As tourists plan their safaris to Africa, Kenya and Tanzania are some of the top destinations that appear on their searches. Both countries have some of the best Safari destinations that offer superior wildlife viewing and other Safari activities like relaxing on the beaches and the famous wildebeest migration which can be witnessed in both countries. The question remains, which of the two offers the best safaris, and below is a comparison between the two that will help you make your decision.

Accommodation, Tanzania vs Kenya

Both Tanzania and Kenya have a variety of accommodations that range from budget to mid-range and luxury accommodation facilities that are found in the different safari destinations in both Kenya and Tanzania. They both have well-developed accommodation facilities to match the different tastes and preferences of tourists. Kenya is however more prepared and due to its small nature as compared to Tanzania, Kenya outranks Tanzania when it comes to accommodation. The general tips that you should follow while selecting the best accommodation facility include the following:

If you are planning on traveling with children, we suggest that you look for a facility that offers babysitting services and is fenced off. The fence is to protect the children from being attacked by wandering animals.

Some accommodation facilities are a favorite for tourists which means that you have to book in advance at least a year or six months before getting the best deals on the accommodation prices especially if you are planning your safari in the peak season.

Make sure that you also inform your tour guide about any dietary issues that you might have for example if you are vegan, lactose intolerant, and any other allergies that you might have. This will help in properly arranging the best facilities for you.

Tanzania vs Kenya Beaches

Kenya Beaches vs Tanzania beachesKenya and Tanzania are well known for having some of the best coastal towns and both have pristine beaches where you can enjoy a relaxed safari. Many tourists usually combine the two and this is where Kenya has the upper hand over Tanzania with the better infrastructure and more luxurious accommodations. Although Tanzania has more pristine beaches spread out, the accommodation in these locations is not as luxurious as they are in Kenya and they are also few. In conclusion about the beaches, both destinations are a good getaway for a beach safari. The beaches that you can visit in both countries include:

Tanzania                                                         Kenya

Mnemba                                                         Lamu

Zanzibar                                                          Diani

Mafia

Pemba

 

The crowds, Tanzania safari vs Kenya safari

Both countries are a hub for tourists, especially during the dry season from June to October which is also known as the peak season. Tanzania has more expensive and exclusive lodges, camps, and lodges that are limited compared to the size of the National Parks. On the other hand, Kenya has a lot to offer in terms of lodges, camps, and lodges which are cheaper which means that Kenya has an influx of tourists as compared to Tanzania.

Crowds in Kenya

Kenya has also marketed itself perfectly on the international market as the best safari destination on the African continent and as a result, more accommodation facilities, and transportation routes, international flights have been improved to attract large crowds. Kenya is also known for having the most budget-friendly safaris even during the peak season as compared to safaris in Tanzania.

Crowds in Tanzania

The crowds in Tanzania are similar to those in Kenya during the peak season. The peak season in Tanzania coincides with the wildebeest migration that takes place in Serengeti and after the migration season, Tanzania is relatively a quiet place for tourists. When it comes to crowds in Tanzania, location is key for example the Northern circuit is the most visited as compared to the southern circuit. If you do not mind crowds, the northern circuit which has Serengeti, Ngorongoro Conservation Area, and Lake Manyara National Park among other northern circuits, and if you are thinking of fewer crowds think about the southern circuit with national parks like Ruaha, Udzungwa, Mikumi and Mahale which are hard to get to even during the peak season.

Note that Tanzania is bigger than Kenya and its National Parks are all spaced out which means that transportation will be high as compared to Kenya which increases the cost of the Safari in Tanzania. The government in Tanzania also has many taxes levied on tourist and fees making it an expensive destination as compared to Kenya. In conclusion, if you are traveling on a budget, Kenya is the best destination for you in terms of lower costs.

Daily safari cost; Tanzania safari vs Kenya safari

The first that is always asked by tourists is the cost of the safari in each of the countries and one of the factors that affect the cost is the park entrance fees for the different National Parks that are found in both Kenya and Tanzania. Tanzania has many National Parks and jaw-dropping safari destinations that you shouldn’t miss out on and on the other hand, Kenya is smaller and more equipped in terms of accommodation and transportation means. Below is an overall estimation of what you should expect to spend on a daily in both Kenya and Tanzania.

