NGORONGORO CONSERVATION AREA
Approximately 20,000 animals take haven in ‘Africa’s Garden of Eden.’ The Ngorongoro Crater is a world heritage site, the world’s largest intact volcanic caldera and is commonly referred to as the 8th wonder of the world. The 2,000 feet high walls of the approximately 10-mile wide Crater form a natural amphitheater for the densest populations of large animals anywhere. The Crater is truly awe-inspiring and game viewing here is among the very best Africa has to offer.
Witness thousands of pink flamingoes preening and reflecting in the still waters – a fantastic sight. A blue-green algae flourishes in the alkaline waters and is the sole source of food for the thousands of flamingos that can be found here. The flamingos travel in and out of the Crater at night, and you may hear them honking like geese as they pass over. Many different animals can be found along the lakeshore including rhino, eland and lion. The lakeshore is also a good place to spot golden jackals which regularly hunt the flamingos.
The magical Lerai Forest is a special refuge for many different species of animals. Look for sly leopards perched high in the tree boughs, hiding in the leaves and dappled light. Also, watch for massive bull elephants ambling through shady thickets. Lerai is a Maasai word referring to the tall yellow barked acacias. These beautiful trees are old, gnarled by years of growing back the bark stripped off by elephants. The forest is also a special bird habitat, providing food and nesting sites for hoopoes, cuckoos and weavers.
This scenic and meandering stream provides water and forage for a host of animals. The Munge stream cuts through the crater wall and wanders across the floor of the crater before emptying into Lake Magadi. Leopards are very secretive though the best place to see them is in the trees that line the stream. Further upstream where the stream flows through the Rumbe Hills, there are large herds of buffalo and flocks of crowned cranes. Beautiful fig trees mark the border of the stream offering scenic backdrops for photography.
BEST KNOWN FOR
- Referred to as the 8th wonder of the world
- World’s largest intact volcanic caldera
- Densest concentration of large animals
- Rhinos, bull elephants and black-maned lions
100 square miles
Short Grass Plains, Forests, Swamps, Hills, Riverine Areas, Lakes
Rhino, Lion, Hyena, Elephant, Warthog, Cheetah, Jackal, Eland, Serval Cat, Hippo, Flamingo