The Serengeti and the Ngorongoro Crater offer good wildlife viewing throughout the year. June and July are the best months for seeing the migration, and February is the best month for the wildebeest calving. The dry months offer good wildlife viewing throughout Tanzania. Tarangire and the southern and western circuit parks (including Katavi, Selous and Ruaha) are best visited in the Dry season, from June to October.
The best wildlife viewing months in Tanzania are during the Dry season from late June to October. The best chance of seeing the wildebeest migration in the Serengeti is during June and July and the time to see the wildebeest calving is late January to February. The southern and western circuit parks are best visited during the Dry season (June to October), unlike the more popular northern circuit parks that can be visited year-round. Tarangire is the only exception since its wildlife viewing is considerably better in the Dry season as well.
Best Time – June to October (All parks), June-July and January-February (Serengeti for the wildebeest migration and calving).
High Season – July to March (northern circuit parks; they get crowded), July to October (southern and western circuit parks; they don’t really get crowded any time of the year)
Low Season – April and May (northern circuit parks still get quite a few visitors unlike the southern and western circuit parks, where many lodges close down)
Best Weather – June to October (Little to no rainfall)
Worst Weather – March and April (Peak of Wet season)
Tanzania has a pleasant, tropical climate but has significant regional climatic variations influenced by several factors, including altitude. Temperatures drop by about 6.5°C for every 1,000m you climb (or 3.5°F per 1,000ft). The hottest and most humid part of the country is on the coast. Other low-lying areas, such as the western and southern parks, are also hot but much less humid. The rest of the interior is much milder and cools down significantly at night. Tanzania is too close to the equator to experience a real winter and summer. There is, however, a Dry and Wet season.
Arusha’s climate compared to Tanzania’s parks
Arusha is the town closest to the most popular northern parks and has a comparably mild climate. The peak amount of rainfall in April is considerably less in most parks than in Arusha. The altitude in the Serengeti ranges greatly, so there are wide climatic variations even within the park. The Ngorongoro Crater rim receives quite a lot of rain and is very cold during evenings and mornings due to its high altitude (about 2,300m/7,545ft). Lower-lying parks, such as Manyara, Selous, Mikumi, Ruaha, Gombe, Mahale Mountains and Katavi, are slightly warmer than Arusha – especially at night.
|January||10 °C / 50 °F||29 °C / 84 °F|
|February||11 °C / 52 °F||29 °C / 84 °F|
|March||12 °C / 54 °F||27 °C / 81 °F|
|April||14 °C / 57 °F||25 °C / 77 °F|
|May||11 °C / 52 °F||22 °C / 72 °F|
|June||9 °C / 48 °F||21 °C / 70 °F|
|July||9 °C / 48 °F||21 °C / 70 °F|
|August||9 °C / 48 °F||22 °C / 72 °F|
|September||8 °C / 46 °F||24 °C / 75 °F|
|October||11 °C / 52 °F||27 °C / 81 °F|
|November||11 °C / 52 °F||27 °C / 81 °F|
|December||10 °C / 50 °F||27 °C / 81 °F|
|January||58 mm / 2.3 in|
|February||84 mm / 3.3 in|
|March||178 mm / 7 in|
|April||368 mm / 14.5 in|
|May||211 mm / 8.3 in|
|June||33 mm / 1.3 in|
|July||15 mm / 0.6 in|
|August||20 mm / 0.8 in|
|September||20 mm / 0.8 in|
|October||36 mm / 1.4 in|
|November||112 mm / 4.4 in|
|December||102 mm / 4 in|