Tanzania's Northern Circuit safaris, tours & holiday packages

Perfect for first-time safaris in Tanzania

Experience the best Tanzania has to offer in six must-see conservation areas of the north, either in a small group or on a private guided safari

The northern tourism circuit is by far the most popular safari circuit in Tanzania, comprising most of the must-see destinations in the country. If you're a first-time visitor to Tanzania, this is where you want to be. The circuit starts in Arusha and includes, from east to west: Arusha National Park at the foot of Mount Meru, Tarangire National Park 110km southwest of the town of Arusha, Manyara Ranch between Tarangire National Park and Lake Manyara National Park, Lake Manyara National Park at the bottom of the Gregory Rift, the Ngorongoro Conservation Area (which includes the Ngorongoro caldera, the Empakaai Crater and the southern Serengeti plains of Lake Ndutu), and the Serengeti National Park that stretches north to the Tanzania/Kenya border.

Popular Tanzania Northern Circuit safaris

These popular itineraries can be customised to match your budget and travel dates

Gorilla trekking and the Great Migration Combined (11 days) - Africa Wildlife Safaris

Gorilla trekking and the Great Migration Combined (11 days)

Unforgettable experience in the jungles of Rwanda to track the last Mountain gorillas on earth and view the awesome Great Migration river crossings

Price on Request

per person

11 days

The Serengeti on Foot (9 days) - Africa Wildlife Safaris

The Serengeti on Foot (9 days)

There's no better way to get close to nature and feel alive than on foot, and no better place to walk than the remarkable Serengeti

$ 3,500

£ 2,679

R 61,165

2,966

per person

10 days

Migration Safari in Kenya and Tanzania (8 days) - Africa Wildlife Safaris

Migration Safari in Kenya and Tanzania (8 days)

See the beauty of nature's greatest wildlife spectacle in two countries

Price on Request

per person

8 days

Game viewing

Green Season Wildebeest Migration Safari (11 days)

This four-in-one calving season safari includes not only the Serengeti, but Tarangire, Lake Manyara and the Ngorogoro Crater

$ 9,865

£ 7,550

R 172,399

8,359

per person

11 days

Affordable Ngorongoro and Serengeti Safari (6 days) - Africa Wildlife Safaris

Affordable Ngorongoro and Serengeti Safari (6 days)

We're offering our guests the chance to explore two world-famous destinations in under a week

$ 4,555

£ 3,486

R 79,602

3,860

per person

6 days

August Migration Safari with HerdTracker (10 days) - Africa Wildlife Safaris

August Migration Safari with HerdTracker (10 days)

Experience the drama of the nature's greatest spectacle in the Tanzania

$ 7,165

£ 5,484

R 125,214

6,071

per person

10 days

Honeymoon Safari in the Serengeti National Park (6 days) - Africa Wildlife Safaris

Honeymoon Safari in the Serengeti National Park (6 days)

Enjoy a romantic honeymoon at the Ngorongoro Crater where you can spot the Big Five and experience the wildlife-rich Serengeti National Park

$ 3,510

£ 2,686

R 61,340

2,974

per person

6 days

Tanzania couples safari - Africa Wildlife Safaris

Tanzania couples safari

Enjoy the wildlife of Tanzania as well as the paradise of Zanzibar

Price on Request

per person

13 days

Asilia Africa

Spectacular July to September Wildebeest River Crossings (10 days)

Experience one of Africa's greatest spectacles – smell the dust and hear the noise of thousands of animals crossing the Mara River

$ 11,990

£ 9,177

R 209,535

10,160

per person

10 days

Stopping for drinks

Affordable Green Season Safari in Tanzania (8 days)

From Lake Manyara to the Ngorogoro Crater and the Serengeti, this Tanzania safari offers real value and shows off the burgeoning green world of Tanzania's rainy season migration 

$ 7,240

£ 5,541

R 126,525

6,135

per person

8 days

Our African Travel Expert

Free safari planning advice from destination experts

Megan Warrington says

'If you plan your northern circuit safari well you can still experience an authentic safari, even during peak times; it is possible to show you lions and the migration without many vehicles present. It's important to start planning early so that you have as many lodge options as possible.'  

