Planning a safari can be quite daunting, mainly because there is too much choice! Our intonation says this is negative, we don’t want to be negative at all, but having too much choice can be a bad thing and can swamp one’s mind. We thought we would help with this and help you focus your mind on some locations and properties over the next few blogs. To start with, we will take you somewhere really wild and wonderfully remote, Southern Tanzania.
When booking your international flights to Southern Tanzania, you need to get to Dar es Salaam, and depending on what time your flight lands, we can help with wonderful hotels to stay at for one night, or possibly two (if you would like to explore Dar a bit more) alternatively, if your flight lands in the morning – this is perfect! You will be met by one of our representatives who live and work within Dar, who will help you through customs and with your visa information, they will then direct you towards your connecting internal flight which will be on a cesna caravan which can carry a maximum of 9 passengers and can often be a private flight all to yourself. Your first stop will be in the Selous (or Nyerere National Park). The flight usually takes just over an hour from Dar, but it means you can enjoy the ever-changing landscape below, from sprawling city-scapes to lush thick bush and the meandering Rufiji River. As the plane descends over the bush, you will touch down on a dirt track airstrip, rumbling along the rugged red ground until you come to a stop and are met by your guide. One of the top places we recommend when staying here is Sand River Selous. You will be taken on a game drive towards Sand River and when you arrive, you are met with a gorgeous sight for weary travellers’ eyes. Walking through the main entrance, you will feel completely at home when you are met with a warm scented towel and a refreshing drink. Stroll through the main mess area, your eyes will skip over the sumptuous sofas and leather coffee tables and stools, before your eyes hit the sight of the Rufiji River, rippling its merry way just below the lodge. As you face the river, to your left are the rooms, snuggled into the hillside amongst the trees, barely visible unless you really look for them, the ultimate in privacy and space. The staff at Sand River Selous are wonderful, nothing is too much of a problem and everyone always has a smile on their face. This is the one place in the Selous where you can have the option of enjoying a sleep out under the stars and we urge you to do this, because it is something special to experience. We recommend staying three days and possibly four so you can really enjoy and relax in this stunningly wild, yet luxurious location.
Following your stay at Sand River Selous, your next stay needs to be Ruaha. A totally different eco-system to Selous, but a must to combine the two. Hop back on your cesna caravan and fly the hour or so to Ruaha. It is much more open in views, hot and dry. The views incredible. Ruaha is dotted with stunning baobab forests, some with their trunks ripped to shreds by the local landscape artists (elephants!) and on your afternoon game drives, the light shining between these majestic trees is nothing by pure magic. Places we would recommend you stay has to be Ikuka Ruaha. This family run lodge is located up high on one of the rare hills in Ruaha, looking down across the bush. The views here are incredible – especially from the pool! The rooms are huge and spacious, ensuring you have full vantage of the views. Walking safaris are a must here. If youre looking for a bit more luxuriousness, then look no further than Jabali Ridge. This camp oozes luxury and the food is beyond delicious. Jabali Ridge has won awards for its unique design and luxuriously spacious and private rooms.
(bedroom views from Ikuka Ruaha)
(Pool views from Ikuka Ruaha)
(the quirky and luxurious rooms at Jabali Ridge)
(Pool views from Jabali Ridge)
Again, we recommend at least three nights stay in both Ruaha and Selous, if you can push this to four, then do! You’ll hop back on your cesna caravan returning to Dar to catch your flight home, this usually takes about 2 hours, but you will land and board your international flight with incredibly memories to cherish. If Southern Tanzania ticks all the right boxes for you, then get in contact and we can plan putting this incredible and memorable trip together and give you something to look forward to after the troubling couple of years we have had… you won’t regret it!