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Tanzania Odyssey Safari Blog

October 31, 2014

Top five safari parks for seeing lions in the wild

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tanzania Odyssey @ 1:47 pm

As The Lion King celebrates its 15-year anniversary in London this week, our safari expert reveals Africa’s top five parks for lion spotting

Top five safari parks for seeing lions in the wild

Top five places to see lions in the wild
1. South Luangwa National Park, Zambia

Renowned as the home of walking safaris, this beautiful wooded valley offers the opportunity of approaching lions on foot – albeit from a safe distance. Or you can see them on a regular morning or afternoon game drive. Lions share the Valley with a big leopard population and you should see both of these magnificent carnivores during your stay. Excellent choice of camps including Tena Tena, Tafika, Puku Ridge. Chinzombo and Kuyenda.

When to go: Best for lions is October when all the game is concentrated along the Luangwa River.

Top five safari parks for seeing lions in the wild

2. Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

The greatest slice of wildlife real estate in Africa and renowned for its lion prides. This is where the BBC filmed “The Big Cat Diary” and where Disney filmed “African Cats.” The Musiara Pride (aka The Big Cat Diary’s Marsh Lions) still rule the roost near Governor’s Camp. Notch, the famous Musiara pride male is no more but his four feisty sons are still around.

When to go: Any time except during the long rains of April and May.

3. Ruaha National Park, Tanzania

At least as big as the Serengeti but less well known in spite of a flourishing lion population. Ruaha itself is as wild and remote as you could wish for. To get there, fly first to the Selous and then go the extra mile. You won’t regret it – especially if you stay at Mwagusi Safari Camp in the pulsating heart of the Ruaha’s prime lion country.

When to go: Any time except during the long rains of April and May.

4. Okavango Delta, Botswana

Set in the midst of the Kalahari thirstlands, Africa’s biggest oasis is an earthly paradise for all the big cats with its abundant prey and bountiful waters. Mombo, a five-star camp in the depths of the Delta, likes to call itself the predator capital of Africa, and Duba Plains is renowned for its confrontations between hungry lions and big herds of buffaloes.

When to go: July to September.

5. Serengeti National Park, Tanzania

One of the few places in Africa where lions are not in decline. Latest figures put the Serengeti’s lion population at around 3,000. The biggest prides occupy the open plains in the south of the park between the Naabi Gate and the Seronera River. If you’re lucky you may find them posing on the granite kopjes that rise like ruined castles from the grass.

When to go: Between December and March when the wildebeest are calving.

Reproduced from the Telegraph 22 Oct 2014

July 9, 2014

Kwihala Camp

Filed under: ruaha,Ruaha National Park,Safaris,Tanzania Safari,The Southern Highlands — Tags: , — Tanzania Odyssey @ 1:45 pm

Kwihala as part of Asilia

On 1st June Kwihala Camp opened as part of the Asilia family. During April and May we refreshed the soft furnishings and put in place a new menu, but kept the spirit of this popular bush camp firmly intact.

This season Kwihala Camp is in the very capable hands of Sandy Mellet. Many of you will know Sandy from Matemwe where she was our Front of House Manager. Sandy is going into her third season with Asilia.

Guiding this season we will have Lorenzo Roskelly and Festo Rafaelle Ntayaye full time. Pietro Lurashi will be in camp from the 1st July – 1st October and Marius Swart arrives on the 1st November.

What makes Kwihala Camp special

  • Kwihala Camp has one of the best locations in the park, close to the Mwagusi Sand River where the most exciting game viewing happens! In the mornings, Kwihala guests tend to have this area to themselves, allowing them to move on when others start to arrive.
  • The camp has a reputation for excellent guiding and we are pleased to announce that the guides who built this reputation will be continuing to guide in the 2014 season.
  • It is one of the only camps in Ruaha to offer game drives, walking safaris and night drives. NB: walking and night drives do need to be pre-booked.
  • Kwihala is one of the smallest camps in Ruaha. With just 6 tents this means we can deliver the kind of personalised service that Asilia has become famous for.