More on Tanzania Northern Circuit holidays

A combination of these parks and reserves will give you the best possible first-time safari experience in Tanzania and there are enough lodges and camps to suit your budget. We can provide you with all three different safari options into Tanzania’s Northern Circuit: group departures, fly-in safaris and private guided safaris. The latter two can include activities such as walking and a hot air balloon ride. We're experts at getting you to see the annual wildebeest migration, the crossings of the Mara River and the birth of a new generation on the southern Serengeti plains.There are variations and ways to keep you from the masses that gather in the central Serengeti during July and August or the busy Ndutu area during February.

Tanzania Northern Circuit Map

Tanzania Northern Circuit's location on Google Maps

Frequently Asked Questions about Tanzania Northern Circuit

What is a safari “bucket” shower?

Safari/bucket showers are common in mobile or tented camps where there is no permanent plumbing. They are an effective yet environmentally friendly way to shower where water is at a premium and provide plenty of hot water to wash… go there.

What is the accommodation like on safari?

Safari lodges have guest rooms similar to a hotel with en-suite bathrooms. They are comfortably furnished with all facilities normally associated with a 3-star hotel. Tented lodges have rooms which are tents on a platform and with a roof and… go there.

What languages are spoken in Tanzania?

Language The official language in Tanzania is Swahili but there are hundreds of other local dialects. English is the second official language and the country's commercial language. It is also the main teaching language used for all higher… go there.

When is the best time to visit Grumeti Game Reserve?

A Grumeti safari is rewarding throughout the year. However, the best time to visit Grumeti Game Reserve is during the migration months of June and July - when massive herds of wildebeest arrive to cross the crocodile-infested Grumeti River… go there.

When is the best time to visit Mount Kenya National Park?

December to March are the sunniest months and perhaps the best time to visit. There are some cloudy periods and rain from March to May, and drizzle from October to early December which may restrict clear views. However, Mount Kenya National… go there.

Can I bring my children along on a safari?

Family safaris in Africa are a worthwhile and meaningful experience. Aside from spending quality time with your nearest and dearest under a wide blue African sky, a safari in Africa offers invaluable experiences including unique cultural… go there.

When is the best time to visit Arusha National Park?

The best time to visit Arusha National Park is from June to October, during the dry season. It is easier to spot the wildlife - since they normally gather around the waterholes, rainfall is minimal, vegetation is not too thick and mosquitos… go there.

When is the best time to visit Mkomazi National Park?

June to October is the best time to visit Mkomazi National Park. During the dry season - when the wildlife viewing is at its prime. go there.

When is the best time to track chimpanzees in Mahale Mountains National Park?

July to October, during the dry months - is the best time to track the chimpanzees in Mahale Mountains National Park. Chimpanzees can be found easily on the low mountains slopes. go there.

Tanzania Northern Circuit - Africa Wildlife Safaris

Reviews on our Tanzania Northern Circuit safaris

Discover Africa and Carel has put in such an effort for us to experience the annual wildebeest migration, meticulous planning and accurate predictions with logical and the best accommodation options both sides of the Mara River guaranteed us…

Jates and Hil Oettle

from South Africa

Start to finish Discover Africa was wonderful crafting the perfect safari tailored for us! Karl was attentive and responsive from the very first email. He worked with us to find us EVERYTHING we wanted within our budget! He kept in touch the…

Our dream Tanzanian Safari was perfect magic; endless unique animal viewing, fab guide, great camps!

from Tanzania

After initially contacting Discover Africa, Karl Svendsen contacted me and we started the process of getting a quote and defining an itinerary for a safari to Tanzania. Karl was extremely professional and timely in his responses and in short…

Fantastic safari and excellent logistics!

from United States

I just wanted to thank Discover Africa and Karl Svendsen - the safari was great - we saw many more animals than expected including cheetah, leopard, many lions and even a three-day old elephant calf. Additionally, we had our own hippo…

Margaret Dean

We had the most wonderful time in Tanzania. We left yesterday and miss it already. We saw the big 5 and felt super lucky to see the lions and leopard with their kill. Our guide was also wonderful. Thank YOU for planning our trip of a…

Debbie Wei

We had a wonderful experience with the Discover Africa team on our trip to Kilimanjaro and Zanzibar. Due to unforeseen circumstances we needed to head down early and their team were most helpful in arranging exciting new options for us while…

Mark Tomlinson

from South Africa

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Our African Travel Expert

Free safari planning advice from destination experts