Brian Jackman
United Kingdom UK

Brian is an award winning travel writer, author of safari books and regular contributor to magazines such as BBC Wildlife and Travel Africa.

Categories: African Hotspots, Tanzania

The Tree Where Man Was Born

Lost in the emptiness of the Serengeti Plains in Tanzania stands a living monument to the vegetable kingdom. The Tree Where Man Was Born.

Nasera Orok – the Black Mountain of the Masai – is a granite monolith the size of York Minster. Rising abruptly from the surrounding grasslands, it guards the entrance to Ang’ata Kiti. That's  the main pass through the Gol Mountains – from the Serengeti to the Saleh Plains.

There is a campsite here. And if you drive northwest from Nasera Orok beyond the Lemuta Hills into the rolling plains and lonely kopjes of the Serengeti, you will come upon a colossal fig tree. It is known as the Tree Where Man Was Born (after Peter Matthiesen’s wonderful book of the same name). And it lies hidden in a shallow valley in the midst of an otherwise totally treeless landscape haunted by cheetahs and shoals of quick darting gazelles.

You could hide an army under its far-spreading canopy. Its branches provide shade and shelter for all manner of creatures including lanner falcons. And if you park in its shade your safari vehicle appears no bigger than a toy when seen alongside this venerable old giant of the vegetable world.

Best time to visit

The best time to visit Tanzania, and especially the Tree Where Man Was Born, is during the dry season (from June to October). This is when you'll get experience some incredible wildlife encounters - especially the wildebeest migration.

View from a lens

To see some of our stunning photographs of African wildlife and the magnificent landscape of Tanzania, check out SafariBookings' photo collection on Pinterest and Instagram. They will no doubt inspire you to visit this exotic country. And, of course, the Tree Where Man Was Born is a must-see! Contact us to book your safari tour.