This Tanzania birdwatching tour has been carefully fashioned for you to experience the very Best of Tanzania’s Northern National Parks. Join us and take a walk on the wild side!
Tanzania’s northern parks are surpassed by no other. They are world famous for a reason.
From the boundless savannah in the Serengeti to the rich volcanic grasslands of the Ngorongoro Crater, it is simply untouchable. Rich in large African wildlife and beautiful avifauna, you’re going to love this tour of Tanzania’s Great Northern Parks.
Brief Tour Itinerary
Day 1 – Arusha National Park
Just a short drive from Kilimanjaro International Airport, we’ll be starting our trip at Arusha National Park. It’s a beautiful park, that hosts a wide variety of landscapes, ranging from vast savannah and rainforest through to acacia woodlands and up to alpine vegetation on the higher reaches of Mount Meru. On arrival, we’ll be transecting the park in our safari vehicle and birding along the way. We’ll also be doing some on-foot birding in certain areas of the park, which will be a highlight. With a lovely mix of both wildlife and avifauna, it’ll be a great way start to the tour.
Day 2 – Lark Plains
On our second day, we’ll be visiting Lark Plains where we’ll be on the lookout for the Tanzania endemic Beesley’s Lark. These dry plains attract a large array of specialist dry country avifauna, so we’ll be very busy doing lots of on-foot birding. These plains are typically dry throughout the year, but experience large downpours from March to May allowing vegetation to quickly flourish and in turn, attract many passerines, raptors and ground dwelling species. We’ll also be on the lookout for the near endemics Athi Short-toed Lark, Red-throated Tit and Short-tailed Lark, among many others.
Day 3 & 4 – Tarangire National Park
On Day 3, we will be visiting the beautiful Tarangire National Park. Bursting with large game and avifauna, we’ll be having a lot of fun here! The park itself, is named after the perennial Tarangire River, a life source to the all the surrounding wildlife – especially in the dry season, where large congregations of wildebeest and zebra come, among others. It’s a gorgeous park teeming with birdlife (over 500+ species recorded), so we hope it get a large list here over two days.
Day 5 – Endoro Cave Trail (Endoro Falls)
Located on the southern edge of Ngorongoro Forest, we’ll be visiting Endoro Falls. There’s a great trail that takes you through the forest, into the caves and to Endoro Waterfalls. The caves themselves are important for forest elephants, where they venture into the caves in search of salt, which is evident by the large carvings made on the cave walls by their tusks, as they excavate this important mineral.
We’ll spend the whole day, transecting the trail and birding along the way. Species highlights include: Golden-winged Sunbird, Tacazze Sunbird, Eastern Double-collared Sunbird, Purple-throated Cuckooshrike and Grey Cuckooshrike, Moustached Tinkerbird, African Broadbill, Sharpe’s Starling, Klaas’s Cuckoo and Crowned Eagle to name a few.
Day 6 & 7 – Ngorongoro Crater
Over the next couple of days, you’ll be spending your time in one of the best locations in all of Africa. That’s no overstatement. In 2013, the crater was voted as one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Africa. It’s the largest inactive, intact and unfilled volcanic caldera in the world and was formed when a large volcano exploded and collapsed on itself two to three million years ago. It’s 610 metres (2,000 feet) deep and its floor covers 260 square kilometres (100 square miles). Due to the volcanic ash that spread across the surrounding area after the explosion, it’s now very fertile with rich grasses that feed huge numbers of ungulates.
We’ll be transecting this region slowing as we soak up all the sights and birding along the way. The avifauna is outstanding, so expect a large count. A few species to look forward to such as: Hunter’s Cisticola, Pectoral-patch Cisticola, Lyne’s Cisticola, Black-fronted Bush-Shrike, Thick-billed Seedeater, White-headed Barbet, Schalow’s Turaco, Shelley’s Francolin, Grey Crowned Crane, Fan-tailed Widowbird, Yellow-throated Sandgrouse, Kori Bustard, Secretarybird, Rosy-breasted Longclaw to name a few.
Big smiles on happy faces!
Day 8 & 9 – Serengeti National Park
Our next destination takes you to perhaps Africa’s most iconic national park – the Serengeti. Iconic for a reason. The vast ecosystem is one of the world’s last true wildernesses. With vast plains sprawling across the landscape as far as the eye can see and home to ginormous congregations of mammals, it is truly unmatched. Most famously, it’s renowned for the Wildebeest Migration, where over 1.5 million wildebeest form huge travelling herds by following the rainclouds, which give life the grasses below. For that alone, there’s no doubt you’ll fall in love with this incredible park. However, the avifauna in this park is nothing short of outstanding. Over 500 different species have been recorded here with one endemic, the Grey-breasted Spurfowl, and many near endemics suchs as Abyssinian Wheatear, Red-throated Tit, Rufous-tailed Weaver, Grey-crested Helmetshrike. Other species we’ll be on the lookout for include: White-crested Helmet shrikes, Meyer’s Parrot, Yellow-throated Longclaw, Zitting Cisticola, Croaking Cisticola, Desert Cisticola, White-headed Sawwing, Black Sawwing, Long-crested Eagle, Brown Snake-eagle, African Hawk-eagle, Eastern Paradise Whydah, Pin-tailed Whydah, Straw-tailed Whydah to name a few.
We’ll be spending two days here slowly transect this vast wilderness and soaking everything up as we go along.
Key Bird Species
Popular species on this tour: Grey-crested Helmetshrike, Grey-breasted Spurfowl, Beesley’s Lark, Athi Short-toed Lark, Red-throated Tit, Short-tailed Lark, Eastern Paradise Whydah, Golden-winged Sunbird.
Below is a list of species likely to be encountered on this tour:
Athi Short-toed Lark, Red-throated Tit and Short-tailed Lark, Abyssinian Wheatear, Red-throated Tit, Rufous-tailed Weaver, Grey-crested Helmetshrike, White-crested Helmet shrikes, Meyer’s Parrot, Yellow-throated Longclaw, Zitting Cisticola, Croaking Cisticola, Desert Cisticola, White-headed Sawwing, Black Sawwing, Long-crested Eagle, Brown Snake-eagle, African Hawk-eagle, Eastern Paradise Whydah, Pin-tailed Whydah, Straw-tailed Whydah, Hunter’s Cisticola, Pectoral-patch Cisticola, Lyne’s Cisticola, Black-fronted Bush-Shrike, Thick-billed Seedeater, White-headed Barbet, Schalow’s Turaco, Shelley’s Francolin, Grey Crowned Crane, Fan-tailed Widowbird, Yellow-throated Sandgrouse, Kori Bustard, Secretarybird, Rosy-breasted Longclaw, Northern Pied Babblers, Rosy-patched Bushshrike, Pangani Longclaw, Double-banded, Temminck’s Courser, Flappet Bushlark and Singing Bushlark, Croaking Cisticola, Rock-loving Cisticola, Rattling Cisticola, White-bellied Go-away-bird, Northern White-crowned Shrike, Von der Decken’s Hornbill, Northern Red-billed Hornbill, Blue-cheeked Bee-eater, European Bee-eater, Grey-headed Kingfisher, Brown Kingfisher, Hooded Kingfisher, Woodland Kingfisher, African Cuckoo, African Scops Owl, Pearl-spotted Owlet, Village Weaver among many more. Please enquire for more information.
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