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The 6 Best Nature Walks through the Ngorongoro Conservation Area

When you hear the word Ngorongoro, what is the next word that comes to your mind? Crater, perhaps? Yes, indeed the Ngorongoro Crater is rightly renowned for its outstanding natural beauty and abundance of wildlife. However, there is a lot more to the Ngorongoro Conservation Area than just the Crater, and many visitors leave the area without having had the opportunity to see more of what is on offer. The surrounding highlands include seven extinct volcanoes full of outstanding beauty and spectacular scenery. The best way to appreciate these attractions is by walking. Even a short walk of only an hour or two can be very rewarding and there are also many opportunities for longer hikes. After spending days sitting in a vehicle, some visitors do say that they would like to stretch their legs.

Crater Rim Walk 

Drive to the starting point on the Crater rim about 5 km from the Rhino Lodge. The walk is along the western rim of the crater past the Oloirobi viewpoint. There are patches of forest at the beginning, which later opens up to thickets and grasslands. You’ll have beautiful views down into the crater on your right, and eventually you’ll come upon a view over the Olduvai Gorge, the Serengeti and the Gol mountains to your left. This is an easy-paced walk with no arduous climbs, just a few short gradients. It’s about 2 hours long, and can be done at any time of day. A good time would be either early morning before your game drive departs, or late afternoon after a day out on safari.

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Walking the rim of the Ngorongoro Crater.

Eyasi Viewpoint

Drive t0 the starting point on the road to Endulen. This open grassland gives beautiful views of Mount Oldeani to the left, and Makarot to the right. You will see several Maasai villages dotted around the valley, and you may well encounter men herding their cattle and goats. You’ll climb gently upwards for about 45 minutes along the shoulder of Mount Oldeani, eventually reaching a spectacular viewpoint where the land falls away to Lake Eyasi, the western wall of the Rift Valley, and the Serengeti plains. This walk can also be done at any time of the day, and takes about 2 hours.

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The land falls away down to the water of Lake Eyasi

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Kenya in a Nutshell

To say Kenya appeals to the adventure traveler would be a huge understatement. Kenya tours offer tons of wild activities and experiences, and exceed expectations at every turn.
Set along the beautiful Indian ocean and boasting a stunning variation of inland scenery, Kenya packs a punch for all visitors. Whether you are traveling alone, with friends or fancy the perfect family safari, Kenya tours cater for all visitors.

Things to do in Kenya

Main Attractions and Tourist Regions in Kenya
Reach new peaks and challenge yourself with an unforgettable climb of Mt. Kenya and observe the Unesco World Heritage site (and Unesco Biosphere reserve) from the soaring height of 4985m. The peak is higher but only attainable by mountaineer experts.

Elegant Giraffe in the Masai Mara, Kenya. Photo by Dylan Walters.
African safaris often entice tourists to Kenya due the renowned Masai Mara game reserve for a view of some of the most attractive wild animals in the world. The ‘Great Migration’ of wildebeests from the nearby Serengeti reserve of Tanzania is also a magnificent spectacle.
Apart from the abundance of game in the reserve, the Masai Mara is also one of the top bird-watching destinations on the planet. You can either observe those birds from the ground or gain an authentic African experience by searching the plains from the vantage point of your hot air balloon.
Learn about the Masai tribe’s culture at the Masai museum in Hell’s Gate National Park, before setting off on the unique cycling or walking safari where any one of the big five may be lurking around the corner. Along with the large amount of African wildlife, Hell’s Gate tours are equally as prestigious for the scintillating scenery on offer, with breath-taking gorges and basalt columns.
In addition to these Kenyan safaris, the Tsavo East National Park and Longonot National Park also provide great opportunities to experience the ultimate African experience and a great chance to see the great animals in Kenya.
Kenya tours are not complete without a trip to the mesmerizing beauty of the Indian ocean. Find rare underwater life as you snorkel the mind-blowing corals of the Kenyan coast.

Tribal attire in Kenya sports beautiful colors. Photo by Christopher Michel

So What’s Kenya all about?

