The word Serengeti is derived in the Maasai language from the term “esirinket” and means “the endless land” or “endless plains”. Extensive, flat grass plains in the south are contrasted with slightly hilly, slightly forested plains in the north. The central savannah is almost treeless. The highest mountains are about 1850 meters above sea level, lower parts of the savannah reach down to about 920 meters.
The Serengeti area encompasses the Serengeti National Park, which at 14,763 square kilometres is one of the largest and most famous national parks in the world and since 1981 has been part of the UNESCO World Natural Heritage.