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ngorongoro crater from above

Ngorongoro Crater Location

The Ngorongoro Conservation Area is one of Africa’s wonders. A world of wildlife and beauty await visitors that venture to this extinct volcano. The plains are home to roaming wild beasts, ancient fossils, and are a stomping ground for nomadic Maasai tribes and their livestock. Find out how you can discover this incredible destination! 

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Where is Ngorongoro Conservation Area located?

A protected area and World Heritage Site located in northern Tanzania, Ngorongoro Conservation Area is 180 kilometres (110 miles) west of Arusha in the Crater Highlands. It falls within the Serengeti ecosystem, and it's not uncommon to see Maasai tribes living alongside the abundant wildlife found here. It's a perfect spot to see wildebeest, who cross the region during their annual migration. 

The Ngorongoro Conservation Area also has plenty of coastal landscape nearby. Travellers interested in combining their safari experience with a beach trip can fly over to Zanzibar. Pro tip: Check out our safari and beach tours in Tanzania and Zanzibar.

Closest airports and cities to Ngorongoro

The closest airports are located in Arusha, at Kilimanjaro National Park and Nairobi. Jomo Kenyatta International Airport is an airport in Nairobi and a major hub in Africa, with main flight routes from all over the world. There are new flight routes from John F. Kennedy International Airport to Nairobi!

Kilimanjaro Airport to Ngorongoro

  • Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO), the second largest airport in Tanzania, has regular flights to major cities nearby as well as all around the world.
  • From Kilimanjaro International Airport to Ngorongoro Crater it is approximately 230 kilometres, about a 5-hour drive.

Arusha to Ngorongoro
  • Arusha Airport (ARK) is a small airport, but the closest airport to Ngorongoro. It can be reached on a regional plane from one of the nearby international airports.
  • The distance from Arusha airport to Ngorongoro Crater is about 170 kilometres. That's about a 3-hour drive by car. Be aware that the roads are not in great condition and you can expect gravel.

Nairobi to Ngorongoro
  • Nairobi to Ngorongoro is about a 7-8 hour drive with a distance of more than 400 kilometres. Driving on your own can be very exhausting, and you will have to search for petrol stations. A better alternative would be to fly into Nairobi and then take a local flight into Arusha.

TourRadar recommendation: Fly into Nairobi and spend 1-2 days experiencing the city, while you also rest and deal with any jet lag. Then embark on a safari that begins in Nairobi

How to best get to Ngorongoro

To truly experience this spectacular region, we recommend booking a tour that starts in Arusha or Nairobi; this way you will be able to discover the very best of it! 

Another way to make the most out of your trip to the area is by adding an overland tour to your adventure. This way you can combine spotting wildlife with culture and landscapes.

Pictured above: the location of Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Pictured above: the location of Ngorongoro Conservation Area


3.2262° S, 35.4467° E
Closest airports
Arusha Airport, Kilimanjaro International Airport, Jomo Kenyatta International Airport

How to get from other national parks to Ngorongoro

  • How to get from Masai Mara to Ngorongoro?

    From Masai Mara National Reserve to Ngorongoro Crater, you should expect a 5-6 hour drive. The best way to get from the reserve to the crater is to drive through the Serengeti; it's easy to combine your travel to Ngorongoro with a stopover in Serengeti. 
  • How to get from Serengeti to Ngorongoro?

    Serengeti is adjacent to Ngorongoro. The distance by road from Serengeti to Ngorongoro is just under an hour and a half. Most safari tours include a visit to Ngorongoro Conservation Area and Serengeti National Park - depending on the length of your safari, your tour may include a visit to Masai Mara and other parks like Amboseli.
  • How to get from Ngorongoro to Amboseli?

    The distance between Ngorongoro and Amboseli is around 6-7 hours by road. It depends on the safari tour, but many tours will allow you to discover the best of all of these wildlife sanctuaries. Ngorongoro to Amboseli is a normal route on many itineraries. 
  • How to get from Ngorongoro to Tararangire?

    Located in Manyara Region, Tarangire National Park is the sixth largest national park in Tanzania. The 180-kilometre (110 miles) drive from Tarangire to Ngorongoro takes about four hours. You'll enjoy these drive times, as they offer precious moments to spot animals in the wild.
  • How far is Lake Manyara from Ngorongoro Crater?

    Lake Manyara is a 1.5-hour drive from Ngorongoro Crater. Located in Lake Manyara National Park, one of Tanzania's smaller parks, this is one impressive body of water. Visitors can explore 11 ecosystems, diverse landscapes, and high densities of animals.

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