The Northern Circuit in Tanzania is one of the few places left in Africa that will exceed your expectations.
This is the world's largest unbroken caldera and the 8th wonder of the world. With an area of 304 sq. km. The crater is the home of up to 30,000 large mammals. More than 100 species of birds not found in the Serengeti have been recorded here. The crater, which has been declared a world heritage site, lies within the Ngorongoro Conservation Area that covers more than 8000 sq. km.
ARUSHA NATIONAL PARK
The park consists of three spectacular features: Momela Lakes, Mount Meru (the second—highest mountain in Tanzania at 4560 m.), and Ngurdoto Crater. The vegetation and wildlife vary with the topography, which ranges from forest to swamp. The park is also famous for its 575 species of birdlife, both migrant and resident. Animals found in the park include elephant, buffalo, giraffe, hippopotamus, hyena, zebra, baboon, black and white Columbus monkeys, and a wide range of antelopes. Guided walking safaris are popular here.
SERENGETI NATIONAL PARK
Serengeti is arguably the best—known wildlife sanctuary in the world. Serengeti is the home of millions of large mammals, including what is so—called Big 5: elephant, lion, buffalo, rhinoceros, and leopard. Over 500 species of birds have been recorded in the area, including eagles, bustards, owls, cranes, herons, vultures, and secretary birds. It is here where the world’s great migration is observed. Some of Africa's biggest crocodiles lie in wait in the Serengeti rivers.
TARANGIRE NATIONAL PARK
Tarangire is famous for its dense wildlife population, which is most spectacular in June and September, the dry period. During this time, thousands of animals including elephants, buffalo, giraffes, elands, kudu, wildebeest, hartebeest, and the rarely seen Oryx, migrate from Masai Steppe to the Tarangire River looking for water. Lions, leopards, and other predators follow the herds. Tarangire has the largest population of elephants in any park in the northern circuit and more than 550 species of birds have been recorded.
Lake Manyara is famous for tree—climbing lions and pythons. The national park consists of underground natural forest that opens up into woodlands, grassland, and swaps beyond the soda lake itself covering 200 sq. km. Over 400 species of birds have been spotted, including flamingos, pelican, storks, cormorants, egrets, and geese.
Gorge is one of the most compelling attractions in northern Tanzania. This is a place where Dr. Luicy Leakey and his wife Mary excavated the skull of the first Nutcracker man. One year later, the remains of Homo Hillocks or "handyman" were discovered, building mankind’s first step on the ladder of human evolution. Other fossils that were discovered include those of prehistoric elephants, giant—horned sheep, and enormous ostriches.
Oldoinyo Lengai means the mountain of God in the Masai language. This is an active volcanic mountain in Tanzania. The last eruption was in 2008, and it is a steep climb. The mountain is a 10,000 ft. near—perfect cone that sits at the very western edge of the Rift Valley in Northern Tanzania. Lengai is the only active volcano in the world known to erupt carbonate lava. This means that its lava does not melt due to natro—carbonate, which is cooler (about 500 c.) compared to 1100 c. for basaltic lava.