The Serengeti is the most famous national park in Tanzania. It is located in the northern part of Tanzania, bordering the Masai Mara in Kenya. The Serengeti covers an area of 14.800 km², most of which is grass plains. The park got its name from the Maasai word Siringitu, meaning endless plain.
Well known in the Serengeti are the “kopjes”. The kopjes display some interesting geological formations made up of ancient granite, which were left standing after centuries of erosion and weathering. Within the grass plains of the Serengeti the scattered kopjes provide protection for animals from grassfires, predators and the heat. The rocky kopjes are one of the best places to see lions and sometimes cheetahs on the hunt or just have a nap in the sun. These animals do also hide their cubs on the kopjes.
The park is home to 3 million animals, which includes big game like lions, leopards and cheetahs, but as well elephants, gazelles, impalas, giraffes, buffalos and topis. The BIG FIVE is present in the Serengeti, although the rhino might be harder to find. The game drives in this park are exceptional and game viewing incredible.
The famous “Migration”, the annual migration of millions of wildebeest and zebras, is a great spectacle. The Serengeti migration takes place the whole year, the exact timings and movements are depending on rainfall. As the rains end in May the animals start to migrate northwest, from the dry southern plains to the western corridor. They will stay in the areas around Grumeti River until late June. This is also the mating season. In July the main migration of wildebeest and zebras head towards the Masai Mara in Kenya, arriving at the border around late July. The animals will stay in Kenya till around October. At the start of the short rains in November, the herds start to move back to the Serengeti. They migrate to the southern plains again. In January-February the calving season begins. The herds remain in the south grazing and giving birth to about 500.000 calves within a 2-3 weeks period. The calves will have a few months to gather their strength before they start the long migration to the north.
The Serengeti has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1981.