Tanzania’s Southern Safari Circuit

Mikumi is Tanzania’s fourth largest National Park, adjoining with Selous Game Reserve in the south forming one enormous ecosystem abutting the Udzungwa and Uluguru Mountains, the both latter highlands considered one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots, the “Galapagos of Africa”, because each separate hilltop has flora and fauna unique in the world. Awesome waterfalls like Sanje cascade hundreds of meters from cliff walls to the forest floor. Almost four times the size of Serengeti, Selous in southern Tanzania is the oldest Tanzanian game reserve and the largest in Africa, home to the rare African wild dogs, large populations of elephants, and some of the last wild families of black rhinoceros on the continent. The Great Ruaha River enters Selous from the west, past hot sulfur springs, through steep gorges where African crested eagles hunt cliff-dwelling monkeys. It joins a stunning string of navigable oxbow lakes along the eastern Rufiji River. Selous boating and walking safaris are popular with  birdwatchers, photographers and active adventurers.

Fishing for spirited tiger fish is another favored activity in Selous. Bring in your night vision binoculars for the stationary examination of nocturnal animals from your campgrounds such as bat-eared foxes, striped hyenas, hunting leopards, and possibly an aardvark or a bushbaby. Night game drives are not permitted in Selous. Fly-camping beside the lakes offers close proximity to giant crocodiles, hippos wandering at night to graze beside your tent and dozens of giraffes drinking in company with zebras, waterbucks, sable antelopes and impalas. It is also your best opportunity to see a lion kill due to the unadulterated environs. Ruaha National Park is even more varied and less accessible, at the convergence of several ecosystems with a fantastic range of terrain from mountains to marshland and from tropical forest to sand rivers. Sentinel giant baobab trees stud the plains. Elephants, other large herbivores, varied antelopes and big cats are all present. Kitulo National Park located in south of Ruaha is one of Africa’s prime botanical reserves, “The Garden Of God” sampling over three hundred fifty types of vascular flora including forty- five assortments of terrestrial orchids. From November to April, its alpine meadows are carpeted with lobelias, iris, red hot pokers, aloes, proteas, geraniums, daisies and many more.