by zebras and wildebeest, lions and cheetahs, elephants and rhinos, and hundreds of colorful bird species. Settle into a remote camp in a part of the eastern Serengeti known for its vast numbers of giraffes and elands. Get to know local Maasai people, who welcome us into their homes and schools and share their vibrant traditions. With the help of our trip leader and local rangers, learn to identify tracks and interpret animal behavior, and encounter an incredible diversity of wildlife on safari in the Serengeti and the Ngorongoro Crater.

Day 1: Arusha, Tanzania

Karibu! Arrive into Kilimanjaro International Airport in Tanzania and transfer to our hotel in Arusha.

Accommodations:

Lake Duluti Serena Hotel

Days 2-3: Eastern Serengeti

Take a short flight to the eastern Serengeti and continue to a private nature refuge, nicknamed “Giraffic Park.” Explore on foot or by safari vehicle and meet young Maasai warriors. Venture into a typical boma settlement, and “jump” into a traditional Maasai dance. Cap off the day with a thrilling nighttime safari. The next morning, take a bush walk with a wildlife expert and visit a Maasai village school during the Kid to Kid Connection. If you wish, hike into the wilderness with our rangers for a night of authentic bush camping under the stars.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Daily
Accommodations:

Eastern Serengeti Nyumba Camp

Days 4-6: Serengeti National Park

Enjoy three days on safari in the legendary Serengeti observing a mind-boggling array of animals. Float over the savanna on an optional early-morning hot air balloon ride or spot wildlife on a dawn game drive. Visit a women's craft collaborative, learn the game of bao, try Tanzanian cuisine, and identify animal prints with trackers.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Daily
Accommodations:Central Serengeti Nyumba Camp
Day 7: Ngorongoro Highlands

Examine fossils at Olduvai Gorge where Louis and Mary Leakey discovered Homo habilis remains on a National Geographic–sponsored expedition. Then settle into a coffee estate on the outer slopes of the Ngorongoro Crater. Relax on the veranda, visit the farm animals, or ride a bike to the nearby village.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:

Gibb's Farm

Day 8: Ngorongoro Crater

Descend 2,000 feet to the crater floor and spend a full day on safari surrounded by some 25,000 wild animals. Later, gather around a fire to hear tembo (elephant) folktales before our farewell dinner. Enjoy a rare chance to spot nocturnal bush babies tonight.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:

Gibb's Farm

Day 9: Arusha

Today, meet an Iraqw storyteller and his artisan wife at their home, visit an art center, and browse local handicrafts. Relax in day rooms in Arusha before heading to the airport for your overnight flight home.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodations:

Mount Meru Hotel

Extensions

Extensions

  • Tanzania Family: Post-Trip Elephant Extension
    3 days from $1,990
Tanzania Family: Post-Trip Elephant Extension

Extend your safari in the wilds of Tarangire National Park, located southwest of Arusha. The park draws many hundreds of elephants to the Tarangire River, which remains the only permanent source of water from June to October. Spend a full day on safari, spotting buffalo, impala, zebra, and hartebeest—and their predators—and observe elephants in their natural habitat with an elephant researcher. Stay in a comfortable Nyumba camp beneath centuries-old baobab trees and enjoy another unforgettable experience in the Tanzanian wilderness.

Day 1: Mto Wa Mbu/Tarangire National Park

Bid farewell to the main group and drive to the town of Mto Wa Mbu, surrounded by fertile farmland near Lake Manyara. Stroll through the leafy streets and bustling markets of the town, and interact with the local people. Then continue south by Land Rover to Tarangire National Park. Watch for wildlife as we drive, looking out for the big cats and other creatures who become active at the end of the day. Settle into our private Nyumba camp, clustered in between soaring baobab trees and perfectly situated for setting out on wildlife drives.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:Tarangire Safari Lodge
Day 2: Tarangire National Park

With 1,600 square miles of protected habitat, Tarangire is a place of refuge for northern Tanzania’s largest population of elephants. Encountering elephant herds, with their young guided protectively with elders’ trunks and feet, is an unforgettable sight. Head out on a full-day wildlife drive with an elephant researcher, following the Tarangire River as it winds through the rugged landscapes of the park. Look for herds of zebra, as well as lions, leopards, reedbucks, giraffes and maybe wild dogs or a rare fringe-eared oryx. Spot some of the more than 550 birds that call this region home. Track herds of elephants and learn about their intelligent behavior, their shrinking habitat, and the urgent need to preserve their home in the wilderness. Later this afternoon, join local kids and camp staff for a game of soccer or just relax under the baobabs and listen to the sounds of the wilderness.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:Tarangire Safari Lodge
Day 3: Arusha

After breakfast, you’ll leave Tarangire and drive to Arusha. Visit a local art workshop that employs local people with special needs and browse local crafts at a cultural center. Relax in day rooms and take a dip in the hotel pool before we head to the airport for evening flights home.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodations:Mount Meru Hotel