Safari type                               Tanzania                                Kenya

Private camping

(2 people)                                 $380                                      $340

Private lodges

(2 people)                                 $650                                       $500

 

Mobile camps

(2 people)                            $600                                            $500

 

Group accommodation     $300                                           $250

Group camping                   $450                                            $350

Tanzania vs Kenya Food

Food is an important aspect when it comes to a Safari in both countries and although they have similar foods prepared, there are a few slight differences for instance spices are an important aspect when preparing food in Tanzania (and this applies to most of the dishes especially those prepared in Zanzibar). Zanzibar was nicknamed spice island because many spices are grown on the island and there are used when preparing dishes so if you are not a fan of the species, make sure that you inform your guide in advance. The staple food in both Tanzania and Kenya is Ugali which is served with different dishes like Vegetables, meat (Nyama China), and fish among others. Coconut rice and milk are also prepared in both countries and the most significant difference between the food served in Tanzania and Kenya is the influence of Indian cuisines served in Tanzania. Both countries also serve street food which is known to be cheaper than food served in restaurants and the good thing is that the food served is always fresh, especially the greens ( Sukuma).

Kenyan national parks vs Tanzania national parks

Kenya parks vs Tanzania parksThe quality of the National Parks found in both Kenya and Tanzania is almost the same because they have the big five and other wildlife that can be seen in the different national parks. We cannot talk about Kenya and Tanzania and not mention Masai Mara and Serengeti in this comparison. Serengeti and Masai Mara host the wildebeest migration and some of the things that distinguish Serengeti from Masai Mara include Serengeti is bigger in size as compared to Masai Mara and Masai Mara is cheaper than Serengeti. Serengeti is also a good place to go if you are not in a rush because of its size. There are also other National Parks that you can check out in both countries and these have unique wildlife that is best seen during the dry/peak season (June to October).

Tanzania has a lot of National parks that are spread out and offer the best adventures if you have time and Kenya has good safari destinations and is considered to be the best destination for tourists in a hurry. In conclusion, we vote for Tanzania as the best safari destination if you are planning on visiting the different National Parks. A summary of the national parks in both countries includes:

Kenya                                                                      Tanzania

Masai Mara National Reserve                            Serengeti National Park

Samburu                                                                 Ngorongoro conservation Area

Amboseli National Park                                       Tarangire National Park

Nairobi National Park                                           Lake Manyara National Park

Aberdare                                                                 Nyerere National Park

Tsavo East and West                                            Ruaha National Park

Meru National Park                                              Katavi.

The most popular routes in Kenya include Masai Mara, Nairobi, and Amboseli National Park. The popular routes in Tanzania include Ngorongoro crater, Arusha, Serengeti, Tarangire, and Lake Manyara National Park.

Tourist attractions, Tanzania VS Kenya

Both destinations are known to have some of the best Safari destinations on the African continent and below is a list of some of the best safari destinations in both Kenya and Tanzania.

Tanzania:

Tanzania has 7 UNESCO Heritage sites and these are Nyerere National Park (Selous), Ngorongoro Crater, Stone Town, Songo Mnara, Kilwa Kisiwani, Mount Kilimanjaro National Park, and Serengeti National Park. Other destinations in the country include Lake Manyara National Park, Zanzibar, Mahale National Park, Gombe National Park, Mountain Kilimanjaro, and Lake Victoria among others.

Kenya:

Kenya also has 7 UNESCO Heritage sites including other Safari destinations like Thimlich Ohinga Cultural Landscape, Fort Jesus, Lake Turkana National Park, Lamu Town, Mountain Kenya, Aberdares National Park, Mombasa, Amboseli National Park, Dani beach, Hells Gate National park, and Masai Mara National Reserve among others.

In conclusion, Kenya and Tanzania are best combined because each has a lot to offer and both are worth visiting. But in instances where you have to choose one, it is better to consider the cost of each safari especially if you are on a budget. The lure that is found in Tanzania destinations is what is going to keep you on the edge from enjoying the wildebeest migration in Serengeti, to visiting Ngorongoro crater which is filled with wildlife and other top activities. And if you are looking at the economic bit of life, Kenya is your destination.

Best time to go Tanzania vs Kenya

Kenya vs Tanzania safariThe best time to go to both destinations depends on the activities that you prefer to engage in while on your safari. Both countries have two seasons that is the peak/dry season and the green/wet season both of which are high determinants of when one should go. The wet season has two phases that is the short rains from November to December and the long rains from April to May. The dry season is from June to October and this is a highly-priced time to travel to both countries as compared to the green season when some lodges are closed down due to prolonged rains whereas others reduce their cost. If you are planning on visiting either Kenya or Tanzania for your safari during the peak season, we suggest that you book in advance due to the limited accommodation in both Serengeti and Maasai Mara during the wildebeest migration.

