Above: At Africa Safari Selous. Courtesy Africa Safari Selous
Published: Satmag Nation newspaper 22 Feb 2020
The four days in Africa’s largest national park that has been re-named after the founding father of Tanzania, Mwalimu Julius Nyerere in 2019 is adrenaline-filled.
The night glows as fireflies flit over the wetland at our abode, the African Safari Selous. A hyena giggles and an elephant walks past. It’s a beautiful place to be at for our inaugural entry into this historical park that was set aside as Africa’s first protected wildlife reserve in 1896 by the German colonial power.
Day three of the road trip into Tanzania that’s about twice the size of Kenya, we’re nearly at the gates of Selous, a World Heritage Site and Africa’s greatest wilderness area, more than twice the size of the two Tsavos in Kenya. I’m beyond excited. I’ve reached my dream destination. Selous the mighty with the largest herds of elephants numbering 150,000 and 2,000 black rhinos with lions so many that they outnumbered those in any park in Africa – l read in the 1980 guide book. My eyes dazzled with the sheer immensity of figures.
Above: The Usambara peak from Kilimanjaro Highway Motel, Tanzania. Copyright Rupi Mangat
PublishedSaturday Magazine Nation media 1 Feb 2019
Over a thousand kilometres south of Nairobi, the road less travelled is to southern Tanzania to explore Africa’s first and largest wildlife protected area. It is what used to be Selous Game Reserve, part of which has been renamed as Nyerere National Park in 2019. Nyerere, the respected Mwalimu was Tanzania’s founding father.
On the banks of the great Rufiji, the earth-brown river flows past little isles and sand banks on her way to the Indian Ocean. It’s overcast during the December dipole with a light rain but the views from the secluded camp on the Rufiji are to die for.
“I like to do the areas that no one does,” states Leina Lemomo showing off the grand space. “And l’m the first African woman to start a mobile camp in Selous.”