Blogs from Selous Game Reserve, Centre, Tanzania, Africa

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Africa » Tanzania » Centre » Selous Game Reserve October 14th 2012

“TAZASTEROUS !...” - TAZARA RAILWAYS STILL A NATIONAL EMBARRASMENT !!!… “Powii nkuchunkuchunkuchunkchu mpakafike mpakamfike ku chingola ku chingola” (The sound of a train on the tracks going to Chingola- an old Zambian nursery rhyme) I’ve travelled on many “ 3rd world”- or as I prefer to say “ developing wold “trains from Russia to India and South America to Egypt and Sudan… and although probably the worst train ride I went on was a toss-up betwee... read more

Africa » Tanzania » Centre » Selous Game Reserve September 6th 2012

We had a challenging start to our safari when we got up early and were transferred to the main terminal of the Dar es Salaam airport (terminal 2), only to discover that our airline only flew from the (much smaller) terminal 1. When we managed to get to terminal 1, we discovered that we were going to be boarding a plane with 11 passengers, 1 pilot and no toilet on board! Eeek! Fortunately, the flight was actually very smooth and we landed at our air strip without incident. We were taken on a game drive en route to our permanent tented camp at Lake Manze and had our first glimpses of baboons, impala, lions, giraffes (including a couple of babies less than a week old), zebras and wildebeest! Very exciting for first time safari goers (although ... read more
Giraffe crossing
African wild dogs
Crazy little plane

Africa » Tanzania » Centre » Selous Game Reserve January 24th 2012

So the big three in the spectaclular Selous National Game Reserve are definitely Giraffe, Hippo and Impala but for those of you who know that my other passion besides leopard print clothing is all things dogs, the true show stopper found here has to be the African Wild Dogs. But I am getting ahead of my story. Selous was noteable for a series of 'firsts'. First boat drive(s), first permanent tent sleeping accomodation (as opposed to lodges, etc. and the 'camping' tenting we will be doing later), first walking 'drive' (previously always in trucks - except for Gorilla/Monkey treks which are different than a 'drive'). As Mon wrote in Selous 1, being out on the water of the river and lakes provided a different and really enjoyable way to view birds, hippos and crocs and the ... read more
African Wild Dogs 1
African Wild Dogs 2
Champagne Sunset

Africa » Tanzania » Centre » Selous Game Reserve January 20th 2012

We flew to Selous Game Reserve on Monday morning (2012-01-16), on another Caravan 208B 12 seater. Only one pilot, this time, who was somewhat concerned about weather reports about a rain storm heading for Selous from the Indian Ocean. Rain in Tanzania in January is almost unheard of, but since the "dry season" was supposed to have begun in mid-December, parts of Tanzania have had more rain than the whole of the last "big rains" season. That is probably because last March to May East Africa was still in a severe drought. Thankfully that seems to be ending, even for hardest hit Somalia. Unfortunately a big storm in Dar es Salaam in late December caused flooding that killed 14 people in the poorer neighbourhoods we visited (see the "coffee" blog entry). Luckily no rain came during ... read more
Yellow-billed Stork
White-fronted Bee-eater
Golden Weaver

Africa » Tanzania » Centre » Selous Game Reserve September 19th 2011

Day 7 - As Anton has just said to me the only word to describe Sand Rivers is WOW!!!! The place is absolutely stunning, with views over the river and amazing suite bedrooms, Sand Rivers quickly became our favourite place in Africa. We were met by our guide Emanuel after a quick final drive from Lake Manze with Adam and Daniel. We had been due to meet under a HUGE baobab tree but when we arrived a pride of lions had taken residence there - Manze really was the lion place for us. Emanuel was great - incredibly experienced and full of information so our 2 hour drive to Sand Rivers was great. The landscape around the area was very different to Manze; much rockier and lots more trees - leopard country if ever I saw ... read more
Photo 13
Photo 14
Photo 15

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Africa » Tanzania » Centre » Selous Game Reserve September 15th 2011

Day 3 - We flew from Ras Kutani back to the local departures lounge at Dar (the funniest airport lounge in the world!) and then after about half an hour waiting we flew in a slightly bigger plane this time - about 12 seats - into the Selous Game Reserve to start the safari element of our trip. When we landed we were met by our guide Adam and driver Daniel who were both really lovely. They asked if we wanted to go back to camp straight away or do a game drive which of course we opted to do (that's the Phillips safari conditioning in us!!). It was lovely seeing the area, it is so different to the Kruger where we have safaried so far, much less commercial and it's a real treat for us ... read more
Our tent!
Pride of lions
Nellie in camp!

Africa » Tanzania » Centre » Selous Game Reserve January 12th 2009

After a leisurely breakfast we got ready to drive back. So it was going to be the two-hour track again to the main road. But on the way down, we hadn’t noticed there was a turn on the way (Many parts of Tanzania are so sparsely populated that there is only one little dirt track for hours and nothing else, no crossings, nothing). Well, so went straight without noticing, as it was in the middle of a village and no signs in this direction. But when the track became more and more overgrown, we thought this can’t be right. We could have made it somehow this way, crossing the river on a little ferry and coming back up again, but the girls were all for turning back to take the way we came. When we got ... read more
Ellen seems to enjoy the drive more than Sara...
Scary bridge crossing
My picture of the dying monkey made it onto the front page of a Tanzanian newspaper

Africa » Tanzania » Centre » Selous Game Reserve January 11th 2009

With the usual 24-hour entry rule we planned for a game drive in the early morning and a second one in the late afternoon. With the camp only 10min from the gate, we didn’t have far to go to get started. But our joyful mood was dented, when we bumped into Katie and Kenny, who were scanning the forest with other people for dead animals - it turned out the monkeys we saw the previous evening weren’t drunk, they had been poisoned! We offered to help them search, but Katie assured us, they had enough people, so we were not needed. With the huge size of Selous in mind and a friend from work telling me of people getting lost, we hired a guide to come in the car with us. After endless paperwork and formularities ... read more
Hippos
At the lake shore
Tree with amazing bark

Africa » Tanzania » Centre » Selous Game Reserve January 10th 2009

Another Bank Holiday weekend - so we couldn’t really stay in Dar! This time the decision fell on Selous Game Reserve, the biggest game reserve in Africa. It’s about the size of Switzerland! But only the North-Eastern part is open for photo safaris, the South is for game hunting with rich Arabs and Westerners going there. We - that were my housemates Ellen and Sara, Rita and myself - chose Selous for it’s vicinity to Dar, it’s only 250km to the South. The first part is tarmac and even less frequented than the roads to the West and North from Dar, so we got to Kibiti, the little town, where we had to branch off to the West in less than 2 hours. As we booked self-catering, we wanted to stock up on fresh vegetables on ... read more
The bar at Selous River Camp
Our mud hut
On the walking safari

Africa » Tanzania » Centre » Selous Game Reserve November 8th 2007

I have just (2 weeks ago) returned from my first real vacation in Africa, and what a great vacation it was. While the school-sponsored safari and trips around Dar were nice, nothing really compares to getting out and exploring a country for yourself. The set-up... most of my friends here were scattering around on various trips, either to the States for weddings, Zambia for elementary education conferences, or Zanzibar to learn how to SCUBA. As none of these applied to me, I floundered around a bit not really wanting my first Africa vacation to be solo, until kindly my friend Emma agreed to forgo a jaunt to Bangkok and take a random trip. We rented a car and drove, first south to Kilwa and then up to Selous, and back. Now, on my first inspection of ... read more
Kilwa Beach on Eid
Bike or Canoe?
Kilwa Ruins




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