Types of travelers, Kenya vs Tanzania

Both destinations are perfect for couples and honeymooners as they offer the best honeymoon suites in the different safari destinations and not forgetting the various activities that couples can engage in while on their honeymoon. Tanzania has the best luxurious honeymoon suites if you do not mind spending and if you prefer privacy, Kenya is the best with the highest number of conservations between the two.

Kenya is considered to be the best option for tourists traveling with young children and this is because of the various lodges that are found in the different parts of the country.  All in all, destinations are good for all types of travelers but if you still have budget issues, it is better if you first consider Kenya since it has cheaper options between the two.

Travelers also have various activities that they can engage in and these include hot air balloon rides, horse riding, game drives, birding, guided nature walks, boat rides, night game drives, cultural safaris, camping, and chimpanzee trekking and relaxing along the beaches among others.

After looking at all the comparisons between Kenya and Tanzania safaris, the best advice we can give is to chat with someone who has been to both destinations to help you make a perfect choice. Get in touch with us to help you make the best itinerary for both destinations and your preference with your budget being put into consideration.

Located in East Africa, Tanzania is a top safari destination in Africa with a variety of safari destinations in the different parts of the country. It is a destination that attracts different types of tourists from those that wish to take on adrenaline activities, and relaxing and adventurous safaris, Tanzania is your destination. The Safari destination will depend on what you want to see and the type of experience that you wish to get on a Tanzania Safari. The northern circuit is the most visited area in Tanzania but the western and southern circuits also have hidden gems that are rarely visited.

The northern circuit

The most visited Safari destinations here include Tarangire National Park, Kilimanjaro, Serengeti, Lake Manyara National Park, and Ngorongoro Crater.

Mountain Kilimanjaro

best places to visit for Tanzania safariThis is the tallest Mountain in Africa standing at 6000 meters above sea level ranking it among the tallest summits in the whole world. The adventure that comes with hiking up Kilimanjaro is one of a kind that every tourist should try out but remember that the hike is not for the faint-hearted. It will take you days to reach the snow-capped Uhuru peak and once you are there, there is a book that is kept safe in a box where many tourists write their thoughts about hiking Kilimanjaro and you can add your thoughts as well.

Serengeti National Park

Located within the northern circuit, Serengeti National Park is a top tourist destination in Tanzania which is famous for the wildebeest migration that takes place annually. The animals migrate following the pattern of rainfall and other animals you should expect to see in Serengeti include lions, leopards, wildebeests, zebras, giraffes, hippos, crocodiles, Topics, gazelles, buffalos, elephants and spotted hyenas among others.

Tarangire National Park

Tarangire National Park is strategically located between Lake Manyara and Ngorongoro Crater and is famous for having a large crowd of African elephants. During a game drive through Tarangire, you will be able to see more than 100 elephants in a day plus other animals which include Lions, hippos, zebras, giraffes, leopards, crocodiles, hyenas, and African civets among others. The animals can be spotted around the Tarangire River which is the main water source for the animals, especially during the dry season. It is a good place for spotting bird species and predators and not forgetting the large baobab trees that make up the ecosystem of the National Park.

Ngorongoro Crater

This is one of the best Safari destinations for spotting the big five and it is home to over 30, 000 animals that can be seen in the crater which is the oldest caldera.  The crater offers some of the best wildlife viewing experiences in East Africa setting it apart from other National Parks since viewing this time round is done in the crater. The best time to go to Ngorongoro Crater for a Safari is during the dry season from June to October and it is the only guaranteed place where you get to see all the big five.

Lake Manyara National Park

Famous for the tree-climbing lions, Lake Manyara is a top tourist destination that can be visited throughout the year with the dry season June to October being the best time. The park is made up of floodplains, forests, Lake Manyara, and woodlands which act as home to the wildlife. Lake Manyara is home to over 300 recorded bird species and other animals like buffaloes, leopards, cheetahs, hyenas, crocodiles, hippos, giraffes, elephants, and black-backed jackals among others.

Southern Circuit

Safari destinations in this circuit include Ruaha National Park and Nyerere National Park (Selous Game Reserve).

Nyerere National Park (Selous Game Reserve)

Nyerere National Park elephants in waterFormerly known as Selous Game Reserve, the Nyerere National Park is extremely big and it is believed that it is bigger than Switzerland. It is made up of an ecosystem that includes swamps, Lakes, the Rufiji River, and woodland which is home to wildlife including crocodiles, hippos, crocodiles, lions, buffaloes, African wild dogs, and hyenas among others. Activities carried out in Nyerere include camping, boat rides, guided walks, Game drives, camping, and bird watching among others.

