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  Southern Tanzania Discovery Safari
 

Private Safari - Small Luxury Camps & Lodges
12 Days
from USD $6,150

SAADANI RESERVE
MIKUMI NATIONAL PARK
RUAHA NATIONAL PARK
UDZUNGWA MNTS.
SELOUS GAME RESERVE
 
  VENTURE OFF THE BEATEN PATH TO THE WILD PARKS AND RESERVES OF SOUTHERN TANZANIA. STARTING AT SAADANI - THE ONLY COASTAL WILDLIFE SANCTUARY IN EAST AFRICA, YOU THEN EXPLORE MIKUMI NATIONAL PARK RUAHA, THE UDZUNGWA MOUNTAINS, AND THE SELOUS GAME RESERVE. THESE SPECTACULAR SETTINGS ARE SELDOM TOUCHED BY CONVENTIONAL TOURISM AND OFFER A PERFECT COMBINATION OF SECLUSION AND WILDLIFE VIEWING. ACTIVITIES LED BY YOUR PRIVATE GUIDE ALONG WITH PARK RANGERS IN SOME AREAS.

 
Days 1/2 - DAR ES SALAAM / SAADANI GAME RESERVE  
After breakfast you will be met by your guide and depart from Dar es Salaam to the Saadani Game Reserve, the only coastal wildlife sanctuary in East Africa. This game reserve, which lies just in front of the Island of Zanzibar, offers the rare opportunity of observing the interaction between Africa’s big game and birdlife with the Indian Ocean. It is not unusual to see elephants and antelopes on the beach, mongooses digging for crabs or fish eagles in action - not to mention the marine life like bottle-nosed dolphins or the whales that cross the Zanzibar channel in October and November. Madete beach at the northern end of the reserve is also an interesting place where green turtles find their nesting ground.

Out of the big five, lion, elephant, leopard and buffalo are present, as well as the Roosevelt sable antelope a singular coastal species. The southern limit of Saadani is marked by the Wami river which can be navigated in search of hippos, crocodiles or the agile black and white colobus monkeys jumping from branch to branch.

Your accommodations will be at Saadani Safari Lodge. This beach lodge consists of ten beautifully appointed canvas bandas with wonderful beach front locations. Each banda is fully en-suite, offers 24 hour solar lighting and hot water showers. At the center of the lodge is a rustic but stylish restaurant and bar complex and behind the bandas, only 100 yards from the beach, is a tree-house and waterhole which attracts regular warthogs, waterbuck, bushbuck, buffaloes and giraffe as well as a wonderful array of birdlife.
Overnight - Saadani Safari Lodge (all meals & activities)


Days 3/4 - MIKUMI NATIONAL PARK  
Depart early in the morning by road to Mikumi National Park, arriving in time for lunch at Mikumi Safari Camp. This park covers an area of 1,250 square miles (3,230 kms2,) and is part of a huge ecosystem comprising the Selous Game Reserve. Situated in the Mkata flood plain, between the Uluguru and Rubeho Mountains, Mikumi is the Kiswahili name for the Borassus Palm which once was very common in the area. Stanley crossed this flood plain in 1872 on his return after finding Livingstone in Ujiji, Lake Tanganyika.

Mikumi has many different ecosystems dominated by grasslands in the flood plain of the Mkata river which later give way to “miombo” woodland, dry forest dominated by “Brachystegia” trees. Every ecosystem has varying species like the Greater Kudu and Sable Antelope with the miombo. Other abundant species include elephant, buffalo, eland and Liechtenstein’s Hartebeest together with predators like lion, leopard, spotted hyena and the highly endangered African wild dog - easier to spot at Mikumi than in other National Parks and Game Reserves of Tanzania.

Accommodation is at Vuma Hills Tented Camp, set in a peaceful location in the hills with a view of the Mkata plains and surrounding mountains. It has 16 spacious, comfortable tents, each with a hot shower and flush toilet in their en-suite bathrooms, with large verandas overlooking the open grasslands. The open air bar is perfect for a sunset drink and there is a small swimming pool here.
Overnight - Vuma Hill Tented Camp (all meals & activities)


Days 5/6 - RUAHA NATIONAL PARK  
Today you drive across Mbuyuni or Baobab Valley to reach the town of Iringa in the Southern highlands. Later in the day you will descend into the valley of the Great Ruaha River and into Ruaha National Park, where you will spend the next two days on foot and in your 4x4, exploring the different ecosystems of the Park. Ruaha National Park is the wild and untouched Africa as described by the early explorers.

Ruaha is crossed by the dry sand rivers and the Great Ruaha River fringed tall tamarinds, acacia and wild fig trees. Huge baobab trees are found almost everywhere in the park giving an interesting feature to this vast wilderness. The park shelters large herds of elephants , sable and roan antelope, together with both species of kudu. Lion, leopard , cheetah and spotted hyena are also found and there are several packs of the rare wild dogs in the reserve. Along with the mammals there are more 370 species of birds that inhabit Ruaha. Sought after sightings of the Pel’s fishing, Dickinson’s kestrel, violet crested Turaco, pale-billed hornbill and the raquet-tailed roller can be worth a visit to the park for bird enthusiasts.

