The Ngorongoro Conservation Area (NCA) is a conservation area and a UNESCO World Heritage Site situated 180 km west of Arusha in the Crater Highlands area of Tanzania. It’s 610 m (2,000 ft) deep and its floor covers 260 km2 (100 sq mi).
A visit to the Ngorongoro Crater is an experience of a lifetime, the world’s largest intact volcanic caldera, which formed when a giant volcano exploded and collapsed on itself some two to three million years ago. Approximately 25,000 large animals live in the crater, including the rare black rhino. It is not unusual to see the Big Five in one day – and all this in the most amazing setting with a backdrop of the 600m high crater wall. There are few places that have wildlife densities and variety on this level. Some of the oldest hominid remains have been found near the crater as well as artefacts dating back to early human evolution. Here activities include game viewings, walking, trekking, excursions to Olduvai Gorge and visiting the Masai and other tribes.
Aside from the well-known Ngorongoro Crater, Empakaai and Olmoti craters are scenic highlights as well. Both the Ngorongoro and Empakaai craters regularly have flocks of flamingo and from a distance, they appear as a pink border of the lake. The crater highlands on the east side is covered largely in montane forest, while west is grassland and bushland dotted with Euphorbia bussei trees. The crater floor is mostly open grassland with two small wooded areas dominated by Acacia xanthophloea.