12 DAYS THE WILD OF SOUTH EAST TANZANIA SELF DRIVE ITINERARY;
This road trip begins and ends in Dar es Salaam and takes you to the less visited national parks of south east Tanzania. Ideal for those that want to get off the tourist trail at friendly prices. Go on world class safaris in Ruaha National Park and Selous Game Reserve, experience local village life in traditional Tanzanian highland villages, and go birding and chimp trekking in the Udzungwa Mountains.
Arrival in Daresalaa, the biggest city Tanzania. The historic city centre is truly sawahili, busy lively, traditional and conservative. It is surrounded by beaches and marina`s where most expertise live. Accommodation at Slipway Hotel.
Drive: 300km/5 hours
The Tanzania High way connects Dare salaam on the east coast with mbeya, bordering Zambia 900km further on the west. Your first stop flanking the Tanzania Highway is mikumi National park. It is smooth journey. Accommodation at Tans-swis Lodge.
Enjoy the day of game drives in mikumi National park. Mikumi protects a classic African Savannah landscape with large herds of zebra, wildebeest, impala and buffalo and lions, giraffe and elephants. The centre of action tends to be around the mkata river floodplain north west of the main road. It can be explored over 5-6 hours by following a 60m loop of game viewing roads that start at the main entrance gate towards the Dam in the north. Accommodation at Mikumi Adventure Lodge.
Drive to iringa at 1,500altitude on a steep escarpment. Iringa is an important regional town an also sees quite some volunteers and NGO workers. It is the principal town of the Hehe people, said to provide most resistance to German colonization of the Tanzanian Tribes. The central market is nice to wander around and a good place to buy rugs and baskets. Accommodation at Neema Guests House.
The park entrance of Ruaha lies 100km west of Iringa along a fair dirt road. Enjoy an afternoon game drive in the park. Accomodation at Tandala Tented camp.
Day six: Enjoy Ruaha National park Full day.
Enjoy the day of game drives. Ruaha National park is often cited as Tanzania`s best kept game viewing secret as indeed the sheer volume and variety of wildlife on show can be truly spectacular. Ruaha is also famous for its striking topography with rocky outcrops, baobab, mountains and seasonal rivers running through.
It is a large ecosystem covers about 40,000km2 and is home to one of Tanzania’s largest elephants and hippo population as well as the kudu a species of antelope not seen in other Tanzanian national parks. There are 580 birds species sighted in the park, with large populations of black-collared lovebird and ashy starlings, fish eagles and falcons and plenty of water birds like herons, storks and the red-billed hornbills. Accommodation at Tandala Tented camp.
Drive: 350km/5.5 hours
After the great breakfast to our camp, we do return to the east coast, towards Mikumi, to know explore the other side of the Tanzam High way, the hiker friendly Udzingwa Mountains. It is vastly different from Mikumi National park. It has a wide elevation variation, rising from 250m to 2500m and protects an unbroken covers of closed canopy forests from lowlands to montane forests. More than 25% of the plants species recoded here are endemic and many species of reptiles and primate are endemic to this rea too, under which the Udzungwa red colubus, sanjecrested Mangabey and dwarf galago. Accommodation will be at Udzungwa forest tented camp.
There are several excellent hiking trails in the park ranging from a few hours to multiple day hikes with camping inside the park. Going with guide is obligatory. You need to be quite fit as the hikes are steep and it is very humid and hot. Luckily there are streams and waterfalls along the way for refreshing swim. Accommodation at Udzungwa forest tented camp.
Drive to morogoro town, an orderly town at the base of the Uluguru Mountains. Wander around town or do an afternoon hike to the little visted uluguru mountains. Accommodation in Morogoro at Simbamwenni Lodge.
Drive to selous Game reserves. Its 140km on fair dirt road. Entering from Morogoro you will focus on the eastern Mtemere Gate and the eastern Lakes circuit. So look for lodges and compass in the area. Accommodation at Selous River camp. It is outside of Mtemere gate.
The main focal point of game drives for the red trippers staying at the camps to the east, is a network of rough roads to five lakes fed by the Rufiji river. Frequently seen on any game drives are impala, waterbucks, wildebeests and more with typically darker in color hand anywhere else in Tanzania. Not to be missed in a boat trip along the Rufiji river, particularly in the afternoon, when the light is just magical. Accommodation at selous River camp.
Drive: 190km/6 hours.
We say goodbye to the wild interior and make our way back to Dareslaam. What a change of scenery, a nice place to end your trip and unwind for a day or two, is at Kipepo beach resort. It has a lovely beach and is a lively hang out place. If you need to catch up your plane in the morning, don’t stay here; better to stay closer to the airport at Slipway Hotel at the northern peninsula.
This will be the end of our trip and we hope you will enjoy your trip with us, and it’s our pleasure you you get back to Tanzania for another trip. Welcome to Tanzania, welcome to Tanzania footmark safaris.