Ngorongoro Crater

Date Added: Aug 17, 2017

As a rule volcanic explosions cause nothing but damage and destruction, however, it was not the case 2.5 million years ago. The huge Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania was formed in the result of the eruption of the volcano on the verge of Serengeti Savannah. The crater floor is 2380 meters above sea level, while the rims are elevated over 3000 meters above the sea. Geologists refer to this type of craters as calderas.

Ngorongoro National Park, which covers 26 400 square meters, is known for unique flora and fauna. The place has developed a kind of environment that is only typical to the crater, since its inhabitants have no chances of getting outside. The crater has a diameter of 17 to 21 km. Lake Magadi occupies the floor of the Ngorongoro Crater. It is famous for the population of flamingos. Sometimes the shoreline seems to be completely colored in pink due to the abundance of these birds.

The crater’s landscape is indeed breathtaking. At the first glance one might think that it’s a flat green plateau, but if you take a closer look you’ll see forests, swamps, a lake and other ponds. Here you get a chance to freely behold the wild nature.

It’s amazing to see zebras, buffalos, antelopes, elands and gazelles running around and drinking water. They are often chased by lions and leopards inhabiting the crater. Nowhere else can you see so many various species of the endangered black rhinoceros. The crater is also inhabited by elephants and hippos, which, are not actually typical for these latitudes.

Since 1951 the crater has been making a part of Serengeti National Park and in 1979 it was recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.


The word “Ngorogoro” derives from Maasai “Ilkorongoro”, which referred to ancient warriors, who protected the local areas from invaders. This kind of territorial issues are still actual, it’s just that the present-day invaders are mostly tourists, as well as shepherds, who graze cattle on the territory of the crater. Tanzanian state authorities are seriously thinking of buying out some other areas around the crater to preserve natural flora and fauna.

At present the conservation area is patrolled by 50 rangers. Researchers and other visitors are allowed to stay in the territory of Ngorangoro Crater only in the daytime – from 6 am to 6 pm.

How to arrive in the crater

There are charter flights available from Arusha or Lake Manyara.  It is 160-190 km from Arusha and 60km from Manyara in case you choose to travel by car. If you are travelling from Kenya the car ride will take about 6 hours. For your unforgettable safari experience in Tanzania you can entirely rely on Altezza.Travel.

Best time to visit

It is always slightly cooler along the skirts of the crater than at the bottom, since the edges are over 2 km above the sea level. There are showers from November to December and heavy rains from March to May. From June to October the weather in Ngorongoro is relatively dry and cool when it comes to the skirts of the crater.