Your two nights here will be spent at the wonderful Ruaha River Lodge - where you can comfortably flop down, put your feet up and watch the hippos splashing in the river in front of you. The lodge stands on the banks of the Ruaha River, with small rapids running over boulders, often with hippos and large crocodiles waiting nearby in calmer pools.

The spacious lodge bungalows are made of stone and thatch and each one has a veranda, simple furniture and en-suite bathrooms containing a flush toilet, washbasin, a shower with copious hot water and the odd frog or two. Enjoy drinks around the campfire each evening and wholesome, plentiful dinners in the elevated dinning room.
Overnight - Ruaha River Lodge ( all meals & activities)


Days 7/8 - UDZUNGWA MOUNTAINS NATIONAL PARK  
After breakfast, you’ll return to Iringa taking the same road that brought you to Ruaha, to reach Mikumi village early in the afternoon. From Iringa you’ll head towards Kilombero and Ifakara to reach the village of Mangula at the foot of the Udzungwa Mountains.

The Udzungwa Mountains National Park was created to protect the only place in East Africa where the land remains unbroken – the forest begins in the lowland (at 250 m altitude) and continues untouched to over 6,500 feet above sea level to montane forest. This forest is similar to the rain forests of Central Africa, is rich in endemic species that are not found anywhere else in the world. The Udzungwa offer spectacular mountain scenery with rainforests, rocky areas, rivers and waterfalls. Rising up from the plains are the green Udzungwa Mountains.

Due to the taboos of traditional beliefs, the mountains have been untouched for millennia - ensuring that the endemic species which has have evolved here still thrive. These include the Sanje crested mangabey and the fabulous Iringa red colobus which are often seen, and also the two endemic galagos, which are harder to spot. You’ll also find black and white colobus, vervet monkeys and yellow baboons, and a whole host of birds and other smaller animals.

The second day of your stay here, you will spend the whole day trekking the Park with a National Parks guide, setting off early in the morning.. The trails vary in length from a few hours to several days and can be steep in parts - but are always taken at your own pace.
Overnight - Twiga Resort (all meals & activities)


Days 9/10/11 - SELOUS GAME RESERVE  
After an early breakfast you will depart for the village of Kisaki, crossing an incredible landscape and in the early afternoon you will reach the border of the Selous Game Reserve.

The Selous is the largest protected wilderness on the continent. The north part of the Reserve offers a perfect blend of all the variety of ecosystems found in this vast area: swamps and wetlands, open grasslands, extensive acacia and miombo woodlands, riverine forests and the Rufiji River basin with his multiple channels and nearby lakes fringed by “Borassus” palms.

The reserve and the surrounding areas host a population of more than 60.000 elephants and many other mammals like buffaloes, hippos and antelopes. Crocodiles and countless species of birds live along the Rufiji River and predators like lion and leopard live within the Selous. One of the main attractions her is the African wild dog, which usually can only survive far from human settlements and domesticated dogs, which tend to transmit disease to their wild cousins.

Over the next three days you will explore this vast wilderness on game drives, by boat and on walking safaris, while staying at the wonderful e Sable Mountain Lodge. Spread over two hillsides in the Beho Beho Mountains and surrounded by forest, Sable Mountain is a beautiful and intimate lodge, deep in the bush. There are just eight stone cottages that have ceiling paintings made by some of Tanzania's finest artists. The cottages also have 24 hour solar powered lighting, spacious bathrooms and tremendous views of the Uluguru Mountains. Along with a bar and dining room, there is a tree-house offering a remarkable vantage point to view the lighted waterhole which gets busy in the dry season. There is also a swimming pool to cool off in. Mornings start with coffee or tea delivered with a wake up call and in the evening usually ends with drinks and tall tales around the camp fire.
Overnight - Sable Mountain Lodge (all meals & activities)


Day 12 - SELOUS / DAR ES SALAAM / END OF SAFARI  
Today after an early breakfast you depart by road back to Dar es Salaam – reaching Dar late in the afternoon. You also have the option of flying to Dar es Salaam or taking the railway from Lusaka to Dar es Salaam that travels through the Selous several days a week.

 
2013:
-Private Safari for 2, $6,650 per person
-Private Safari for 4, $6,150 per person
- Single supplement $1,400 if joining others
2013: This is a private safari and can start any day, based on availability of accommodations. It can also be customized for you.
 

 


All accommodations and meals as per itinerary
Transportation and wildlife viewing in 4 WD modified safari Land rover or Land Cruiser with photographic roof hatches
Services of a private professional safari guide
Bottled water and sodas during game drives
Wildlife viewing by vehicle, on foot and by boat (walking escorted by Park Rangers)
Hiking at Udzungwa Mountains
All National Park and wildlife reserve entry fees


International airfare & flights
Airport transfers in Dar es Salaam
Visa and visa fees
Gratuities for guides and staff
Laundry (can be done for a fee)
Travel Insurance
All items of a personal nature
Alcoholic beverages and drinks during meals
Travel Insurance
All items of a personal nature
Airport Departure Taxes

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