The Ngorongoro Crater was formed by a large vocano exploding and collapsing into itself; the crater
is 610 meters deep and its floor covers 260 square meters. Here in the Ngorongoro Crater, wildlife
and humans co-exist; the only conservation area in Tanzania where this has been permitted. In 1959
the Maasai residents of the Serengeti were moved to the Ngorongoro Crater Area and have co-
existed with the wildlife ever since. Cultivation is limited to a subsistence level, to protect the
wildlife’s ecosystem; the wildlife being the major concern of the government.
Tourism is a huge industry in Tanzania, and the Ngorongoro Crater is a big draw, after the Serengeti
National Park itself. Being next to each other, and the constant wildlife moving back and forth
between the two, it has helped to reinforce both National Parks’ maintenance.
Over 25,000 large animals live in the crater; including black rhino, Cape buffalo, hippos, blue
wildebeest, Grant’s zebra, eland, Grant’s and Thomson’s gazelles, waterbucks, Tanzanian cheetah,
East African wild dog and African leopard. It also has the densest known population of Maasai
There are numerous lodges built on the rim of the Crater; offering spectacular views of the crater itself.
Many of these accommodations have all the modern conveniences, despite their isolated locations.