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Ndutu Safari Lodge
Ndutu Safari Lodge
Ndutu Safari Lodge

About Ndutu Safari Lodge

Ndutu Safari Lodge, which overlooks Tanzania's Ndutu Soda Lake, was constructed in the 1960s by a former ...

... hunter, and renovated in 1985. Technically, the lodge lies on the northern border of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area but essentially offers a Serengeti experience. The wildebeest migration passes through here, usually between December and April, when the rains have made the plains lush and green.

Ndutu Safari Lodge offers an inexpensive and central base from which to explore the short-grass plains of the southern Serengeti and the northern section of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. However, because it is very good value and in a great location, it gets very booked up during the wildebeest migration. You may need to book a year or more in advance to be sure of finding space here.

Accommodation
35 rooms
Children
Best for aged 8+
Open
All year

Activities

4WD Safari

4WD Safari

Birdwatching

Birdwatching

Hot air ballooning

Hot air ballooning

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Traveller reviews of Ndutu Safari Lodge

11 real, un-edited reviews from Expert Africa's travellers.


93%
11 reviews since August 2007
Excellent
8
Good
2
Average
1
Poor
0
Terrible
0
Mr & Ms SfromOakland

Arrived 21 Feb 2017, 2 nights

"Ndutu Safari Lodge comments"

"The staff were great, the food good, the location was beautiful. …" Read Mr & Ms S’s full holiday review

Overall rating: Good

Mrs AfromHaslemere

Arrived 26 Dec 2016, 2 nights

"Real safari ambience"

"The lodge had a real safari feel to it, being an open camp in the Serengeti …" Read Mrs A’s full holiday review

Overall rating: Excellent

Top Catfrombristol

Arrived 12 Feb 2016, 4 nights

"Ndutu Safari Lodge review"

"An excellent lodge in a wonderful location giving easy access to a wide range …" Read Top Cat’s full holiday review

Overall rating: Excellent

The T-R familyfromLondon

Arrived 29 Dec 2013, 2 nights

"Ndutu Safari Lodge review"

"We found everyone very helpful , the rooms were fairly basic but quite adequate …" Read The T-R family’s full holiday review

Overall rating: Excellent

Mr & Mrs GfromTurkey

Arrived 27 Nov 2013, 3 nights

"Great for safaris even before migration"

"Ndutu is a lovely place and we thoroughly enjoyed our time there. The rains …" Read Mr & Mrs G’s full holiday review

Overall rating: Excellent

Dr WfromWest Glamorgan

Arrived 1 Sep 2013, 1 nights

"Ndutu Safari Lodge review"

"Wonderful setting and helpful staff …" Read Dr W’s full holiday review

Overall rating: Good

Family TfromLondon

Arrived 28 Dec 2012, 3 nights

"Great stay at Ndutu"

"We really enjoyed our stay here. Great welcoming feel about the whole place …" Read Family T’s full holiday review

Overall rating: Excellent

Mr & Mrs GfromHuntingdon

Arrived 27 May 2012, 1 nights

"Ndutu Safari Lodge review"

"Not our favourite lodge, the location was great but too many guests after the …" Read Mr & Mrs G’s full holiday review

Overall rating: Average

Mr & Mrs FfromDerbyshire

Arrived 28 Jan 2012, 4 nights

"Ndutu Safari Lodge review"

"We really enjoyed staying at Ndutu. It is such a wonderful setting and I felt …" Read Mr & Mrs F’s full holiday review

Overall rating: Excellent

Mrs CfromDevon

Arrived 28 Jan 2012, 4 nights

"Wonderful safari at Ndutu Lodge"

"This was just as I had imagined a safari would be - great setting, wonderful …" Read Mrs C’s full holiday review

Overall rating: Excellent

See all Ndutu Safari Lodge reviews

Ndutu Safari Lodge's location

Look closer at the environment and surroundings of Ndutu Safari Lodge.


