Serengeti National Park
The park covers 14,763 sq km (5,700 sq mi) of endless rolling plains in northern Tanzania. It lies between the shores of Lake Victoria in the west, Lake Eyasi in the south, and the Great Rift Valley to the east. It is one of the world’s last great wildlife refuges. Most of its three million large animals take part in a seasonal migration.
The Serengeti’s climate is usually warm and dry. The main rainy season is from March to May, with short rains falling from October to November.
For centuries, the Serengeti Plains remained virtually uninhabited; but about hundred years ago the nomadic Maasai came down from the north with their cattle. The first European to arrive in the area was the German explorer and naturalist, Dr. Oscar Baumann. Other Germans built Fort Ikoma in the north and used it as an administrative centre. It was captured by the British in 1917. The first professional hunters came in 1913.
It was decided to make a partial game reserve in the area in 1921 and a full one in 1929. It was expanded and upgraded to a national park in 1951. In 1981, it became a UNESCO World Heritage site. It is a popular park for safaris.
The name “Serengeti” comes from the Maasai language and means an extended place.
The sections are complete only as far as information is currently available. There are many more species of both fauna and flora.
(This page was updated in December 2012.)