“Walk, drive and boat alongside a dizzying array of wildlife in Africa's largest conservation area”
Eleven of the 14 tents are spread out along the riverbank on a platform, with the communal lounge, bar and eating area in the middle. Contemporary in decor, they have wooden floors, thatched roofs, walled ensuite bathrooms and voile netting draped over beds. The kitsch animal-print cushions are a great touch, as are the hand-carved writing desks and there are shelves to store your kit. Electricity is provided by a solar powered generator, and is only switched on in the evenings. This is means that showers are warm (rather than hot), and we found water pressure to be an issue. All tents can be set up as singles, doubles or triples.
Outside, each tent has a private veranda with a mikuti thatch roof, table and chairs; guests can sit here and watch the animals in the Rufiji below. At dusk, a lantern is placed on the table to help light the tents; this is removed once guests are asleep.
There are also 3 Family Tents, each made up of 2 adjoining tents on a private platform, and sleeping 4-6 people. They're more luxurious than the basic tents, and have a snazzy bathroom and a private plunge pool with loungers on their terrace. Perfect for families, friends or those wanting a little more privacy and space, we feel these tents offer the best value.
For the ultimate back-to-nature experience, go fly camping for a night. The temporary camp is a 45-minute drive away on the shore of Lake Mzizimia, and consists of 20 simple tents. Each has fold-up cot beds with mattresses, and a table and safari chairs outside. The bathroom is shared between the group - 2 toilets and 1 shower - and soap and towels are provided. Meals are cooked on an open fire then served in a lakeside gazebo, and an armed ranger is on-hand at all times.
Expect good simple fare, although there's not a huge variety. Breakfast is a buffet consisting of hot cinnamon rolls, eggs and toast, served with coffee or tea, and juices.
Lunch is a buffet or a simple packed lunch of sandwiches, fruit and cakes if you're going out on a full day drive.
Dinners are a 3-course affair - often taken out on the terrace under the stars weather permitting. Starters are served at your table, think tempura vegetables or an onion soup with warm bread rolls. The main coursed is a buffet of various meats, pastas, curries and vegetarian dishes. Dessert was a sponge cake with chocolate sauce, a little bit bland, but we were told it’s hard to get a lot of ingredients so far out in the bush. If you're lucky, the Masai may entertain you while you eat, with singing and dancing.
Game drives can be tailored to suit and you can also set up fly camping trips en famille for an ultra personalised experience. Bear in mind that when taking kids on safari, it's best if they're over 8 (younger ones can't sit still for long enough or stay quiet) and it's a good idea to bring games and DVDs with you. There is no babysitting option here.
The owners recommend splitting a family safari by doing maybe 3 nights on safari, then a break in the Highlands or somewhere where the kids can run around and do activities, then another 3 nights on safari and then back to the beach. In their experience, it has worked well.
Children (4-12 years), Teens (over 12)
Family Tents are 2 interconnecting tents, on a private platform, with your own plunge pool. Each sleeps 4-6
The camp host can accommodate special requests or earlier meal times to suit
A Maasai escort will ensure families get between their rooms and the facilities safely; parents must keep their kids in view at all times