When to go to Serengeti Migration Area

Our month by month guide: What it's like to visit Ndutu Safari Lodge in Serengeti Migration Area


Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Tanzania in January

January usually marks the start of the short dry season, although the exact timings of this are a little unpredictable. You can expect clear blue skies and sunshine, if the short rains have stopped, and the temperatures will be building. The short dry season is a little less pronounced in Southern Tanzania, and so it can still be wet in these areas. It is an interesting time for avians as resident birds go into breeding plumage and migrant species can be present. Once the New Year busy period has quietened down, January can offer great value and quieter parks, although the weather can be variable, and in the Selous and Ruaha the wildlife is more dispersed.

  • Variable weather: clear & dry or cloudy with some rain.
  • Occasional thunderstorms may occur.
  • A good time of year for birding as and many migrant species are around
  • The wildebeest migration is gathering in the southern Serengeti.
  • Busy in early January, quietening down through the month.

Our view

A good time to visit, with pros & cons

Weather in January

Tanzania in February

February is during the short dry season and is one of the hottest months in Tanzania, with temperatures reaching around 33°Celsius. This can be a good time to visit, as some areas of the Northern Circuit are comparatively quieter than during the European summer months, and lodge rates are also a little lower. The wildebeest will typically be on the southern plains of the Serengeti for their calving season, which tends to occur in a 2-3 week window in early-mid February – although this does vary year on year. This is also a particularly rewarding time for birdlife, as northern hemisphere migrants join the resident species.

  • Hot and dry weather.
  • Wildebeest migration calving on Serengeti’s southern plains.
  • Ngorongoro Crater and southern Serengeti busy for the migration.
  • Selous and Ruaha are typically quiet at this time.
  • The parks are likely to be lush and green, leading to pretty landscape

Our view

A very good time to visit

Weather in February

Tanzania in March

The heavier ‘long rains’ start in earnest in March although exactly when varies year on year. With no need to stay close to permanent water sources, migratory wildlife disperses, and so game viewing starts to become more challenging. This is most prominently seen in Tarangire National Park. The wildebeest migration may still be calving, or have moved on into the central regions of the Serengeti. Many of the camps in the southern parks close mid March and mobile tented camps in the Serengeti will wind down towards the end of the month in order to move location or carry out refurbishments, ready for the new tourist season.

  • Hot with building humidity, before the rains begin at some point.
  • Wildlife viewing is variable depending on the start of the rains.
  • Parks are quiet and rates are low.
  • Not great for southern or western Tanzania.
  • March can be a good time for birding, with many migrant species.

Our view

A good time to visit, with pros & cons

Weather in March

Tanzania in April

April is in the middle of the long rainy season and is the wettest month, with on average 250mm of rain. Temperatures are fairly high and humid in comparison to the rest of the year. Expect the bush to be lush and flowering, and alive with insects, birds and smaller animals. It is however also dense, allowing wildlife to hide, which in turn makes game viewing harder. This is a very quiet time in terms of visitor numbers. Many of the tented camps are closed in April, however the larger lodges remain open. The rates are significantly cheaper, and so if you are willing to work harder to spot the bigger game, some accommodation bargains can be had.

  • Heavy rain expected, with impressive thunderstorms and lightning.
  • Many camps closed and roads impassable due to ground conditions.
  • Rates are at their lowest all year round, with very few other tourists
  • Places that are open are green and vibrant, wildlife more dispersed.

Our view

This is not a great time to visit

Weather in April

Tanzania in May

As Tanzania is close to the equator there is no dramatic difference in climate throughout the year, but temperatures do start to drop a little in May. The rains are likely to still be present, although potentially clearing towards the end of the month. Visitor numbers and lodge rates are still low. The wildebeest migration is making its way through the western regions of the Serengeti, crossing the Grumeti River. Virtually all camps in southern Tanzania remain closed, and many of the roads and tracks in the Selous become impassable.

