Serengeti National Park
The Serengeti is Tanzania’s oldest national park, and one of its most popular. It is no surprise that it is also a World Heritage Site. The park, which gets its name from the Maasai word for “endless plains,” is located in northern Tanzania and meets up with Kenya’s Maasai Mara National Reserve, covering 14,750 square kilometers (5,700 square miles). It is here where you can see one of the greatest wildlife spectacles ever – the great annual wildebeest migration, voted one of the seven natural wonders of Africa in February 2013.
Each year, about 1.5 million wildebeest, accompanied by more than 200,000 zebra and 300,000 Thomson’s and Grant’s gazelle, set off with their young on a long journey to find food and water. Their trek starts in the Serengeti Plains, heads west, and then north to the Maasai Mara. Anyone who has the opportunity to see nearly two million animals all on the move at once cannot help but be touched forever by the magic of this place. One of the migration’s most magnificent sights is the crossing of the massive herds of wildebeest through the crocodile-infested Mara River to and from Kenya, from July through September.
But even if you cannot make it to Tanzania in time to see the migration, the Serengeti still offers arguably some of the most exciting game-viewing in Africa. Just witnessing the plains filled with thousands of animals, which attract many of Africa’s legendary predators, is a sight in itself. There are great herds of buffalo, smaller groups of elephant and giraffe, and thousands upon thousands of eland, topi, kongoni, impala, and Grant’s gazelle.