Best time to go to Serengeti National Park
Best time to go to Serengeti National Park is the time of the year when a traveler feels more comfortable and more successful when they visit the park. Serengeti National Park which is located in the northern part of Tanzania is among the popular wildlife viewing destinations. This national park is visited all year round and however, tourists prefer certain times of the year to visit this destination.
The choice of the best time to visit Serengeti national park depends on different factors such as the activity which the tourist is interested in carrying out, choice of the tourist among other factors.
Serengeti national park has beautiful scenery characterized by open plains, woodlands, rock kopjes such as Moru kopjes, Simba kopjes, Maasai kopjes which act as lookout points for predators such as lions who watch their prey grazing and roaming in the distant plains.
Some tourists base their best time to visit Serengeti national park around the wildebeest migration which takes place in the different parts of Serengeti national park. The different parts of this national park which are visited by tourists include the western section, the central or Seronera area, the northern section, the southern section.
- The western part of Serengeti national park is marked by a variety of attractions such as the Grumeti River which acts as a crossing point during the wildebeest migration. This part of the national park is characterized by open savannah plains, valley and hills which act as habitat for the wildlife species. The western part of Serengeti national park is best visited during the months of April to July when the wildebeest migration takes place in this section of the national park in June and July.
- Central or Seronera part of Serengeti national park is one of the most-visited parts of this national park due to its high concentration of wildlife species and attractions such as the Seronera valley, Moru kopjes, Simba kopjes. This part of the national park is characterized by grassy plains, acacia trees, rock outcrops, rivers and swamps where the different wildlife species can be sighted. The best time to visit the central part of Serengeti national park is during the months of April to June and it can also be visited all year round for wildlife viewing adventures and to engage in a variety of activities such as nature walks, game drives, bird watching among others.
- The northern part of Serengeti national park is also known as the Lobo area which is closest to the Masai Mara national reserve where the wildebeest migration also takes place. This part of the national park is characterized by rolling hills, acacia woodland, rocky kopjes, and open savannah. The best time to visit the northern part of Serengeti national park is during the months of July to September. The attractions in this part of the national park include the Mara River which is also a major crossing point for the wildebeest during the great wildebeest migration.
- Southern part of the Serengeti national park is characterized by open plains and rock outcrops and it extends from the Ngorongoro conservation area, Seronera area and also the Maswa reserve. The calving season takes place during the months of January and February.
Other times of the year when tourists visit Serengeti national park include the dry season when the wildlife species such as elephants, buffalos, lions, leopards, rhinos, giraffes, zebras, wildebeest, and other wildlife species are easier to spot due to the short nature of the grass plains.
The dry season occurs in the months of June to October which is offers amazing wildlife viewing opportunities. The wildebeest migration also takes place in this national park at this time of the year which involves movement of wildebeest in search of greener pasture and water.
Different wildlife species can also be seen around water points in Serengeti national park during the dry season.
The wildebeest migration is a natural wonder which involves thousands of wildebeest moving between Serengeti national park and Masai Mara national reserve. The wildebeest also move with other wildlife species such as zebras during their migration in search of greener pasture and water.
The wet season in Serengeti national park is during the months of November to May. This season also favors bird watchers since a number of both native and migratory birds can be seen. Birding is best done in the morning hours in this national park.
From January to February, tourists can see the young wildebeest since this is the calving season of the wildebeest. During these months, many predators can also be seen hunting near the areas where calving takes place since they prey on the unknowing calves.
In the months of March to May, the rainy season is experienced in Serengeti national park. during the rainy season, the grass is longer which makes it difficult for wildlife viewing and some of the routes used during game drives in the national park are sometimes impassable which makes it difficult to see the different wildlife species.
Activities which tourists engage in during visits to Serengeti national park include the following;
- Game drives in Serengeti national park take place at different times of day such as in the morning, evening as well as full days. During morning game drives, tourists stand a chance of seeing a variety of wildlife species such as elephants, lions, leopards, buffalos, rhinos, giraffes, wildebeests, zebras, waterbucks among others. Seeing wildlife species during evening game drives may be a little difficult since the wildlife species are hidden and taking shelter at this time of day. During full day game drives, tourists get to see wildlife species at different times of day and to study the behavior of wildlife species.
- Nature walks are a unique wildlife viewing experience in Serengeti national park which involves exploring the open savannah plains on foot as tourists see the different attractions within the national park.
- Bird watching in Serengeti national park involve searching for a variety of bird species in the national park which includes both the native and migrant birds such as plovers, secretary birds, kori bustard, secretary birds, tailed weavers, fisher’s lovebird, grey breasted spurfowl, black-headed gonolek, sterlings, vultures, ostriches, black eagles, hornbills, shrikes among others.
- Hot air balloon safaris is another activity of wildlife viewing which involves exploring Serengeti national park from a birds-eye view.
- Cultural visits involve interactions between tourists and the local community which consists of the Maasai people. During cultural visits, tourists experience the culture of the Maasai such as the traditional dances, visiting the traditional homesteads known as “manyattas”, seeing local arts and crafts such as beaded necklaces, bracelets, earrings among other activities.
Attractions in Serengeti national park include wildlife and bird species, Seronera valley, kopjes, mara river among others.
How to access Serengeti national park
Serengeti national park can be accessed by both air and road means in the following ways;
- By road, tourists can access Serengeti national park by driving from Arusha to the national park.
- By air, tourists can fly to any of the airstrips within the national park such as Seronera airstrip, Musiara airstrip, Lobo airstrip among others.
Visit Serengeti national park to experience amazing wildlife viewing and engage in many other activities during a safari.