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Sand Rivers Camp

When To Visit Selous Game Reserve:
When To Visit Selous Game Reserve:
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"This property epitomises the very essence of Selous. Great for walking safaris and excellent for boating trips, this is a seriously well-run camp that has an incredibly well-established reputation. First class, especially in the suites!"


Founded by famous guide Richard Bonham in the early 1990s, today Sand Rivers Selous is operated by Nomad Tanzania. Nomad runs a total of ten properties, among them the superb Serengeti Safari Camp, Entamanu Ngorongoro, and Greystoke Mahale. Sand Rivers has received a Certificate of Excellence from TripAdvisor! The accommodation is booked on a full-board basis, including all meals, a selection of alcoholic and soft drinks, Wi-Fi, and a laundry service. The camp is closed from mid-March to early June every year.


The camp can be accessed via 15 minutes’ road transfer from Kiba airstrip. It’s situated on a broad curve of the Rufiji river and surrounded by trees, within a peaceful region of the Selous Game Reserve.


Guest accommodation consists of just eight cottages, all elevated above ground level on decking and constructed using timber, stone, and thatch. Five are termed Riverside Rooms, and the remaining three are Hillside Suites. As their name suggests, the Hillside Suites are positioned higher up than the Riverside Rooms. Each suite benefits from a separate lounge as well as a private plunge pool! All cottages are very spacious, and as they are entirely open fronted they boast uninterrupted views over the river and its resident hippo. Vervet monkey may also be spotted, darting about the trees. Every bedroom contains a king-size bed with mosquito nets, bedside lighting, and, in the case of the Riverside Rooms, a seating area with a sofa and coffee table. En-suite facilities comprise flush toilet, washbasin with hot and cold running water, and walk-in shower. A selection of toiletries is supplied.

Sand Rivers’ communal spaces also offer spectacular vistas of the River Rufiji. With the exception of the swimming pool, they’re found in an open-sided timber, stone, and thatch structure. The lounge contains comfortable armchairs and sofas around coffee tables, some reading material, and a few intriguing artworks. In the dining area, chic separate tables are positioned in the best spots for guests to enjoy river views. Times for breakfast and lunch are flexible, and these meals are presented buffet style with plenty of options to suit all tastes. Afternoon tea is usually served at 4pm or so, and dinner involves a satisfying three courses! Private dining is available, at a variety of locations around camp. The bar is well stocked, and the curio shop sells clothes, jewellery, and branded items. A short distance from the lodge building, there’s the pool – surrounded by sunloungers and deckchairs, it’s the perfect place to relax between activities and marvel at the river and its inhabitants, mammals and birds alike!


The camp offers a great range of activities:

  • The sprawling plains, woodlands, and water sources of the Selous are home to a wonderful wealth of wildlife!
  • Highlights include all Big Five – lion, rhino, leopard, elephant, and buffalo – as well as numerous smaller predators and herbivores such as cheetah, hyena, jackal, wild dog, giraffe, wildebeest, zebra, and an astonishing assortment of antelopes.
  • There are also a lot of birds – about 440 types of feathery friend at last count!
  • Sand Rivers’ game drives, which head out during early morning and late afternoon, are fantastic for exploring all areas of the Selous.
  • Walking safaris provide opportunities for really close scrutiny of the reserve’s plant life and insect life. This activity is often combined with a drive in the 4×4 – for example, your guide might stop the vehicle so you can quietly track big game on foot.
  • Boat trips are also a stealthy way to watch wildlife, as the boat is virtually silent as it drifts along the water.
  • Just a few river specials include hippos, crocs, and great white pelicans! You can fish too, and enjoy swimming in the reserve’s lakes.

And fly camping is available at extra cost – for more information about this activity and anything else about staying at Sand Rivers, please contact a member of the YZ team.

*This property is unfenced and located in a wildlife area, so large and potentially dangerous animals do pass through. If you opt to stay here, always be alert when walking around the camp and request for a member of staff to escort you if you have any concerns. Any guest is escorted after dark as a matter of course.

*Related Blog Posts and Client Reviews:

Client Review: Fly camping in the spectacular Selous

Jenny Bolton-Clark and her husband journeyed to Tanzania’s southern Selous Game Reserve, where they stayed at Sand Rivers and went fly camping. Here’s Jenny’s description of the 24-hour experience.

Client Review: Tony And Terry's Nomad Safari Tanzania

Tony and Terry M travelled with Yellow Zebra to Tanzania on a Nomad safari in November 2018. Among the favourite properties they visited were Ruaha’s Kigelia Camp and Selous’ Sand River.

Selous Game Reserve

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