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“Absolute bush adventure in understated, unparalleled style”

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Kigelia Ruaha, Nomad Tanzania
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed June 9, 2011

Kigelia Camp: reconnect with the rhythms of the planet, regain perspective, restore your spirit and experience adventure away from the tourist hordes. From sunrise to sunset and beyond, Ruaha National Park reeks of adventure and remote beauty. From majestic baobabs with millennia of wisdom to sand rivers; from thick bush to plain: Ruaha is the unsung hero of Tanzania's parks. To experience it at its best, Kigelia Camp (one of the superb set ups run by Tanzanian-based Afrika Afrika Safaris) is the obvious choice.

Nestled in a remote grove of Kigelia Africana trees, known by many as 'sausage' trees due to their distinctive hanging pods, the camp sits on the banks of the Ifuguru Sand River and is as far from bright city lights and modern urban stress as you can imagine. Surrounded by baobabs which, if they could speak, would surely share the wisdom and secrets of their ancient lives the six luxury tents blend perfectly with the quite unique location. As a guest, I felt myself to be at once part of, yet safely protected from, the enveloping bush which offers a constantly changing chorus of excited birdsong as well as more thrilling close encounters with the larger indigenous species.

Quite brilliant food and plenty of sundowners/ camp fire tipples/ filled wine glasses punctuate the days with comforting regularity and nothing is too much trouble for the excellent staff: imagine hot water bottles ready in the cushioned Land Cruiser for those chillier early morning game drives.

If you are very lucky, you may be treated to the unparalleled enthusiasm for, and breath taking knowledge of, the bush and its flora and fauna by Afrika Afrika's Vera Heydenrych. Vera is a unique font of passion and wisdom and will give your safari a rare dimension. No matter if she is guiding in one of the other camps: all Afrika Afrika's guides are fine spotters and bursting with fascinating facts.

What more to say? Ruaha is not the easiest park to reach but those who make the journey are richly rewarded. Kigelia is not to be neglected from any serious safari itinerary.

  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled with friends
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2  Thank pencabot
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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74 - 80 of 84 reviews

Reviewed March 24, 2011

Not the easiest place to get to but so worth the trip. This camp is in a park that is not nearly as heavily visited as the Serengeti and yet this is a location teeming with wildlife. Game drives are so personal with very professional and knowledgeable guides. You truly feel like you are the only person in the entire national park. I saw more elephants, etc. than I could possibly count. The young lions were also stunning.

Comfort and being in the bush can coexist! The tent was secluded with elephants and giraffes walking around the camp at times. The beds are comfortable, the showers hot and delivered when you want, and the privacy is priceless. The food also was terrific. If you want to truly experience the bush, this is the place to do it. My sleep was occassionaly interrupted by the sounds of wildlife but even that made the location special.

A solar powered charging station available to keep batteries charged up and Vodacom cell service works fine. Seems odd to be so far out and still be able to stay in touch if needed. What would Stanley and LIvingstone say if they were alive today?

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled solo
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1  Thank Cardurg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
annajonsson, Marketing Manager for AfrikaAfrika at Kigelia Ruaha, Nomad Tanzania, responded to this reviewResponded October 17, 2011

Dear Cardurg,

Thank you so much for your lovely review of our Ruaha camp. I am happy that you have highlighted two very special aspects of Kigelia Camp - firstly the location of Ruaha National Park and the fact that it is not as busy as Serengeti along with the absolutely incredible wildlife - makes it a fantastic national park on all accounts. The lion population is the largest in Tanzania and most guests have the privilege to encounter these cats up close and in large numbers.

Your other point is how our mobile tented camp allows you to be literally surrounded by wildlife! Our 12 bedded tented camp concentrates on the traditional tented safari experience accessing remote areas that offer an unparalleled level of exclusivity and fantastic game viewing.

We are so happy you had a wonderful trip even when traveling solo to the far but incredible Ruaha.

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Reviewed November 10, 2010

Having previously enjoyed several safais staying in lodges this was my first stay at a tented camp and my wife's first trip to Africa. Putting it simply this was a fantastic experience.
The camp is well situated, very comfortable and gives taste of what I imagine to be a singularly authentic African experience.
The guides were extermely knowledgeable about all aspects of flora and fauna and, together with the other camp personnel, were friendly, personable and could not do enough to make our stay memorable. Nothing was too much trouble.
The food was great, tents very comfortable, open air showers just what the doctor ordered after a game drive and the wildlife viewing superb.
Would I recommend Kigelia - without doubt.
Would I go again - absolutely. When? As soon as I can.

  • Stayed: September 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank BOFtraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 5, 2010

We stayed for three nights in Kigelia Camp. It is a very good tented camp. The guides are very professional, the food is great, the people working at the camp are very polite and always wants to help you.
The camp is situated at a dry sandriver. It is very quiet. Elephants were around our tents in the night and the impalas and baboons were never far away.

  • Stayed: September 2010, traveled with friends
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2  Thank dinieNjombe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 10, 2016 via mobile
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Stayed: December 2016, traveled as a couple
Thank anna50Perugia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 30, 2016
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  • Stayed: September 2016, traveled as a couple
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Thank Roland P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 26, 2016
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Room Tip: alle Zelte topp; wenn der Fluss vorm Zelt Wasser führt, kann man bestimmt viele Tiere beobachten.
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  • Stayed: June 2016, traveled with friends
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Thank Hans-Günter F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Kigelia Ruaha, Nomad Tanzania

Address: Ruaha National Park, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Iringa Region > Ruaha National Park
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 13 Specialty Lodging in Ruaha National Park
Price Range: $700 - $1,200 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Kigelia Ruaha is where you go when your soul seeks the humbling solitude of giant baobabs, the exhiliration of encountering Africa's big cats or great herds of elephant; where the focus is on experiencing nature and not the gold taps, and where you can feel at home while simultaneously enjoying the care of a dedicated team. Located in the best wildlife area of the great Ruaha National Park, Kigelia Ruaha is a simple but beautifully put together tented bushcamp offering all those creature comforts that you need, while enjoying one of the best kept big game secrets in East Africa. ... more   less 

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