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17th February 2016
Yesterday did the German Ambassador to Tanzania handed over a surveillance aircraft to the Tanzanian Minister of Natural Resources and Tourism which was donated a few months ago during an official visit of the German Foreign Minister to the country. The Husky aircraft will be operated by the Frankfurt Zoological Society (FZS) for surveillance of the Serengeti National Park to support TANAPA’s fight against poaching.
We are seeing the large mammals of our protected areas under a severe threat of local extinction because of poaching‘ said the Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism Prof. Jumanne Maghembe on the occasion of the handover in Seronera. He thanked the German government for the support in countering the recent upsurge in poaching.
Stringent law enforcement, community involvement and ecosystem management are key in the fight against poaching‘, said the German Ambassador Mr. Egon Kochanke before adding: ‘I am very proud to be able to hand this aircraft over to the Tanzanian authorities and FZS. This is an important cornerstone of our close and longstanding cooperation‘.
It is the Frankfurt Zoological Society which will operate the aircraft in close cooperation with the Serengeti National Park Authority. With aerial support, poacher camps and illegal activities can be detected and the pilots can provide critical information to reaction forces on the ground.
Tanzanian wildlife authorities are faced with a dramatic upsurge of poaching threatening the country’s populations of elephants and rhinos. To counter this threat and to support wildlife and habitat monitoring, the German Government through the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) has provided funding for the acquisition of overall three aircraft.
The other two Husky A-1C Aircraft will be deployed in the Tanzanian Selous Game Reserve, one of the hardest hit areas by elephant poaching gangs and the Zambian North Luangwa National Park. The Husky is well suited for monitoring and anti-poaching surveys as it operates at low heights and slow speeds.
This support is part of longer-term financial and technical development cooperation measures implemented by FZS, GIZ, KfW, in collaboration with Tanzania Wildlife Authority TAWA, Tanzania National Parks TANAPA, and the Zambian Department of National Parks and Wildlife DNPW.

