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Serengeti Luxury Safari Tours

Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park is the finest all-round safari destination for luxury tours in Africa. It is best known as the home of the legendary annual wildebeest and zebra migration. The Serengeti is also well known for hosting many large predators such as lion, leopard, cheetah and spotted hyena. Other common wildlife include large herds of buffalo, elephant, giraffe and different types of antelope. Extending over 14,763km2 / 5,700mi2, this national park has an ever-growing number of upmarket and luxury lodges and exclusive camps. The park’s vast size means that it is usually easy to get away from the crowds.

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1-20 of 167 luxury tours, packages and holidays to Serengeti National Park

7 Questions About Serengeti Luxury Safari Tours

Answered by Philip Briggs

Why should I choose the Serengeti for a luxury safari?

“The Serengeti is serviced by a superb range of luxury safari accommodation options. There are world-class ‘hotels in the bush’ with all the facilities you’d expect of a five-star hotel. There are also more boutique-like permanent tented camps that combine bush chic with a close-to-nature feel. And seasonal tented camps where exclusivity rests less on the amenities than on their flexibility to relocate close to where the migration action is happening. It all depends on your priorities. The Serengeti offers top-notch wildlife viewing, superb birdlife and limitless opportunities for off-the-beaten-track exploration. The wildebeest migration is the top attraction. You need to research safari options in advance to be reasonably sure of catching it during the time of year you will be visiting. The timing of the migration varies every year, but the best chance of seeing it is during June and July. Even when the wildebeest migration is elsewhere, the Serengeti offers some of the world’s best big cat viewing. It isn’t unusual to score close-up encounters with lion, leopard and cheetah all on the same day. Buffalo, elephant, giraffe, eland, topi, kongoni, impala and Thomson’s and Grant’s gazelle are prolific in the park. The Serengeti is also unusually good for smaller predators, such as serval, bat-eared fox and golden jackal. It is difficult to think of a more appealing destination for a first-time luxury safari holiday. The Maasai name Siringit means ‘endless plain’, which describes the sense of infinite space in the Serengeti.”


What is included in a luxury safari in the Serengeti?

“A luxury package to the Serengeti will usually be all-inclusive. This means the quoted price will include transport between camps, accommodation, all meals, and guided game drives and any other activities included in the package. Many top-end lodges and camps include non-premium drinks, such as tea, coffee, soft drinks, local beer and house wine, in the room rate. Some also include laundry. This isn’t always the case, so do check. One thing that won’t be included is tips. These can really add up on a Serengeti luxury tour so ask your operator about tipping expectations and don’t forget to bring cash with you. ”


How long do I need for a luxury safari in the Serengeti?

“It is tempting to say, ‘the longer the better’. Some people find that three or four days on safari is all they need. But a lot depends on your personal preference and interest in wildlife. After three or four days the routine can start to feel repetitive and wildlife sightings start to look the same. Others can’t ever really get enough of being on safari. The length of time also depends on the ground you want to cover. Those traveling by road often want to include Lake Manyara National Park and the Ngorongoro Crater. My suggestion for the minimum time is seven days/six nights total between the three parks. If you have limited time, you might fly in and out directly from Arusha. In this case, I would aim for three nights at one camp or four nights split between two different ones. Another option is a longer period exploring the main Serengeti destinations (southeast plains, Seronera, Western Corridor, Mara River area), as well as Lake Manyara and the Ngorongoro Crater. For this, anything from 10 nights to two weeks would be realistic. ”


What is the difference between a drive-in or fly-in on a luxury safari in the Serengeti?

“Most trips to the Serengeti include stays at Lake Manyara National Park and the Ngorongoro Crater. Both destinations are easily visited en route to the Serengeti by road from Arusha, the safari capital of Northern Tanzania. But some long and bouncy drives are involved, particularly along the rutted road that connects the crater to the Serengeti. People with limited time or back problems are advised to fly between lodges and camps. That said, flights tend to add to the cost of a safari. Flights are more expensive than driving. Flying restricts you to lodges and camps offering packages that include guided game drives. By not being on the road, you also miss out on spectacular scenery unfolding before you. An excellent compromise is to structure the safari so you drive out in stages to the most remote camp or lodge, then fly back to Arusha. ”


How does a typical day on a luxury safari in the Serengeti unfold?

