Ngorongoro Crater

About the Park

The Ngorongoro Crater is located in the northern region of Tanzania. Once upon a time, it was an enormous volcano and is the largest intact caldera on the planet. The Crater region is an extensively varied highland area with the crater at the centre. This ancient caldera shelter is almost 3 million years old and is one of the most wonderful wildlife paradises on Earth.

  • Area – 8,292 sq. km. (3,202 square miles)
  • Established in – 1959
  • Designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site in – 1979
  • Coordinates - 3.2279° S, 35.5075° E
  • Opening Hours – 6 am to 6 pm (every day)


The conservation area in the crater offers a classic big five safari on the backdrop of an ancient volcanic caldera. The area has a variety of habitats and they can be explored on a Ngorongoro Safari. The scenic landscapes are amazing and the predator population is abundant. Whats more, is that the big five can be seen in the span of a single day.

Best Time to Visit

The wet or rainy season (April and May) is usually considered the best time to visit the Ngorongoro Crater. But, game viewing is ideal throughout the year. Thus, the question of when to go is more about the number of visitors you will have to share the experience with.

Our Opinion – There are fewer tourists in the low season, so you should consider visiting then if you want a more exclusive experience.

Getting There

The most convenient way to get to the Ngorongoro Crater is to fly to Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO). Other access points are also an option. They include Julius Nyerere International Airport (DAR) and Arusha International Airport (ARK).

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Below are some great activities that we recommend for travellers on a Safari in Ngorongoro Crater:

The Ngorongoro Crater is home to a notable diversity of Tanzania Wildlife. They include herbivores like zebras, wildebeests, cape buffaloes, and Thomson’s and Grant’s gazelles. The Conservation Area alone supports around 25,000 large animals.

The huge population of wildlife makes the crater one of the best destinations for Tanzania Safaris to see the big five. Ngorongoro Crater also supports the endangered population of black rhinos. And, the elephants in the area are some of the largest in Africa.

Predators such as cheetahs, leopards, lions, hyenas, and African wild dogs can also be seen on a Ngorongoro Safari.

Moreover, around 500 species of birds have been recorded in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. And 400 of them can be found in the crater itself. Some birds that you can spot here are Fischer’s lovebird, Jackson’s widowbird, Hartlaub’s turaco, African rail, and many more.

A Pro Tip – To see flocks of lesser and greater flamingos you should visit Lake Ndutu, Lake Magadi, the Empakai Crater, and Lake Magadi.


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