Tanzania Bird Watching Safari
Day One: Mikumi National Park
Depart after breakfast and head to Mikumi National Park, driving alongside freshwater swamps with dancing orange-red Zanzibar Bishops and Open-billed Storks searching for aquatic snails. After Morogoro we'll enter the wooded savannas of Mikumi National Park. Elephant and Zebra can be seen from the road, as well as glistening Superb Starlings and sentinel Brown-headed Parrots. Dinner and overnight at the lodge.
Day Two: Udzungwa Mountains
After an early breakfast head in search of different bird species in the surrounding acacia, miombo woodland and the grassy plains. We may see the splendid pink Northern Carmine Bee-eaters darting after insects and Speckle-throated Woodpeckers tapping the timber for tasty hidden morsels. Later drive to the Udzungwa Mountains, arriving late in the evening. Dinner and overnight at the lodge.
Day Three: Ifakara
Drive to Ifakara where 20 years ago, three new species were discovered Kilombero Weaver and two cisticolas still awaiting description but known as Kilombero and White-tailed. All three species are numerous and should not be difficult to find. Not so easy to see are the morose, booming Coppery-tailed Coucals at their northernmost range and strident and argumentative White-headed Plovers. We could also see Red-headed Quelea, the secretive Anchieta's Tchagra, attractive Zebra Waxbill and a wide variety of marshland species. After lunch at a local hotel we'll return to Ndzungwa National Park for the remainder of the afternoon to look for birds in the lower forest. We'll climb as high as the waterfall where the endemic Rufous-winged Sunbird was first collected (though it seems it is really an inhabitant of the higher levels).
Day Four: Uluguru Mountains
Drive to the Uluguru Mountains, passing through the Mikumi National Park on the highway towards Morogoro town then to Uluguru Mountains Agricultural Research Hostel near Tegetero, the starting point of our hike. The hostel is basic but with clean shared toilets and shower rooms and substantial fresh food.
Days Five & Six: Uluguru Mountains
From our hostel we can see the towering Uluguru Mountains all around us. We'll spend two full days in the Ulugurus, driving some of the way and then walking uphill to reach the forest. Bird species include the endemic Uluguru Bush-Shrike with its musical duet, the nectar-loving Loveridge's Sunbird and local species such as Chapin's Apalis, East African Citril and the very local Bertram's Weaver. Diner and overnight at the hotel.
Day Seven: East Usambaras
Depart and drive north to Amani in the East Usambaras. On the way we may see striking pied Palm-nut Vultures and fiery Black-winged Red Bishops. Soon the lowlands give way to these impressive mountains and we'll climb into lush forest, leaving the aridity behind us. Before the major ascent we'll stop at a bridge, where we could see Half-collared Kingfisher. Dinner and overnight near Amani
Day Eight: West Usambaras
Descend briefly into the dry lowlands and climb again to the West Usambaras for a three-day stay. White-necked Ravens should be along the roadside and radiant Lilac-breasted Rollers find perches on the flowering heads of sisals. As we enter through the rocky gorge we'll keep an eye open for Striped Pipit and the more colorful Cliff Chat. Dinner and overnight at Lushoto.
Days Nine & Ten: West Usambaras
Two days of exploring the local forest in search of its two endemics, Usambara Akalat and the attractive Usambara Weaver. Other species here include Hartlaub's Turaco at the southern end of its distribution, noisy but well-hidden Evergreen Forest and Cinnamon Bracken Warblers, piping Black-fronted Bush-Shrike and the unusual Spot-throat, whose ear-splitting song is reminiscent of a Blackcap on steroids. Dinner and overnight at Lushoto.
Day Eleven: Arusha
Depart and head to Arusha for an overnight stay. Patches of semi-arid acacia along the way may reveal species at the extreme southern edge of their range, such as the statuesque Buff-crested Bustard, the squeaky Pink-breasted Lark, the diminutive Mouse-coloured Penduline-Tit and the colourful Red-and-yellow Barbet. As we near Moshi, and if we are lucky, Mt. Kilimanjaro may clear itself of its misty shroud and grant us a fine view. Dinner and overnight at Arusha.
Day Twelve: Ngorongoro Crater
After breakfast, we'll cross the Great Rift Valley to the famous Ngorongoro Crater Highlands and on to the thorn scrub, wooded habitat and soda lakes around Ndutu where Fischers's Lovebirds and endemic Grey-breasted Spurfowl are a possibility. Bush birds such as Blue-capped Cordon-bleu, Green-winged Pytilia, Swahili Sparrow, White-crowned Shrike and Slate-colored Boubou are common. Dinner and overnight at the Lodge.
Day Thirteen: Ngorongoro Crater
After an early breakfast descend to the floor of Ngorongoro Crater, where there is abundant wildlife. Birds include Pectoral-patch Cisticolas and Ostrich. The swamps attract a variety of waterfowl, including the curious Cape Wigeon, and a ribbon of soda-loving Lesser Flamingos paints a swath of vivid rose around the central lake. Stately Kori Bustards scour the grassland for grasshoppers, African Marsh Harrier and Great Sparrowhawk hunt for small birds. After a picnic lunch ascend the crater. Dinner and overnight at the Lodge.
Day Fourteen: Arusha
Depart and head to Arusha in time for Lunch.
Safari Pricing Includes:
- Transport in a custom 4x4 land rover with pop up roof.
- All park entrance fees.
- Fullboard Accommodation.
- Game drives and other activities as described in the itinerary
- Services of an English speaking driver guide.
- Complimentary Bottled water 1 Litre per person per day.
- All government taxes.
Safari Pricing Excludes:
- International airfares.
- All expenditure of personal nature such as telephone calls, hard drinks, soft drinks and laundry.
- Travel Insurance.