Southern Circuit Safaris
The Southern Circuit epitomizes Tanzania in her most pristine form, off the beaten track, away from the crowds of tourists and the sound of other safari vehicles. Here you will find prolific wildlife unscathed by human interaction, where the night sky dazzles with millions of stars, and a part of the continent which is untouched by time.
Selous Game Reserve.
The Selous Game Reserve, with an area of about 55,000 sq. km, is the largest well-watered wildlife sanctuary in Africa, and one of the largest protected areas in the world. Its size is simply stunning, bigger than Switzerland, uninhabited and little touched by human interference. It is perhaps the most pristine wilderness still remaining in Africa, with a wide variety of wildlife habitats, including open grasslands, Acacia and miombo woodlands, swamps and riverine forests in the many tributaries of the mighty Rufiji River which flows through the reserve. Due to its unique ecological importance, it was designated a World Heritage Site by the United Nations in 1982.
Its wildlife is spectacular, with some of its mammal and reptile populations are the largest in Africa, namely buffaloes, elephants, hippos, wild dogs and crocodiles. Other wildlife include the wildebeest, impala, waterbuck, zebra, eland, the greater kudu, sable antelopes, giraffe, baboon, the vervet and blue monkeys, and the black and white colobus monkey which can be seen in certain riverine forests moving from tree to tree in family groups. There is a large population of predators including lions, leopards, cheetah and the spotted hyena, and about 440 species of birds in the Selous, of both resident and migratory birds.
Named after Captain Frederick Courtney Selous, a legendary 19th century naturalist, explorer and hunter, Selous Game Reserve was founded in 1905. It is situated in the southern part Tanzania, bordered by Mikumi National Park to the northwest and by Udzungwa Mountains National Park and Kibasira Swamp to the west. The greater part of northern Selous is reserved for photographic safaris, and it is one of the most beautiful and game rich areas in the whole ecosystem.
The Selous wilderness meets the kind of dream visitors have of Africa of the early European explorers like Dr. Livingstone and Henry Stanley. The Reserve offers a wider variety of game viewing opportunities to the visitor, including the thrilling experience of a foot safari through game inhabited bushes in the company of an armed ranger. The many waterways in the Reserve provide an excellent natural setting for boat safaris, both for game viewing and bird watching. This is in addition to the game drives in 4X4 motor vehicles which, combined with boat and walking safaris, offer an exciting and richer game viewing itinerary unique to the Selous Game Reserve.
The best time to visit the Selous is from June to October. During the long rains, between March and May, some parts of the Selous become impassable and are temporarily closed for game drives.
MIKUMI NATIONAL PARK
Mikumi National Park is only three to four hours drive from Dar es Salaam, lying astride the main highway to Zambia, and en route to the National Parks of Ruaha and Udzungwa Mountains. The main feature of the park is the Mikumi flood plain, along with the mountain ranges that border the park on two sides. Open grasslands dominate in the flood plain, eventually merging with the miombo woodland covering the lower hills. The park is rich in wildlife. And animals like buffaloes, hippos, baboons, sable antelopes, lions, wild dogs, wildebeests, zebras, impalas, giraffe, warthogs, and elephants which can easily be viewed all the year round. Reptiles including crocodiles, monitor lizards and pythons are also resident in the park. Over 300 species of bird have been recorded some of which are Eurasian migrants.
Ruaha National Park
Ruaha National Park derives its name from the Ruaha River, which flows along its southeastern border. The river provides permanent water in the park and, during the dry season, animal concentration along its banks is spectacular.
Ruaha National Park is about two to three hours drive from Iringa, a famous town on the Dar es Salaam to Zambia highway, and covers an area of 12, 950sq km, making it the second largest National Park in Tanzania, after Serengeti. This unspoilt wilderness is rich in flora (about 1650 plant species) and fauna, and contains a wide variety of animals that includes Greater and Lesser Kudu, roan and sable antelopes, which are rarely seen in most other game parks especially in Northern Tanzania. Ruaha National Park is famous for its herds of elephant and buffaloes.
The Ruaha River, which plays an important role in the ecosystem of the park, provides sanctuary to a large number of hippos and crocodiles. During the dry season the river attracts great quantities of game including lions, leopard, hunting or wild dog, impala, waterbuck, warthog, giraffe, and elands. In the plains ostriches, cheetahs and Grants Gazelles can be seen. The park is rich in bird life throughout the year, with over 370 bird species recorded. The best time for game viewing is during the dry season, from May to December. During the wet months from January to April some tracks become impassable.
