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  • Northern National Parcs

  • Serengeti, crater of Ngorongoro, lake Manyara, Kilimandjaro...
    The high places of Africa are certainly here, in Northern Tanzania

     

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    National Parc of Serengeti

     

    A mythic place. The largest national park in Tanzania and one of the most spectacular parks in the world, the Serengeti covers some 14,763 square kilometers including large plains, short grass plains, kopjes, and lakes.

    The name "Serengeti" is derived from the Maasai language meaning "endless plain". It presents a scenery of boundless rolling plains, a variety of game and the extraordinary phenomena of the « great Migration ». Every year, more than 2 million wildebeest travel in long caravans across the plains of the mighty Serengeti, all in search of better feeding grounds, followed by a large variety of other animals (not far behind follow the hungry lions, cheetahs, and hyenas...). On their way back, a brief demographic explosion, during which about 8000 calves are born every day and the great circle starts all over again.


    The Olduvai Gorge is located between the Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti.

    Olduvaï, called « the craddle of humanity » is the richest prehistorical site in the world., sketches between the crater of Ngorongoro and the Serengeti national park. The couple leakey, during the excavation of the site in 1931, discovered an important quantity of mammal fossils dating back to about 2 million years. In 1959, the skull of the most ancient humanoïd at this time is discovered upsetting all the theories about human evolution. This major historical discovery will back up the idea of Africa being the craddle of mankind.

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    Ngorongoro Conservation Area

     

    Called the eighth wonder of the world and stretching across some 8,300 sq km, the Ngorongoro Conservation Area in northern Tanzania boasts a blend of landscapes, wildlife, people and archaeology that is unsurpassed in Africa. The volcanoes, grasslands, waterfalls and mountain forests are home to an abundance of animals and to the Maasai. Unlike other national parks, the human presence is not totally forbidden. Massaï shepherds roam freely with their cattle in the midst of the wild animals.

    This site scheduled as « World Heritage » by the UNESCO.

     

    Ngorongoro crater is the world's largest unbroken, unflooded volcanic caldera (20km wide). The Crater, which formed when a giant volcano exploded and collapsed on itself some two to three million years ago, is the only one in the world that remains intact. The top of the crater is at 2286 meters above the sea level and overlooks the wide plains of the Serengeti.i
    As this huge crater is watered all year long, it is able to cope with the unceasing presence of more than 30000 animals among which the famous « big five » counting the nearby extinguished black rhino.

    Empakaï crater, one of the volcanoes close to Ngorongoro measures approximately 6 km in diameter and half of its surface is occupied by a lake. Of everywhere the sight is magnificent. If the weather is clear you could admire far off the volcano Ol Donyo Lengaï ( active volcano) and sometimes the sight carries up to the lake Natron. By particularly clear weather we perceive far off eternal snows of Kilimanjaro.

     

     

     

     

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    National Parc of Manyara

     

    The national park of Manyara is the smallest park of the North Tanzania (330 km ² which ¾ are occupied by the lake). Situated at feet of the depression of the rift valley. The park is considered as the variety of its landscapes as well as by the wealth of its fauna. The forest which occupies the biggest part of the park is a magnificent example of the flora of East Africa locust trees, spurges candelabras, crotons, trees with sausages, baobabs, huge fig trees, etc....

     

    The lake Manyara is the refuge of numerous birds and mammals. The neighborhoods of the lake are populated, in certain periods of the year, by thousands of pink flamingos, but also with numerous pelicans, marabouts, gooses of Egypt, ibises, eagles fishermen, in all more than 400 listed sorts. We can observe also numerous families of elephants, buffaloes, hippopotamuses and the tree-climbing lions, pregrowing tired on the branch.

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    National Parc of Tarangire

     

    Tarangire covers 2600 square miles and includes two large plains and a seasonal swamp in the south. This is a beautiful park filled with Baobabs and Acacias with a large variety of game such as zebras, elephants, giraffes, and waterbuck. All the animals can enjoy the water coming from the Tarangire River.

     

    This park, part of the »World Heritage » of the UNESCO, is more spectacular during the dry season, from June to October, as thousands of animals are migrating from the june trails in the South of the massaï land, right through the park. The concentration of so many animals round the drying up river is godsend for the great predators.