Dar es Salaam

This is like a one-stop Centre for tourists on their way to Zanzibar. You can stay overnight and enjoy the luxurious accommodation that is found in Dar es Salaam and check out the nightlife that it has to offer. It’s also the easiest place to get to Nyerere National Park, formally known as Selous.

Ruaha National Park

Ruaha National Park is located in the southern circuit, one of the hardest places to get to in Tanzania and one of the least visited in the country. It is home to the endangered African wild dogs and it has the largest elephant population in the whole country. Other animal species that you get to see include lions, leopards, giraffes, kudus, roan antelopes, and buffaloes among others.

Other safari destinations in Tanzania include Udzungwa Mountains National Park, Arusha National Park, Mikumi National Park, Pande Game Reserve, Rubondo National park, Gombe National Park, and Saadani National park among others.

Western circuit

Katavi and Mahale National Park make up the western circuit and although they are rarely visited, they have a lot to offer when it comes to Wildlife viewing.

Zanzibar

There is no better way to start and finish your Safari than with a relaxing trip to Zanzibar and one of the many islands that are found along the Tanzania coast. Zanzibar is a collection of cultures and some of the activities that you can engage in while here include all water sports, sunbathing, fishing, a spice farm tour, a Jozani forest walks, a food Safari, and a guided walk through the Stone Town. Chole and Pemba are some of the beaches you should check out but note that when you visit during the Ramadan month, most restaurants will be closed because the largest percentage of the population will be fasting.

Best time to visit Tanzania

The dry season

Experienced from June to October, the dry season in Tanzania is the peak season with lots of tourists visiting the different safari destinations in the country. This is the best time to explore the northern circuit where National Parks like Tarangire, Serengeti, Ngorongoro crater, and Lake Manyara National Park is found. It is also the best time to explore other parts of Tanzania including Zanzibar but be ready for the hiked safari costs.

The rainy season

Two rainy seasons in Tanzania are the short rains from November to December and the long rains from March to May. The accommodation prices from November to December are high because of the Christmas season with crowds of tourists. This is the best season for visiting Serengeti in case you do not like large crowds in Serengeti during the wildebeest migration. This is when the animals are preparing for the calving season. The long rain season comes with the actual calving making it the best time to see lots of calves and predators. read our detailed article on the best time to visit Tanzania for safari.

In conclusion, the best time to go for a safari in Tanzania is from June to October but you can still plan your trip to Tanzania all year round depending on your budget and your preference for the different safari activities and destinations.

Is visiting Tanzania for safari safe? This is a very common question among safari enthusiasts who would like to travel to Tanzania. The answer is simple; Yes, Tanzania safari is safe. Tanzania is one of the safest countries in East Africa with some of the best safari destinations in the region. Tanzania has a lot to offer to tourists in terms of the big five, cultural experiences, hikes, and tourists who love adventures. Tanzania might be safe but as a tourist, you also need to keep safe by following the rules and regulations that are set up to keep you safe.

Safety precautions when traveling within Tanzania

Avoid going to isolated places. It is dangerous mostly to women who can easily be targeted. If you plan on traveling alone, make sure you check the taxi you are using and we advise that you avoid using shared taxis.

If you are planning on making arrangements for a specific destination, never pay money through a third-party agent because you might not see them again.

Research the dangerous places in Tanzania and avoid them at all costs.

Make sure that you book through a recognized tour operator

Getting a trusted local tour operator is the first step in keeping safe and although it might look like an easy fit, there are so many fraudsters online who pose as tour operators and end up stealing people’s money without delivering the promised services. Before settling on a specific tour operator, first carry out extensive research, read reviews on TripAdvisor, and find out if the company is registered under the Tanzania Association of Tour operators.

Keeping safe in the city Centres and towns

is Tanzania safari safe?We have already established that Tanzania is a safe country however there are crimes that are committed by pretty thieves within the city Centres and towns so you need to be vigilant. Pickpockets are common and they can be seen in the streets but note that it is rare for violent crimes to happen. You must follow steps to keep safe include not walking after dark. Ask your hotel to help order taxis and love with less cash if possible.

  • Do not leave your luggage unattended to and visible in the Safari vehicle
  • Do not travel with valuables, Tanzania might be a safe country but there have been instances where tourists have been targeted by thieves and conmen. We advise that as you travel around the country, keep your valuables in a safe in your hotel or lodge so that you don’t end up losing something, especially money while on a Safari.
  • Avoid traveling at night if you are alone. It is dangerous especially when the place is crowded. This is a high risk since tourists are easily targeted by pickpockets.
  • When withdrawing money from ATMs or leaving the bank, be careful and if you suspect anyone, seek safety first.
  • Lock your windows and doors while traveling in a Taxi.

