Sanctuary Ngorongoro Crater Camp is one of 18 properties listed in the impressive portfolio of Sanctuary Retreats. This company prides itself on providing authentic boutique experiences and its motto is ‘Luxury, naturally’. Ngorongoro Crater Camp has received a Certificate of Excellence from TripAdvisor! The accommodation is booked on a full-board basis, including all meals, a selection of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, one shared game drive in the crater and one on the rim, transfers between the camp and the airstrip, and a laundry service. Young safarists aged 15 years and younger are required to share a tent with their parents, and it’s essential to book a private safari vehicle for kids aged under 6 years – a special child rate applies.
ACCESS & LOCATION:
The camp is accessed via 30 minutes’ road transfer from Lake Manyara Airport. This airport is 40 minutes’ flight from Arusha. Travellers driving into camp from Arusha have a journey of 2 hours 30 minutes to the Ngorongoro Conservation Area gate, followed by a 45–60 minutes’ game drive transfer. The camp is situated in the crater’s beautiful rim valley, and it’s very close to the road leading onto the crater floor.
ACCOMMODATION & FACILITIES:
Guest accommodation consists of ten tents, all nestling into the valley woodlands. These are Meru in style – an outer layer of canvas extends over the inner structure to create a shady veranda. This is set with a couple of campaign chairs and a table, as well as a useful washstand. It’s a great spot for tucking into morning coffee and biscuits before starting your safari day! Inside each tent, there’s a comfy double bed or twin beds, bedside tables and lighting, and ample storage furniture. The en-suite facilities are positioned behind curtains to the rear of the tent, and they comprise flush toilet, washbasin with mirror over, and classic bucket shower! Your bucket is filled from outside the cubicle by a designated tent attendant, with water at whatever temperature you require. A hairdryer is supplied, and there are plug points too.
Ngorongoro Crater Camp’s communal lounge, dining room, and bar occupy a tent apiece. In the lounge, dark brown leather sofas and armchairs are positioned around coffee tables. There’s a selection of reading material too, and some wildlife artwork. The dining room contains chic individual tables and upright chairs, and it too features prints of local animals – including a zebra! The bar tent is the most informal of the three tents, with pictures of local animals again and fabric seating. All tents are open fronted, so you can marvel at the views while relaxing and dining. Additionally, some lounge and dining furniture is positioned in the camp’s grounds, providing opportunities for very pleasant al fresco relaxing and eating/drinking! Guests can enjoy a breakfast buffet in camp, or head out with a breakfast picnic. You can request a picnic lunch too, or head back to camp for this meal. Dinner is always served on site, either in the dining tent or at a special outside location.
The camp offers one game drive on the Ngorongoro Crater floor per guest stay. Vehicle safaris are possible in early morning and late afternoon – and as the crater is so close to camp along the access road, you can fit in plenty of wildlife viewing! This is one of Africa’s most famous safari destinations. It’s home to all Big Five – lion, rhino, leopard, elephant, and buffalo. Smaller predators include cheetah, hyenas, jackals, serval, caracal, golden cat, and wild dog, while the herbivore count features giraffe, wildebeest, zebra, and a vast variety of antelopes. Keen birders can look out for vast flocks of flamingo, and hundreds of other feathery species! Drives are also possible along the crater rim. Guests staying for more than one day are treated to a trip to Lake Manyara National Park – there are lots of flamingos here too, and another big highlight is the area’s tree-climbing lions. And anyone interested in a little culture can enjoy excursions to a nearby village, for some exciting Maasai activities.