There is no "Best Time" to visit. Owing to its vast area, the climate in Tanzania varies from region to region, and in any given month and there will be a best time for something... birding... catching up with the Great Migration in a certain region. As in every tropical and sub-tropical region there are only two seasons. It is either dry or raining.
The Best Time to See the Great Serengeti Migration
To be sure, the wildebeest migration goes on all year round in a cycle that is linked to the rainfall patterns. Millions of animals are on the move. Particularly the vast herds of wildebeest. Other herds are on the move too zebra, eland, gazelle and impala.
All racing to keep up with where the rainfall is moving to, and where the fresh grazing will be growing.
Just imagine. All year, the animals move in a huge circle across the landscape. You just have to know where they will be at on any given month (more or less).
See a detailed Great Migration Map by month
Tanzania's Changing SeasonsJanuary and February:
This is the short dry season, before it really starts bucketing down in March. If it has rained during the short rains, then it normally dries up for a few months.
March to May:
This is the long rainy season, with the typical and predictable tropical afternoon heavy rain shower. With daily temperatures above 30°, the evaporating rainfall immediately raises the humidity. Sort of like raining upwards.
June to October:
The long dry season. Blue skied and sunny weather - with hardly any rain. Perhaps the occasional light shower. The daily average temperature gradient depends on your location and altitude - Cooler at the coast, and hotter inland. These are the best wildlife viewing months in Tanzania.
November to December:
The short rains - unreliable as they are unpredictable, these light showers are over as quickly as they appear.
Seasonal Cycle of the SerengetiDecember-March:
The November rains bring fresh grazing to the south
of the Serengeti.
Arrival of the rains and most lodges are closed.
The herds are moving to the north
of the Serengeti, and crossing the Grumeti River.
The rains have started in the south of the Park. The herds begin migrating south.
Tanzania Safari Guide
Read more articles in our Tanzania Safari Guides below.
Great Migration maps by month. See where the wildlife of the Great Migration in Serengeti and Masai Mara will be throughout the year....more
Enjoy a safari on the Northern Tanzania Safari Circuit or the Southern Tanzania Safari Circuit. Find out what makes each circuit special....more
Everything you need to know about Tanzania safari destinations. Read up on the highlights of the various regions: the Great Migration across Serengeti, the fabled Ngorongoro Crater, the flamingos of Lake Manyara...more
These Tanzania safari reviews are by seasoned travel writers. Read first hand experiences and accounts of travelling in Tanzania......more
These Tanzania Travel Guide articles offer useful information and inspiration for some of the more interesting activities available on a Tanzania safari....more