Staying safe while viewing wildlife

Before a safari begins especially in National Parks, tourists are briefed about the rules that need to be followed to keep safe and everyone should follow these rules because they not only keep tourists safe but the animals safe as well. Some of the general rules set up in the National Parks include:

Do not litter the park, keep a safe distance between you and the animals, do not leave your Safari vehicle on a game drive unless you are told to do so by the rangers, walk in groups, especially tourists camping, keep your voices down since it disrupts the animals, drive at a normal speed because animals have a right of way and make sure you put out the fire after camping.

Safety while chimpanzee trekking

Chimpanzee trekking has been made easy and safe with the introduction of the chimpanzee habituation process where the chimps get used to the presence of humans. Tips that can be followed to keep safe while trekking includes the following:

  • Avoid looking the chimpanzees in the eyes
  • Never put on sunglasses when you get to the chimpanzees, the reflection might force them to attack.
  • Avoid making abrupt movements when in the presence of the chimps
  • Keep the recommended distance of 8m from the chimpanzees and do not approach them.
  • If you need to use the toilet, they are not found in the jungle and you will have to dig a hole that is to be covered properly afterward.
  • Do not use a flashlight while taking photos.
  • You are not allowed to eat or drink in the presence of the chimpanzees.

Travel safety precautions while in Tanzania

Safaris organized by recognized local tour operators are always safe and secure and although self-drives are considered to be safer, it doesn’t hurt to take travel precautions so that you get to enjoy your Safari in comfort. Below are some of the tips you need to keep safe in your travel.

  • All your travel bags should be locked and kept safe.
  • Get good travel insurance that covers emergency medical evacuation, cancellation, and many other items connected to travel
  • Be polite to everyone you meet but you’d still need to be cautious.
  • It is better if you travel with duplicates of your travel documents while in Tanzania.
  • Make sure that you take all the necessary vaccines.

Safety of Tanzania’s food

Local Tanzania food safe?This is one of the most asked questions by tourists and with the cuisines served in Tanzania including Asian, African, European, and Arabic, it is safe to say that the food is extremely safe. Food can be got both from restaurants and the streets, it is better if you first try the food from restaurants. We however advise that you avoid taking tap water in Tanzania because it is not safe and that is why you need bottled drinking water.

In conclusion, taking health and safety precautions on a Tanzanian safari is very important and you need to follow all the rules and regulations set up for your safety. Contact us for more details about Tanzania safaris.

Best time to visit Tanzania

Tanzania country is visited by tourists from different parts of the world who travel all year round to see the beautiful scenery and explore the different safari destinations that are found in the country. The best time to visit Tanzania for birding is during the wet season from March to May and this is also considered to be the best time for tourists traveling on a budget because costs are cut during this period and there are few tourists. For the best wildlife viewing safaris, the best time is ruing the dry season from June to October when the animals can easily be seen in the different National Parks in Tanzania.

In conclusion, Tanzania is a safe country for all traveling tourists from all over the world but it does not hurt if you still check out the different sites because this is also another step to keeping safe that is finding out more about not only Tanzania but also other safari destinations in the country.

It is no secret that Tanzania is one of the best Safari destinations you can explore on the African continent as it will offer you nearly everything that you can ever wish for or imagine on an African Safari Holiday. Basing on a thorough analysis of the numerous reviews written about Tanzania by various travelers and Safari experts, Safaribooking.com which is the largest online market platforms for safaris and tours, has declared Tanzania as the best Safari destination in Africa.

The majority of holidaymakers visit what is known as the Northern Tanzania Safari Circuit which comprises of the very popular wide Serengeti National Park which is best known for its annual wildebeest migration that included millions of animals; the amazing Ngorongoro Crater a natural habitat to approximately 30,000 animals; Tarangire National Park and Lake Manyara National Park.

Although these popular and highly frequented destinations offer very wonderful safari experiences, well the country has a lot more to offers. For those of you interested in a less crowded, more remote, and pristine safari environment but will nearly the same level of game viewing, re recommend that you explore the Southern Tanzania Safari Circuit.

Taking a Tanzania Safari in the Southern-Safari-Circuit

Well, majority of the Safari on this southern safari circuit are focused in two (2) major areas and that is: the Selous game Reserve (which is the largest of this type on the African continent), and the Ruaha National Park (the largest National Park in Tanzania). irrespective of the fact that these two destinations are remote, they can easily be accessed by domestic flights from Dar es Salaam to their respective airstrips.