By Brian Jackman
09 April, 2015
No matter how often I visit the Serengeti its magic never palls. In this wild and open country you feel you could drive forever and never have enough of it. Out on the plains the light is dazzling. Colossal thunderheads trail shawls of rain across horizons wider than the sea, and wherever you look there are animals. 
When United Nations delegates met in Stockholm in 1972 to choose the first World Heritage Sites it was the Serengeti that came top of the list. Today it is one of the most famous national parks on Earth, renowned for its magnificent lions but best known for its great migration. 
The key players in this 1,200-mile odyssey are the wildebeest – 1.5 million of them – accompanied by 200,000 zebras. For them, every year is an endless journey, chasing the rains in a race for life. The action takes place across 150,000 square miles of woodlands, hills and open plains, a wilderness that includes not only the Serengeti national park and Kenya’s Maasai Mara game reserve but also the dispersal areas beyond. 
The yearly cycle begins in the south of the park, where half a million calves are born between January and March. But when the rains end in May the land dries fast and the grazing animals must move on, heading for their dry season refuge in the Maasai Mara. 
With the beginning of the short rains in late October the migration makes its way back into the Serengeti, so this a good time to be anywhere in the north of the park between Klein’s Camp and the Lamai Wedge. By December, having emerged from the northern woodlands, the herds return past Seronera to mass on their calving grounds again and the circle is complete. 
July to October is the time to catch the show in Kenya. The rest of the year belongs to Tanzania and the reason is the weather. Rain is the engine that drives the migration, dictating where the herds will be at different times of the year. 
The rainy season normally runs from October to May. It begins with the short rains – a period of gloriously hot sunny days that end with brief torrential thunderstorms. It peaks in the long rains of April — a month to avoid when most camps close and the plains become quagmires. 
When the rains end in May the wildebeest make tracks for the Maasai Mara. Some take Route One – north across the Seronera Valley. Others swing through the Western Corridor, but for all of them the journey is beset with danger. For a start there are the famous Serengeti lions – about 3,000 at the last count – to which can be added leopards and cheetahs, hungry hyena clans and monster crocodiles. 
That is the migration’s normal pattern but this year is different. Lack of rain forced the herds to leave their breeding grounds early, driving them into the Western Corridor two months ahead of time. There, lying in wait for them are the notorious Grumeti River crocodiles. Now, at last, rain has come,the river is high and experts are predicting unparalleled scenes of high drama as the monster crocs take their toll. 
Zebras are often the first to arrive in the Mara, chomping down the tall grass with the wildebeest hot on their heels. Here they stay from July to October — the main tourist season – when visitors flock to watch the dramatic river crossings. 
But as soon as the rains return the wildebeest head back to the Serengeti, drawn towards their calving grounds in the park’s deep south. In the dry season you will see nothing here but an emptiness of dust and stubble. But between January and March when the calves are born there is nowhere on Earth so vibrantly alive. 
The best game-viewing areas in the Serengeti are the short-grass plains and their granite kopjes in the south, the Seronera Valley, the Western Corridor and the far north of the park where it meets the Mara. New since last year is Namiri Plains (www.namiriplains.asiliaafrica.com), a small luxury camp 90 minutes’ drive east of Seronera. This area was closed for 20 years to create a cheetah haven until it opened last year and is offbeat Serengeti at its very best. 
Ndutu Safari Lodge (ndutu.com) is ideally placed for exploring the southern plains, set on the edge of woodlands that teem with game in the rainy season. There are soda lakes, too, with pink clouds of flamingos, and marshes where serval cats love to hang out. 
One of the loveliest areas lies in the heart of the park, where the Seronera river meanders across the plains, creating a linear paradise of Senegal palms and fever trees in which to look for leopards. 
June is when the migration pours through the Western Corridor into Singita Grumeti, a private game-viewing stronghold the size of the Mara with only 70 guests at a time (singita.com). 
The north of the park between the Lamai Wedge and Klein’s Camp is a wild, broken country of granite kopjes, hidden valleys and open savannah. 
Off-track driving is still allowed and the abundance of game is reminiscent of the Mara I knew 30 years ago. During the migration in early November you can watch huge river crossings with fewer vehicles than you will see in the Mara. 
The Maasai Mara is renowned for the spectacular river crossings that take place when the migration is here from July to November. Some of the biggest crossings occur where the Mara River flows past the Mara Serena Safari Lodge on its hilltop overlooking the plains. The Mara Triangle, the area to the west of the river, has fewer lodges, and therefore fewer visitors at this busy time. 
Elsewhere in the reserve you can often witness similar dramatic scenes when the herds gather along the Sand river and the Talek, and with luck you may even spot the Marsh Lions of Big Cat Diary fame hunting zebras near Governors’ Camp (governorscamp.com). 
The best way to avoid the crowds that gather whenever big cats are found is to stay outside the national reserve on one of the excellent private wildlife concessions, such as Naboisho, Mara North and Olare Orok, where visitor numbers are strictly limited. The game viewing is as good as anywhere. So is the accommodation (some of Kenya’s finest bush camps are here), and you can still enter the reserve to watch the river crossings. 


For Kenya fly from Heathrow to Nairobi (eight hours non-stop with British Airways; 0844 493 0787; ba.com). For Tanzania, flying from Heathrow with Kenya Airways (0208 283 1818; kenya-airways.com), it’s an extra hour to Kilimanjaro airport. After that the choice is yours: fly direct into the bush by light aircraft (saving hours of precious time) or transfer by road (long and arduous but cheaper). 
If you are going to Kenya you could combine the Mara with a stay on the Indian Ocean coast, and in Tanzania you can easily visit Tarangire National Park, Lake Manyara and Ngorongoro Crater en route to the Serengeti. 
First-timers may feel happier staying in safari lodges, but tented camps are not lacking in comfort and bring you closer to the wild. Best of all are mobile camping safaris that move wherever the migration is and allow you greater freedom when deciding how to spend each day. Wherever you stay, location is all-important, and good professional driver-guides can make all the difference. 
Forget about independent travel. It’s far better to rely on the UK’s own bespoke safari tour operators who know the logistics inside and out regarding camps and lodges, internal flights and land transfers. For reliability, choose operators belonging to the African Travel and Tourism Association (atta.travel). 





