Explore the Serengeti, a wildlife arena like no other, and look for lions, leopards, elephants and giraffes in this iconic park.. Spend a day with local women in Arusha, learning to prepare a Swahili dish, crafting and learning about village life in Kisongo.. Take a mind-blowing safari across the floor of the Ngorongoro Crater in an open-roof 4WD vehicle for a chance to see endangered black rhinoceros.. Embark on a hike through the Usambara Mountains to the Irente viewpoint, then stop at a farm on the way back for a picnic lunch.
Take an East African road trip with Lonely Planet and Intrepid. Spend nine days searching for wildlife among Tanzania’s incredible scenery, from the remote Usambara Mountains to the vast expanse of the Serengeti. Go on game drives in search of lions, elephants and rhinos, and experience small-town life during village stays, crafting and cooking sessions. This overland adventure is all about being as close to nature and wildlife as possible – camping in the wild, watching animals you’ve only ever seen on TV in the flesh and going without wi-fi most nights.
Breakfast Included: 8 Lunches Included: 7 Dinner Included: 8
Stone Town / Bagamoyo
Begin your African adventure in Stone Town, Zanzibar’s Old Town. Meet your tour leader and travel group at an 11 am welcome meeting at the hotel. After this important meeting, catch the ferry to Dar es Salaam. Then board your overland vehicle (and meet your driver and cook) and take the short drive to your camp at Bagamoyo, a lovely spot by the beach.
If you wake early, you can make an optional excursion to the historical slave trade markets that once operated in Bagamoyo. After that visiting that sombre but important site (if you choose) it’s time to travel into the remote Usambara Mountains (approximately 7 hours). This unspoilt area of Tanzania attracts very few tourists, making it the perfect place for a Lonely Planet Experience. The forests stretch across the mountains and are ideal for easy hikes and guided walks. You base is the old German colony of Lushoto, where you’ll stay on the grounds of one of the earliest hotels in Africa.
Today, explore the beautiful Usambara Mountains and experience this area’s gentle hospitality on a visit to some of its small communities. From your base, hike to the gorgeous Irente viewpoint. It's best to pack some water and snacks in a day pack for this trip. On your way back, visit a local cultural project based at Irente farm and enjoy a picnic lunch.
Get ready for is a full day of travel as you board your truck once again and venture towards Tanzania’s national parks. Your destination is the sprawling gateway town of Arusha, approximately 10 hours’ drive. Arrive at your campsite on the outskirts of the town and settle in for the evening.
Take a short drive to the small town of Kisongo, where you will learn how to prepare a Swahili dish and enjoy a crafting session with local women. Enjoy your food creations for lunch. After this illuminating day, drive to the small town of Karatu, the gateway to the Ngorongoro Crater.
Ngorongoro Crater / Serengeti National Park
Get up early, put your camping and personal gear into a six-person jeep and head out for an excursion into the Serengeti via the Ngorongoro Crater. Enjoy a safari in the crater, spending between 3–4 hours exploring this perfectly intact volcanic crater. Watch for black rhinos, lions, leopards, elephants, impalas, zebras and hippos. Next, move on to the open plains of the Serengeti. Green after the rains, brown and burnt in the dry season, this is perhaps the quintessential image of Africa – the home of thousands of hoofed animals and fierce predators. Your campsite is within the Serengeti itself, so listen out for the sounds of nocturnal animals as you drift off to sleep.
Serengeti National Park
Wake at dawn and embark on a game drive. You will head out while the animals are at their most active, then go back to camp for brunch at around 11 am. After spending the middle of the day relaxing, just like the animals do, head out again as the day begins to cool. You'll return from this second game drive in time for dinner. There's also the option today of a balloon ride over the park (in place of a portion of the morning game drive). If you have pre-booked this activity you will be picked up before dawn and driven to the launch site. After a safety briefing, you will glide through the dawn, sometimes at tree height, which provides amazing photo opportunities. After landing, you'll be treated to a five-star bush breakfast, then be returned to your camp.
Mto wa Mbu
Rise with the sun and enjoy another game drive as you exit the Serengeti and head for Mto wa Mbu. On arrival, take a stroll and acquaint yourself with this small village situated well off the tourist trail. Learn about the farmer and artisan co-op that operates at the local market.
Set off early and cross the Kenyan border then continue to Nairobi (approximately 9–10 hours). You'll be dropped at the finishing point hotel in Nairobi where your trip ends on arrival. No accommodation is provided for tonight, but this can be arranged when you book this trip (subject to availability). You can also choose to finish your trip in Arusha this morning if you wish.