“A typical day would be an early start with a quick cup of coffee and snack, then an early morning game drive. You might carry a packed breakfast to eat on the road or return to camp for a late breakfast or brunch. Lunch can be a good time to take a rest. You then set out again for an afternoon game drive at 3 PM or 4 PM. Typically, the day aims to make the most of the finest wildlife-viewing hours, the first hour or two after sunrise and the last hour or two before sunset. There are occasions when you might take a packed lunch and spend the whole day out on one long game drive. This allows you to explore further afield than the tracks in the immediate vicinity of your camp. Longer midday drives also happen as you move between camps. Either way, the day usually ends with sundowners around the campfire, a three-course bush dinner and an early night for the next day’s pre-dawn start. ”


What type of accommodation can I expect on a luxury safari in the Serengeti?

“Many of the Serengeti’s most upmarket accommodations are semi-permanent tented camps whose single most compelling feature is their remote bush location and wilderness feel. These are more fairly characterized as exclusive rather than luxurious. There are also some utterly gorgeous small five-star permanent lodges scattered around the national park. In almost all cases, you can expect large units with en suite hot showers, very comfortable bedding and private verandahs looking into the bush. Also expect top-notch cuisine, service and wine. Research the facilities at your intended accommodation carefully if more modern amenities such as 24/7 electricity, wifi or swimming pools are important to you. ”


What are the typical costs of a luxury safari in the Serengeti?

“The starting rate for a Serengeti luxury safari is around US$500 to US$600 per person per day. At the top end, staying at a handful of premier luxury camps, you might be looking at an all-inclusive price of US$1,000 per person per day, possibly more. The costs of a luxury safari depend on just how luxurious and exclusive you want your safari to be. Another cost factor is the season. Camps and lodges along the wildebeest migration route tend to charge higher rates during the period when the wildebeest are scheduled to arrive. One thing is for certain, you will be staying in fabulous accommodation in one of Africa’s premier safari destinations. So whatever you pay, for many people, it’s a once in a lifetime experience and well worth it.”


Serengeti Reviews

4.9/5 402 Reviews
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.

The Greatest Wildlife Show on Earth

We’re talking about the Serengeti migration, the year-round spectacle of a million wildebeest and maybe 200,000 zebras chasing the rains on an endless journey in search of grass and water. Come in Jan-Feb to see them massed on the short...

Full Review

Ariadne van Zandbergen  –  
South Africa ZA

Ariadne is a renowned African wildlife photographer whose work is featured in many well-known guidebooks and magazines.

African Splendor

The Serengeti holds a very special place in my heart. I’ve been privileged to visit this vast ecosystem many times over the last 30 years (in and out of season). I’ve traveled the highways and the byways; the busy Seronera area, the...

Full Review

George Thomas  –  
India IN
Reviewed: Sep 4, 2022

Plenty of wildlife. In the central part one can see lions, leopards, buffalo and elephants. The northern part is where the great migration of wildebeest across the Mara River takes place. Giraffe, zebras, gazelle and impala are everywhere....

Full Review

Jan Robertson  –  
United States US
Reviewed: Aug 22, 2022

Top notch safari destination. Saw everything there including a lion kill, and the great wildebeest migration of thousands of animals across the Mara River. HOWEVER, there was a huge wait at the entrance to the park while our guide had to...

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Diana Calixto  –  
Colombia CO
Reviewed: Aug 15, 2022

Each reserve and national park has its own enchant. The Serengeti is massive. Much more big than I expected. We saw all we wanted and expected to see, and beyond. Very beautiful in its own and particular way. It was the only place where...

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Carlos Manuel Rodrigues Teixeira  –  
Portugal PT
Reviewed: Aug 11, 2022

The vastness draws you in, sleeping in the tented camp, feeling the cold in the evenings and in the mornings, excellent.
many lion cubs, cheetah, gazelles, elephants, rhino, buffalo, leopard!
I wish we had more time!

Full Review