When compared to the large masses of animals in the Ngorongoro Crater as well as the Wildebeest Migration in the Serengeti, the Southern Safari circuit without a doubt lacks some of the glory of its Northern Safari Circuit counterpart, however it prides of the genuine African Wilderness Safari beauty. Amazingly, the wildlife in the south is more diverse than in the north, although it is not always easy to see due to the vastness of the area.

The Selous Game Reserve together with Ruaha National Park are not listed among the major tourist areas in the country, and have just a few lodges to offer, what however they have in plenty is the genuine feel of an African wilderness with untamed raw jungles and plains. Exploring the Southern circuit will reward you with a very different but equally rewarding and more remote safari experience.

About Ruaha National Park

Ruaha National Park covers an area of more than 20,200 square kilometers which makes it the largest National Park in Tanzania, approximate New Jersey’s size. This vast land is home to the largest elephant population in Africa as well as ten percent (10%) of the lions in Africa.

The landscape of Ruaha is scattered with baobabs and tiny palms trees, and it is bordered with distant outcrops of granite or kopjes and rolling hills. Another amazing feature in the park is the seasonal River Ruaha which is the life link of this park. During the wet season, its waters flow across the parks and tumble over rocky boulders. However in the dry season, it turns into a large sand river which attracts very large numbers of wildlife.

Wildlife in Ruaha National Park

The park is located within a transitional zone where the south meets east Africa.  Because of this, the wildlife here is uniquely varied. You will be able to best see the rich diversity of wildlife in this park during the guided walking safaris and game drives. Another thing worth mentioning is the very high number of different bird species living within Ruaha. Today more than 550 bird species have been recorded within the park. You will encounter several different antelope species here including the roan, sable and the greater kudu.

Ruaha NP is among the best destinations on the African continent to see the rare and hard to pin down wild dogs which are strange carnivores with odd ears that are saucer-shaped and have a distinctive pattern of white, brown and black on their coats. These can be seen resting in trees in the day or hunting in the plains at night. Leopards too are found within Ruaha, although the numerous lions can best be seen around River Mdonya and River Mwagusi

About Selous Game Reserve

The Selous Game Reserve is a UNESCO World Heritage Site as well as the largest game reserve in Africa, covering and area of 54600 square kilometers, making it almost three (3) times Serengeti’s size. On the hands, a small portion of approximately 5,200 sq km can be accessed for photographic safaris while the largest areas which is south of River Rufiji is apportioned to private hunting.

This however shouldn’t discourage you as the Selous is generally a beautiful place whose  beautiful landscapes that are dominated by a series of lakes and a river that offer great wildlife views. Being a reserve, you can also enjoy fly-camping, walking safaris and boat rides beside the traditional game drives, and all these will widen you spectrum and adventure as you explore this remote wilderness.

Read here on how safe Tanzania is for safari travel.

Wildlife in Selous Game reserve

Because of the hunting activity carried out in the Selous, a number of animals here are panicky and very shy as compared to the more habituated ones in the north. One of the best places to see wildlife is around Lake Nzerakera and Lake Manze found in the eastern part of the reserve. During the boat rides refrain from dipping your hands in the water as these lakes are home to hundreds of crocodiles which are fun observing as you enjoy nice sundowner cocktails. Predators like lions wait by the lake shores to prey on other animals that come to drink at the lake. There are also very large schools of hippos commonly seen on the lake shore.

The walking safaris in the reserve give you an opportunity to encounter the smaller animals within the bushes, including bugs and several bird which you may not be able to see while in the Safari car. It is one of the places where you can see the African wild dogs in packs of more than twenty.  Elephants were previously very many in number however due to poaching, their numbers greatly dwindled, although today you can still see a number of them and their young ones in the bushes. Giraffes as well are very plenty here and you can encounter these even on walking safaris.

The one thing that you will not encounter while on Safari in the Selous Game Reserve or Ruaha National Park are crowds of tourists. The two tourist destinations have a few safari camps and lodges which are intimate and smaller in size offering a wilder, off-the-beaten-track ambience. These range from the modern luxury facilities to the rustic budget facilities.

