Tucked beneath a canopy of shade trees, on the sandy shores of a quiet bend in the Rufiji River in the Selous Game Reserve, lays the elegant and exciting Selous Safari Camp. (“Selous” is pronounced Se-loo.) The Camp consists of only 12 sleeping tents, which are further subdivided into two separate camps with dedicated facilities and staff.
An isolated island of luxury in the middle of the great wilderness of the Selous Game Reserve, this safari camp offers the best of everything: beautiful surroundings, close proximity to wildlife, exciting activities, intimate atmosphere, exquisite accommodations, sophisticated dining and friendly service.
Activities at Selous Safari Camp are shared with other guests and are conducted twice a day, once in the morning and once in the afternoon. Activities for guests to choose from include game drives, boat trips and walking safaris. Game drives are conducted in an open-sided vehicle and the morning drive usually begins around 8am. Boat safaris are conducted in sturdy motor-boats covered by a shade canopy, and they also begin around 8am.
Guided walking safaris are also conducted earlier, around 6.30am, to avoid the heat of the day. These typically last till lunch at 1pm. There's then time to relax at Camp before the afternoon round of activities begin, which start at 4pm and last till sunset.
Lake Nzerakera supports a myriad of birdlife, as well as an abundant population of crocodiles, hippos, elephants and other animals that rely on the ample water supply to survive.
Selous Safari Camp is situated on the banks of Lake Nzerakera, one of the oxbow lakes that adjoin the Rufiji River, in the Selous Game Reserve of southern Tanzania. Selous Game Reserve is located approximately 125 miles west of Dar es Salaam. Unlike the great parks of the north like the Serengeti which really shine in the green season, it is best to avoid the rainier months of March, April and May here in Selous.
Selous Safari Camp boasts a total of 11 elegant canvas tents, which are sub-divided into two intimate camps. North Camp contains 6 tents and the South Camp contains 7 tents. Each of the two camps is appointed with its own private swimming pool, dining area, lounge, bar, game viewing deck and bar.
The common areas are contained by magnificent structures inspired by the longhouses of Indonesia. Giant thatched roofs cover open air interiors in grand safari style. The lounge and bar area is raised high on a wooden platform above the trees with a view over the lake. Comfortable sofas and cushioned chairs are arranged in a casual style to encourage informal gatherings. Safari ambiance is promoted by thoughtful décor including earthy clay pots, ebony woodcarvings and traditional African artifacts.
A second building situated on an adjacent platform form a mirror image of the lounge, only this side houses the dining room. Both sides are accessed by their own set of stairs from the ground.
The spacious sleeping tents are elevated on wooden stilts and a timber platform and are aligned along the lake shore. These permanent tents are all positioned with plenty of space in between to ensure maximum privacy, and each is located just a short distance from the sandy banks of the lakeshore to optimize the views. Furthermore, each tent boasts two large game-viewing verandahs on either side, appointed with a day bed, lounge chairs and writing desk, where one can continue safari long after formal activities are over.
There are no fences and no artificial means to keep animals from freely wandering through the Camp, and many often do. It is not unusual to hear an anonymous myriad of animals (Hippos? Buffalo? Elephant?) munching around your tent after night-fall.
The interior of each sleeping tent is an oasis of relaxation, decorated in muted colors and luxurious fabrics that provide the perfect setting for peace and relaxation. A grey concrete slab offers a sleek floor surface. An overhead fan gently billows the curtains and chases away the mid-day heat, lulling the most active vacationer to contemplate an afternoon siesta. The bathroom offers a double vanity appointed with copper-colored basins set inside a spacious wooden countertop. A stunning outdoor shower offers both privacy and a sense of freedom in an open-air environment.
The sleeping tents are thoughtfully appointed with considerate essentials such as umbrellas and an in-room safe, small luxuries such as dried flowers and plush cotton robes, and elegant toiletries such as silky lotions and stylish soaps.
The Selous Safari Camp is a 45 minute flight from Dar es Salaam, and is serviced by the Siwandu airstrip which is only a 10 minute drive from the Camp. Pick-up and transfers are facilitated by the staff.
Food and Drink
Expect excellent food at Selous Safari Camp, with an emphasis on simple yet elegant cuisine. All dishes are made onsite including fresh baked goods.Breakfast consists of eggs, sausage and/or bacon cooked to order, as well as a variety of cereals, cold meats, fresh fruit, yogurt, and toast or pastries. Breakfast is served between 7-10am.
Lunch is served around 1pm, consisting of light fare, usually 2 courses with fresh salad, breads and a fruit-based dessert. Tea and snacks are served around 3.30pm, just before the afternoon activities begin. This service includes your choice of tea or coffee, cookies and lemonade.
Dinner is served at 8pm after sundowners and consists of 3 delicious courses: a tantalizing appetizer, a main meal consisting of meat (beef, pork or chicken) paired with vegetables, and a dainty dessert to finish the meal.
Unless you request private dining, there is a good chance you may be seated with fellow guests. Tea or coffee is included with the meal. A wide selection of soda, water, and alcoholic drinks are available at an extra charge.
Special Features and Notes
- Sleeping accommodations are split into two private Camps of 6-7 tents, each catered by a private staff, lounge, bar, dining area and swimming pool
- Guided boat safaris on Lake Nzerakera on a shared basis
- Guided game drives in open-sided 4x4 vehicles on a shared basis
- Guided walking safaris
- Laundry services are included
- 24/7 electricity (combination of generator power and solar power)
- Breakfast served from 7-10am
- Lunch served at 1pm
- Afternoon “Tea” with coffee, tea, lemonade and snacks served at 3.30pm
- Sundowners served at 7.30pm (extra cost)
- Dinner served at 8.00pm
- Internet services available (extra cost)
- No children under 6 years of age allowed
- Facilities are not handicapped accessible
- Cell phone usage is restricted in common areas
- Main lounge and dining area with spacious verandah
- Nearby Siwandu airstrip (10 minutes from Camp)
- Well stocked safari boutique and gift shop available
- Satellite phone is available but reserved for emergencies only
- Camp is closed from mid-March through May. Game drives and walking safaris are limited during the months of January and February while boat safaris prevail