  • Heavy rains and storms are likely, this can create some dramatic skies
  • Blissfully quiet in northern Tanzania, and a good time to avoid crowds
  • The parks are likely to look lush and green, with long grass.
  • Wildlife is likely to be more dispersed, with fewer sightings.
  • The low prices make safaris much more affordable at this time.

Our view

This is not a great time to visit

Weather in May

Tanzania in June

The rains come to an end at some point during the month and migratory wildlife begins to be drawn back to perennial water sources as the land starts to dry up. It’s likely that the parks will still be quite green and the grass high though, so walking and fly-camping may be unlikely. This marks the start of the season with camps reopening, but prices are still more affordable than the subsequent months. The migration may still be in the Western Corridor, or on the move northwards towards the Mara River. Western Tanzania presents more challenging conditions for chimpanzee trekking in Mahale National Park, as the chimps are higher in the mountains.

  • Variable weather: clear & dry or cloudy with some rain.
  • A transitory time for the migration – moving from west to north.
  • The parks may still be quite green, and grasses high.
  • Wildlife may be dispersed still.
  • Relatively low visitor numbers and good value, shoulder season prices.

Our view

A good time to visit, with pros & cons

Weather in June

Tanzania in July

July is considered to be the start of the peak season, with no rainfall expected and pleasant daytime temperatures. As the parks dry, the wildlife congregates in fewer areas, grass is eaten and trampled by the migration, and game viewing gets better and better. The wildebeest are typically arriving in the northern Serengeti, ready to begin their period of crossings of the Mara River. In the Selous and Ruaha wildlife sightings can be fantastic, with animals gathering around the lakes and rivers. Great conditions and school holidays mean the parks are at their busiest, with Ngorongoro and the Serengeti particularly crowded.

  • Dry and warm daytimes, chilly and windy in the mornings and evenings.
  • Great wildlife viewing, as water sources diminish.
  • The most popular time of year with very high visitor numbers.
  • Prices are at their highest due to the great conditions on the ground.
  • To avoid the crowds consider Tanzania’s southern parks.

Our view

Fantastic: the very best time to visit

Weather in July

Tanzania in August

August is the middle of the long dry season, with clear skies and sunny weather. You can expect some cooler weather at night and first thing in the morning. Remember to pack layered clothing, so you can wrap up warm on your early morning game drives, but remain comfortable as it heats up throughout the day.
August is a very popular time to visit, so accommodation prices are at their highest and advanced booking is necessary. It can get noticeably busier in some of the northern parks – in particular the Ngorongoro Crater and northern Serengeti, as visitors flock to the area in hope of witnessing an exciting migration river crossing.

  • Dry and warm daytimes, chilly in the early mornings and evenings.
  • General wildlife viewing should be excellent.
  • An exciting time of year for the wildebeest migration.
  • Certain areas will be very busy and camps fill up fast.
  • Great wildlife sightings in the Selous and Ruaha, and fewer people.

Our view

Fantastic: the very best time to visit

Weather in August

Tanzania in September

September can be an excellent time of year to visit Tanzania. As the parks continue to dry up the wildlife becomes increasingly reliant on the remaining water sources, leading to high densities of animals. Whilst early September can be busy, with fewer families traveling at this time the parks typically become quieter as the month goes on. You are still likely to see the wildebeest migration in the northern Serengeti, with river crossings occurring on a regular basis. Tanzania’s southern parks are also fantastic at this time of year, generally receiving far fewer visitors than the north, and wildlife sightings can be great. Prices remain high and the weather generally remains good.

  • Wildlife viewing in September can be fantastic.
  • Whilst still fairly busy, often the parks are typically a little quiet
  • The parks will start to become very dry, with little new vegetation
  • Cooler mornings and evenings, warming up during the day.
  • Prices remain high.

