Wilderness has made its long-awaited debut in Tanzania with this unique and exciting project, a luxury safari camp that follows the path of the Great Migration with precision. This wildlife phenomenon is famously one of the largest mass migrations of mammals anywhere on the planet and is often called “the greatest show on earth”, as millions of wildebeest, zebra, and antelopes make their annual pilgrimage in search of grassland, under the keen eyes of hordes of predators. Covering their journey from the calving season in the south, to the wide expanses of the central Serengeti grasslands and western corridor, right up to those famous river crossings in the north, Usawa offers sensational game viewing year round, always right in the heart of the action. In addition to the excellent guiding, service, and food we’ve come to expect from a Wilderness property, the brilliant locations secured across the park are away from the busier areas. This gives you a more exclusive experience and uniquely offers walking safaris directly from camp! Two camps are open at any one time, covering the mega-herd, and based on current information as to their exact movements. This amazing new outfit, which merges boutique luxury with mobile adventure, is sure to become a fast favourite.
ACCESS & LOCATION:
Wilderness Usawa has eight camp locations throughout the Serengeti, with two always open, depending on the path of the migration for optimum game viewing. The flexibility of this new luxury safari camp means staff can move super-efficiently to follow the movement of the wildlife. A camp will never move when guests are resident, with the next one on the path seamlessly opening as another closes.
A brief summary of the main events in the yearly cycle would start with Ndutu/Kusini in the southern Serengeti, January through to March, for calving season, when the herbivores give birth to their young. April and May is the heavy rainy season. Come June and July, the herd moves up the western corridor and through the central Seronera region. And from mid July until late October the action is in the north, the animals making multiple crossings back and forth over the Mara river with crocs snapping at their heels. November and December herald the short rains season, the start of the herd’s journey south again, spreading out with the rains and coming down the central and eastern side of the park… to begin the cycle again in Ndutu/Kusini!
To access Usawa you would fly by scheduled light aircraft, and then it’s a short game drive between the airstrip and camp. It’s possible to access the southern camps by 4x4 during part of the year, but generally access is via fly-in.
ACCOMMODATION & FACILITIES AT WILDERNESS USAWA SERENGETI:
With only six tented suites, set away from busier parts of the park, the camp offers a stand-out remote and private Serengeti safari experience. The rooms are beautifully appointed, with comfy beds, an indoor shower, a double-basin vanity unit, and a separate toilet. There’s a writing desk in true Out of Africa style, as well as charging points for all your photographic needs. Other features include Wi-Fi, an electronic safe, a complimentary tea-and-coffee station, and a yoga mat for personal exercise. The camp is 100% solar powered, in keeping with Wilderness’ impeccable eco-credentials. This extends to the mindful design of the tents – expansive stretch fabric and a shaded net roof for excellent airflow, while outside there’s a seating area for your fresh morning coffee, complete with hammock!
The main tent is equally lovely, with a comfortable lounge, dining area, and bar, alongside a small research library and a spotting scope. There’s the obligatory firepit and seating area outside for sundowners and safari tales before supper. The food is superb, truly as good as it gets for a mobile tented outfit like this. Dining is usually communal and beneath the stars, but private dining is also possible on request if you’d like an intimate night with your partner.
ACTIVITIES AT WILDERNESS USAWA SERENGETI:
The main activity at Usawa is enjoying unrivalled views of the Great Migration and the incredible predator–prey interactions that make it so famous. There are two ways to do this at camp!
Expertly guided game drives– The guiding at Wilderness properties is right up there with the best. Among the wildlife highlights are lion, elephant, buffalo, wildebeest, giraffe, zebra, spotted and striped hyenas, cheetah, and an excellent assortment of antelopes. If you are lucky then you may see leopard, oryx, aardvark, black rhino, hippo… but these depend slightly on what time of year you travel and subsequently at which camp you stay.
Walking safaris– Why not head out into the grassy savannah with an armed guide? As well as enjoying animal tracking and the area’s phenomenal birdlife, you can take a closer look at the park’s smaller creatures, insects, and plant life. Different levels and distances can be arranged, depending on the requirements of your group. Please note, classic walking safari has a 12-year age limit.
Hot Air Ballooning– Alternatively, take to the skies and marvel at the Great Migration from the air! This activity needs to be pre-booked, and please discuss with your safari holiday consultant which camp is best to arrange it for you.
*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.