Start your 7 Days Virunga Gorilla Trekking & Serengeti Wildlife Adventure by heading straight into D.R. Congo’s Virunga National Park, a place of ethereal swirling mists and smoky lush forests and, obviously a home to the magnificent/magnificent mountain gorillas and Senkwekwe gorilla orphanage which you can visit as an option.
Next is a tour to another world’s natural wonder – Serengeti National Park. Located in Northern Tanzania, this park is filled with teeming wildlife, including big predators – cheetahs, lions, leopards, hyenas as well as other Big African mammals. See detailed East African Safari Plan below.
Day 1: Arrival in Kigali. Transfer to Virunga NP
Depart from Kigali and start your trip to Congo’s popular Virunga National Park. The park is one of the most biologically diverse protected areas on planet earth. Almost 50% of all the sub-Saharan Africa’s biodiversity can be sighted during a single tour to Virunga.
It is as well a geologic wonder, encompassing two of the world’s most active volcanoes – Nyiragongo and Nyamuragira mountains. For much of its long history, though, Virunga National Park has been threatened by civil conflicts and rebel groups, but thanks to the dedication and efforts by the park’s management, Virunga has been able to stand the test of time.
Day 2: Gorilla trekking in Virunga NP
Another early start as you drive to the Virunga park headquarters for a short briefing on the mountain gorilla trekking guidelines. An experienced ranger guide takes you into the forest to view a mountain gorilla family. Each group of gorillas is usually led by a giant male silverback and several juveniles, babies and mother gorillas.
This is an unforgettable experience and you have up to one hour to observe these gorillas from real up – close – an unequaled wildlife encounter. However, the close contact between mountain gorillas and visitors is often limited to 7 meters to control the risk of infecting airborne diseases to the gorillas. After this tour, trek back to the starting point and transfer to the lodge for relaxation and overnight stay.
Day 3: Visit the Senkwekwe gorilla orphanage and return to Kigali. Departure to Arusha
Have breakfast at your lodge in Virunga national park, and just before you set off to drive towards Kigali city, first visit the Senkwekwe gorilla orphanage center. Located just 10 minutes away from Mikeno lodge, this center is home to four gorillas who survived the massacre in 2007 by gunmen including Ndeze and Ndakasi gorillas. After drive through Goma to Kigali city for an early flight to Arusha, northern Tanzania.
Day 4: Travel to Serengeti NP from Arusha. Overnight stay in Ngorongoro crater
After breakfast in Arusha, you will travel northwards to Ngorongoro area; upon arrival, immediately head out for a short game drive through Ngorongoro ranges. You might be able to sight the “Big Five”; elephant, buffalo, lion, rhino leopard, as well as other animals and birds.
The 600 m deep and 260 sq. km Ngorongoro Crater is a UNESCO world heritage site, formed millions of years ago is known for its dense animal population which is approximately 25 000. the Crater also avails the best game viewing opportunities incomparable with all other parks in Tanzania.
Arrive at the Crater rim before lunch, and descend into the Crater and very quickly, you will spot popular residents, including wildebeests, gazelles, zebras, elephants and over 500 species of birds that dwell here. On a lucky day, you might also spot the endangered black rhino through the grass. After lunch and whole afternoon inside the Crater, head back to your accommodation for dinner and a night stay.
Day 5: Early game drive in Ngorongoro area and transfer to Serengeti
After breakfast in Ngorongoro area, you’ll take a morning game safari to explore this interesting crater region. This breathtaking wildlife crater measures up to 600-meter-high offering is an incredible game viewing spot, and one can expect to see diverse range of wildlife, including buffaloes, wildebeests, warthogs, zebras and elephants, etc. The region is home to a huge population of predators, including lions, cheetahs, leopards, hyenas and jackals.
Ngorongoro is also famous for its population of black rhinos which are ideally difficult to spot anywhere else in Tanzania. Leave this interesting place and drive to the Serengeti, Tanzania’s most famous and premier national park. Serengeti National park specifically offers some of the iconic wildlife viewing encounters in Africa and it is home to the greatest wildlife spectacle on planet earth, the Great Migration.
Each year, over 2,000,000 wildebeests and zebras migrate north from Serengeti National Park to the Kenya’s southern based Maasai Mara Reserve.
Day 6: Day game safari in Serengeti
This is a full day of game experience in Serengeti national park. It is without doubt that this park is home tothe great wildebeest Migration, and during the months of June, July, August until October, massive herds must brave the perilous Mara River, which runs through the Maasai Mara Game Reserve in Kenya and Serengeti National Park on the Tanzanian side.
Other than the great migration, Serengeti permanent residents which are often spotted during a full day game drive include antelopes, lions, cheetahs, lions, buffaloes, elephants, zebras, giraffes, to mention but a few.
On the same day, visitors can also undertake bush walks in the Serengeti park led by the native Maasai warriors, and this avails an authentic walking safari experience, getting up-close encounter with the park’s impressive savannah, culture of the Maasai and vast wildlife.
Day 7: Depart from Serengeti NP and travel to Arusha. Departure
Spend your last morning in Serengeti with a sunrise game drive in the sweeping plains, before heading to Arusha and proceed to your next destination. Return to your lodge to check out, have lunch and begin your transfer through Karatu, Manyara and Tarangire areas until Arusha for shopping, and departure.
End of 7 Days Virunga Gorilla Trekking & Serengeti Wildlife Adventure.
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