LAKE NATRON AND OLD DONYO LENGAI TOUR
4 Days Tour In Lake Natron + Ol donyo Lengai view
The 4-day Lake Natron Tour in Tanzania begins in the eastern part of Africa's Great Rift Valley. Lake Natron is not very deep, less than three meters, and its size changes based on how much water it has. This changes because a lot of water evaporates, leaving behind a high amount of salt and other minerals. If you're interested, you can request a price quote.
Tanzania Lake Natron safaris: Lake Natron is famous for being one of the places where flamingos in East Africa lay their eggs. This lake is located in the basin of the Great Rift Valley, on the slopes of Mount Oldonyo Lengai, which is a volcano that recently erupted, and on the slopes of Ngorongoro Highlands. The Lake Natron tour will include activities such as visiting a waterfall, taking a short trip to Lake Natron, and experiencing Masai culture while on the way to Serengeti National Park through Lobo gate.
Lake Natron Tour in 4 Day Overview
The lake is close to a mountain called Ol Doinyo Lengai, which you can see in the south. Lake Natron is big, about 56 kilometers (35 miles) long and 24 kilometers (15 miles) wide, but its water level goes up and down because it evaporates. This lake is not very deep, and it has some special things like springs, the Ewaso Ng’iro River, and hot springs. On the top of the lake, there's a kind of pinkish-white layer made of salt, magnesite, and sodium carbonate.
The area around the lake has many cool things to see, like craters from old volcanoes, waterfalls, and deep cracks where Rüppell’s Griffon Vultures build their nests. One of the most exciting things near Lake Natron is the Gelai Volcano, a really tall mountain, and an old spot where scientists found the Peninj Mandible, which is some really old teeth from a type of ancient human called Australopithecus boisei.
There are lots of things to do at Lake Natron. You can go swimming, visit a Maasai village, or just take a walk in the Ngorongoro Crater Highlands, which is full of craters and beautiful animals.
One of the special things about Lake Natron is that thousands of Rift Valley Flamingos come here to have their babies. They make nests on the salty parts of the lake between August and October. These flamingos eat a special kind of algae called Spirulina that's in the lake. Because the flamingos come here to have their babies, people from all around the world want to make sure the lake and the area around it stay safe and healthy. There are also other animals here like zebras, ostriches, fringed eared oryx, gazelles, gerenuk, lesser kudu, and golden jackals.
Lake Natron Detailed Itinerary
Lake Natron Detailed Itinerary
Day 1: ARRIVAL
When you arrive at Kilimanjaro airport, one of our team members will be there to welcome you. They will take you to your hotel in Tanzania for your first night. The drive from Kilimanjaro International Airport to your hotel will take about 1 hour. You can relax and enjoy the ride through the city's outskirts until you reach your hotel for a well-deserved overnight stay.
Day 2: ARUSHA CITY TO LAKE NATRON
Our guide will pick you up from your hotel in Arusha, and you'll go on a road trip to Lake Natron. The journey will take you through Engaruka Town on a somewhat bumpy and dusty road. Along the way, you'll see many Masai villages, termite mounds, and various animals like gazelles, giraffes, zebras, baboons, and different kinds of birds. This drive will last around 4 hours. After checking in at your camp and having lunch, you can take a guided walk in the afternoon around Lake Natron. It's the lowest point in the Great Rift Valley in Tanzania (600m / 2000 ft) and is famous for having lots of flamingos and other water birds because of its high levels of sodium carbonate, algae, and zooplankton. You can also choose to hike up the Ngare Sero River, which is a small oasis in contrast to the dry surroundings.
In the middle of the night, you'll get coffee, tea, and a light snack before heading in a safari vehicle to the base of Ol Doinyo Lengai. That's where your trek to the summit begins. The climb is challenging, and there's no shade on the mountain, so you'll need a good hat and plenty of water. The climb typically takes 5 to 7 hours, and you'll be walking on rough scree, lava, volcanic ash, and dealing with steep gullies and furrows. Once you reach the summit, you can explore two craters, but one of them is still active. You'll be treated to stunning views of Lake Natron and the Great Rift Valley. By mid-morning, you'll descend to the base of Ol Doinyo Lengai, where your safari vehicles will be waiting to take you back to your camp. You can rest and have breakfast there.
Day 3: LAKE NATRON
After breakfast, you can explore Lake Natron, which is one of the most alkaline lakes in the world. It's home to tiny crustaceans and is a nesting ground for thousands of lesser flamingos. The area around the lake is dry and barren, but it has a strangely beautiful landscape that draws people to it.
In the afternoon, you can take a long walk to the Ngare Sero River. After a challenging walk upstream, you'll reach the source of the river, where waterfalls flow from the mountains. You can have a refreshing swim in the river and under the waterfalls to cool off from the hot sun. You might even see baboons or other animals in the gorge. Later, you'll return to the camp where the chef will have dinner prepared for you. Enjoy your meal under the stars before going to bed.
Please note that Lake Natron is very hot, so it's strongly recommended to bring protective clothing, a hat, and sunscreen. Also, consider bringing water shoes or shoes that can get wet for the river hike.
Day 4: LAKE NATRON TO ARUSHA CITY
After breakfast, you'll leave the camp and head back to Arusha by road. You'll go through Engaruka Town, and on the way, you'll see many Masai villages, termite mounds, and wildlife like gazelles, giraffes, zebras, baboons, bee boxes, and various birds, including vultures, ostriches, starlings, Cory Bustards, and kites. The journey will take about 6 hours, and you'll have a picnic lunch on the way. You can also stop for some souvenir shopping during the trip.