Our view

Fantastic: the very best time to visit

Weather in September

Tanzania in October

At the tail end of the dry season, the wildlife should be the easiest to spot, although photographers should be aware that it can be a bit dusty at this time of year, as there has been no rain for several months. Great general wildlife viewing throughout as animals are attracted to remaining sources of water. Elephant numbers are particularly high at this time in Tarangire, and Mahale and Katavi are especially rewarding with frequent wildlife sightings close to camp. There is a chance of rainfall towards the end of the month, if the short rains commence. While prices remain high, visitors numbers are significantly lower than in July-August.

  • Mostly dry and temperatures comfortably warm, with the chance of storm
  • Great game viewing although the landscape can be a bit barren.
  • Much lower visitor numbers than the earlier months.

Our view

A very good time to visit

Weather in October

Tanzania in November

In November you can expect the start of the short rains, although the start date varies every year. The rains are highly localised, and are much lighter and more unpredictable than the long rains that occur earlier in the year. These should not really interfere with your safari – as the game viewing at this time is still good - but you should pack a waterproof jacket and be prepared for some short rain showers! The majority of tented camps remain open, but some of the mobile camps in Northern Tanzania will close for the latter half on the month. Given the seasonality, camps are charging shoulder season rates so there are often some bargains to be had. Early November can offer great value for money and the weather conditions are likely to be comparable to late October.

  • Variable weather: clear & dry or cloudy with some rain.
  • Parks are comparatively quiet and prices at the lower end.
  • Some camps will close towards the end of the month for maintenance.
  • Good wildlife sightings, but animals will disperse when rain starts
  • The wildebeest migration is on the move and the location unpredictable

Our view

A good time to visit, with pros & cons

Weather in November

Tanzania in December

December is also during the short rainy period, but this does not stop Tanzania being a popular destination to spend the festive period. Be aware that many of the lodges book up early, and charge peak rates over this time. Advanced booking is essential over this period, especially if travelling in larger family groups.
Travelling in December outside of the festive period allows travellers to make use of excellent shoulder season rates. Temperatures are pleasant with the averages of 27Celsius, although there is the chance of intermittent thunderstorms.

  • Variable weather:clear & dry or cloudy with some rain and thunderstorm
  • Good general game viewing in parks with low seasonality - Serengeti.
  • Very quiet early in the month, becoming exceptionally busy.
  • Prices reflect this – great value rising to the highest they are.
  • The wildlife in southern Tanzania is more dispersed.

Our view

A good time to visit, with pros & cons

Weather in December

Tanzania fact file

Useful information and advice to help you prepare for a trip including Ndutu Safari Lodge


Excursions from Ndutu Safari Lodge

Optional extra day-trips and excursions possible whilst you're staying at Ndutu Safari Lodge. Talk to us: these are usually best arranged before you go.


Balloon Safari over the Serengeti

Balloon Safari over the Serengeti

Three hours - approx. one hour flight

As the sun rises over the Serengeti National Park in Northern Tanzania, climb aboard for an extraordinary adventure. For an hour you’ll float in a hot air balloon over beautiful savannah and woodland and a diversity of plains wildlife.

More about Balloon Safari
100% (9 reviews)

Other lodges in Serengeti Migration Area

Alternative places to stay in this same area.


Olakira

Olakira Camp

Comfortable, friendly and relaxed, Olakira Camp moves between the Mara River and the southern Ndutu area, in line with the wildebeest migration.


96% (60 reviews)
Sayari Camp

Sayari Camp

In the northern Serengeti, near the Mara River, luxurious Sayari Camp offers excellent wildife all year – boosted further by the wildebeest migration.


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Nomad Serengeti Safari Camp

Nomad Serengeti Camp

Serengeti Safari Camp is a well-appointed tented camp that moves several times a year to follow the predicted path of the migration.


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Dunia Camp

Dunia Camp

Dunia Camp is well located for the migration from December to March, and has excellent game viewing for the rest of the year.


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Lamai Serengeti

Lamai Serengeti

Set high in the kopjes with fantastic views, Lamai Serengeti offers top service and guiding and good migration sightings from Jul-Oct.