Taking a Southern Tanzania Safari is extremely fulfilling, very wild, conducted along the off-the-beaten tracks and will definitely change your choice of whether to take a luxury safari or a wild safari experience. The amazing thing about such safaris is that in just a few minutes you can connect from Dar es Salaam to any of the remote southern wildlife habitats. This is the only place on the African continent where holidaymakers can get to explore the off-the-beaten-tracks without having to drive for so long hours. Actually, nothing can be matched to the beauty of the large open plains of Ruaha National Park, or the rolling green hills plus the breathtaking sight of the numerous palm trees that line the banks of River Rufiji within Selous Game Reserve. Because Southern Tanzania is generally a less popular tourist destination, the cost of accommodation there is very unique. You will get an opportunity to stay in some of the most beautiful and high-class luxury safari accommodations across the African continent but at a lower price compared to what is paid in Northern Tanzania. Furthermore, the closeness of the popular islands of Zanzibar and Pemba to Southern Tanzania Safari destination is another bonus as a Beach Holiday can be organized as an extension before or after your Southern Tanzania Safari.

Another important thing worth mentioning is the fact that game viewing within this part of Tanzania is very amazing, so expect to encounter a very large number and diversity of wildlife, and a more private, well guided safari experience as compared to that in northern Tanzania Safari Parks. The southern Tanzania safari parks are done by professional guides whom because of the topography and wild animals living there have to pay more attention to detail as they read the tracks and listen to the echoes from the bushes rather than radio call each other for assistance. It is no surprise that you may complete your Southern Tanzania Safari without meeting any other people a thin that makes this indeed a Luxury Safari Paradise.

Below are our Best 5 Luxury Safari Accommodations in Southern Tanzania

1. Siwandu Camp

The Siwandu is located within the Nyerere National Park, formerly  Selous Game Reserve on the shores of River Rufiji. It is a very amazing luxurious facility finished with a blend of even cream surfaces and canvas. It offers very good views of Lake Siwandu on which you can enjoy sunset cruises as well as boat safaris, with occasional sights of elephants that visit the lake shores to drink water. The staff here are very charming, extremely jolly and will definitely ‘spoil you’ with great hospitality treatment and fun throughout your stay a thing that will make your safari truly memorable.

2. Sand Rivers Selous

The Sand Rivers Selous is located on the shores of River Rufiji, on the other side opposite of the Siwandu so each of the rooms / suites in this cherished safari lodge enjoys breathtaking uninterrupted views of the river and the different animals and birds living in and on its shores. You will see numerous hippos, crocodiles and a great diversity of colored water birds. Each of the rooms together with the main area were constructed with a finishing of local materials, which give it a true natural peaceful wilderness ambience. Every room has a verandah where guests can sit and enjoy this quite but beautify setting. The Sand Rivers Selous has some of the finest food as well as one of the most hospitable well trained team of staff, so by the end of your stay you won’t feel like a mere tourist but as one of the members of the Sand Rivers Selous family.

3. Azura Selous

The Azura Selous is found within the Selous Game Reserve, however within a completely different location compared to the above earlier mentioned luxury facilities.  The facility is located within a more pristine, wilder and extremely beautiful area, with plenty to see despite the fact that there is less game around this area. The lodge offers twelve very nice rooms with plunge pools where you can easily see antelopes and hippos grazing especially in the night. The food here is good and the staff here are hospitable and very helpful. There is an outdoor shower that offers amazing views of river Rufiji. The best highlight at Azura Selous is the indulging spa and the remarkable guided walking Safaris conducted starting there. Throughout the year, the lodge has a number of special offers for its guests which makes it a more likeable accommodation facility among holidaymakers.

4. Kigelia Camp Ruaha

Kigelia Camp is found in Ruaha National Park which is not only part of the Southern Tanzania National Parks, but also the largest National Park in the whole of Tanzania. Unfortunately, this park has been overlooked my many holidaymakers due to its remoteness despite the fact that it offers very dramatic views of large numbers of wild animals, a thing that recently raised its status among the luxury safari accommodations. This is the best luxury accommodation in Ruaha National park, and offers great comfort, nice food and classy customer service from its amazingly hospitable team of staff. The comfort and amazing treatment you will receive during your stay at the Kigelia Camp will without a doubt make your Southern Tanzania Safari very memorable.

5. Jongomero Camp

Jongomero Camp is another outstanding luxury safari camp found within Ruaha National Park, and it is constructed half lodge, half canvas, similar to its sister camp the Siwandu like luxury safari Camp. The staff here are very fun-loving and amazing, the food is extremely nice with unique opportunities to enjoy meals in the bush. A safari in Ruaha National park can be combined with a visit to the Selous Game Reserve as well as the Zanzibar islands.

Tanzania is indeed the best safari destination on the African continent as the wildlife is extremely diverse and very large in numbers, with breathtaking scenery and a very large number of lodges and safari camps to suit every budget, styles and preferences of their visitors. Now with so much to choose from all before you, the question many ask is “Where do I begin from?” so to help you figure this out easily, we have broken these into two major sections and we are going to make a comparison of each of these to ease your choice making.

