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The northern region of the Serengeti is a vast pristine area of wooded rolling hills interspersed with open grassy patches and large granite outcrops. This region extends north about 55 miles from Seronera in the central Serengeti to the Masai Mara Game Reserve in Kenya. Most visitors to the Serengeti never see the northern region. It is only rarely visited and remains an unexplored and untouched wilderness packed with stunning landscapes and abundant wildlife.
We find it ironic that the most popular game viewing regions in East Africa are the Central Serengeti in Tanzania and the Masai Marareserve in Kenya. Thousands of visitors a year flock to these two great areas, which belong to same ecosystem. Located right in between these two areas is the northern Serengeti, which receives very few visitors.
Wildlife concentrations are a little lower in the northern Serengeti and the thick woodlands do make game harder to see but this is more than compensated by the beautiful landscapes and the fact you will have the majority of wildlife sightings all to yourself.
Home to the enormous migratory herds during the dry season (July to Nov). The Northern Serengeti remains an unexplored wilderness packed with stunning landscapes and abundant wildlife. The most captivating highlight of this area is undoubtedly the massive herds of migratory wildebeest and zebra during the dry season. However, the North Serengeti also supports an abundance of resident wildlife including lion, elephant, hippo, giraffe, crocodile and the rare oribi antelope.
Great Migration crossing the Mara River
Northward migration from July – Nov
Rare oribi antelope & black rhino
Big cat viewing in ancient Lobo Valley
The Seronera region, as the most popular area of the park, has a wealth of lodging options ranging from budget-friendly through to mid-range and up to all-out luxury, with some of the park’s best high-end properties. Budget travellers can camp under the stars at the rustic Seronera Campsite, while travellers looking for mid-range options will find affordable lodges and camps – many of which are family friendly and offer the full range of amenities such as WiFi. You’re spoiled for choice when it comes to luxury camps: there are mobile camps which move with the Great Migration herds (and don’t scrimp on comfort, with proper beds, hot bucket showers and private butlers), beautifully designed lodges with private infinity pools and activities such as guided meditation sessions in the bush, bush picnics and stargazing.
The park headquarters are also based in Seronera (close to the airstrip), where there’s a visitor information centre, a curio shop and a café.
The Seronera gets particularly busy during the most popular months of June and July and October to April and sightings can be overpopulated. If escaping the crowds is your priority and you’re travelling in these months, consider booking your lodging in another part of the park.
Some of the lodges and camps offer short walks in the bush of two to four hours with Maasai guides, who’ll teach you about the smaller creatures and the plants that you miss on game drives. If walking is something you’d like to experience, do some research on lodges that offer this activity.
Seronera is accessible by road on a six-hour drive from both Arusha and Mwanza, but the easiest option to access this part of the park is to fly into the Seronera airstrip and stay at a lodge that caters for fly-in travellers: they’ll come and pick you up from the airstrip and provide game drives in their vehicles.