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Namiri Plains Camp

Namiri Plains Camp

Namiri Plains is one of the best camps in the Serengeti and its remoteness ensures a fantastic wildlife experience away from the crowds.


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Ubuntu Camp

Ubuntu Camp

Ubuntu Camp has several locations in the Serengeti, following the wildebeest migration, so it is often in a great location to see the herds.


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Kati Kati Camp

Kati Kati Camp

Kati Kati is a small, simple camp, which is well-positioned to explore the wildlife-rich Seronera area.


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Kimondo Camp

Kimondo Camp

Kimondo Camp is based in the remote Lamai Wedge in the northern Serengeti from Jul–Oct, and on the southern Kusini plains from Nov–Mar.


98% (11 reviews)
Kleins Camp

Klein's Camp

Klein's Camp, in a private area of the northern Serengeti, sets high standards. Activities include walks, nights drives and Maasai village visits.


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Serengeti under Canvas

Serengeti under Canvas

Two of the three Serengeti under Canvas camps move through the Serengeti National Park every few months to follow the wildebeest migration.


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Grumeti River Camp

Grumeti River Camp

Grumeti River Camp offers a laid-back atmosphere combined with top service, first-rate food, expert guiding and an excellent location.


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Alex Walker's Serian Serengeti

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Serian Serengeti is a mobile tented operation run by Alex Walker which moves between two locations following the wildebeest migration.


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Lobo Wildlife Lodge

Lobo Wildlife Lodge

The large Lobo Wildlife Lodge has simple, functional rooms in a stunning location. It's a good base for exploring the north-eastern Serengeti.


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Kusini Camp

Kusini Camp

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Kubu Kubu

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Mbalageti Lodge

Mbalageti Lodge

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Lemala Ewanjan

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Lemala Kuria Hills

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Faru Faru Lodge

Faru Faru Lodge

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Serengeti Walking Mobile Camp

Serengeti Walking Mobile

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Serengeti Sopa Lodge

Serengeti Sopa Lodge

Serengeti Sopa Lodge is an international-style hotel offering good-value accommodation in the central Serengeti, with lovely views of the plains.


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Serengeti Green Camp

Serengeti Green Camp

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Serengeti Migration Camp

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Serengeti Migration Camp is a smart tented camp, good for the wildebeest migration from Jul–Aug, or to explore the Lobo Kopjes any time.


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Sabora Tented Camp

Sabora Tented Camp

Sabora Tented Camp is a smart tented camp – one of the most luxurious, professional and stylish properties to be found in Tanzania.


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Lemala Mara-Ndutu

Lemala Mara-Ndutu

Lemala Mara-Ndutu is a semi-permanent camp that moves between the north and south of the Serengeti to witness the wildebeest migration.


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Lemala Nanyukie

Lemala Nanyukie

Lemala Nanyukie is a comfortable and stylish tented camp that opened in 2018 in the central Serengeti.


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Serengeti Serena Safari Lodge

Serengeti Serena

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Sasakwa Lodge

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Ndutu Kati Kati

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Lake Masek Tented Camp

Lake Masek Tented Camp

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Mara Kati Kati

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No reviews yet
Kirawira Camp

Kirawira Camp

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Kirurumu Migration Camp

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Kirurumu is a rustic tented camp which moves around the Serengeti twice a year to follow the wildebeest migration.


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Nimali Mara

Nimali Mara

Nimali Mara is a luxurious safari lodge in a quiet region of the northern Serengeti with good access to the wildebeest migration.


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Mwiba Lodge

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Mwiba Lodge is a luxurious property located on a private concession on the edge of the southern Serengeti.


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Mara Mara

Mara Mara

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Mbuzi Mawe

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Taasa Lodge

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Nimali Serengeti

Nimali Serengeti

Opened in July 2017, Nimali Serengeti is a smart, permanent tented camp located in the Seronera area of the central Serengeti.


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