Ngorongoro Conservation Area
The Ngorongoro Conservation Area is a "must see" part of Tanzania. It is named after it's central feature, the Ngorongoro Crater. This is the world's largest intact volcanic caldera and is described as 'the 8th wonder of the world'. There is a high diversity of game in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area including the rare Black Rhino. Most of the landscape was created by the volcanic activity that formed the Rift Valley between 15 and 20 million years ago.
The crater is at high altitude and can get cold in the night. We recommend that you bring a fleece or jumper for the evenings. If you wish to stay in lodge accommodation on the crater rim then we advise early booking to avoid disappointment.
Contact us directly and our field staff will help you design your own personal Tanzania safari, selecting from our wide range of accommodation.
Ngorongoro Conservation Area Locations view all
Karatu is the closest village to the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. Karatu is in the northern part of Tanzania and the south eastern slopes of Ngorongoro Crater.
Described as one of the wonders of the world, Ngorongoro Crater is perhaps one of the most spectacular arenas that exists. As well as being the largest intact caldera in the world, the crater floor offers unsurpassed game viewing. Ngorongoro is volcanic in origin and was created during the same fracturing process that formed the Rift Valley about 20 million years ago. At it's peak in size it would have matched Kilimanjaro at it's current height. The rim is still high at roughly 2220m so a good fleece or jacket is essential.
At 8300 sq km the NCA is bigger than most of Tanzania's parks and because it falls outside the national park system it is permissible to walk along the numerous trails. Those who have time can explore the less publicised natural features further afield. These include Olduvai Gorge, Olmoti and Empakaai Craters, the Gol Mountains and Mount Lolmalasin (3rd highest in Tanzania).
Ngorongoro Conservation Area Activities
Birdwatching in Ngorongoro
Birdwatching in Ngorongoro is excellent with over 600 species recorded. The bird life in the highland forests is rich and diverse. Among the birds to be seen include the Slaty Flycatcher and Livingstone's Turaco.
Cultural Visit to Maasai Boma
Around 200 years ago the Maasai arrived in Ngorongoro driving all before them. It is still possible to visit their communities and see their traditional way of life.
To the North-East of the world famous Ngorongoro Crater lies the Empakaai Crater. Empakaai Crater is around 6000 metres wide and 300 metres deep. Amongst other animals, you will see buffalo, bush-buck, a medley of antelope and blue monkeys.
Ngorongoro Crater Game Drive
Ngorongoro Crater is a natural wonder of the world and is 20km in diameter. On your Ngorongoro Crater Game drive you will descend 600m into the Crater. It is best to do this in the early morning to maximise your game viewing and minimise the number of other vehicles present in the Crater. The access road is very steep and only 4x4 vehicles are allowed into the crater
Ngorongoro Crater Rim Walk
Walk for around two and a half hours around the spectacular Ngorongoro Crater Rim. This is a relatively easy walk with no steep hills.
Ngorongoro Highlands Drive
The Ngorongoro Highlands is a dramatic landscape consisting of undulating grasslands, forests and craters. You can drive around the rim of the Ngorongoro Crater and go to visit Empakai Crater