The spectacular Selous Reserve, the largest expanse of game reserve in Africa, covers a massive 55,000 square kilometres of rolling savanna. About four times the size of Serengeti and larger than Switzerland, it is home to the largest concentration of elephants in the world. The reserve is named after Frederick Courtenay Selous, naturalist, conservationist and hunter, who was killed in World War 1 in the Beho region of the reserve.
Located in south-east Tanzania in a remote and little-visited part of the country, the Selous Game Reserve covers more than 5% of Tanzania’s total area. One of the last untouched gems of the nation’s parks, it offers the visitor a unique opportunity to see Africa the way the early explorers found it – pristine, alive with game, empty of tourists and utterly awe inspiring. Irrigated by the meandering network of lakes and tributaries that make up the mighty Rufiji River, it also offers the chance for one of the world’s most unique boating safaris.
The Rufiji River
The Rufiji River Delta connects the Great Ruaha River with the Rufiji River before emptying into the Indian Ocean. Home to a colourful array of water and bird life, the Rufiji offers sanctuary to enormous numbers of hippos and crocodiles, which bask and wallow on its muddy brown banks.
The ‘Big Five’
The Selous is also home to some of African’s largest populations of elephants, buffaloes, hartebeests, sables and hunting dogs. Other easily-spotted animals include; lions, giraffes, antelopes and black rhinos.
A wide range of activities
The Selous is unique among Tanzania’s game areas because it is a game reserve, and not a national park. This means that a wider range of activities are permitted such as; boating, walking and camping safaris. More controversially, large parts of the south of the reserve (90% of the total) are reserved for professional game hunting.