Chada Katavi

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Chada Katavi, Katavi National Park, Tanzania

Chada Katavi is spacious and comfortable with wide-open fronts giving you panoramic views of the plain and animal life that constantly comes and goes.

From the air you have to be looking carefully to spot the tents (the camp has made sure of this) and they blend totally into their surroundings. So much so in fact, that you often don't have to leave your tent veranda to see game of all kinds. Elephant are frequent visitors, attracted to the same shady fruit trees as us, and vast herds of buffalo graze on the flood plain.

Chada Katavi is designed to be a stylishly simple bushcamp and since we share all the resources here with Katavi's animals and so the camp has ensured that their footprint remains light. They've avoided unnecessary fripperies but you'll still find all your needs taken care of.

Highlights: Unbelievable game with vast herds of buffalo roaming the plains; also elephant, lion, leopard, crocodiles and tons of hippo. Return to the creature comforts of Chada Katavi after an exciting day out in the wilds.

Six wide spacious safari tents with large shade windows to catch any passing breezes. The tents have a wood-floored veranda out front. En-suite bathrooms adjoin with safari-style bucket showers (hot water on demand) and eco-flush toilets.

Intrepid explorers Roland and Zoe Purcell discovered the vast wilderness of Katavi in the 1980s when they were traveling around east Africa looking for the meaning of life. They had already found it on a white beach on the shores of Lake Tanganyika, where they created the barefoot fantasy chimpanzee camp of Greystoke Mahale.

One day, when flying low over a stretch of wilderness that went as far as the eye could see, they spotted a seemingly endless herd of buffalo and landed their plane nearby. They set up camp for the night on the edge of the great Chada plain and from here they ventured out into this unknown landscape.

As they sat and studied their surroundings, they realised they had stumbled on a hidden paradise of game: hippos in their hundreds, not just in the rivers, but grazing on the banks in herds. The crocodiles were more circumspect, but so numerous that they couldn't easily hide And ranging across the open spaces were the largest herds of wild cape buffalo they had ever seen, shadowed by lion, leopard and hyena.

Game Drives

Guided Walks

Flycamping Under the Stars

The camp shares the mountains and the lake with so many animals, but it's the chimps that inspire; hard not to compare their daily lives, their movements, feeding, squabbling, foraging and grooming, with our own.

Time spent with them is time away from everything else that is ordinary. The camp has watched, over the years, as families have grown, alpha males have come and gone, bonds and friendships have been created and then broken, and then created again. They are not so different from us.

It's all acted out on this natural chimpanzee stage, and witnessing it is something the camp and staff are privileged to be able to do every day.

The enormity of what the guests are seeing hits them for the first time. After tracking them, for an hour or two, maybe more, only aware of the sounds they are making ahead of us, we find them; suddenly they are everywhere. You sit quietly on the forest floor and take a deep breath, this is what it's all about.

Other Camps in Tanzania