Why go to Ruaha?

  • Exclusivity: Ruaha is Tanzania’s largest National Park at over 20,000km2. There are approximately 150  tourist beds in the park which means 130km2 of space for each guest!
  • Big Cat viewing: Ruaha is home to 1 in every 10 of the world’s lions and the density of lions per km2 is higher than the Serengeti (0.27 per km2 in Ruaha compared to 0.16 per km2 in Serengeti). Cheetah and leopard are also seen regularly.
  • Elephants: Ruaha is also home to Tanzania’s largest elephant population (aprox 20,000).
  • Diversity: Ruaha is a transition between southern and eastern eco-systems and this is what accounts for its incredible diversity with over 1600 plant species and 500 bird species.

Namiri Plains

Filed under: Great Migration Serengeti,Serengeti National Park — Tags: , , , — Tanzania Odyssey @ 1:21 pm

We are very excited to bring you the first photos of Namiri Plains. The 6 tents have fresh and contemporary décor, with accents of reclaimed steel and wood to keep it in harmony with nature. Stand out features include bold geometric rugs contrasted against organic, plant print textiles. Bathrooms have traditional bucket showers.

Namiri Plains

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We have also had some incredible game sightings in the last weeks. A recent FAM trip saw a unbelievable 6 species of cat in 8 days.  The 3 big cats; lion (95 different individuals), leopard (6 individuals) and cheetah (20 Individuals including some young cubs), were abundant, but also their smaller cousins were seen: wildcat (3), caracal (2) and an elusive serval. Namiri Plains is living up to its name as the place where the Big Cats Roam.

Namiri Plains

Namiri-Plains-view

 

The Namiri Team

Namiri Plains will be run by Epimark Mwaklianga who many of you will know from Ubuntu Camp. Epimark has been with Asilia for 9 years and has worked his way through the ranks from waiter to manager. Assisting Epimark and leading the guiding will be Blessed Mpofu, originally from Zimbabwe but who many of you will know from Explore Gorongosa Camp in Mozambique. A Professional Walking Guide, Blessed has worked in camps across Africa.

What makes Namiri Plains special?

  • Exclusivity and remoteness – Serengeti on your own: Namiri Plains is the only camp in the area (and will be for a while) which means other vehicles are a rare sighting in contrast to many other areas in the Serengeti
  • Permanent water source means unrivalled access to fantastic wildlife, especially cheetah, lion and leopard year-round
  • Access to the great migration for a long period of the year (Nov-March and June-July)
  • An amazing variety of Serengeti landscapes: short grass plains typical of the south contrasting with the valleys and rock formations that are more recognisable of the north

May 16, 2014

FCO warn against travel to Kenya

Filed under: The Indian Ocean Coast,Zanzibar — Tanzania Odyssey @ 10:15 am

From the BBC website, 16 May 2014 by Marc Harris

Travel firms suspend flights to Mombasa after FCO warning
Hundreds of UK tourists are being evacuated from parts of the Kenyan coast, after the Foreign Office warned of a “high threat” from terrorists. …. The FCO advised against non-essential travel to areas within 37 miles of the Kenya-Somali border and Nairobi. …. The FCO’s warning against non-essential travel covered the Mombasa Island area, Kiwayu and coastal areas north of Pate Island, the Garissa district, the Eastleigh area of Nairobi and the slum areas of the Kenyan capital. But it said its advice did not include the Diani beach resort or the nearby Moi International Airport. It said the main threat was from terrorism, which included kidnapping, and that westerners could be targeted. …. The United States, France and Australia issued similar alerts.

Regardless of terrorism, we warn against travel to the Kenya coast too – there are much better beaches and resorts elsewhere in Africa, including Zanzibar, the Tanzanian mainland coast and Mozambique. We have some really fabulous places on offer! If you find yourself affected by the recent FCO advice we’d be delighted to discuss all the alternative options with you – give us a call…

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