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“So Serene...even the Hippo are Chill.”

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Sand Rivers Selous, Nomad Tanzania
Certificate of Excellence
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“So Serene...even the Hippo are Chill.”
Reviewed 27 October 2013 via mobile

I would highly recommend Sand River to be the last stop on any Safari. It's just so different and so serene. Actually, very relaxing. Nic and Jana do an amazing job and all the staff including our guide Lazaro who works for Nomad Tanzania was just wonderful. Keep it up! Asante Sana.

  • Stayed October 2013
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Helpful?
Thank Roma253
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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205 reviews from our community

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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (48)
Date | Rating
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English first
london
Level Contributor
12 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 October 2013

As already mentioned Mark and Chloe were indeed excellent hosts, truly motivated in trying to understand your preferences as quickly as possible to make you feel right at home – also making everyone feel welcome individually. It was quite impressive to experience, well done to both of them.

With few roads in the secluded park the game drives were about the excitement of working to find your more exotic game, working closely with your guide to spot the signs, which made finding rarer game all the more thrilling (leopards etc). The usual game is plentiful, but slightly skittish compared to other safaris; this is reflective of the wilder and less touristy nature of Selous. You really won’t meet another vehicle unless you go looking for it; it’s that private and peaceful. The land rovers are comfortable (4 seaters) with fridges and canopies which makes the game drives easy to copy with considering the terrain. The guides are very skilled and knowledgeable (all of them), very much an extension of the professional approach of the camp.
They offer various other activities, I’d recommend taking advantage of: eating lunch out in the park, fishing on the river (I don’t fish btw!), a safari walk, use the large pool which has views of the river (with a cold drink). The extra activities allow you to experience Selous in a way others can’t.

Accommodation is as expected and of a good standard. The suites are positioned along the bank with views over the river; they’re private and spacious areas to relax in. The cuisine as mentioned in other reviews is of a high standard as well; I can’t see anyone complaining over food (or wine for that matter), and they really do prepare/cook food to order and encourage you to request it how you like it - including allergies (eg I had pancakes and maple syrup for breakfast). They offer the option to have meals separately from other guests as well, whether it’s by the pool etc which may be important to some guests if they prefer an intimate meal.

All in all a fantasic way to experience Selous and with great hosts in an intimate camp.

Stayed Sep 2012, travelled with family.

  • Stayed November 2012, travelled with family
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Thank G L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Westlake Village, California
2 reviews
Reviewed 17 October 2013

Plush surroundings, every creature comfort, attentive staff. good food. Considerable flexibility in planning next days activities so that one never felt rushed or pressured into schedules. Very relaxed professional staff, knowledgable on all aspects of species, flora and fauna. Elephants and Hippos right by your room! Recommend boat adventure to Stiegler Gorge for new perspectives on alligators coming at you, hippos underwater. Great sunset/ "sundowners" on sandbar at end of day with guides and new friends, then boat trip back to camp.

Room Tip: Make sure that you get Joel as your guide--he was outstanding and knows every nuance of the trails...
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  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Quinn M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oxford, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed 13 October 2013

I was lucky to stay in Sand Rivers in September 2013 as part of my fam trip and I had absolutely fantastic time- beautiful spacious bungalows with breathtaking views over the river Rufiji with hippos bathing in it was extraordinary, food was delicious, staff were very friendly and the hosts (Andrea and Alessia) were extremely welcoming, professional and really looked after me and all other guests. I highly recommend this place as an ultimate getaway to an unspoilt wilderness where everyone is extremely looked after and entertained.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled solo
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Helpful?
Thank Anna J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 October 2013

We stayed at Sand Rivers for the first week of our honeymoon. We had some idea of what it was going to be like from pictures and reviews, but there is no way you can fully describe without seeing it yourself! It is a beautiful place. Our room was amazing, with views over the Rufiji. Laz, our guide for our 5 days, looked after us so well. All the staff were always willing to help and Nick and Jana were great hosts. Thank you for an amazing experience - something we will remember for life.
Andrew and Sarah

Room Tip: Suite 3 if you can! Best views in the camp!
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  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Andrew C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Los Gatos, California
Level Contributor
144 reviews
43 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 September 2013

We did the Northern Circuit for 17 days before we flew to Sand Rivers. Our tour operator had suggested we save Selous for the end of our first safari because she claimed it would be the "crown jewel of our Tanzanian experience." She was quite right, actually, although I doubted it at the time!

