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Tanzania Safari in January

Updated: Dec 14, 2023


Tanzania in January.
Tanzania in January.

Explore Tanzania in January for an unforgettable adventure. This month brings dry and warm weather, making it perfect for wildlife safaris in renowned parks like the Serengeti. Witness the spectacular Great Migration and the birth of wildebeest calves. Enjoy the sunny beaches of Zanzibar and immerse yourself in the local music and culture at the Sauti za Busara Music Festival. With fewer crowds, January offers a quieter yet vibrant experience of Tanzania's natural wonders and cultural festivities. Join us on a journey to discover the beauty of this East African gem.

Tanzania Weather In January. At the end of December, the short rains in East Africa come to an end. Now, the skies are clear, and the bright sun shines over the region, turning the once dry land into a lush, green landscape.


Moving into January, it's the short dry season, meaning there's not much rain, although occasional brief showers might still happen. The days are sunny and clear.


However, January is the hottest time in Tanzania, with temperatures ranging from 27°C (82°F) at the warmest to 13°C (55°F) at the coolest in the north. Despite being the warmest, the temperatures are still quite comfortable, especially in the north where higher altitudes keep things from getting too hot.

Is January Good for a Safari in Tanzania?

January is an excellent time for a safari in Tanzania! Many animals in Tanzania's national parks give birth during this month because the previous short rains have encouraged new plant growth, providing a good environment for newborns.


While the foliage is thicker in January compared to the long dry season, making it a bit harder to spot wildlife for some, there are still plenty of opportunities, especially in the vast plains of the Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater.


The middle of January marks the beginning of the wildebeest calving season. In the green plains of southern Serengeti, thousands of wildebeest give birth each day. Watching the little ones take their first wobbly steps is a heartwarming sight. It's truly magical to see them running around after just a couple of days.


In January, it's not just wildebeests having babies – new life is everywhere! Tanzania's well-known predators, like lions and cheetahs, are also caring for their young. If you're fortunate, you might catch a glimpse of playful lion cubs or even some cheetahs.


The high number of prey animals during January provides an abundance of food for the predators. In fact, this is one of the best times to see them in action, hunting for their meals.


Ngorongoro Crater is another fantastic safari spot in January. This enchanting destination maintains a consistent density of wildlife year-round. The animals don't tend to migrate in or out of this spectacular crater. With minimal vegetation, wildlife viewing is always exceptional as there are few places for the residents to hide.


Great Wildebeest Migration in January.

In January, the massive herds of wildebeests gather in the southern Serengeti, particularly in the Ndutu Plains within the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, just below the Serengeti National Park.


This is where they start giving birth, thanks to the lush grass that provides the necessary strength for both the adults and their young. In just a few months, they'll begin their journey back north.


From mid-January to late February, it's an incredibly thrilling time to witness the great migration. With up to 8,000 wildebeest calves born daily, it becomes a race for them to stand on their feet and learn to run, a crucial skill they need to develop quickly.


The abundance of new life creates a feast for the Serengeti's predators. Lions, cheetahs, and leopards are always close by, seizing opportunities to catch an easy meal to feed their own young. It's a captivating spectacle of nature's cycle in action.



Is January a Good Time to Visit Zanzibar?

Certainly, January is a great time to explore Zanzibar!. While the dry season from June to October is usually considered the best due to consistent warm, dry weather, January is not too different. It's a bit hotter, and there's a slight chance of brief rain, though it's uncommon. January typically sees around 7 days of rainfall, only a slight increase compared to the dry season's average of 5 days.


One significant advantage of visiting Zanzibar in January is that it falls in the shoulder season, with fewer tourists. This means more tranquility and better hotel rates.


Underwater conditions in January are excellent. The water is clear, making it perfect for activities like snorkeling and scuba diving.


Temperatures in Zanzibar during January are very warm, with highs around 32 °C (90 °F) and lows of 24 °C (75 °F). The ocean temperature is approximately 28 °C (83 °F), providing a delightful environment for beach activities.


Is January a Good Time to Hike Kilimanjaro?

Absolutely, January stands out as one of the prime months for Kilimanjaro hikes!. January, along with February, boasts the warmest temperatures, creating the most comfortable conditions for a Kilimanjaro summit. During this time, you can anticipate clear and sunny skies for the majority of the day, ensuring excellent visibility. While there's a slight chance of rain in the late afternoon and evenings, it is much less compared to the months before.

Despite being the optimal time to climb Kilimanjaro, January is less crowded than the long dry season from June to October. This means you can enjoy your climb without dealing with large crowds.


Where you can visit during January.

In Tanzania, January offers a variety of incredible destinations to explore. Here are some recommendations:

  1. Serengeti National Park: Witness the Great Migration's wildebeest calving season, a spectacular natural event. Experience thrilling safaris and see an abundance of wildlife.

  2. Ngorongoro Crater: Explore the unique ecosystem of the Ngorongoro Crater, home to a high concentration of wildlife. The lack of vegetation allows for excellent animal viewing.

  3. Mount Kilimanjaro: Embark on a trek to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro. January provides favorable weather conditions, making it an excellent time for this challenging adventure.

  4. Zanzibar: Enjoy the beautiful beaches and clear waters of Zanzibar. January offers good underwater visibility, perfect for snorkeling and diving.

  5. Arusha National Park: Discover the diverse landscapes of Arusha National Park, from lush rainforests to volcanic craters. It's an excellent destination for birdwatching and hiking.

  6. Tarangire National Park: Experience the diverse wildlife of Tarangire, known for its large elephant herds and baobab trees.

  7. Lake Manyara National Park: Explore the scenic beauty of Lake Manyara National Park, famous for its tree-climbing lions and diverse birdlife.

  8. Selous Game Reserve: Head to the Selous Game Reserve, one of Africa's largest protected areas, for a more off-the-beaten-path safari experience.

Remember to plan your itinerary based on your interests, whether it's wildlife safaris, trekking, or relaxing on the beach. Always check for travel advisories and local guidelines before planning your trip.


If you're considering visiting Tanzania around January or any other month, fear not! Travel Wise Safari is here to plan everything for you, ensuring you have an amazing and memorable experience in Tanzania.


Whether you're drawn to the spectacular wildlife of the Serengeti, the adventure of climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, or the serene beaches of Zanzibar, we've got you covered. Let us handle the details, so you can focus on soaking in the beauty and wonder of Tanzania. Your dream journey awaits – reach out to us, and let's plan an unforgettable adventure together!.


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