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The Serengeti National Reserve & Lake Manyara & Zanzibar. Drive across endless savanna as you seek out intimate encounters with elephant, lion, cheetah and giraffe. As an expert safari guide leads you around, stop to learn about the smaller insects, amphibians, birds and plants, which are fundamental to this phenomenal landscape. Indulge in a classic cocktail in a secluded corner of the bush as the sun descends around you, prompting a dramatic transformation of the sky at sunset.
Fly out of the bush, landing on the idyllic tropical shores of the Zanzibar Archipelago. Spend a day exploring the Swahili-steeped city of Stone Town, visiting monuments, palaces and delightful restaurants as you wander through a labyrinth of cobbled streets. Detour via a spice farm before concluding this unbelievable adventure on the soft white sand beaches of northern Zanzibar. Slip into the aquamarine water to explore the marine life below, or simply drift away in a daydream as you reflect upon the magic of it all.
Pick up at your hotel after breakfast then begin explorations through the African bush. This portion starts in the tranquil and serene Lake Manyara National Park. You will drive to the park from Arusha over the course of the morning, arriving in time for lunch, followed by an afternoon game drive.
The park itself revolves around a sparkling alkaline lake, which is frequently coated by pink flamingos. These soda lakes are characteristic of the Great Rift Valley, and attract phenomenal populations of both resident and migratory birds. Ornithologists will want to do little more than set up under an acacia tree with a pair of binoculars, gazing at the skies above. The woodlands that surround the lake are also fascinating, largely because they house a population of rare tree-climbing lions. Found in only a handful of parks in Africa, these nimble lions are often seen swinging their tails from the branches of a tree. Drive along the escarpments and valleys, tracing the Tarangire River that feeds into this lake.
This morning, depart Lake Manyara and begin your journey towards the Serengeti. This region is significant for much more than solely its wildlife, which will become apparent over the coming days. We will first detour through the town of Mto Wa Mbu, where a number of Tanzanian tribes assimilate. Dominated by Masai warriors, this community has organized a cultural tourism program that shares the rich and varied local cultures with visitors. Take a tour through an authentic Masai homestead, or stop to peruse the crafts and beadwork made by local women.
Proceed the journey you will also detour past the Olduvai Gorge, one of the world’s most important paleoanthropological sites. It was here that Mary and Louis Leaky discovered some of the oldest known hominid remains in the 1960s. These Zinjanthropus bosei remains date back over 1.75 million years, while fossilized footprints date back over three million years. Few areas provide greater insight into human evolution than this particular gorge. Swing past the visitor’s center for additional information, before continue on westwards towards the Serengeti.
Rise early and hop in your vehicle with a packed picnic breakfast to explore the wilderness while it is at its most active. Venture out across the plains with your local guide, who will spend the day helping you locate the coveted cast of the Big Five. Watch as elephants tear leaves off acacia trees, while giraffes look onward from above the treetops. Seek out a lion lazing quietly in the shade, while rambunctious cubs circle the pride. You will undoubtedly find yourself perpetually surrounded by herds of ungulates, including countless zebra, gazelle and buffalo. If timed correctly, you may even be lucky enough to drive through the epicenter of the Great Wildebeest Migration. Spend time along rivers and beside watering holes, observing the species that come by for a drink. Keep your eyes peeled for crocodiles and hippos, which are often found lazily bobbing and lounging along the shore.
Spend the entire day exploring as much of the park as possible, or, return midday for some indulgence and relaxation at the lodge property.
Rise before the sun in order to squeeze in a final safari before you depart the Serengeti. Spend a few final hours traversing the plains in search of your favorite species, and those yet to be seen. For those craving a new perspective on the terrain, this may be the perfect opportunity to embark on a romantic and luxurious hot air balloon ride over the savanna, complete with a champagne picnic breakfast as you descend(Optional). Floating high above the plains is one of the few ways to truly grasp the expansiveness of the area – and to experience the total tranquility of it all.
In the mid-morning, drive back through the Ngorongoro Crater, stop at a lodge perched on the edge of the crater, with phenomenal views of the crater floor below. Ngorongoro was formed an estimated two to three million years ago, when an ancient volcano collapsed in on itself, creating this expansive caldera. Today, it is the largest inactive caldera worldwide and is home to vibrant populations of wildlife. The crater floor is often stippled with ungulates grazing on the lush grasses, while one of the world’s densest populations of lions looks onward.
This morning you will rise early in order to explore the floor of the Ngorongoro Crater. Weave down the rainforest lined slopes of the caldera, peering through the tangled trees for signs of leopards. Unsurprisingly, these fertile fields seasonally attract large herds of zebra, wildebeest and impala as part of the Great Migration. As the day wears on, begin your journey back up the opposing slopes to the surrounding highlands. Here, you will have impressive views of this volcanic landscape, with Mount Lengai looming off in the distance.
This morning you will board a flight in Arusha that will fly you across Tanzania, out over the ocean, descending on the tropical shores of Zanzibar.
Arriving at the airport in the historic Stone Town, the remainder of the day will be spent exploring the cobbled streets and winding roads of this unique city. In Zanzibar, you will begin the third radically different portion of the trip.
Today will be spent entirely at your leisure. Stone Town has played a significant role in east African development, acting as a meeting ground for Arab, Persian Indian, European and African merchants and traders. Swahili culture emerged as a result of this vibrant fusion, and remains a protected pride of the island today. Architecture, culture and cuisine are markedly different from that of the mainland, and today will be your chance to explore it.
Some of the highlights of Stone Town include a visit to the Palace of Wonders, an opulent former Sultan’s residence, since converted into a museum for Swahili and Zanzibari culture. Having played a significant role in the slave trade, a tour through the city’s Old Slave Market is another worthwhile endeavor. Navigating the tiny underground chambers provides a chilling and unforgettable insight into the horrors of the island’s dark history. While Mercury’s Restaurant is a favorite given its famous ownership (Queen lead vocalist, Freddy Mercury), The Café at Emerson Spice serves some spectacular Zanzibari fusion cuisine. Take the day to lose yourself in the history and culture of this singular city, ensuring of course that you migrate to an oceanside bar for the sunset.
While Stone Town is truly special, the beaches outside the city brought the island international fame. On this day you will head northwest towards Kendwa, detouring through a spice plantation en route. The spice trade has been fundamental to the island’s development, and remains an important feature of life today. Set out on a guided tour that exposes your senses to fields of cloves, black pepper, cardamom, cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon and lemongrass. Pause in fields of breadfruit and jackfruit to sample the island’s fresh tropical fruit, before carrying on north towards the island’s beach capital.
You will arrive on the idyllic shores of Kendwa in the late afternoon. Listen to the sound of the ocean washing up in front of a beachfront restaurant, as a soothing evening breeze blows past.
Today, this unbelievable adventure draws to a close on the tropical shores of Kendwa. Enjoy the sand as the turquoise and teal waters lap up around your feet, enjoy a final day with a great book and a cocktail in hand, if you happen to be an underwater enthusiast, forget the day of reflection and hop on a local dhow for a snorkeling, diving or sailing trip!
Return to the island as the sun sets, and sip on a final mojito while you order an impossibly fresh seafood feast. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure at your hotel.
This morning you will drive back to Stone Town in order to catch a flight off the island. Flying either to Dar es Salaam or back to Arusha, you will arrive at the connecting airport in time to catch your international flight. END OF SERVICE!
4 Days 3 Nights
Beatiful view of Jungfrau
Alpine Resort by Lake Thun
Hiking at Engadin
4 Days 3 Nights
Beatiful view of Jungfrau
Alpine Resort by Lake Thun
Hiking at Engadin