Ngorongoro crater is found within Ngorongoro Conservation Authority (NCA) located in Ngorongoro district about 190Km (4 hrs drive) from Arusha. Ngorongoro crater boasts a blend of landscapes, wildlife, people and archaeology that is unsurpassed in Africa. The volcanoes, grasslands, waterfalls and mountain forests are home to abundance of animals and to the Masai land and people.
The Ngorongoro crater is one of the world largest volcanic caldera which is unbroken and unfolded. Sought to be formed more than 40 million years ago when the east Africa volcanism took place and formed most prestige mountains of Africa (The Kilimanjaro, Mt Kenya, Mt Elgon, Mt Meru, Ol Doinyo Lengai.
In fact, it’s not really a crater it’s a caldera, a collapsed volcano. The crater (we still call it a crater) has a diameter of 19km, it is about 600m deep. The bottom is flat, almost treeless and filled with some small creeks and lakes.
Ngorongoro is thought to have formed about 2.5 million years ago from a large volcano whose cone collapsed inward after a major eruption, leaving the present vast, unbroken caldera as its landmark.
The crater is loaded with game. Gazelles, zebra’s, elephants, hyena’s, buffalo’s, hippos, lions and many birds including ostriches. Only the giraffe is not present. The steep pathway down into the crater forbids this tall legged animal to descend.