Although the estimates of the number of animals in the Serengeti Migration – wildebeest, common zebra and Thomson’s gazelle – vary, most authorities agree the number is around 2 million animals. Following the seasonal pattern of rain, the Migration takes an annual circuitous route that extends from Kenya’s Maasai Mara in the north, to the southern plains of the Serengeti in Tanzania.
The locations of the vast herds of the migration vary from year to year. In order to ensure that you have the best opportunities to see the amazing diversity of wildlife in the Serengeti – and catch up with the migration – you’ll visit two destinations within the Serengeti ecosystem.
The most popular time to visit is from January through March, when lush grazing can be found in Tanzania’s southeastern Serengeti. With such abundant pasture, hundreds of thousands of wildebeest babies are born within a six-week period – one of the world’s most amazing wildlife spectacles.
Later in the year, the herds move to the north, providing some of the most exciting wildlife viewing in Africa, as the herds cross the Mara River. Patience is required to actually see a river crossing. The herds may spend several days on the bank of the Mara River before they actually begin to cross. But, once the crossing begins, you’ll know the wait was worth it.
In June, the movement of the herds takes them into the Maasai Mara, the northern portion of the Serengeti that lies in Kenya. Much of the migration resides here until September, when the annual trek in search of fresh grazing turns the animals south.
The rolling grasslands of the Serengeti are also home to a wide variety of African wildlife, among them are elephants, African buffalo, Maasai giraffe, Grant’s gazelle, impala, topi, eland and hippos. And predators abound, ranging from the big cats – lion, leopard and cheetah – to hyenas and jackals. With any luck, you may find two smaller members of the cat family – slender servals and the African lynx, also known as the caracal.
If the Serengeti is on your bucket list, this is a great time to begin planning your dream safari in 2021! Tanzania is already open to international travel and ready to safely welcome visitors. Please give us a call at 800-779-2146 or contact us here.