Selous Game Reserve
Selous – Adventure in an untamed Eden
The vast expanse of Selous Game Reserve in southern Tanzania was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1982 due to its diverse wildlife population, undisturbed ecological and biological processes, and spectacular wild beauty. This phenomenal 50,000 km2 reserve covers 5% of Tanzania and is a protected area where the permanent human residence is prohibited. In 2019, most of Selous Game Reserve was upgraded to National Park status, under the name Nyerere National Park, with the remaining 20,000 km2 continuing as Selous Game Reserve.
From the ponderous herds of African elephant and the wary black rhino to the curious families of Masaai giraffe and the buffalo and zebra thronging the plains; the abundant Nyerere/Selous landscape makes for rewarding game viewing, particularly during the drier months. Towards the north, a section of the park was set aside as a designated photographic zone. Here, many of the park’s superb safari lodges and camps are dotted along the majestic Rufiji River and its network of lake systems.
Selous Game Reserve is not subject to the same restrictions as Tanzania’s national parks. More adventurous visitors can choose to explore on foot, via guided overnight walking and hiking tours, take an open-top game drive or participate in a boating safari for an up-close encounter with the profusion of Nile crocodiles and hippopotamuses that bask along the banks of the watercourses.
Mostly visited as a fly-in safari destination, Nyerere/Selous combines well with stays at the equally untamed Ruaha or Katavi National Parks or the pristine rainforest reserve of Mahale.
Best Time to Visit Selous
For birding enthusiasts, January to April offers incredible sightings, but the optimal time for game viewing is between the dry months of June to October. During the wet seasons between March and May, the roads become virtually impassable, and some lodges may remain closed over this time.
Wildlife conservation authorities aim to develop the landscape into a photographic safari destination.
Water activities also include fishing and visits to the natural hot springs.
Its exceptionally luxurious lodges are available at remarkably good value.