Top 11 Attractions In Tanzania’s Ngorongoro Conservation Area : The Ngorongoro Conservation Area is well-known for having some of Africa’s most iconic sights. It is a part of Tanzania’s vast Serengeti National Park ecosystem, which hosts the annual wildebeest migration. The highest density of wild animals and plants are housed here; no wonder it is referred to as the ‘8th world’s wonder.’ At any given time, the area can house over 30,000 wild animals. This safari destination has unparalleled wildlife diversity. In this mind-blowing environment, a small population of the endangered black rhino and other fascinating animals thrive. The following are the top eleven attractions in Tanzania’s Ngorongoro Conservation Area:
- Lake Magadi
There are so many memorable places to visit on a nature vacation in Tanzania. The shallow, azure-blue Lake Magadi, which is fiercely alkaline due to sodium carbonate, is surrounded by thousands of long-legged pink flamingos inside the Ngorongoro Crater itself. Most are lesser flamingos that eat blue-green spirulina algae and can be identified by their dark red bills. However, there are also a lot of larger flamingos with pink bills that are slightly bent and have black tips to help them sift through the abundant bottom mud for shellfish.
In the dry season, the lake significantly shrinks, leaving behind thick, crystalline salt pans that jackals, hyenas, and other animals use as licks to supplement their diet. In addition to the Ngorongoro Crater, there are numerous other areas in Tanzania that are well worth visiting as part of your Focus East Africa expedition tour.
- Lerai Fever Tree Forest
Elephant, rhino, eland, bushbuck, hyrax, and numerous birds frequent the Lerai Fever Tree Forest, which is made up of tall, slim yellow-barked acacia trees that form an open, lace-canopied wonderland of glades. The rare black rhino prefers to eat this foliage, but because elephants have damaged the old forest by tearing off whole branches rather than just grazing, it is taking longer for it to regenerate.
The Gorigor Swamps, which are home to hippopotamuses, wading birds, and thousands of ungulates during the dry season, are, however, seeing the spread of seedlings. At the foot of the Ngoitokitoki Springs, where the famous Tokitok pride of lions stars in their own right on film and television, a younger Fever Tree forest is now forming new groves.
- Olduvai Gorge and Laetoli
Nearby Olduvai Gorge, where our ancestors started their journey towards civilization by making the first tools and establishing the first human settlements, are Lake Ndutu and Lake Masek, which are also on the migratory route in the Rift Valley. In 3.7 million-year-old sedimentary rock at Laetoli, hominid footprints of our genetic ancestors and their relatives have been discovered.
Without a guided tour of the Olduvai excavations and small paleoanthropological museum, where you can also view evolutionary fossils, no Tanzanian safari would be complete. However, we are their descendants, and by visiting Africa on our mother’s tour, we are going back to where we came from.
- Shifting Sands
Shifting Sands, a black dune of moving sand that is 100 meters long and nine meters high and ingeniously moves slowly across the plains at a rate of 15 meters per year, were created by the ash from Ol Doinyo.
- Olmoti Crater and Empakai Crater
A safari to Ngorongoro with Focus East Africa Tours offers countless exciting possibilities. To visit two additional nearby craters, you can take leisurely, supervised walks. Olmoti Crater is a shallow, grassy hollow where Maasai people pasture their cattle alongside eland, bushbuck, reedbuck, and the occasional buffalo. It is very serene and beautiful. The Munge stream creates a lovely waterfall on the caldera’s south wall before plunging several hundred meters into the Ngorongoro crater to feed Lake Magadi. A soda lake that is unusually deep fills half of Empakai Crater.
From the rim, you can see Ol Doinyo Lengai, the Great African Rift Valley, and, in exceptionally clear conditions, snow-covered Mount Kilimanjaro’s distant Uhuru peak across an exhilarating panorama of volcanic craters and depressions. The densely forested green bowl can be walked all the way around. Blue monkeys, brilliantly colored sunbirds, and red-crested turacos are frequent visitors.
- Gol Mountains
A bottleneck for the annual Great Migration of hundreds of thousands of wildebeest and zebra as they return to their ancestral breeding grounds in the southern Serengeti and the Ndutu wilderness, the prehistoric Gol Mountains to the northeast offer a surreal wilderness environment of stark, pink cliffs.
- Nasera Rock
Monolithic Nasera Rock, rising 80 meters from the foot of the Gol Mountains, is inhabited by mountaineering klipspringers, baboons, and a variety of birds. The Leakey’s also discovered a human shelter from the Stone Age there.
- Top 11 Attractions In Tanzania’s Ngorongoro Conservation Area : Salei Plains and Ol Karien Gorge
At the end of the vast, empty Salei Plains is the Ol Karien Gorge, a ravine with sheer rock sides. It is a Mecca for bird watchers because the Ruppel’s griffon vulture breeds there in the months of March and April, when the Great Migration passes through and provides an abundance of food.
- Top 11 Attractions In Tanzania’s Ngorongoro Conservation Area : Mount Oldeani
A lodestone for archaeological and cultural safaris in East Africa, the bamboo-covered Oldeani Mountain to the southwest of Ngorongoro crater feeds the stream that sustains the Lerai Forest. The nearby Nasera Rock and Mumba Cave are both Paleolithic sites.
- Top 11 Attractions In Tanzania’s Ngorongoro Conservation Area : Hadzabe Tribe
The Hadzabe Bushmen of East Africa still call Lake Eyasi, close to Ngorongoro, home. They only eat wild foods and communicate by clicking and whistling. There are now pastoral and farming tribes called Mbulu and Datoga that were expelled from areas that the Maasai now call home centuries ago.
- Top 11 Attractions In Tanzania’s Ngorongoro Conservation Area : Ol Doinyo Lengai and Lake Natron
Ol Doinyo Lengai, which is located further to the northeast and is close to the Kenyan border, casts a conical shadow across the plains from the edge of the Great African Rift Valley escarpment. It is still active; its most recent eruption was in 2007. It is referred to by Maasai as “The Mountain of God” and last erupted in 2007. The main crater can be viewed from the mountain’s lava-covered slopes, and brave adventurers may risk their lives to do so in exchange for the risky reward of sulfur fumes and sporadic lava spurts from nearby smaller cones. The Lara Croft movie “Tomb Raiders II” included a scene about it, but Chris Hug-Fleck and Evelyne Pradel have done more thorough research on it and popularized it.
The largest breeding population of lesser and greater flamingos in Africa can be found in Lake Natron, which is far below. This lake is fed by hot mineral springs that are so heavily saturated with volcanic ash from Ol Doinyo Lengai that they act as a toxic, protective moat. The lake itself sparkles like a gem, occasionally turning green and blue and other times turning bright red with cyanobacteria and algae that serve as their food source.