The Priceless Nature Walks through Ngorongoro Conservation Area
If you thought the Ngorongoro conservation area hosts a sprinkling of wildlife that inhabits an enormous crater with separate streams of water, then you’re not alone. There is more to this natural phenomenon that meets the eye. And it can best be enjoyed while walking on foot.
This safari is a fantastic experience on two legs – trekking in what is arguably the most spectacular scenery in East Africa, with stunning views of the Ngorongoro crater and Serengeti National Park on the horizon. And if this doesn’t qualify for heavenly bliss, then we don’t know what does!
The walk proper takes place inside the conservation area, and includes an exploration of some millions of years-old volcanoes, strolling through villages, across massive craters and plains and all the time meeting the occasional harmless small herbivores and villagers on their daily survival chores.
The crater is made up of a sizeable spectacular bowl measuring 270 km sq. With sides measuring in some places 600 meters deep. It forms part of the Serengeti ecosystem and one edge of the crater touches the national park.
While driving on the crater, you’re likely to find almost every wildlife species in Africa, but specific areas are prohibited from walking due to dangerous predators.
One outstanding feature is its incredible beauty. Then there are the extinct volcanoes that are home to vast herds of elephants, giraffes, buffaloes, rhinos and zebras, and predators that inhabit the area.
But while care is taken to isolate the animals from the common areas, the management has worked hard to create what today are known as the priceless nature walks. The surrounding highlands include some seven extinct volcanoes that are a marvel to walk across and grant the area outstanding beauty and spectacular scenery.
The western rim of the crater
One of the most popular hikes is the path that leads from the Rhino Lodge. This walk will lead you to the western rim of the crater past some patches of forest. The trail leads to empty spaces covered in grassland and thickets. If you look on your right as you walk, you’ll chance to see amazing scenes of the crater below that makes you want to keep your eyes fixated.
Right ahead of you is the incredible view of the Olduvai Gorge. The gorge itself sits majestically over the Serengeti plains. This is one of the most comfortable strolls without steep gradients or arduous climbs to exhaust you. If you walk casually, it can get covered in about 3 hours and can be done any time of day. The best time to enjoy the walk is immediately after breakfast, before you head out for your game drives, or late in the evening after your daytime excursions.
Other nature walks include descending to the bottom of the crater and climbing up. Visiting local Maasai villages to learn about their rich traditional lifestyle and how they live side by side with wild animals.
You can also complement your nature walk with one or more of the following activities:
- Photograph the crater and the beautiful landscape
- View over 20,000 wildlife
- View and photograph birds
- Meet local Maasai villagers
- Venture into nearby Serengeti game park
- Venture into Olduvai Gorge
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