Tanzania is an East African country known for its vast wilderness areas. They include the plains of Serengeti National Park, a safari mecca populated by the “big five” game (elephant, lion, leopard, buffalo, rhino), and Kilimanjaro National Park, home to Africa’s highest mountain. Offshore lie the tropical islands of Zanzibar, with Arabic influences, and Mafia, with a marine park home to whale sharks and coral reefs.
Tanzania has so much to offer! To make it easier to plan your trip, Tanzania has been divided into regional circuits – all offering breathtaking landscapes, intriguing wildlife, and a plethora of exciting safari activities, including Northern Safari Circuit, Southern Safari Circuit, Western Safari Circuit, and Coastal Circuit.
- Northern safari circuit encompasses some of Africa’s most iconic parks and reserves including Serengeti National Park, Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Tarangire National Park, Lake Manyara National Park, Kilimanjaro National Park, Arusha National Park, and the Great Rift Valley lakes Natron and Eyasi. Due to the popularity of these parks, the northern safari circuit harbors more tourists than any other circuit in Tanzania. Sometimes, especially during peak seasons, it is not uncommon to see plenty of vehicles in one area.
- Southern Safari Circuit, For those who want to get away from the crowds and experience a remote safari adventure, the southern safari circuit would sound perfect for that. The parks in this region are enormous, untouched, remote, and teeming with a spectacular diversity of wildlife. The parks included in the southern safari circuit are Selous Game Reserve, Ruaha National Park, Mikumi National Park, and Udzungwa Mountains National Park. Although the Big Five isn’t complete here and cannot be found all in one area, a lot of other animals like roan antelopes, sable antelopes, black rhinos and cheetahs can be easily spotted. Also, this is where you can find the world’s thickest population of the last remaining African wild dogs.
- The western safari circuit is where you get to explore the intriguing jungles of Tanzania to meet chimpanzees. But, it’s not all about the primates. Here, you can also find rare roan and sable antelope species as well as hippos, and giraffes and if you’re lucky, you can spot elephants, leopards, zebras, and maybe even a lion, too! The western safari circuit comprises Mahale Mountains National Park, Katavi National Park, and Gombe Stream National Park. Although not the primary reason for visiting Tanzania, the western circuit promises a different kind of adventure and an exciting side trip to any wildlife safari. Since this area is very remote, the only way to get here is via light aircraft or boat. Flights may start from Arusha, Dar es Salaam or even Zanzibar.
- Coastal Circuit. Tanzania is not all about wildlife. There is also a slice of tropical paradise on this side of the world. You can find some of the world’s most beautiful beaches, extravagant diving spots, and fantastic historical experiences in the coastal lands and towns of Zanzibar, Pemba, and Mafia. Zanzibar is the most popular beach and honeymoon destination in Tanzania. It features clear, turquoise-blue water, shallow sandbars, and many small islands. Aside from the gorgeous stretches of white sand beaches and the many diving and fishing spots, Zanzibar also houses many historical and cultural areas including the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Stone Town. You can easily revel in the beauty of this island from other parts of Africa and even other parts of the world.