As other reviewers have said, Jana and Nic are the consummate "camp" hosts and managers. Nic picked us up at the airstrip, and Jana was waiting with other staff, waving and singing a song, when we arrived at Sand Rivers. The staff was really phenomenal, although I have to add that the staff at every Tanzanian accommodation was wonderful too.

Others have generally described the accommodations, which are unique in many ways. We had a huge suite (Suite #2). It is really more of a large apartment, complete with living room, plunge pool, large decks, huge bedroom, bath with adjoining patio (allowing both indoor and outdoor showers). The suite has a wall halfway up to the roof, with the remaining space open to nature. So yes, monkeys can come into your suite, and animals can get up close and personal. For some guests, this may be too scarey, but we thought it was great.

The Sand Rivers guides and activities were top-flight. We had Laz for all of the 2-1/2 days that we were there. He was incredibly knowledgeable, pleasant, and helpful. You couldn't find a better guide. You can tell that this man is in love with the bush and everything it offers to see.

The boat trips are fun, as variety to the usual driving safari format. There were large numbers of hippos and crocs in the river. The driving safaris offered unique experiences, just when we thought we had seen a great deal in our Northern Circuit experience.

The noteworthy experience was the last evening when we were almost done with our drive, when we came upon a pack of wild dogs. None had been seen by anyone in Selous for over 3 months, so we were honored to be able to experience them. Laz said he has had a German couple come three different times to Selous just to find wild dogs, and they still haven't had a sighting.

I would like to especially thank Jana and Nic for their thorough and amazing level of service and hospitality. They are really interesting and fun people to visit with, about a myriad of topics. And even better, we could see that this is just the way they always are.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank ClaireWilson36
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Barkway, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 September 2013

This trip was a 70th birthday present from my son so you can see we were not as young as some of the other guests.I was slightly concerned that there might be too much walking which was not the case but if this had been an issue I am sure Nic and Jona would have organised something different, they were so attentive. Charming is too anodine a word, delightful and great fun but entirely serious about organisation and safety. The room with showers outside and in, a plunge pool and wonderful views of the river, was deceptively simple until you took in the enormous and comfortable bed, the lanterns, the reading lamps, the beautifully arranged towels which were always miraculously immaculate again every time you returned to your room and many other thoughtful touches which were beyond anything we could have expected. Others have written about the excellent food but who could have expected to be adding madelines at tea time to their Safari memories.

All three guides who accompanied us on different occasions were so knowledgeable but also so concerned that we should see everything that was around. We really enjoyed the fact that they joined us in the evening when we were having a drink and discussing the next day's trips so we could get to know them. Ernest, who met us off the plane, was clever at discovering our tastes so that white wine, beer and delicious little edible treats appeared that evening when we stopped to look at the view after watching a large group of elephants walking slowly in front of our truck. I was envious of the other guests who had done the fly camping but we had the fun of sitting outside on the terrace by our room gazing at the stars and listening to the grunting of the animals around us. I don't think any elephants passed our room in the night but maybe we just slept so well after our wonderful days at Sand River.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Location
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Helpful?
1 Thank Caroline M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sand Rivers Selous, Nomad Tanzania

Property: Sand Rivers Selous, Nomad Tanzania
Address: Selous Game Reserve, Tanzania
Region: Tanzania > Lindi Region > Selous Game Reserve
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 25 Speciality Lodging in Selous Game Reserve
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Sand Rivers Selous, Nomad Tanzania 3.5*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
When Richard Bonham built Sand Rivers, he was offered any area in the Northern Selous. There were good reasons why this site, overlooking the mile wide Rufiji River, was the only place he wanted to be.At the heart of an intricate network of sand river channels, oxbow lakes and open plains, Sand Rivers opens a window on the private lives of Africa's big mammals. Creep up on elephant as they wallow in hidden lakes; drift silently down the river at dusk or sleep out under the stars at night.With just eight open-fronted rooms looking out over the Rufiji River, Sand Rivers offers variety, spontaneity and a gradual immersion in a seductively wild part of Southern Tanzania. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Sand Rivers Selous Hotel Selous Game Reserve
Sand Rivers Selous, Nomad Tanzania Selous Game Reserve

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