Northern Tanzania Safari vs Southern Tanzania, So where is the divide?

The safari routes in Tanzania are divided into two. The Northern Tanzania Safari circuit which includes found in the northern part of the country, and these are; Serengeti, Ngorongoro Crater, Tarangire and Lake Manyara. This is the most popular.

The Southern Circuit includes parks and a game reserve found in the southern part of the country and these are the Selous Game Reserve, Ruaha National Park, and the occasional Mahale Mountains National Park and Katavi National Parks. It is very possible to combine these two routes however, the majority of the holidaymakers prefer to explore just one.Northern Tanzania vs Southern Tanzania safari

Southern Tanzania vs Northern Tanzania, What is the difference?

Well the biggest question that every safari-goer heading for a Safari in Tanzania asks themselves is ‘What is the difference between the northern Tanzania Safari Circuit and the southern Tanzania Safari Circuit?’ when people think of taking a Tanzania safari, what comes in their mind is exploring the northern circuit.

Well, these parks offer some of the very amazing busy safari experiences and beautiful landscapes on the African continent ranging from the amazing tall Maasai people with a very rich Culture living in the Serengeti, to the green towering peaks that surround the Ngorongoro Crater.

Heading south, the experience is rather different. Selous and Ruaha will offer you the best definition of what is known as the true off-the-beaten-track safari experience. The parks are less crowded and offer you a more wild and private encounter of wildlife.

Is there a Difference in what I will See?

When it comes to wildlife, the northern and southern areas equally have large numbers of wild animals and with so many varied species, however, each has its own numbers and glories.

The northern circuit is best popular for the Wildebeest Migration that takes place in Tanzania which includes thousands and thousands of wildebeest matching across the Serengeti plains in search for fresh pastures and water. The ‘big Five’ can also be seen within the Ngorongoro chasing several herbivores as prey while large flocks of pink flamingoes can be seen in Lake Manyara.

In the south, Ruaha is home to ten percent (10%) of the lion population in the world, and very large herds of elephants and buffaloes can be seen within Ruaha and Selous while the endangered wild dogs can only be seen within the southern parks.

Which activities can I engage Northern vs Southern Tanzania

The northern Tanzania Safari circuit offers a number of classic safari activities including: game drives in the early morning and in the afternoon game; walking safari can be conducted in Tarangire and some areas within some parts of the Serengeti; and night game drives although these are not common and hot air balloon Safaris.

Moving south, there is a variety of safari activities to do in the Selous and Ruaha National Park. These include: both morning and afternoon game drives, boat rides on River Rufiiji, expertly guided walking safaris as well as night game drives led by very professional drivers. Don’t miss out on the exciting fly-camping expeditions.

How much Does a Safari Cost?

Northern Tanzania safari or Southern Tanzania safariWhen comparing the safari prices for a northern circuit and the southern circuit, the northern Tanzania will definitely offer you a cheaper choice. In a nutshell, the area is more accessible, with numerous flights serving it which make the flight costs way cheaper. All you need to do is book a safari car and a driver and then be driven around to see all the different animals; this will save you a lot of money.

The south is generally expensive! There are less flights serving this area which makes the cost of flights pretty high. There are more distant areas to drive so this means more fuel to use during the game drive. Fortunately, majority of the accommodation facilities there are very good and offer good deals.

Is there anything to pay special attention to in each area?

Over the recent years, the northern circuit has become extremely popular among holiday makers, its accessibility and fairly low prices have attracted a large number of tourists. So the northern safari parks are overly crowded especially during the peak tourist season.

Special about the south is that there are no crowds. So you will enjoy a private wildlife safari as you explore the untamed remote verdant African wilderness. It’s a very unique experience. See sample Tanzania safari packages here.

Northern Tanzania vs Southern Tanzania, how to get there?

Majority of the safaris to the northern circuit begin from Arusha town and sometimes tourists spend a night or two there. Flights start at the Arusha airport and take a circular route across all the parks on this circuit dropping and picking holidaymakers to the different parks in the northern safari circuit.

When it comes to the south, the major starting point for flights is in Dar es Salaam where you will be able to catch charter flights to Ruaha or the Selous. Similarly some people spend a night before or after the safari.

In summary, it is hard to choose which of the two (northern Tanzania Safari Circuit or Southern Tanzania Safari Circuit) is better than the other. If you prefer exploring the vast, open plains, scattered with several animals, and taking a hot Air balloon Safari, then the northern Circuit should be your choice. And if you are looking to have a more private, peaceful and less crowded in a pristine environment, then head south.