Lake Natron & Ol Doinyo Lengai

Lake Natron is a soda lake with a large resident population of flamingos. Lying on the border of Kenya, just north of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area , Lake Natron and the active volcano Ol Doinyo L’Engai occupy a surreal landscape, overshadowed by the Rift Valley Escarpment. 

Lake Natron is a good area to visit authentic Maasai communities, experiencing first-hand the Masai culture. Foot safaris along natural river gorges are another possibility, as there are waterfalls, plunge pools and a natural jacuzzi fed by water coming from the Ngorongoro Conservation Area .

At the head of the valley lies the active volcano Oldoinyo Lengai, Tanzania’s only active volcano and the world’s only natrocarbonatite volcano. This unique and amazing geological feature is the most remarkable geological sight Tanzania has to offer, towering over the desolate landscape produced by the ash falling from its constant eruptions; Lengai created – and still creates – the Serengeti Plains, and is the cause of the archaeological fossil layers of Olduvai Gorge! 

Oldoinyo Lengai means “mountain of God” in KiMaasai (the language of the Masai tribe), and when you see an eruption under-way (last eruption in 2008/9) you can understand why how Oldoinyo Lengai got its name. It is usually possible to climb Oldoinyo Lengai, if the volcano is not erupting too savagely, and although the climb is hard (some might say savage) the views from the top are truly breath-taking.

If you are interested in visiting Lake Natron or Oldoinyo Lengai contact us< directly and our field staff will help you design your own personal Tanzania safari itinerary selecting from our wide range.

Lying on the border of Kenya, Lake Natron is the only known breeding ground for East Africa’s millions of lesser flamingos. The best time to see the flamingos is during the breeding months from August to October.

The surreal scenery of Lake Natron is great for landscape photography. The lake is not inside any national park, which means that as a visitor it is possible to go on a foot safari with your local guide.

You can take a short hike along a gorge in the rift escarpment to Engaresero Water Falls. There is a natural jacuzzi at the base of the falls where you can bathe, overshadowed by the rocks and epiphytes hanging above. It is also possible to take a dawn stroll out to the edge of Lake Natron and watch the sun come up over the immense landscape.