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7 day Ngorongoro Highland trekking with highlights including....

  • Exciting off the beaten track multi-day hikes inside of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area.
  • Spectacular scenery with wildlife, mountains and plains and 2 nights in the Lake Natron area.
  • Experience culture, nature and hiking on it's own or include some extra days for safaris in the nearby National Parks.
  • Quiet locations, not packed with tourists offering real encounters with Maasai who live in these remote locations.
  • Camping in special campsites with the classic 5 million star experience in basic tents.
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Day 1 - Moshi / Kilimanjaro Airport (JRO) / Arusha to Nainokanoka (Ngorongoro Highlands)

In the morning you will be picked up from your hotel and you will travel on a good tar road to the village of Mto wa Mbu with the escarpment of the Great Rift Valley towering up ahead. A short drive further and you will reach the gate of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. The journey continues along the scenic crater road, to the Masai village of Nainokanoka. While the camp is being set up, you will hike to the rim of the Olmoti Crater during the afternoon. Dinner will be served at the camp.

  • Accommodation options
  • Basic camping: Nainokanoka special campsite
  • Approx driving distance: 5-7 hours
  • Expected game drive: None
  • Optional activities: None, speak to your consultant
  • Meals usually included: Lunch, dinner
  • Start Hike: Nainokanoka
  • End hike: Nainokanoka
  • Altitude: +-300
  • Approximate trekking time / distance: 1-2 hours / 2km

Day 2 - Nainokanoka to Bulati (Ngorongoro Highlands)

Today you will pass many traditional Masai bomas and cattle herds. Soon, you might also see wild animals around the highlands. After approximately 16 km of hiking you will reach a campsite not far from the Masai village Bulati.

  • Accommodation options
  • Basic camping: Bulati special campsite
  • Approx driving distance: None
  • Expected game drive: None
  • Optional activities: None, speak to your consultant
  • Meals usually included: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
  • Start Hike: Nainokanoka
  • End hike: Bulati
  • Altitude: +500m
  • Approximate trekking time / kms: 4-5 hours / 16kms

Day 3 - Bulati to Empakai (Ngorongoro Highlands)

After breakfast, the journey continues up and down through the bushy landscape which finally opens up to the active volcano, Oldonyo Lengai, that can be seen in the near distance. Today’s trek gives you great views of the majestic volcano as well as into the impressive Empakai Crater before reaching the campsite for the night on the crater rim. You can explore the crater and on a well-maintained path you descend to Empakai Lake inside the crater. This alkaline soda lake is an important food source for flamingos. Returning to camp for your dinner.

  • Accommodation options
  • Basic camping: Empakai special campsite
  • Approx driving distance: None
  • Expected game drive: None
  • Optional activities: None, speak to your consultant
  • Meals usually included: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
  • Start Hike: Bulati
  • End hike: Empakai
  • Altitude: +500m
  • Approximate trekking time / kms: 3-4 hours / 9kms

Day 4 - Empakai to Acacia (Ngorongoro Highlands)

Today you leave behind your vehicle and hike with donkeys who carry your luggage to the Masai village Naiyobi and following a good vehicle path. Nayobi village will be seen in the distance under the impressive volcano (active) that is Oldoinyo Lengai; ‘The mountain of god’. From Nayobi your trek takes you outside of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area and the landscape becomes drier and warmer. Tonight’s camp will be set up in the acacia forest. A rewarding extra short hike to a viewpoint can offer views of the Ngorongoro Highlands, Gol mountains, Lake Natron, the Rift Valley and Oldoinyo Lengai all from one impressive location.

  • Accommodation options
  • Basic camping: Acacia special campsite
  • Approx driving distance: None
  • Expected game drive: None
  • Optional activities: None, speak to your consultant
  • Meals usually included: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
  • Start Hike: Empakai
  • End hike: Acacia
  • Altitude: +200m
  • Approximate trekking time / kms: 4-5 hours / 13kms

Day 5 - Acacia to Engaresero (Lake Natron)

The last stage of the journey is relatively short and downhill and takes you down into the dry and hot Rift Valley, where ash from previous eruptions may be seen. Your driver will meet you at the end of the trek and take you to Engarasero village where you should reach around lunchtime. This afternoon you have optional activities (time permitting) including: Village tour / Hotspring tour / Visit to waterfalls / Biking tour to Orpul caves / Footprints / Maasai cultural and botanical tour / herding tour.

