Africa

Tanzania / Travel Story

The sun rises over Arusha in Tanzania. The landscapes of East Africa parade along the trail leading to Chem Chem Lodge and Little Chem Chem. The Tarangire National Park, where the Tarangire River flows, rolls out its Savannah plains -sometimes scrubby, scattered with incongruous baobabs.

Fabia Bausch and Nicolas Nègre chose the huge Chem Chem Wildlife Reserve, a 20,000 hectare private concession between Tarangire and Manyara, to set up two vintage-style canvas camps. On our arrival at Chem Chem, we are welcomed by a family of elephants, numerous in this region of Tanzania. We enjoy a refreshing drink in the wooden veranda facing the bush, listening out for the smallest noises, eager to begin the great adventure with an authentic luxury safari in Tanzania.

But Fabia and Nicolas, a former French hunter who became a professional ranger guide, explain with a smile their version of the “slow safari” … A more tranquil way of enjoying this experience, where one soaks in the feeling of the savannah and above all enjoys the pleasure of contemplation. It is actually quite easy to do so here thanks to the constant parade of gazelles, oryx or elk, only a few meters away from us.

Tonight, the wood-burning stove cleverly set up in the tent warms the cozy atmosphere, spreading a dancing halo through the African dusk.

The next day, a ride in an open roof 4WD takes us to the Manyara National Park where the different shades of blue and white of Lake Manyara alternate. There one can also see hordes of pink flamingos departing from the flat muddy shores – paradise for pelicans, herons and cormorants, not forgetting the groves of acacia trees where the famous lions of Manyara take refuge, looking out for the warthogs or any other more enticing preys.

An additional night at Little Chem Chem, an intimate camp with 5 suites, allows you to experience the adventure of a walking safari with the Masai warriors.

Then the red track climbs up, crossing a luxuriant jungle invaded by curious baboons, towards the edge of the crater whose name is so difficult to pronounce. N’Gorongoro, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, is the largest intact volcanic caldera in the world. This ancient volcano which collapsed heavily, causing this impressive circle of nearly 20 km in diameter, is now a sanctuary for more than 30 000 animals…

At the turn of the track, hanging on the edge of the abyss, Crater Lodge seems to hold its breath. The view from the suites is unique, as is the architecture of this lodge of the collection & Beyond. Its tribal look and decoration with a baroque feeling makes you feel as if you were staying in an East African mini-Versailles.

The next day, the whole day is devoted to the site of N’Gorongoro and its flat stretches of land where some water points still remain and are the rallying places for zebras and wildebeests, escorted by buffalos, gazelles of Thompson or Grant, not forgetting some elephants.

The lions and the hyenas blindly ignore the constant flow of vehicles, a little bit too numerous in the crater. It is a quite busy tourist stop but an unavoidable one in Tanzania.

A romantic fire in the large library’s fireplace where you can enjoy a sip of cherry brings to our day, a touch of elegance signed “Crater Lodge”. The last stop of the trip is the Serengeti National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. More specifically, at the Mwiba Reserve, where the Mwiba Lodge suites cling desperately to the steep rock, overlooking the Arugusinyai River Gorge.

Owned by Legendary Expeditions, the bush luxury adventure specialist, Mwiba Lodge is located in a wild area, home of major migrations.

The antique looking bathtub overlooking the rocks of the Serengeti – with its nuances of red- makes you feel like lounging for hours. But one cannot ignore one of the most preserved ecosystems on the planet for very long, a unique show in this very unique theatre.

From May to the end of August, the cycle of the perilous journey of the wildebeest and zebra herds bravely crossing the territory at the end of the rainy season starts, they are going west and north of the Serengeti all the way to Kenya, in search of water and pastures. Their destiny, sometimes tragic, is at stake during the crossing of rivers – hideouts of crocodiles and strategic shelter for big cats…

Our Travel Story in Tanzania is a non exhaustive example. Thanks to our expertise and our partner’s expertise, we create custom-made itinerary, specific to the regions or the themes you are interested in. Do not hesitate to contact us by phone on + (33) 1 42 96 00 76 or by email at info@exclusifvoyages.com.