The Nyerere National Park is one of the largest faunal reserves of the world, located in the south of Tanzania. It was named after Englishman Sir Frederick Selous, a famous big game hunter and early conservationist, who died at Beho Beho in this territory in 1917 while fighting against the Germans during World War I. Scottish explorer and cartographer Keith Johnston also died at Beho Beho in 1879 while leading a RSGS expedition to the Great Lakes of Africa with Joseph Thomson. The Selous ( Nyerere National Park ) was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1982 due to the diversity of its wildlife and undisturbed nature.
The reserve covers a total area of 54,600 km2 (21,100 sq mi) and has additional buffer zones. Within the reserve no permanent human habitation or permanent structures are permitted. All (human) entry and exit is carefully controlled by the Wildlife Division of the Tanzanian Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism. Some of the typical animals of the savanna (for example bush elephants, hippopotami, Masai lion, East African wild dog, South African cheetah, cape buffalo, Masai giraffe and crocodiles) can be found in this park in larger numbers than in any other African game reserve or national park.
This 4-day safari to the Selous Game Reserve departs from Dar es Salaam by vehicle and spends three nights at the Rufiji River Camp. It is a safari well worth doing if you find yourself in Dar es Salaam and have just a few days to spare. This 4-day safari to Selous departs on request (subject to accommodation availability), and costing is based on the number of people.
DAY 1 – DAR ES SALAAM TO NYERERE NATIONAL PARK
Depart from Dar es Salaam city centre by 4×4 to the Selous Game Reserve to start your African safari experience. At 55,000 sq km, Selous is almost twice the size of Belgium and four times larger than the famous Serengeti to the north, covering 5% of Tanzania’s land area. The Selous’ ecosystem as a whole is made up of a few conservation areas, covering in total over 90,000 sq km of pristine wilderness devoid of human influence.
Enjoy a late lunch at the Rufiji River Camp. Embark on an afternoon game drive in the reserve, fed by the mighty Rufiji River. This is the largest river in East Africa and the reserve is home to over 1,000,000 large animals and over half of Tanzania’s elephant population. Return to Rufiji River Camp for dinner and overnight stay.
Rufiji River Camp: Rufiji River Camp is located on the banks of the Rufiji river, in a point where the ample and tranquil river is animated by many and different species of animals. The tented camp, situated in the heart of the reserve, is environmentally friendly and each tent is equipped with private bathroom and a veranda facing the river. There is a constant flow of animals coming down to drink at the river, offering a permanent show for visitors of the camp. The water is usually full of hundreds of hippos as well as groups of crocodiles that laze in the sun on the sandbanks in the river.
Included: Lunch & Dinner
DAY 2 – RUFIJI RIVER CAMP TO NYERERE NATIONAL PARK
Enjoy a full day game viewing in the reserve. Participate in some classic-style game drives exploring the bush in open 4 x 4 vehicles. Waterbuck, southern reed buck, and bushbuck are common in the Selous. Rare sable antelope, lion and greater kudu also frequent this area. Selous contains about one third of all the wild dogs (often called painted dogs), in the world. Along the Rufiji River, an array of grazing antelopes, crocodiles and hippos are commonly seen as well as black and white colobus monkeys in the riverine forests. During the dry season from June to October, the concentration of animals along the river is astonishing.
Meals and overnight at Rufiji River Camp
DAY 3 – RUFIJI RIVER CAMP TO NYERERE NATIONAL PARK
After breakfast, accompany an armed ranger on a walking safari in the reserve. The sights and sounds of a walking safari are a special treat that will live long in your memory. Walks leave at 6:30 am accompanied with a watchman and a fully qualified armed guide. It is a gentle stroll through the wilderness with emphasis on the little things that are difficult to experience from a vehicle. The walking concentrates on ecology, tracking, dung identification, medicinal uses of trees, birds and generally interpreting. The bush gives you a much broader understanding of nature.
In the afternoon, enjoy a boat safari where you will explore the different channels and lakes of the Rufiji River System, surrounded by hippos and crocodiles. The boat safaris are conducted in sturdy metal boats with a powerful outboard motor on the back and a covered canopy. Each boat safari is guided by a boatman who has grown up on the river and knows all the little nooks and crannies for the boat to sneak through. They are also well aware of hippo and crocodile behaviour having spent so many years safely guiding people between them. The boat safaris provide some of the best water birding in Africa as well as getting up close and personal to hippos and crocs which swarm through the river system, be they wallowing in the water or basking on the banks. A large variety of herons, storks, ducks, stilts, and other water birds may be seen as well as land mammals, such as giraffe and elephants.
Meals and overnight at Rufiji River Camp.
DAY 4 – NYERERE NATIONAL PARK BACK TO DAR ES SALAAM
Enjoy a morning game drive in the Selous Game Reserve then early lunch at the camp, followed by departure transfer to Dar es Salaam. Drop off at the airport for your flight back home or to Zanzibar for a beach holiday.
- Accommodation and meals as stipulated on each itinerary
- Ground transportation with an English speaking driver/guide or naturalist guide
- Game drives or sightseeing depending on the itinerary – where indicated
- Park or reserve entry fees – where applicable
- Airport or border transfers – unless stated otherwise on the itinerary
- Inoculations and personal insurance
- Any internal flights and departure taxes (with Tanzania)
- International flights and departure taxes
- Optional activities and excursions
- Items of personal nature such as beverages, telephone, postage etc..
- Holiday (Christmas, Easter) and other seasonal surcharges