    Tarangire doesn’t get many visitors because out of the way of the traditional tours and so remains the most unspoiled and wild of the North.


     

     

     

     

     

     

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    National Parc of Arusha

     

    Arusha National Park is a gem of a nature reserve just an hour's drive from Arusha town. Despite its proximity to the safari capital of Tanzania, this is actually the least frequented of northern Tanzania's parks, making it a treat for nature lovers who are interested in more than just seeing the Big Five.

    This small park (covers only 137 square kilometers) sketches between the kilimandjaro and the Meru mountain at 1530 meters above the sea level contains a wide variety of landscapes, including crater, lakes, mountain rain forests and savannas.

     

    It shows three distinct zones:

    - The spectacular Lake Momela with a prolific fauna of birds, about 400 different species have been noted in the site;

    - The crater of the Meru mountain with a great variety of wild animals such as buffalos, zebras, giraffes, waterbucks and so on.

    - And the small crater of the Ngurudoto presenting its luxurious swamps.


    The only place on the northern safari circuit where the acrobatic black-and-white colobus monkey is easily seen.

     

     

    Mount Meru is the second highest mountain in Tanzania at 4,5685m.and the fifth highest in Africa.

     

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    National Parc of Kilimandjaro

     

    The Kilimandjaro Mountain, the top of Africa with its majestic snow cap rises up to 5895 meters above the sea level. It Three volcanoes form this beautiful mountain: the Shira on the western side, the Mawenzi, “black mountain” and the Kibo.

    Above the gently rolling hills and plateaux of northern Tanzania rises the snowy peak of Mt. Kilimanjaro, it’s slopes and glaciers shimmering above the rising clouds. Kilimanjaro is located near the town of Moshi and is a protected area, carefully regulated for climbers to enjoy without leaving a trace of their presence.

    The mountain’s ecosystems are as strikingly beautiful as they are varied and diverse. On the lowland slopes, much of the mountain is farmland, with coffee, banana, cassava, and maize crops grown for subsistence and cash sale. Once inside the park, thick lowland forest covers the lower altitudes and breaks into alpine meadows once the air begins to thin. Near the peak, the landscape is harsh and barren, with rocks and ice the predominant features above a breathtaking African view.

    Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain that regular tourists can climb, although it remains a considerable feat of human endurance!

     

     

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    Other sites

     

    Oldonyo Lengai
    The « Mountain of the Gods », Oldoinyo Lengaï in massaï language, is a still active volcano, on the southern shore of Lake Natron. Its highest point is at 2960 meters above sea level. It is the only volcano in the world that erupts “carbonatitie lavas” with a temperature of about 530 °C. Black first, cooling down they turn white. Seen from the distance, the volcano seems to be covered with snow.

     

     

    Lake Eyasi

    A salt lake situated between the Rift Valley’s Eyasi escarpment and the Kidero Mountains (immediately southwest of the Ngorongoro Crater).
    This area is inhabited by small groups of bushmen - the Hadza and Watindiga. who live in groups hunting with bow and arrows and gathering roots, tubers and wild fruits much as humankind lived in the Stone Age.

    The meadows along the shores of the lake and the forests are home to a wide variety of wildlife including leopard, hippo, a variety of monkeys, various birds, greater and lesser flamingos, storks and pelicans.

     

     

    Saa Nane Island, meaning "eight o'clock island", is situated in the lake Victoria region. There is a large variety of reptiles. Hippo, zebra and wildebeest and some caged animals are found within the wildlife sanctuary. This reserve is literally a 95-acre outdoor zoo. Birdwatchers will enjoy the scenery on Saa Nane while nature lovers can venture onto the rock formations that appear out of the grassy landscape.

     

     

    Lake Natron

    This undeep lake is mainly fed by the waters streaming down the Lengaï mountain with a high concentration in sodium, potassium and calcium, is a sanctuary for a settlement of flamingoes.
    They feed on spiruline, a blue alga that grows only in alkaline waters but its because they eat in the same time artemias, small red prawns that live in the same spot, that they sport their rosy or red feathers.

     

     

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