Serengeti National Park
Serengeti is derived from the Maasai word “Siringet” which means endless plains. Upon entering the park, you will see very quickly why this name is more than fitting. The scenery is dominated by the seemingly endless plain land, which is only interrupted by a lake, hill, tree or kopje (rock outcrop) here and there. The ecosystem of Serengeti covers an area about as big as Belgium, with slightly less than half of it being Serengeti National Park. Serengeti, which will be reached after a five to six hour drive from Arusha, is not only the oldest National Park in Tanzania and UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1981, it is also the most famous park in Tanzania, if not in Africa. The main reason for this is the yearly migration of up to 2 million wildebeests, 300.000 zebras and 900.000 Thomson gazelles along with other herbivores who are on the move for finding water and food throughout the ecosystem and being followed by their predators such as lions, leopards, cheetahs and spotted hyenas. This spectacular natural event also gained more fame through the work of professor Bernhard Grzimek and his son Michael in the 50’s with the book and movie “Serengeti shall not die”. Depending on the season and rainfall in the current year, you will find the big herds in the west or east, inside or outside of the park, migrating south towards Ndutu and Ngorongoro Conservation Area or north for crossing the Mara river to find fresh grasses in Maasai Mara Game reserve in Kenya.