Food and Culture of Kenya
Culture in Kenya is really determined by the community/tribe that you come across, many offering different ritual ceremonies and traditional dishes.
The staple Kenyan meals often consist of Ugali (cornmeal), Sukuma Wiki (greens) and many different rice  and bean dishes.
The traditional Kenyan attire is often brightly colored and will differentiate the community that you are in.

When to go to Kenya

What time of the year is it best to visit Kenya?
The best time to visit Kenya is during the dry seasons – January-March and July-October.
For wildlife in particular, the greatest time to go is anywhere between July and October.
The worst months to visit Kenya are generally considered to be around April-May.
Have you experience an exhilarating Kenyan safari? What are your favorite memories from your Kenya tours?…
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The voting on the Seven Natural Wonders of Uganda

The voting on the Seven Natural Wonders of Uganda

The voting on the Seven Natural Wonders of Uganda is under way. Uganda, nature wise, may be most notable for the mountain Gorillas. Is an encounter with the gorillas one of the seven natural wonders of Uganda? What other wonders of nature does the country of Uganda offer visitors, explorers and nature goers. When people think of Africa they are usually thinking of Safaris – does Uganda deliver with the anticipated African safari experience?

What are the Seven Natural Wonders of Uganda?

What wonders of nature throughout Uganda do you recommend? Uganda is home to the mountain gorillas, but there is so much more nature to encounter in Uganda: jungles, rivers, waterfalls, mountains and more. What are your nominations for the 7 wonders of nature for Uganda?
Now, you can share your opinion and help determine the 7 Natural Wonders of Uganda. Voting is free and only takes a few minutes.

VOTE NOW

1. Email your vote or nominations to vote@sevennaturalwonders.org
2. Place Uganda in the SUBJECT field of the email address
3. Copy the link to your favorite wonder from the 7 Natural Wonders of Africa
4. Please record at least 3 and up to 7 votes

