Ndutu Safari Lodge: The last truly wild African destination

discoverafrica 08 February 2018
Part of the Tanzania Safari Collection
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There is something so wild about Ndutu Safari Lodge. Located in the heart of the ancient Ngorongoro Conservation Area and a stone’s throw away from Lake Ndutu, this rustic accommodation allows for safari goers to get right into the soul of Tanzania’s world famous Serengeti park. Every year, millions of wildebeest, along with zebra and other plains game traverse Tanzania in search of green pastures. This migratory journey is one of the most documented and fascinating displays of nature on the planet.

ndutu-safari-lodge-migration

Ndutu Safari Lodge is at the epicentre of this journey and for decades has brought travellers from far and wide to this untamed retreat.

Stone and thatch

In keeping with the concept of low-impact tourism and minimal human footprints, Ndutu Safari Lodge is hidden unpretentiously among thorny acacia trees and the brushing grasslands of the Serengeti. These stone and thatch en-suite cottages (34 in total) blend rustic charm with modern amenities, simple homestyle food and adventurous activities. With wraparound views of the swamps, soda lakes and shimmering Lake Ndutu north of the camp, this multi-faceted lodge is a wildlife mecca.

ndutu-safari-lodge

Ndutu is about a return to nature, to our roots and primal instincts. Established in the 60’s, Ndutu has transformed from a simple hunter’s retreat to an exemplary example of responsible travel and conscious tourism.  

Remote and intimate, Ndutu has fallen back on rudimentary ways of gathering water (which is scarce during the dry season), wood (sourcing firewood at the lodge is strictly prohibited) and food (ingredients must be brought in from almost three hours away in Arusha). The emphasis here is on minimalist living and simplicity.

ndutu-calving-season

Maintaining standards of service and quality requires plenty of hard work from the staff. Ndutu is a close-knit community and the family-like atmosphere makes this a wonderful way to experience the generosity and hospitality of Tanzania.

No borders

It is not uncommon for the camp to be invaded by curious wildebeest and elephants and the occasional apex predator. Ndutu is unfenced, allowing for the natural movement of animals in the surrounds. Wildlife are free to come and go at will, just another way that Ndutu has maintained an authentic safari experience.

serengeti-wildlife-photography

Teeming with wildlife, Ndutu is home to plenty of cheetah, lion, leopard, African wild dog, hyena, genet, bat-eared fox and predatory birds. The sheer number of predators is understandable as there could be a meal at every turn for these carnivores. Stalking prey is the order of the day and Ndutu allows you unprecedented access to this natural circle of life.

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Two seasons, limitless experiences

Ndutu Safari Lodge experiences three seasons each year, each dependent on the life-giving rains that fall in the region. Rainfall marks the start of the Great Migration. The usually golden plains are transformed into a lush paradise from November to March. The plains come alive during the calving season and wildflowers dot the landscape in a beautiful spectacle of nature.

serengeti-calving-season

The dry season from June to October means great game viewing. The green vegetation recedes and visibility increases for high-action predator vs prey interaction. This is a prime time of year to see dramatic wildlife scenes. Ndutu sees guests return multiple times to experience the allure of the last truly wild African savannah.

affordable-serengeti-safari

Our Herdtracker partners

The game rangers and staff at Ndutu Safari Lodge are committed to bringing the Great Migration to the rest of the world. They have partnered with Discover Africa’s migration app called Herdtracker, which provides detailed updates on the wildebeests’ movements through the region. Without Ndutu Safari Lodge and their incredible staff, planning your Great Migration safari itinerary would be impossible. We’d love to extend our thanks to the rangers and guides who combine their experience and knowledge into this project.


Our Recommended Itinerary

The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)

day 1

Arusha and your arrival
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)

day 2

Onwards to Tarangire, the perfect start
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)

day 3

Elephant and so much more

day 4

Lake Manyara and the rim of the Crater
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)

day 5

Full day on the Crater floor

day 6

Lake Ndutu and the southern plains
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)
  • The migration (Calving season) Late January to end March (EA 11 days)

day 7

The Great Migration, it is hard to imagine

day 8

day 9

Big cat country

day 10

Make sure you find leopard

day 11

Fly Home

View Full Itinerary

Some related info

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IN PICTURES: The Great Migration calving season

The Great Migration exodus starts in January and March from the Ngorongoro and Serengeti Conservation in Tanzania, where over 500,000 new calves are born during the calving season. Enormous herds of zebras and wildebeests are seen grazing on the fresh grass. When the supply soon becomes scarce, these animals head to the woodlands and long grass plains of the Serengeti’s western side close…

Where is the great migration in July?

The migration has been a little erratic this year, due to the above-average rainfall during the wet season, and predicting where the herds will be is not an exact science.  Having said that, early July sees a lot of herds in the Grumeti Reserve, with the balance in the western region of the Serengeti. July is normally the time when the rut starts so you can expect the herds to be very…

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