Le lac Natron est un lac salé riche en minéraux qui donne à ses eaux une couleur rouge sang. Situé au nord de Tanzanie, prêt de la vallée du Grand Rift, ce lac offre un paysage époustouflant.

Discover Lake Natron on safari in Tanzania

During your Tanzania safari with Off Road, you can enjoy the wonderful experience of discovering the Natron salt lake, a real adventure in the heart of Africa! The landscape is unique at Lake Natron. After 3-4 hours on the track from the village of Mto Wa Mbu, you will arrive at your destination and discover an arid environment where a whole ecosystem has developed around the lake. An incredible biodiversity exists at Lake Natron, making it an ideal place for observing nature in general and birds in particular.

The exploration of the flora and fauna will mingle with the discovery of the Masai people, giving you a totally immersive experience, an enchanted interlude in the heart of your safari!

The geological wonders of Lake Natron

The limestone formations are home to a multitude of geological treasures, including salt deposits, shimmering crystals, soothing hot springs and a variety of unique minerals. These evaporite-rich volcanic landscapes, composed of magnesium, calcium, carbonates, sulphates and halites, are ideal for the formation of spectacular rocks such as travertine. The geothermal energy present in these regions creates an ideal environment for the formation of these natural wonders.

The incredible biodiversity of Lake Natron

During your trip with Off Road Tanzania you will discover that the Lake Natron region is home to a unique ecosystem with a multitude of endemic species, including majestic pink flamingos, colourful fish, micro-organisms proliferating among algae and cyanobacteria. This environment is also home to a variety of migratory birds, land animals, fascinating insects and reptiles adapted to this thriving wildlife. The presence of these different species is testament to the incredible ability of the flora and fauna to adapt to this unique ecosystem.

The ecological challenges around Lake Natron

The preservation and conservation of the natural environment of the Lake Natron region is essential in the face of growing threats such as human impact, climate change and various forms of contamination.

The protection of this ecosystem depends on the proper use and management of resources

Raising awareness among travellers plays a crucial role in promoting environmental policies and safeguarding this fragile ecosystem. Striking a balance between sustainable development, ecotourism and stimulating the local economy is essential to preserving this natural heritage and ensuring a viable future for generations to come.

The local culture of the communities around Lake Natron

The traditions of nomadic peoples, such as the Masai, are marked by rich cultural exchanges, reflecting their way of life, deep-rooted beliefs and craft skills. Their fishing, herding and farming practices are intimately linked to their harmonious cohabitation with nature. These traditions are the very essence of their identity and constitute a precious cultural heritage that must be preserved.

Things to do around Lake Natron on safari

During your hike or trek, you can enjoy unique moments such as birdwatching and photographing breathtaking landscapes. A camel ride will allow you to explore the surroundings while soaking up the serene atmosphere. You can also relax with a dip in the Engare Sero waterfalls, which gush out from the bottom of a superb gorge.

Back at your lodge, you can admire the superb sunset over Mount Lengai, a volcano sacred to the Masai.

Committed to responsible tourism, with Hors-pistes you will experience an authentic immersion in the Lake Natron region, combining relaxation with respect for the environment.

The breathtaking scenery of Lake Natron

The grandiose panoramas of the mountains blend harmoniously with the vast expanses of desert and savannah, offering fiery sunsets and gentle auroras. At night, the starry skies stretch out above us, offering breathtaking and dazzling views. The striking contrast between the vibrant colours of the African earth and the wilderness that flourishes there creates an unforgettable visual symphony.

Accommodation and facilities for your safari in Lake Natron

Accommodation in the Lake Natron region offers a variety of options, from tented camps to luxury lodges, guaranteeing comfort and respect for the surrounding ecology. The facilities are carefully designed, offering quality catering services and spaces in which to relax. Overnight stays in these establishments are marked by warm hospitality and an attentive welcome, creating an intimate setting conducive to an unforgettable experience.

The best times to visit Lake Natron in Tanzania

The region has a dry and a wet season, with climatic variations but pleasant temperatures throughout the year. The best time to visit depends on individual preferences, desired activities and the current weather situation. Tourist numbers can vary according to these conditions, and each season offers unique experiences, whether it’s the spectacular animal migrations in the Serengeti, the births of baby animals on the Ndutu side or the brilliant flowering of the surrounding countryside.

Must-sees and must-dos on your Lake Natron safari

The itinerary carefully planned with your Off-Road consultant will include a variety of points of interest, offering a captivating journey through diverse excursions and enriching activities. Short hikes will provide authentic encounters, unique experiences and unexpected discoveries. These highlights will make for memorable adventures, a source of personal enrichment and memories to last a lifetime. The emotions felt, ranging from wonder to amazement, will leave their mark on this unforgettable travel experience.

Natron, an African natural wonder

The lake lies in an arid climate, is shallow with an average depth of just three metres, and its width varies according to seasonal rainfall (from December to May). It is 57 kilometres long and 22 kilometres wide, and temperatures frequently reach 40°C and can be as high as 60°C.

The lake is called Natron after the mineral contained in its water. Present in large quantities, it is responsible for the red colour of the water. The water in this lake also contains many saltwater minerals, such as sodium and trona, which is extremely hostile to most living creatures. Only certain types of bacteria and blue-green algae can survive in these waters. As you can probably imagine, it’s impossible to swim in these waters.

Safari at Lake Natron

The lake lies at the foot ofOl Doinyo Lengai near the Kenyan border. It is a still active volcano belonging to the Ngorongoro massif. If you’re looking for a thrilling adventure, this is the destination for you!

Lake Natron is a popular breeding ground for pink flamingos, who nest directly on the salt craters built by micro-organisms during the dry season. This salt, which is hostile to predators, provides absolute protection for the eggs. Every year, more than two million flamingos lay their eggs here, representing 75% of the world population. The eggs hatch between September and April. The spectacle is breathtaking.

Travelling to the Lake Natron Reserve

The Lake Natron Reserve is a top destination for birdwatchers in Africa, with tens of thousands of birds to be seen. It is also home to a wide variety of wildlife, including fish, goats, sheep, zebra and wildebeest.

Lake Natron is linked to a number of other national parks in Tanzania, including the nearby Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Lake Manyara and the Serengeti National Park to the west.

The lake is popular with travellers who want to add an unforgettable adventure or experience to their safari trips, so why not you? Let’s include it in your itinerary!

How to get to the lake

Exploring Lake Natron can be an adventure, as it is located 5 hours from Arusha airport, on a rough road, which is why it is important to get there by 4×4 with a driver to reach the site.

  • From Arusha Park -> 6 hours
  • From Tarangire -> 4 hours
  • From Lake Manyara -> 3 hours
  • From Karatu -> 4 hours
  • From Serengeti National Park -> 4.5 hours
  • From Mto Wa Mbu -> 3 hours

Where to sleep?

There is little accommodation around the lake. That’s why Off Road has set up its own eco-lodge at the foot of Langai in Masai territory. Find out more!

Excursions and activities around Lake Natron

  • Visit a real Maasai village, an opportunity to discover their culture at close quarters.
  • Hike around the lake to see the magnificent pink flamingos and the Ol Doinyo Lengai volcano.
  • Hike to the Ngare Sero waterfall
  • Bird watching
  • Photography