Covering a total area of 14,763 kilometers of natural and expanse grazing land in northern Tanzania tourist circuit, Serengeti National Park has been named this year’s chosen global tourist site for the tourism, hotel and catering industry.

The park is the leading tourist attraction site in Tanzania, pulling in over 150,000 foreign tourists each year.

Global Trade Leaders’ Club, an International Businessmen Club counting more than 7,000 associated companies globally, named Serengeti National Park a global prestige tourist site which attracts the hospitality industry, reports from Tanzania National Parks said.

Tourism professionals from over 40 countries around the world are expected to attend a special function to honor this Tanzanian biggest park in Madrid and that will coincide with the FITUR International Tourism Fair.

Serengeti is Tanzania’s oldest and most popular park, also a World Heritage site, it is famed for its annual migration when some six million hooves pound the open plains as more than 200,000 zebra and 300,000 Thompson gazelle join the wildebeests’ trek for fresh grazing.

Serengeti offers arguably the most entertaining game viewing in Africa with great herds of buffalo, smaller groups of elephant and giraffe, and thousands upon thousands of grass-eating mammals.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Tanzania's amazing Ngorongoro Crater is truly a photographer's paradise, and ideal for photo safaris. That is what our ATA delegates experienced during Host Country Day at the Africa Travel Association's 33rd Congress in Arusha. To prove my point, most of the wildlife images on this page were taken within a few hours by Muguette Goufrani, Africa Travel Magazine Associate Editor, who has lived and worked in several African countries. The group of ladies in their colorful Maasai tribal attire were photographed near the Serena Lodge, where we stopped on our return to Arusha. Our ATA party included Hon. Dhino Chingungi, Tourism Minister, Republic of Angola (second from left) next to Editor Jerry W. Bird).


One of Tanzania's seven World Heritage sites, the Ngorongoro Crater is located in Northern Tanzania, and is part of the famous Serengeti. It is a deep Volcanic crater, the largest unflooded and unbroken Caldera in the world at 19.2 km in diameter, 610m deep and 304sqkm in area. UNESCO declared it an International Biosphere Reserve and World Heritage Site because of its wildlife and Cultural Heritage. It is also home of the world famous archaeological site, Oldupai (Olduvai) Gorge, often referred to as the "Cradle of Mankind," because some of the oldest humanoid remains, dating back 2,000,000 years ago, have been found there. 

In order to protect this unique blend of scenery, wildlife, human culture and pre-history. The Ngorongoro Conservation Area Authority is not a national park, but a unique multiple use area with an indigenous population sharing the area with the wildlife. Rare Species The rich pasture and permanent water of the crater floor supports a large concentration of wildlife of up to 25,000 large mammals, predominantly grazing animals. "The Ngorongoro Crater is one of the few places in East Africa where visitors can be certain of seeing black rhinoceros in a natural setting," said Stephen Mallya, World Tourism Manager. "And for the adventure traveler, there are walking safaris in special areas such as the Olmoti and Empakaai Craters; to the Great Rift Valley, the Northern Highlands Forest Reserves and the Eastern Serengeti Plains." One of the lures of Ngorongoro, besides witnessing the breathtaking sunrise and sunset from the Crater's rim, is that it is a dynamic and constantly changing eco-system and the numbers and proportion of some animals there have fluctuated considerably over the past 30 years.


