Sample Trip

Affordable Southern Tanzania Safari

“Great value for money safari in Tanzania’s southern Circuit”
Budget level: Affordable
When to Go
Jun to Mar
7 Nights
Safari Type
Southern Tanzania
Kids Min Age

An affordable and unforgettable safari taking you to the Selous Game Reserve and Ruaha National Park in Southern Tanzania.

Itinerary in Brief

5 Boat Safari 1

A safari created for those wanting to experience the best of southern Tanzania on a more affordable level. This safari has you visiting the famous Selous Game Reserve and the predator filled Ruaha National Park.

The safari starts with a comfortable night in Dar Es Salaam to relax and recover from the long international flights. Then a flight sees you landing in Selous and being transfers to Lake Manze Camp. The camp is located in one of the most productive wildlife areas of the park and has great access to the lakes for boating activities which is an absolute must! Another flight then sees you landing in Ruaha National Park and being transferred to Mwagusi Camp where you will be based for the next 3 nights. Here you can choose to explore Ruaha on either game drive activities or walking safaris with great guides! The area is famous for its lion population, with prides often more than 10 individuals!

This 7-night Affordable Southern Tanzania safari is for travellers wanting to visit both Selous and Ruaha, but don’t need excessive luxury or high-end accommodation. Both of the selected camps are in great wildlife areas and offer comfortable accommodation.

Detailed itinerary

1st Night: Dar Es Salaam

A comfortable nights accommodation in a conveniently located hotel which allows you to relax and refresh after the long international flights.

2nd, 3rd & 4th Nights: Lake Manze Camp

The camp comprises of twelve Meru style walk-in tents, each with twin or double beds, flush toilet, outdoor shower and private veranda, are perfectly situated to enjoy the morning ritual: elephants trampling across an old, well-worn elephant trail in front of the camp towards the river. Manze’s communal area is simply a large thatched roof spreading above a sand floor, with armchairs and sofas for lounging with a drink to watch the animals come and go.

Game drives take place in 4×4 vehicles which usually take only 4 guests, except for airstrip transfers, when there may be up to 6 guests. The drives are not limited to a specific schedule but tailor-made to guests’ wishes and can be in the morning, or in the afternoon, or for a full day. Departure times for the drives can usually be arranged according to your preferences. The full day drive usually goes towards the Beho Beho area, with a packed lunch. The vegetation in this area is different from the Manze area, being more open plains. In the afternoon a stop can be made at the Maji Moto hot springs. There are three pools: very hot, hot and warm. If you wish, you may take a swim in the lowest pool – or the middle pool if you can stand it!

A walk with an armed ranger and an informative guide is a rewarding experience and a great way to get closer to the beauty of the Selous. Walking safaris can be arranged either in the early morning or the late afternoon. The walk usually lasts for about 2 hours and can cover up to 5 km in the area around the camp. The purpose of a walking safari is not to get close to animals. You get closer to animals when in a vehicle. The purpose of a walking safari is to see their tracks, their dung, to see plants and trees, and generally to enjoy being in nature without a vehicle. It is not a route march intended to cover long distances, but a gentle stroll, stopping to look at things of interest.

For boat safaris there are two possibilities: either onto Lake Manze, or along a channel that runs from the Lake to the Rufiji River, although it is too far to reach the river itself. In either direction you can expect to see hippo, crocodile, maybe other animals coming to drink, and about 40 species of birds. Some birds, like osprey, are more likely to be seen on the lake; others, like white-fronted bee eaters, are more numerous on the channel. Some guests do both trips, and opinion seems to be equally divided as to which is the better. Boat safaris last a little over 2 hours and can be arranged in either the morning or the afternoon.

5th, 6th, 7th Nights: Mwagusi Camp

Mwagusi Safari Camp offers its guests a unique and comfortable tented safari experience. Almost all of the camp is built from natural materials such as grass thatch, timber, driftwood, stones and reeds, allowing the camp to be in perfect balance and harmony with its surroundings.

There are two daily game drives, one early morning drive and one late afternoon drive taking advantage of the cooler temperatures when the animals are most active. Night drives can also be done on request, a great way to go! Flexibility is key at Mwagusi and you can choose the time and length of your game drives (from a 6-hour early morning drive, other shorter 2-3-hour drives or a full-day drive with picnic lunch). You will be accompanied by an excellent and knowledgeable guide and an experienced driver.

The guided safari walk is a 2-3 hour walk where you will be accompanied by an experienced guide as well as an armed Parks Board ranger for safety.
Mwagusi is renowned for its high calibre of local guides and their in-depth knowledge of the African bush. Local Tanzanians benefit from an in-house guide training programme aimed to provide top-class guides with excellent wildlife and bush knowledge, who have an ability to read animal behaviour – knowing when to sit patiently and watch a natural sequence of events unfold.

When to go

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