Vehicles used are generally open roof 4WD Toyota Land Cruiser or Land Rovers, as they are most suitable to the terrain. For larger groups we use 4WD buses as it is more convenient for clients to be all together in one vehicle only, and it is also more economic and better for the environment. Drivers have been trained in customer relations, tourism-related topics, environmental issues and vehicle maintenance. They are very familiar with the routes we take.
Safari in Kiswahili, the language of East Africa, simply means a journey. Today it is synonymous in English with a wildlife viewing adventure in the African Bush. If your primary reason for traveling to Africa is to experience an abundance of African wildlife in unspoiled wilderness, then Tanzania should be your destination of choice. Tanzania protects over 25% of its land through national parks and reserves, more than any other country on the continent. You simply cannot beat the wildlife concentrations found in Tanzania. The parks and wildlife reserves of Tanzania are inhabited by vast herds of wildebeest spread across the Serengeti savanna, huge populations of elephant and buffalo, as well as plains game and their predators. All these animals interact and roam freely, as they have for thousands of years. Here you’ll witness an incredible diversity of ecology and will find the vegetation and bird life as fascinating as the big game. This is the home to 90% of the film series produced on African animals. Tanzania also boasts a remarkable number of World Heritage Sites including Serengeti National Park, Kilimanjaro National Park, Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Selous Game Reserve (this reserve alone is the size of Denmark), Kilwa Kisiwani and the Songo Mnara Ruins.
Anytime is a wonderful time to be on safari. April tends to be rainy, but for the more adventurous travelers, we can arrange a private trip for you during that time. At Toto Africa Adventures, we adjust our safari itineraries to take advantage of the best possible game viewing in accordance with the seasonal concentrations of wildlife.
You simply can’t beat northern Tanzania for wildlife concentrations. Most people have heard of the spectacular Ngorongoro Crater and the wide array of wildlife dwelling on the crater floor. Most have heard of the vast Serengeti savanna, which hosts the annual migration of wildebeest and the predators that follow in its wake. This is only the beginning of the natural phenomena awaiting your discovery on a safari to Tanzania. Our Guests consistently tell us the wildlife they experienced far surpassed their most optimistic expectations.
Tanzania is home to over 35 species of large four-legged mammals and has over 1000 species of birds. On a typical safari in northern Tanzania you can expect to see elephant, buffalo, giraffe, hippo, baboons, monkeys and a variety of plains game such as wildebeest, hartebeest, zebra, impala and gazelle. Most people see lions and hyenas, and possibly a cheetah or leopard. In Ngorongoro Crater you may see one of the few remaining black rhino to be found in Tanzania. You’ll undoubtedly see several different species of mongoose and some hyrax and other small mammals. If you’re lucky, you’ll see one or more of the smaller cats, foxes, wild dog or the more reticent antelope like lesser kudu, bushbuck, oryx or eland.
Every year, over one million wildebeest move through the Serengeti plains in search of food and water. The phenomenon of these animals moving en mass through the African savanna is known as the Migration. Their movement is driven by the seasonal rains that water their grazing pastures. It is impossible to predict in advance exactly how or when this progression will take place, but there is a pattern. Generally from mid-December through May the herds feed in the southern Serengeti. During February thousands of calves appear on the plains. Between June and July, the wildebeest begin their annual migration north reaching the Mara River that marks the Kenyan border sometime between the end of July and beginning of August. After the first short rains, usually in the beginning of November, the herds move back into Tanzania’s Serengeti and make their way to the southern pastures where they rest and feed through the rains until their search for better grazing leads them to begin their annual migration once again. Even when the “migration” moves into Kenya for the summer months, there are many resident herds in the Serengeti and there is always an incredible array of wildlife to experience there. Also, in the summer months, this is the height of the dry season thousands of elephant congregate around the Tarangire River. This park is at its prime during these months and we adjust our itineraries to take advantage of the prime wildlife viewing there. Each time of year offers the visitor to Tanzania a special opportunity for wildlife viewing.
The vast majority of Tanzanians still live a lifestyle very close to their traditional lifestyles. Most people are subsistence farmers. The Masai people, favored by photographers for their strikingly colorful décor, live a pastoral existence following their herds of cattle to better grazing areas, still adhering to the traditions and ceremonies of their ancestors. Their villages are located throughout northern Tanzania. Other small tribes of hunter-gatherers, living according to their ancient customs and traditions can also be found in this area.