Safari Contact:

Looking for a company that is familiar with Ngorongoro Crater and all prime locations in Tanzania? Look to Predators Safari Club. Their fleet includes 36 Safari vehicles all 4X4 combinations, specially modified for safaris with pop-up roofs and sliding windows for unrestricted viewing. Visit www,predators-safaris.com - www.ngorongoro-crater-africa.org - or www.africa-ata.org

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Tanzania National Parks launches new global tourism brochure
This exciting new brochure details all 14 of the national parks and will be an invaluable guide for anyone planning a trip to Tanzania. The brochure is available in English, French, German and Spanish. http://www.tanzaniaparks.com/

The Tanzania Experience



Gombe Stream


Mount Kilimanjaro

Kitulo Plateau

Mahale Mountains

Lake Manyara




Rubondo Island




Udzungwa Mountains

Can any one mental snapshot encapsulate the Tanzanian experience? Thousands upon thousands of wildebeest that march in mindless unison on the annual migration through the Serengeti, perhaps? Or a family of elephants wading across the wide, muddy Rufiji/Tarangire River? What about a pride of well-fed lions sunbathing on the grassy floor of the majestic Ngorongoro Crater? Certainly, it is such images that tend to spring to mind when one thinks of Tanzania. And properly so!

Tanzania, truly, is a safari destination without peer. The statistics speak for themselves: an unparalleled one-quarter of its surface area has been set aside for conservation purposes, with the world-renowned Serengeti National Park and incomprehensibly vast Selous Game Reserve heading a rich mosaic of protected areas that collectively harbour an estimated 20 percent of Africa's large mammal population.

And yet there is more to Tanzania than just safaris. There is Mount Kilimanjaro and Meru, respectively the highest and fifth-highest peaks on the continent. And Lakes Victoria, Tanganyika and Nyasa, the three largest freshwater bodies in Africa. Then, of course, there is the magical 'spice island' of Zanzibar, the highlight of a vast Indian Ocean coastline studded with postcard-perfect beaches, stunning offshore diving sites, and mysterious mediaeval ruins.

It doesn't stop there.
Rising from the sandy shores of Lake Tanganyika, the forested Gombe Stream and Mahale Mountains National Parks vie with each other as the best place in the world to track wild chimpanzees. Closer to the coast, the isolated massifs of the underpublicised Eastern Arc Mountains have been dubbed the 'African Galapagos' in recognition of their wealth of endemic plants and animals. And Tanzania's daunting natural variety is mirrored by a cultural diversity embracing 120 distinct tribes: from the iconic Maasai pastoralists of the Rift Valley, to the Arab-influenced Swahili of the coast, to the Hadzabe hunter-gatherers of Lake Eyasi.

So, how to define the experience offered by a country with highlights as unique and diverse as Kilimanjaro, Zanzibar, Lake Tanganyika, Serengeti and Selous? An experience that might for some entail long days hiking in sub-zero conditions on the upper slopes of Africa's most alluring peaks; for others a once-in-a-lifetime safari followed by a sojourn on an idyllic Indian Ocean beach; for others still the thrill of eyeballing habituated chimpanzees, or diving in the spectacular offshore reefs around Mafia, or backpacking through the time-warped ports and crumbling ruins of the half-forgotten south coast?


Well, the one thing that does bind Tanzania's diverse attractions is, of course, its people, who take justifiable pride in their deeply ingrained national mood of tolerance and peacefulness. Indeed, Tanzania, for all its ethnic diversity, is practically unique in Africa in having navigated a succession of modern political hurdles &endash; the transformation from colonial dependency to independent nation, from socialist state to free-market economy, from mono-partyism to fully-fledged democracy - without ever experiencing sustained civil or ethnic unrest.


Tanzania has also, over the past 20 years, emerged from comparative obscurity to stand as one of Africa's most dynamic and popular travel destinations: a land whose staggering natural variety is complemented by the innate hospitality of the people who live there.


How to define the Tanzanian experience? Surprisingly easy, really. It can be encapsulated in a single word, one that visitors will hear a dozen times daily, no matter where they travel in Tanzania, or how they go about it: the smiling, heartfelt Swahili greeting of "Karibu!" &endash;