The Ngorongoro Crater is a natural amphitheatre created about 2 million years ago when the cone of a volcano collapsed into itself, leaving a 100 sq. mile cauldron-like cavity. This caldera, protected by a circular unbroken 2,000-foot high rim, contains everything necessary for Africa’s wildlife to exist and thrive.
Game viewing vehicles descend the steep crater wall every morning and spend the day on grass plains that are teeming with animals. Predators such as lion, spotted hyena, leopard, jackal and cheetah lord over a domain that swarms with zebra, wildebeest, gazelle and other herbivores. Tanzania’s few remaining black rhino are regularly sighted in the crater, as are large herds of buffalo. In the lake on the crater floor and in the Ngoitokitok swamps, reside plenty of hippos who remain partially submerged during the day and graze on grass at night. The stunning pink flamingo is also resident at the Crater.
The landscape is made up of a blend of volcanoes, grasslands, waterfalls and mountain forests, where the wildlife is extensive. The southern and eastern boundaries are approximately defined by the rim of the Great Rift Valley, which also prevents animal migration in these directions. The annual ungulate migration passes through the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, with wildebeest and zebra moving south into the area in December and moving north in June.
To get you started with planning your holiday to Ngorongoro Crater, we have showcased below some popular itineraries requested by our clients which we hope will inspire your visit to Africa