MIKUMI NATIONAL PARK
DAY 1 DEPART Dar es Salaam at 7.00 hours. Drive to Vuma Hill for lunch. After lunch game drive at Mikumi Natioal park, return to Lodge for dinner and overnight.
DAY 2 Morning game drive, lunch at Vuma Hill. After lunch depart to Dar es Salaam . End of our services
RUAHA / MIKUMI NATIONAL PARK
5 DAYS 4 NIGHTS BY ROAD
DAY 1 Morning pickup from the Hotel in Dar es Salaam with packed lunch and drive to Sunset Mountain Lodge. Dinner and overnight at Sunset Mountain Lodge.
DAY 2 Drive to Ruaha National Park for game drive, lunch at Ruaha River Lodge. Evening game drive, Dinner and overnight at Ruaha River Lodge.
DAY 3 Full day of game viewing in Ruaha National Park with Picnic lunch. Dinner and overnight at Ruaha River Lodge.
DAY 4 After an early breakfast and check-out from the Lodge, a morning game drive in Ruaha before proceed to Mikumi National Park with picnic lunch, game drive in Mikumi National park . Dinner and overnight at Vuma Hill.
DAY 5 Morning game drive. Lunch at the Lodge. Return to Dar es Salaam . End of our services
SELOUS / RUAHA / MIKUMI (By Road)
8 nights/9 days
Day 1 Depart from Dar es Salaam city centre by 4x4 safari vehicle to the Selous Game Reserve. Enjoy a late lunch at the Rufiji River Camp. Embark on an afternoon game drive in the reserve, and then return to Rufiji River Camp for dinner and overnight
Day 2 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. Meals and overnight at Rufiji River Camp
Day 3 After breakfast, accompany an armed ranger on a waking safari in the reserve. The sights and sounds (and smells) of a walking safari are a special treat that will live long in your memory. The thrill of creeping up to animals to “shoot” them with your camera is a great experience. 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. A large variety of herons, storks, ducks, stilts, and other water birds may be seen. And you also see land mammals, such as giraffe and elephants. Meals and overnight at Rufiji River Camp
Day 4 Another full day game viewing in the Selous Game Reserve. Meals and overnight at Rufiji River Camp
Day 5 Collect picnic lunches and drive to Mikumi National Park and proceed driving to Vuma Hill Tented Camp. The camp is perched above the trees stretching over the seemingly endless wilderness south west of Mikumi National Park . Dinner and overnight at Vuma Hill Tented Camp
Day 6 After breakfast drive to Ruaha National Park , which is famous for its rare sable antelope, roan antelope, and big herds of elephants. The park represents a transition zone where eastern and southern African flora and fauna overlap. Although Ruaha is one of the largest parks in Africa , it is comparatively unknown and, due to its remoteness, remains unspoiled. Enjoy a late lunch at the lodge followed by an afternoon game drive. Ruaha River Lodge is the only lodge in the reserve and is built on a rocky ridge with spectacular views of the Great Ruaha River . Dinner and overnight at Ruaha River Lodge
Day 7 Enjoy a full day game drive in the park. Nearly 500 bird species have been sighted within the park. The river area features large numbers of hippo and crocodile and attracts lion, leopard, hunting dog, waterbuck, impala, giraffe, warthog and eland. Grants gazelle, ostrich and cheetah may be seen on the plains. Meals and overnight at Ruaha River Lodge
Day 8 After an early breakfast drive to Mikumi National Park . Lunch at Vuma Hill Tented Camp, followed by an evening game drive in Mikumi National Park . The park is well known for its population of elephants, giraffes, buffaloes, zebras, elands, and greater Kudu, wildebeest, roan and sable antelope. Predators include tree-climbing lions, leopards, wild hunting dogs and black-backed jackal. You may also see crocodiles, monitor lizards, yellow baboon and hippos. Dinner and overnight at Vuma Hill Tented Lodge
Day 9 After breakfast, enjoy another game drive in Mikumi National Park . Return to the camp for lunch and then depart for your return to Dar es Salaam . Drop off in the city centre. End of our services