Since the pandemic set in, we've been taking advantage of the extra time we've had and also the increased availability of room in camps and lodges here in Tanzania. Since the government approved SOP (standard operating procedures) for tourism in Covid-19 times, we made several forays out to "the bush".
One place we've wanted to visit for a while is Namiri Plains, an Asilia Africa camp out in Eastern Central Serengeti, known for it's high population of cats including lion, cheetah, serval, caracal and African wildcat.
We flew to Seronera in central Serengeti where we were met by out guide, David, and set off for the camp; a drive of about 2.5 - 3 hours. The camp is located in a grassland area that was formerly restricted to wildlife researchers and was opened up for tourism purposes in 2014.
When we were about 30 minutes from camp we came across a lovely large elephant family group and enjoyed watching them and laughing at the antics of the youngsters for some time before continuing on our way.
Arrival at camp was warm and welcoming; and during our stay every single staff member (fully masked for covid-19) went out of their way to ensure our comfort and satisfaction. We experienced exceptional and friendly service here. The rooms are stunning with excellent lighting, ample storage space and room for relaxing inside and out plus tea making facilities and mini-fridge.
The food was delicious and chef Stanley sent us off with a few of our favourite recipes when we left. Below you'll see the remains of our favourite meal (vegie) burgers and fries!
Now to the purpose of the safari, cats! Each day we had two long game-drives, morning and evening. The mornings were quite cold, especially since the safari vehicles are open sided. We dressed in layers and made good use of the hot water bottles and maasai blankets provided. On the first evening we saw eight cheetahs! Including a mother with four cubs.
The following morning we had our breakfast with a Mama lion and three wee cubs. Alone. There were no other vehicles around. We continued to find bat eared foxes and a very large pride of lions staking out a water hole frequented by big herds of zebra and antelope. On our wish list was a caracal and the famous Namiri melanistic serval. That particular serval eluded us but we did watch another one stalk and catch a mouse for breakfast.
And, we did find that caracal!
All in all, a super safari experience and one we highly recommend to you.