Wildlife Division: Selous Game Reserve

Selous Game Reserve

Selous Game Reserve is one of the largest fauna reserves of the world, located in the southern part of Tanzania. It was named after Englishman Sir Frederick Selous, a famous big game hunter and early conservationist. He died at Beho Beho in this territory in 1917 while fighting against the Germans during World War I. It was first designated to be a protected area in 1896 by the German Governor Hermann von Wissmann and became a hunting reserve in 1905. Due to the diversity of its wildlife and undisturbed nature, it was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1982.
The reserve covers a total area of 50,000 km2 (21,081 square miles), has additional buffer zones and no permanent human habitation or permanent structures are permitted. Selous is one of the remaining pristine true wilderness areas in the world and contains about one third of all the wild dogs (often called painted dogs) in the world.


The vegetation in Selous Game Reserve vary remarkably. Savannah wooded grassland and deciduous Miombo woodland dominate most of the reserve. It is also covered by dense thorn bushes and ground water forests as well as rocky outcrops.


Selous contains the world's largest concentrations of elephants and buffalo. The area is famous for wild dogs, lions, leopards and some of the last black rhino left in the region. Antelopes, white bearded wildebeest and giraffes are commonly seen on the northern side of the Rufiji River. Selous has a variety of bird life: fish eagle, African Skimmer, waders, herons, kingfisher and weavers.

Guided Walking Excursions

Guided Walking Excursions are usually accompanied by an armed ranger; can be arranged for few

hours’ short walks or for few days with fly camping. This let you have the feel and experience of the wilderness. It is normally done on the vicinity of the base camp


There are number of lodges, normal camps and luxury tented camps inside and outside the reserve.

Beho Beho Camp

Beho Beho camp, P.O Box 2261, Dar es Salaam. Tel: (255 22) 2110507, Fax (255 22) 2151106 Email: obhotel@acexnet.com. Beho Beho has 8 spacious en-suite cottages. The camp’s elevated position in the hills allows for cool breezes making it well ventilated. The central dining room and lounge, along with its “vista” swimming pool, all have wonderful views over the nearby hills and its plentiful wildlife. Rate: USD 800 per person per sharing per night, Bed capacity 16 -20 tented camp.

Selous Impala Camp

Selous Impala Camp, P.O Box 3052, Dar es Salaam. Tel: (255 22) 2117959 / 60. Email: safari@coastal.cc Web: www.coastal.cc. Opened under new management in late 2003, this camp has 6 spacious tents on the banks of the Rufiji River. Each tent has a boat and safari 4x4 vehicles. Waterbuses descend from the camp to the Indian Ocean crossing to Mafia Island, from where Coastal Aviation flies to Zanzibar and Dar es Salaam. Rate: USD 395 – 500, Bed capacity 10 – 23 tented camp.

Sand Rivers Selous Camp

Sand Rivers Selous, P.O Box 681, Usa River, Arusha. Tel: / Fax (255 27) 2553819 / 20. Email: sara@nomad.co.tz Web: www.sandrivers.com. Eight (8) open-fronted thatched cottages overlook the Rufiji River blending the beauty of the Selous with comforts of its most upmarket lodge. The remoteness coupled with excellent food, fly camping, walking and vehicle safaris and memorable river expedition ensure an unforgettable visit. Rates: USD 600 – 800, Bed capacity 12 – 24 lodge

The Selous Safari Camp

The Selous Safari Camp, P.O Box 1192, Dar es Salaam. Tel: (255 22) 2134802. Fax: (255 22) 2112794. Email: info@selous.com Web: www.selous.com. Has 12 luxurious safari tents on raised timber each with en-site bathroom. Located on the banks of Lake Nzelekela just off the Rufiji River, it blends in with the environment offering spectacular views. Activities include fly camping, walking, boat and vehicle safaris. Rate: High season USD 797, Low season USD 597, Bed capacity 13 per person per sharing (pp) tented camp.

Rufiji River Camp/Hippotours and Safaris

Rufiji River Camp, P.O Box 13824, Dar es Salaam. Tel: (255 22) 2128662 / 3. Fax: (255 22) 2128661. Email: info@hippotours.com  Web: www.hippotours.com. The camp has 20 en-suite tents overlooking the Rufiji River. Excellent options for boat and foot activities including overnight fly camping and game drives. Well-stocked bar and Italian cuisine adds to the informal, relaxed atmosphere. Rates: USD 215 per person per sharing (pp) per night, Bed capacity 20 tented camp.

Selous Wildlife Lodge

Selous Lodge, P.O Box 23250 Dar es Salaam. Tel: (255 22) 2600305 / 6, Fax: (255 22) 2600310. Set on the Eastern bank of the Simbazi River, in the South West of the Northern sector of the Selous. Selous Wildlife Lodge comprises of 12 well appointed tents positioned under individually grass-thatched structures, luxuriously furnished with adjoining beautifully appointed colonial bathrooms. Rates: USD 350 per person per sharing per night (pp), Bed capacity 12 tented camp, single room supplement UDS 150

Mivumo River Lodge

Mivumo Lodge, P.O Box 23250 Dar es Salaam. Tel: (255 22) 2600305 / 6, Fax: (255 22) 2600310. Situated on the panhandle of the Rufiji River in view of the mighty Stiegler’s Gorge is Mivumo River Lodge. All 12 rooms are set along the river as is the large dining area. The lodge also has a full aromatherapy Spa offering a range of facilities. The lodge offers a variety of activities including boat adventures, exclusive guided walks, wilderness picnics, private game drives and sundowner river adventures. Rates: USD 460 per person per sharing per night (pp), Bed capacity 12, lodge, single room supplement UDS 150.

Amara  Luxury Tented Camps

Amara Luxury Tented Camps, P.O Box 2763, Dar es Salaam. Tel: (255) 784747265 E-mail: info@amara-tanzania.com. Amara brings a whole new meaning to luxury accommodation in the heart of the African bush. Great effort has been made to ensure that Amara reflects the colours and mood of the Selous, balancing it with its wild and unblemished environment. Bed capacity 7 operating at the moment but expected to be 12 beds capacity in near future. (For more information contact above E-mail)

Retreat Safari Camp

The Retreat safari, P.O Box 13757, Dar es Salaam. Tel: 255 787 013 666 Email: welcome@retreat-africacom Web: www.retreat-africacom. Retreat Safari Camp offers comfortable accommodation in a remote and unique setting, where you can stay in grand colonial-style accommodation while experiencing untouched wilderness. You can sit back and enjoy the views from the terrace, as you watch the hippos and crocodiles in the river. The tents are positioned on the hill or on the banks of the river, offering beautiful views and comfortable accommodation. Rates: USD 800 – 1000, Bed capacity 12 – 24 lodge.

Lake Manze  Camp

Lake Manze Camp, P.O Box 5374, Dar es Salaam. Tel: (255 22) 2134035. Fax: (255 22) 2133499. Situated on the banks of Lake Manze, Lake Manze Camp is a tented authentic safari camp that rests under a beautiful shady canopy of vast dorm palms and terminalia trees. The 12 tents are spacious and well spread out with good views out over the lake in front. Each tent has an en suite bathroom with flush toilet and hot shower and is furnished with twin or double beds with a comfortable veranda to watch the animals passing. Rates: USD 375, full package USD 650 – 700, Bed capacity 12 – 24 tented camps.
Selous is  easily accessible by train, Four wheel  car or chartered aircraft from Dar es Salaam. The best time to visit is all year round except March and April.