The Wildebeest Migration: When to go?

Big herds of wildebeest join the great migration

As the migration is an all-year round event and highly depends on the rainfall, it is fairly predictable where the herds can be found.

Below is a brief summery of the migration route. For a more detailed overview go to our Wildebeest Migration Guide with the movement month by month and an interactive Serengeti Migration map.

The Migration Route in short

Every month has its own unique wildlife sightings. From December up till March the herd resides in the south of Serengeti National Park and northern part of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area. February is ‘calving month’ with an estimated 8,000 calves being born per day. It is unforgettable to see the vulnerable young ones trying to stand on their feet. At the same time, hungry lions and leopards are never far away as they prey on an easy meal.

Around April and May, as the southern plains dry out, the herds of wildebeest begin to move. You will be able to find them flooding through Moru Kopjes and west of Seronera as they begin their journey to the north to chaise the rains. The wildebeest will be joined by many zebras and Thompson’s and Grant’s gazelles. It is also in the western part where they encounter their first river crossings: the Mbalageti River and Grumeti River.

July and August are generally the best months to witness the dramatic river crossing at the Mara, in the far north. The migration remains in northern Serengeti and Masai Mara National Reserve till the end of October or November and then moves again to the south, making the circle complete.

However, even when the big herd is found in the north, wildlife remains abundant in other parts as there are many ‘resident’ animals who prefer to stay where they are, instead of to follow the migration.

Did you know this about the Great Trek? Discover 12 Fast Facts about the Migration!

wildebeest spectacle serengeti mara river tanzania