For those of you who have a high level of fitness and enjoying hiking, the steep paths and steamy conditions of the Ngorongoro Highlands offer an exciting way to see Tanzania’s most beautiful conservation area from outside your vehicle and far from the tourist crowds.
Not just a hiking program, your tour will also include a game drive in the world-famous Ngorongoro Crater – a UNESCO World Heritage Site – and a visit off the beaten track to beautiful Lake Natron, a breeding ground for hundreds of thousands of lesser flamingos and home to Ol Doinyo Lengai, the holy mountain of the Maasai.
DAY 1: Arrival Tanzania
Upon arrival at Kilimanjaro Airport, you will be met by your Tansafari-Tours driver-guide, who will transfer you to your hotel in Arusha for your overnight.
Day 2: ARUSHA – NGORONGORO CRATER
This morning after breakfast, you will depart with your driver-guide to the Ngorongoro Crater, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. When you catch your first glimpse of this vast, verdant caldera from the panoramic viewpoint, you will soon understand why it has earned such a lofty reputation.
Descend the 600 meters (approximately 2,000 feet) into the crater floor for what promises to be an exciting day of wildlife encounters.
Midday, you will stop for a picnic lunch near the hippo pool, followed by more game viewing before heading to your accommodation in Karatu for dinner and overnight.
DAY 3: KARATU – Nainokanoka VILLAGE
You will begin the hiking portion of your trip today, departing after breakfast to the nearby village of Nainokanoka. From there, your hike will take you to Olmoti Crater and onward to Bulati village, passing through open grasslands, rolling hills, Maasai villages and cattle trails. You will overnight at the campsite in Bulati.
DAY 4: EMPAKAI CRATER – NAIYOBI VILLAGE
From Bulati, you will hike to Empakai Crater and then descend into the crater floor. If you wish, you can take a walk around the lake. Afterward, you will climb back up to the crater rim and proceed to Naiyobi village, where you will overnight.
Day 5: Naiyobi Village – Lake Natron
After breakfast, you will depart on foot with a local Maasai guide and with donkeys to carry all of your gear, to the foot of Ol Doinyo Lengai, the holy mountain of the Maasai). Here, you will be picked up by car and driven to Engare Sero village for your overnight.
DAY 6: LAKE NATRON & waterfalls
This morning, you will hike to the lake and to Engare Sero village. You will return to camp for lunch and then head to the waterfalls, which is a challenging hike. Please bring water shoes with you. Enjoy a swim in the falls before returning to camp for dinner and overnight.
For those of you who wish to climb Ol Doinyo Lengai, you will start your climb tonight, when the air is cooler. You will depart with your guide at around 11:00pm to begin your ascent. Please be aware that this is a tough climb.
Climbing Ol Doinyo Lengai, the only active volcano in East Africa, is an invigorating experience that rewards successful climbers with an astounding view of the surrounding lands and distant Lake Natron.
DAY 7: LAKE natron
Those of you on the climb will make it back to camp at around 10:00am, where a nice breakfast will be waiting for you. This will be a leisure day for everyone. It is possible to visit a nearby Maasai village if you wish, or take a drive around the lake with your guide.
DAY 8: LAKE NATRON – ARUSHA
This morning after breakfast, we will return to Arusha, where you will be dropped off at your hotel or at the airport, depending on your onward travel plans.
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