  • Accommodation options
  • Basic camping: World view campsite
  • Approx driving distance: None
  • Expected game drive: None
  • Optional extras: Oldoinyo lengai trek (Midnight)
  • Meals usually included: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
  • Start Hike: Acacia
  • End hike: Engaresero
  • Altitude: -1200m
  • Approximate trekking time / kms: 2-4 hours / 6kms

Day 6 - Lake Natron

The day today will be relaxed, and your options include (time permitting): explore the lake shores of Lake Natron / Village tour / Hotspring tour / Visit to waterfalls / Biking tour to Orpul caves / Footprints / Maasai cultural and botanical tour / herding tour. Lake Natron is a breeding place for thousands of Flamingos who usually build their nests using the soda flats between August and October. At approximately 11:00pm you will hike up Ol Doinyo Lengai (2,960 m (9,718 ft); the “Mountain of God”. Overnight” (approx. 4-5-hour hike).

  • Accommodation options
  • Basic camping: World view campsite
  • Approx driving distance: None
  • Expected game drive: None
  • Optional extras: Oldoinyo lengai trek (Midnight)
  • Meals usually included: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
  • Start Hike: None
  • End hike: None
  • Altitude: N/A
  • Approximate trekking time / kms: None

Day 6 - Lake Natron to Arusha / Kilimanjaro Airport (JRO) / Moshi

Today you start your drive back to Arusha / Moshi passing the Engaruka ruins in between Lake Natron and Engarasero. The road will likely be full of stones and a difficult drive until Mto wa Mbu where you will join the tarmac highway again. The drive from Engarasero to Moshi will likely take around 6 to 7 hours.

  • Accommodation options
    None included but you can add pre / post tour accommodation to any of our safaris on request in Arusha, Moshi or around Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO)
  • Approx driving distance: 6-7 hours
  • Expected game drive: None
  • Optional extras: None, speak to your consultant.
  • Meals usually included: Breakfast, lunch
  • Start Hike: None
  • End hike: None
  • Altitude: N/A
  • Approximate trekking time / kms: None

7 days and 6 nights Ngorongoro highland trekking

Ngorongoro Highlands (4 nights) > Lake Natron (2 nights)

  • Parks and reserves:
    Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Lake Natron
  • Activities included:
    Walking safaris, cultural activities
  • Optional extras:
    Wildlife safari (game drives)
  • Pre/post safari accommodation:
    Not included, can be added as an extra
  • Best months for this tour:
    December to February or June to October
  • Commonly seen animals:
  • Occasionally seen animals:
    Leopard
  • Rarely seen animals:
    Lion

Standard packages usually include...

  • Accommodation as stated in the itinterary with all taxes and fees included
  • National park, Conservation area or Wildlife Management Area fees as applicable to your itinerary
  • Game drives as indicated in the itinerary with a dedicated (private) 4x4 Land Cruiser operated by our English speaking safari-guides and sanitized between uses.
  • Meals as indicated in your itinerary
  • Domestic flights if indicated in your personal itinerary
  • In vehicle sanitizers and complimentary face masks
  • In vehicle safari WiFi subject to network connectivity

Optional extras you can add...

  • Airport or other transfers
  • Pre and post safari accommodation if not already included
  • Hot air balloon safaris if available on your planned route
  • Night game drives if available on your planned route
  • Walking safaris in Arusha or Tarangire National Parks
  • Extra activities such as museums, snake parks, cultural or nature walks if avaialble on your planned route
  • Canoeing safaris in Arusha or Lake Manyara National Parks (subject to water levels)
  • Kilimanjaro scenic flight
  • Special bush meals if available at your planned activity

Standard packages usually exclude...

  • Tips / gratuities
  • Beverages such as soft drinks, alcohol etc.
  • International flights
  • Insurance
  • Items of a personal nature
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When to visit


These recommendations are based on weather predictions and trends.

Excellent time

January, February, July to October, December

Good time

March, June, November

Mixed time

April, May

Why choose us?

Here are some of the top reasons thousands have chosen Shah Tours.

35+ years experience

We are not just saying it, we have decades of experience with many guides having worked with us for years and years creating memories since 1984.

Family owned

Currently on the third generation of the 'Shah' in Shah Tours, we have always been family owned bringing the experience and passion of many generations.

Responsible

We are part of multiple organisations to ensure our standards are high. Some of our tours are also externally monitored to ensure fair and independent monitoring.

Superior guides

Most of our guides have worked with us for many years and have plenty of training, skill and real world experience to offer a superb and friendly experience in multiple languages.

Safe and Reliable

Policies for safety and operations ensure our tours are enjoyable and safe. Some companies still operate without licenses and cut corners, we are not one of them!

Happy clients

Although we have never counted exactly, we can safely say that many tens of 1000's have travelled with us and left happy. We continually improve based on feedback.

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