Safari game drives are a highlights for anyone visiting the African wildernesses. They are the number one activity on any safari in Tanzania, the perfect way to explore the country’s various National Parks with exotic wildlife and remarkable landscape. The game drives are tailor-made, designed to suit the travellers’ preferences and are carefully planned to give the best experience depending on the national park visited. Game drives in Tanzania are done in 4WD open-roof safari vehicles with professional driver guides. Most people prefer to have game drives during the cooler times of the day when animals are not finding shades due to the hot sun. Often, game drives happen in the morning and the clients return to the lodge for lunch and later return to the park for beautiful sunset. Night game drives generally happen near the lodge areas and you look out for the numerous nocturnal animals crawling out of their hideouts to start their night’s hunt. In a few instances, some people opt for a full day game drive where they carry along a packed lunch and have a picnic in the wilderness.
For instance, game drives in Serengeti National Park located north of Tanzania offer some of the greatest wildlife spectacles in Africa. From views of the great migration of millions of grazers to Masai Mara in Kenya to encounters of hundreds of predators, large mammals, and primates among others. Serengeti National Park also features remarkable landscapes including savannah grassland, woodland, and riverine forests, all offering great scenery during game drives. Game drives in Serengeti National Park start as early as 6:00 am to catch the wild animals as they start their day or end their day depending. The grazers are mostly starting their day and the predators are mostly ending their day. Some of the wildlife to look for include; wildebeest, zebras, gazelles, hartebeests, warthogs, impalas, antelopes, bushbucks, rhinos, elephants, buffaloes, lions, cheetahs, hyenas, jackals, wild dogs and primates such as vervet monkeys, patas monkeys, baboons, among many others.
Lake Manyara National Park treats travellers to impressive views of the famous climbing lions among a variety of other wild animals. Located in Northern Tanzania, at the foot of the Great Rift Valley, Lake Manyara National Park is one of the smallest, yet most fascinating safari destinations in the country. The Park is one of the three National Parks in Africa that harbour tree-climbing lions. Here expect to explore the Park’s climbing lions lying up and resting on the acacia and fig trees. It is also home to countless elephants, buffaloes, antelopes, hippos, reedbucks, bushbucks, gazelles, klipspringers, zebras, olive baboons, monkeys, among others, and a variety of bird species. Night game drives in the Park start after dinner giving one a chance to spot other nocturnal animals such as lions, cheetahs, leopards, and hyenas.
In Ngorongoro Crater, enjoy encounters of numerous wildlife. It is located in Northern Tanzania and is part of the Serengeti ecosystem. The Conservation Area is home to over 30,000 wild animals which include; elephants, black rhinos, buffaloes, giraffes, zebras, gazelles, wildebeests, lions, leopards, spotted hyenas, and cheetahs among others. In addition to its open plains and attractive crater walls that are dotted with lush forests, the crater offers spectacular game viewing. No cars are allowed in the crater after 6pm consequently there are no night game drive in the crater.
Another National Park with great wildlife viewing in Tarangire National Park well known for hosting large herds of elephants. Tarangire is also comprised of diverse habitats including woodlands and swampy floodplains that provide shelter to several wildlife species. You re able to enjoy both day game drives and night drives. Day game drives for mostly grazers such as large herds of elephants, elands, giraffes, zebras, hartebeests, gazelles, buffaloes, bohor reedbucks, lesser kudus and antelopes among others grazing in the savannah grassland. A variety of bird species, primates and lovely scenery are things to enjoy while on a game drive in Tarangire. Tarangire also offers thrilling night game drives to search for nocturnal animals. They usually start at around 08:00 pm and are conducted under the supervision of an armed ranger for protection. Night game drives offer tourists the opportunity to encounter the predators as they come out of their hideouts to start hunting for food. Among these include; lions, leopards, hyenas, serval cats, civets, jackals, and bush babies, to mention but a few.
Safari game drives in Tanzania are done in several other National Parks which include; Mikumi National Park, Ruaha National Park, Katavi National Park and Arusha National Park, Nyerere national park. Game drives in Tanzania give tourists to explore not just wild animals but the scenery of the park, breath-taking sunrises and sunsets to mention but a few. Game drives in Tanzania can be done at any time of the year, however, they are best done from June to October, which is the best time to witness the Great Wildebeest Migration in Serengeti National Park and it is dry thus the vegetation in National Parks is short allowing for better views of wild animals. In addition, wild animals concentrate on the areas near water sources in the Parks and are hence easy to access.