Duration: 8 days
Area: Katavi National Park, Mahale Mountains National Park
Style: Mahale chimping and big game in Katavi
A week in Tanzania's new frontier, this safari combines the best of Africa's big mammals in the wild, authentic tented camp of Chada Katavi with the off-the-map paradise of Greystoke Mahale - perched on a white beach overlooking a clear tropical lake and backed up by forested mountains full of chimps.
Please note that should be considered a rough guide to the safari and activities will vary according to local arrangements and guest preferences.
|Day 1||Arrive in Arusha and depart for Katavi National Park|
|Day 2||Katavi National Park|
|Day 3||Katavi National Park|
|Day 4||Katavi National Park|
|Day 5||Mahale Mountains National Park|
|Day 6||Mahale Mountains National Park|
|Day 7||Mahale Mountains National Park|
Day 1: Katavi National Park
Early morning departure from Arusha via the Serengeti (dependent on schedule) and Tabora to refuel. Arrive into Katavi in time for a late lunch and a siesta in your spacious en-suite tent. At Chada, we believe that camping should be done in comfort, but we still enjoy the simplicity of canvas, a good safari bucket shower and the company of impala and elephant as they move through the camp.
Take a short afternoon walk with one of our safari guides and armed scout and see more of the area around camp, getting back in time for sundowners around the fire and supper in the mess tent.
Day 2: Katavi National Park
Morning game drive and head further into the wilds of Katavi with a picnic lunch. Katavi is renowned for its game, huge herds of buffalo and elephants are often on the plains in front of camp and the animal interaction can be intense. We'd suggest sundowners out on the plains (the light is gorgeous at that time of day) and watch the big herds of buffalo come in.
Day 3: Katavi Fly Camp
A morning game drive, returning to the camp for a delicious lunch and a siesta through the heat of the day. After tea and cake in camp, venture out on foot for a couple of hours walk with your expert guide and scout, pausing to look at tracks and the other small wonders of the bush. Arrive in your fly camp as the sun dips below the tree-line, for a sundowner by the fire. Wash the days' dust of under a hot safari bucket shower before slipping between the sheets of your bedroll. Few nights are as memorable as those spent under a mosquito net tent with a ceiling of stars above you, surrounded by the night sounds.
Day 4: Chada Katavi
Wake in your fly camp and enjoy a cook-out breakfast. The choice is yours if you'd like to do a short walk, then a game drive back to camp or hop in the vehicle and drive back to camp the scenic route. We always love a siesta after lunch, then how about a gentle stroll and bird walk around the camp and environs before drinks around the fire and supper.
Day 5: Greystoke Mahale
Mid-morning departure from Chada Katavi for your one-hour flight to Mahale airstrip, followed by a 90 minute trip down the lake in the dhow to Greystoke Mahale with lunch on board.
After arrival, settle into Greystoke, meeting the staff who will also tell you about the chimping activities and all else on offer here. Afternoon at leisure to swim, take a dhow cruise down the lake, a spot of fishing, a short forest hike, or just relax on the beach or in the mess. Meet at the bar for sundowner drinks before dinner in the mess.
Day 6 : Mahale Mountains National Park
After breakfast in the mess, the scouts and trackers will tell you the whereabouts of the chimps. Head off in two groups of six, walking up the narrow mountain trails to find them. On reaching the chimps, spend an hour with them whilst they do their own thing, eating, foraging, playing, squabbling.
After a well-earned lunch in the mess, head off snorkeling or for a deep-water swim further out in the crystal clear lake. At sunset enjoy a beach supper under the stars as the sun sets over the lake.
Day 7: Greystoke Mahale
Start the day with more chimp trekking after breakfast; take snacks along with you - sometimes you have to walk quite far. If you've walked far the boat might meet you and take you back to camp, stopping near the waterfalls for and swim in the ice-cold rock pools.
Catch up on the day's stories around the bar, before dinner under the stars on the beach or in the mess.
Day 8: Depart
Head out early morning in one of our kayaks and have your first cup of coffee out in the middle of the lake or enjoy a relaxed morning in camp before boarding the dhow and heading back up to the airstrip before boarding the plane back to Arusha and your onwards travels.