Ngorongoro Highlands Trek

Trek and camp in rural Tanzania, see an active volcano, watch flamingos swim beneath a waterfall and meet local Maasai.

Ngorongoro Highlands Trek

4 days

Calling all adventurers! If you want to discover Tanzania away from the crowds, trek deep into a volcanic crater, travel along ancient Maasai trading routes, picnic in a canyon, swim beneath a waterfall and walk to the Mountain of God, this is the trip for you!

Get off the well-worn safari circuit with this trek in the scenic Ngorongoro Highlands, a chance to experience rural Tanzania and meet local Maasai people. Your adventure starts at the rim of Empakai Crater. 6kms wide and 300m deep, the crater cannot fail to impress. Your guide leads you down to the crater floor, through forest and on to the lake. You feel like an explorer of old discovering a lost world, inhabited by buffalo, antelope, monkeys and birds.

Over the next couple of days you get breath-taking views of the highlands and the jagged outline of Ol Donyo Lengai. Your route follows ancient trading routes that are still in use today, and you are likely to encounter people as they go about their daily tasks. You pass through Maasai villages, and your guide can act as interpreter helping you gain an insight into their lives and culture. All the while you are nearing Old Donyo Lengai, and your trek culminates at the base of the 2000m volcano, known to the Maasai as ‘Mountain of God’.

You stay in private campsites, basic but comfy, with food cooked over an open fire and all chores performed by the crew.


  • A remote camping adventure in northern Tanzania
  • Trek to the foot of the Maasai Mountain of God
  • Walk with Maasai, and donkeys carry the luggage
  • Trek in Empakai Crater
  • Panoramic views of the Ngorongoro Highlands
  • Reach Lake Natron with its flamingos

Tanzania Travel Consultant

Talk to Sinead

Start planning your tailor-made
holiday to Tanzania.
Tell us what you want,
and we will tailor make
your perfect trip.

Call: 01473 599084

Beach extension

To extend your holiday and see
yet another side of Tanzania,
you could add a beach
stay to this trip.


You are collected from your lodge in Arusha early this morning for the drive to Empakai Crater (about 5 hours), including a break for a picnic lunch. The trek begins this afternoon as you descend into the crater. Walk through shady forest where you can see the intertwined roots of strangler figs on tree trunks. You emerge at Empakai Lake which attracts many water birds including flamingos. From here you return to the campsite. Having walked for some 5 hours you’ll be ready for dinner. Lunch, dinner


After a breakfast you set off with your guide, the crew and donkeys having gone on ahead with the camp gear. Your route leads around the crater rim and then down to a viewpoint where you can look out over the highlands and across to the impressive sight of the active volcano Ol Donyo Lengai. During the day you pass Maasai villages and meet locals along the trail which provides a valuable insight into local lifestyles. You reach Acacia Bush Campsite in the mid-afternoon. Rest and enjoy the sight of the volcano as you look forward to dinner. Breakfast, lunch,


Today you get to see the volcano at closer range. Your path is a traditional Maasai trading route used for hundreds of years. A canyon provides welcome shade from the sun as you tuck into a picnic lunch, and you may have time for a swim beneath a waterfall afterwards. Later you are collected for the drive to your private camp near Lake Natron, and have the option to visit the shore for some bird watching before relaxing in camp. Breakfast, lunch, dinner


Start your day with a bracing walk on the Natron flats, the sole breeding site for lesser flamingos in East Africa, before boarding the vehicle for the 6 hour drive back to Arusha, where this trip ends.  Breakfast, lunch

Please ask for prices

Includes: 1 night at each of Empakai Special Campsite, Acacia Private Bush Campsite and Lake Natron Private Campsite, all meals listed as included, mbuzi choma (roasted goat BBQ) and Maasai dances at Acacia Camp, 3 litres of bottled mineral water per person per day, private safari driver-guide, private trekking guide (1 guide: 4 clients), private 4×4 safari vehicle, park fees, conservation fees, activity fees, entry fees, campsite fees, vehicle fees.

Excludes: International flights and taxes, domestic departure tax, visas, travel insurance, meals not listed as included, drinks other than mineral water, personal expenditure, tips.


Empakai Special Campsite and Lake Natron Private Campsite
These are exclusive private campsites using dome tents with bedding provided, shared shower facilities and a dining tent with table and chairs.

Acacia Private Bush Campsite
You sleep in a fly tent with a foam mattress, with buckets of water provided for ablutions, a toilet tent, and a dining where you sit down for meals.

Avoid the most rainy months, and possibly the hottest, driest months too. 
This region gets the long rains around April and May (though it can be as early as mid-March and go into early June). In November there are short rains, which are less of an issue, but can still make travel difficult at times. January and February tend to be very hot, dry and windy in the Natron area.


Tanzania Specialists

Start planning your tailor-made holiday to Tanzania.
Tell us what you want, and we will tailor make your perfect trip.

Call: 01473 599008