Planning Your Safari To Tanzania
Tanzania is a year-round safari destination that promises visitors amazing experiences no matter what time of year they embark on a safari! However, the tour operators that host top African safaris will tell you that the best time to go on safari in Tanzania depends on the wildlife you want to see! Keep in mind that the location of wildlife throughout the year are dictated by Tanzania’s rainy season, so your experience will vary based on the time of year you visit.
Many people choose a safari in Tanzania so that they can see the Great Migration. This annual event attracts thousands of people to African Serengeti tours each year, especially during the months between July and September. However, this is a peak season for tourists and can be quite overwhelming if you want to avoid crowds. The green season, which runs between November and March, is a much quieter time to visit Tanzania. Keep that in mind when you are planning your trip, too!
A Month-By-Month Planning Guide For Your Tanzanian Safari
Although Tanzania is a year-round safari destination, there are several factors that make certain times of year better than others for a visit. This includes safaris as well as other activities. Keep reading to learn more about the best time to go on a safari in Tanzania.
January and February
The first two months of the year are Tanzania’s “short dry season.” During this time, the days are typically characterized by blue skies and sunshine. It’s also a low point in the safari season, meaning it is often very quiet and travelers can take advantage of price reductions in safari tours, lodgings, and other accommodations. During this time, taking an African Serengeti tour to see the calving season in the southern Serengeti or a trip to Ngorongoro Crater are recommended activities.
March to May
March brings the rains to Tanzania, which will continue in earnest through April and May. This is known as Tanzania’s “Green Season,” and the parts are transformed into lush, verdant landscapes. Although the animals participating in the Great Migration have begun their journey southward, the Northern Serengeti is still magical. A safari during this time allows you to see big cats, rhinos, and gazelle, with a minimum of disturbance by other visitors. However, it is good to keep in mind that many camps close during this time of year due to the rain. Others do stay open and offer visitors incredible deals, which can be a budget-friendly option for those who need to watch their pennies.
June to October
From June to October is peak safari season in Tanzania. During this time, the days are warm and dry and the evenings are cool. These conditions are extremely favorable for game drives and walking safaris. As the dry season continues, wildlife gathers around the limited water sources, making it easier for those on safari to spot them. This is a prime time of year to see the Great Wildebeest Migration in the Serengeti, but it is also a good time to visit the coastal islands of Zanzibar, Mafia, and Pemba.
November and December
The final two months of the year bring the “short rains” to the countryside, which is a welcome relief after the long dry season. This is still a great time for African Serengeti tours because the short rain showers rarely interfere with game viewing. This is also the start of shoulder season, meaning that tour operators and camps will begin to offer deals to attract off-season visitors.
Know Your Seasons Before You Go On Safari
The Tanzania Safari Season is generally divided into two seasons. They are High Safari Season, which runs between May and October, and Low Safari Season, which runs between November and April. Although you can go on safari in Tanzania at virtually any time of the year, there are some activities that are better suited to High Safari Season while others are better suited to Low Safari season. Read on for an explanation of the two seasons below:
- During the high season, wildlife viewing is excellent. This means that game viewing and other safari activities are better during this time.
- The low-season Safari In Tanzania is best for bird watching. You can see hundreds of migrant birds flying from different corners of the world like Europe and Asia. The best birding destinations are Lake Manyara and Tarangire, where you can see lots of colorful birds during the low/season.
- Many tourists from all over the world come for African Serengeti tours during the High Season. This means that national parks are crowded, and there are fewer lodges and camps available for visitors. Prices on various accommodations and tours can also be higher at this time of year.
- During the Low Season, there are fewer tourists visiting Tanzania. Because of this, lodges and camps are not fully booked and are generally available.
- If you book with a top African safari during the high season, it is best to know that some national parks, many lodges, and quite a few tour operators raise their prices during this time.
- On the other hand, if you need to plan a budget safari, the low season is best.
The Best Time For African Serengeti Tours
Serengeti National Park offers visitors an amazing array of wildlife viewing opportunities throughout the year. However, the best time to go on a safari in Tanzania, specifically in the Serengeti is dictated by what you want to see. Winter is the best time to see visit the Southern Serengeti for the Great Migration, but in the summer and autumn months, you’d want to visit the Western Corridor or the Northern Serengeti. If you want to avoid the crowds, you can always split your safari in two. Spend a portion of the safari in the Serengeti following the Great Migration, but then head to a lesser-known park for a unique (and much less crowded) experience!
No matter where you go or what you see, an African Serengeti tour will be an experience of a lifetime! Just keeping a few key factors in your mind as you plan will help you create an itinerary that is personalized especially for you. So, what are you waiting for? It’s time to plan your Tanzania safari.