Sand Rivers Selous
Sand Rivers Selous: Our View
Sand Rivers Selous is a remote, luxurious, high end Safari Camp overlooking a huge bend on the mighty, meandering Rufiji River in the Selous National Park. We felt welcome and relaxed at Sand Rivers Selous from the moment we arrived for our five-night visit. Management is excellent - highly motivated and experienced. The staff are friendly and accommodating.
The 8 “rooms” at Sand Rivers Selous are large, inviting, and well spaced apart. Not that we can really call them rooms. The “rooms” are in fact secluded, well appointed “bungalows with a view” that feature an open lounge/dining area, a welcome private pool (it can get really hot in the Selous!), a huge, inviting, raised bedroom that is open to the African bush - with a view to die for - and a large al fresco bathroom.
A note on the open “rooms” - they really are open. Wildlife can and does enter the rooms on occasion. This may not be to the liking of some guests.
There is an exciting range of activities available at Sand Rivers Selous, many of them water-based activities - which we feel always adds an extra dimension for the discerning Safari guest. The water-based activities include boat trips upriver to the famous Stieglers Gorge, fishing, game viewing from the boat (hippos and crocs abound), superb birding, and exploring pristine islands and sandbanks on the mighty Rufiji River.
This part of the Selous National Park is renowned for its excellent game viewing. Every game drive we went on led to astonishing and exhilarating viewing experiences – from lion kills through to the birth of an Impala calf right in front of us! And everything else in between, including huge herds of antelope, giraffe everywhere, and lazy leopards lounging in the majestic East African trees. We did see elephant but unfortunately the elephant in the area are few and far between, and mostly stay hidden.
Don’t miss the excursion to the warm springs up in the hills above the Rufiji River. We drove to a point nearby, then scrambled up in the rain for a delightful communal soak in the steaming warm rock pools.
Next to Sand Rivers Selous is their sister camp, Kiba Point, which caters for families and small groups. Private, secluded, with 4 luxury rooms. You can decide what to do each day as it is a private camp!
Sand Rivers Selous: Quick Facts
- 8 Private, open, secluded luxury “bungalows with a view”
- Large, comfortable communal area overlooking the river
- So remote it feels like an exclusive, private concession
- Game drives including night drives, guided walking, fly camping (it’s a secret!), birding, fishing, boating
- Easy access by small plane from Dar Es Salaam - 45 min
- Vehicle access possible too
- Swimming Pool, Library, Curio Shop
- Limited Wi-Fi - outside the manager’s office
- Remote, wild, beautiful setting on the Rufiji River
Sand Rivers Selous: The Details
We could immediately sense how the whole camp worked together as a team without any obvious effort. There was always a drink and a snack on offer, either from the friendly staff or on a self service basis. Meals were excellent - tasty, and plentiful. We rolled out of there after six days! Similarly, camp staff and management were always available for any request.
The “rooms” at Sand Rivers Selous are nominally secure but this doesn’t stop the occasional intrusion by local wildlife. A baboon hung my trousers high up in a nearby tree after snatching them from the bathroom. A couple returned to their “room” to find a lioness drinking from their private plunge pool!
During our boating trips we explored an exquisite island, dodged charging hippos, gazed at the abundant wildlife, and fished for the feisty Tiger fish. All from the comfort of a shaded motor launch with a gin and tonic, or cold drink and snack, a request away. Aside from the boating activities the game drives were excellent with super viewings.
For us a highlight of the trip was the Tiger fishing from the shore of the Rufiji River. We caught plenty of fish and even had our bait taken by a crocodile on one occasion! Another highlight was exploring an uninhabited island in the Rufiji river. The island was raised from the river level which allowed for a river breeze to cool us while we explored with our rangers under the huge shady East African trees.
This camp is not cheap, but we wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it. Think twice about driving down from Dar es Salaam. It’s a really long drive. One needs to set aside a full day each way. Nonetheless it’s an interesting drive, especially if you can get the driver to do some tour guiding en route.
The main area of the lodge - pool area and lounge – is really comfortable and luxurious. You would be forgiven for spending a morning or afternoon just relaxing there if you have the time.
All in all this is a first class camp from all perspectives. Highly recommended.