Stretching from northern Tanzania to southwestern Kenya are the plains of the legendary Serengeti. Appropriately named “Endless Plains” in the native Maasai language.
An iconic land, images of the Serengeti’s grassy plains, granite kopjes, and wildlife have inspired everyone from writer Ernest Hemingway to Disney’s The Lion King. Unlike other parts of the Africa, the Serengeti managed to avoid European colonization due to the fierce tribes of Maasai warriors that roamed these lands since ancient times raising cattle. Encompassing about 12,000-square miles, the Serengeti is one of the oldest ecosystems in the world. Early man himself made an appearance in Olduvai Gorge about two million years ago. Two World Heritage Sites and two biosphere reserves have even been established within the region. The southeastern region lies under the Ngorongoro highlands and ancient Ngorongoro Crater to the west acacia forest stretch all the way to the banks of Lake Victoria.
As host to the largest mammal migration in the world, the Serengeti’s diverse ecosystems are today home to more than just great herds of blue wildebeest. It is home to approximately seventy large mammals including innumerable gazelle, zebra, and buffalo also graze the grasslands along with notable numbers of elephant and giraffe. Not far behind the migrating herds are the Serengeti’s predators, most notably large populations of lion but also including leopard, cheetah, jackal, hyaena, aardwolf, and serval cat.