Seven Natural Wonders of Uganda

Natural Wonders are determined by statistical and traditional significance, uniqueness and the eclectic nature experience they afford visitors. Below are the leading 7 Natural Wonders of Uganda. Take a look at these candidates and cast your vote to confirm or recognize another wonder of nature from Uganda that you believe is more deserving.
Bwindi Impenetrable National Park: The national park covers 128 square miles (331 sq km) and is home to approximately half of the mountain gorilla population. In addition to serving as the home for the mountain gorillas, Bwindi also features both lowland and montane forests. Located in the southwest part of Uganda, Bwindi is bordered by the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Virunga National Park. Bwindi is a haven for nature lovers with 120 species of mammals, 348 species of birds, and more than 1,000 species of flowering plants. The approximate 340 gorillas serve as the pinnacle nature experience for visitors. Bwindi is also recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Murchison Falls: Located in the northwest part of Uganda, the falls is part of the Murchison Falls National Park and Conservation Area. This collective area covers over 2,000 square miles (5,300 sq km) of protected land. The Nile River is the source of the falls. Murchison falls plummets 141 feet (43m) after squeezing through a narrow gorge that creates a powerful and magnificent waterfall. The Murchison Falls area features four of the “Big 5″ with only the rhino being absent. The government is breeding rhinos and looking to reintroduce them back into area. Wildlife lovers will also find crocodiles, hippos, giraffes, and many other favorites making this a pinnacle wonder of nature.
Mount Stanley: Mount Stanley is the tallest mountain in Uganda and the third tallest mountain in all of Africa. This amazing mountain is part of Rwenzori Mountains National Park, which encompasses 386 square miles (1,000 sq km), features waterfalls, lakes, glaciers and wildlife that enhance this wonder of nature. The mountains of this area or certainly highlights, however explorers of Mount Stanley are in for one special botany treat. There are five distinctly different vegetation zones throughout the area. Wildlife enthusiast will have the opportunity to discover 89 species of birds in addition to the popular elephants, chimpanzees and monkeys. Another unique wonder of nature for Uganda.
Queen Elizabeth National Park: Queen Elizabeth NP is the most visited and popular national park in all of Uganda. The park encompasses 764 square miles (1,978 sq km) and features an abundance of wildlife. Nature lovers can leverage safari options for a chance to view 95 different species of mammals. Some of the more popular wildlife include lions, leopards, elephants, hippos and chimpanzees. One of the highlights for this national park is the famous for black maned and tree climbing lions. Encountering the lions up in the trees is a unique experience for all of Africa. This volcanic region complements the wildlife viewing with deep craters, volcanic cones and crater lakes enhancing this wonder of nature.
Mount Elgon National Park: The park, named after the mountain, is located near Lake Victoria and encompasses 494 square miles (1279 sq km) of spectacular feature of nature. This national park is one of the most eclectic nature experiences in all of Uganda. Explorers have the opportunity to experience waterfalls, gorges, cliffs, caves, hot springs and of course Mount Elgon. This wonder of nature is most notable for the scenery, however wildlife lovers may experience elephants, antelope, and monkeys. One of the biggest draws is the four varying explorable caves. Elephant and other wildlife use the caves as salt licks, and there is a theory that the wildlife actually created to the development of some of these caves.
Kibale National Park: This national park features one of the most diverse and populous collection of primates in all of Africa. Located in south Uganda, Kibale encompasses 296 square miles (766 sq km) of some of the most most evergreen forests. This jungle environment is home to 13 different primate species. Along with Bwindi, this is one of the last remaining places that features both lowland and montane forests. In addition to the primates, nature lovers may also look forward to the 325 different species of birds. Although doubtful to see, the leopard also calls Kibale home.
Semuliki National Park: Encompassing 75 square miles (194 sq km), Semuliki is one of Uganda’s smallest and newest national parks. The park is located in the western part of Uganda and features East Africa’s only tropical rainforest. It one of the most diverse areas for floral and fauna in Africa being home to over 400 species of birds. Semuliki is found in a eco-juncture that results in an array of eco-diversity and micro habitats. Some of the popular animals from the 60 different mammal species include elephants, leopards, hippos, primates, and the flying squirrel.

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Mahale National Park

mahale ntl park Mahale National Park

In Mahale National Park, you can trace the Tongwe people’s ancient pilgrimage to the mountain spirits, hiking through the montane rainforest belt – home to an endemic race of Angola colobus monkey – to high grassy ridges chequered with alpine bamboo.

Size : 3,230 sq km (1,250 sq miles).  Location: South-West Tanzania, bordering Lake Tanganyika.

Then bathe in the impossibly clear waters of the world’s longest, second-deepest and least-polluted freshwater lake – harbouring an estimated 1,000 fish species – before returning as you came, by boat.

The highest peak in the Mahale range is at 2462m, and the only way to explore this park is on foot, there are no roads. There are between 1 500 and 2 000 chimpanzees in the park, making this one of the best places in Africa to get close to pan troglodytes. This is where successive teams of Japanese researchers, unheralded and quietly, have done some of the most important scientific work on primates and the links between chimpanzees and humans.

Besides the chimps, leopard, lion, kudu, eland, buffalo, roan and sable antelope, olive baboons, red colobus and white spot nose mangabeys and a host of other game wander through this reserve. Dominated by the brooding presence of Nkungwe Mountain with vegetation ranging through almost the entire gamut of African botany (from lowland forest to brachystegia woodland) this is one of Africa’s most intriguing parks. Accommodation (aside from the luxury tented camp) is in a elementary camp site with bungalows and camp site.

All journeys have a beginning and an end

All journeys have a beginning and an end, but what happens in between is really up to you.  You may prefer to lie in the same hammock watching hippos at the same waterhole for ten days in a row, or you may have identified a dozen safari camps and four beach resorts that you want to visit before you return home.  It’s simply a process of selection, and here we can be really helpful.  We’ll give you our best advice about the most exciting sequence in which to experience your choices, and we’ll iron out any kinks involved in getting you from here to there—and back again, of course.
MEX gate All journeys have a beginning and an end
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