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“Short walk but beautiful place”
Review of Empakaai Crater

Empakaai Crater
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Reviewed November 28, 2013

This is a stunning place to visit. The pink edges of the water turned out to be flamingoes and it was incredible to walk down to them. We saw a blue monkey on the way and glorious trees - which I have forgotten the name of already! There was a Masai woman at the top of the crater selling jewellery she had made which was beautiful and much cheaper than some of the shops. We loved it but had hoped for a long walk and found that really it is only possible to walk downhill to the crater then back up. So don't expect to be walking for hours. It's steep though for those who may find hilly walks more challenging. Scenery makes it worth it - not to be missed.

Thank Frances N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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51 - 55 of 90 reviews

Reviewed September 30, 2013

Our family of 4 (2 adults, 2 sons, aged 15 and 12) added this as an excursion from Ngorogoro - thinking that a half day walking would break up long days wildlife watching in our jeep. We are a family of walkers, so nothing about the trip was physically daunting for us - but do beware that the climb back out is long and steep. I have to say the trip was "okay" but not brilliant. We hadn't appreciated that we would need to be escorted by an armed guard, (rather than our own safari guide, who was brilliant), or that it would be rather the luck of the draw who we got. Nor had we realised it would be a steep straight descent through forest to the crater beach, then a steep straight ascent by the same route back. This wasn't quite the adventure we had hoped for!
Our guide, from the national parks service, was fairly non-communicative who spoke little English. By contrast, another couple we met at the crater itself, had traditional masai guides, who were considerably more engaging!

The highlight I think for us on this excursion was not the walk itself but the magnificent landscape seen on the journey to it from Ngorogoro. Vast open plains and remote Masai villages - beautiful. There are apparently guided walks through this landscape - now that might be quite appealing......

1  Thank Annie H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 26, 2013

Nature is so beautiful in Ngorongoro and the area around the crater is amazing. I congratulate the wild life guards for keeping such a high standard of environmentally friendly practices in place especially with such large numbers of tourists.

Thank Noon A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 24, 2012

Our whole group really enjoyed this hike into the crater. Empakaai was beautiful, with lots of flamingos. Also, everyone on our trip enjoys hiking, and we were all enthusiastic about another opportunity to just stretch our legs and take a look around, from outside the jeep.

The hike itself is not particularly strenuous. It took us about 40-45 minutes each way (up and down). That said, our Maasai guide told us that he usually does this hike in about 10-15 minutes!

One person wrote that they only had about 5 minutes to look around. We were fortunate, in that our guide let us stay as long as we wanted. We have a more thorough review on our blog at http:/www.porcupinelane.com

1  Thank porcupinelane
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 25, 2012

I must disagree with some of the other reviewers here. Empakaai is really very beautiful and the hike is also very good, so I would recommend it.

We knew that going down to the crater is a only about an hour and a half hike so we asked to be dropped before the crater (walk some of the way) and all together hiked for almost 5 hours. It was market day in the nearby village and on the way to the crater we saw many local Maasai walking alongside donkeys on their way to the market. That was very interesting and colorful. On the way back from the crater, we actually saw some of them return, only this time the donkeys carried bags full of fresh produce...
Once we got to the crater's rim we saw how beautiful it was and were able to see hundreds of small pink dots lined at its bottom- flamingos of course. With the still active volcano of El Doinyo Lengai at the background, views were spectacular.
Going down to the crater floor is very steep but quite short. We had lunch down there and it was a great spot to enjoy the views and the flamingos. The hike back up is rough, especially due to the scorching sun and the very steep incline, but again, it's not long, so it's OK.

All in all, it was a very good hike and we liked it a lot. Only thing I regret is that after seeing the great views and scenery of the Ngorongoro Highlands on the drive there, I think it would have been great to hike for 2-3 days and enjoy it by foot. The entire area is just beautiful.

1  Thank Ori P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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