Reviews of Siwandu
Wildlife sightings and reviews
78 independent comments and wildlife information from our travellers who have visited Siwandu and kindly agreed to share their thoughts. They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa
The area was very green in December, and there had been much rain the previous week. This made hunting for wildlife more of a challenge - but we still saw plenty, including wild dogs. The water trip was excellent, and also lunch relaxing on the pontoon.
A new dam is being built in the Selous - far from the lodge, but the new access road has made the area more accessible. I am worried that the dam will also affect water levels and wildlife over the next few years." See all these reviews: 12n in Tanzania
"Fab safari at Siwandu"
Some improvements had been made to the camp in the four years that have passed since our last visit.
We had heavy rains towards the end of our visit and they coped well maintaining our safari programme. Also despite the airstrip being closed due to flooding, suitable arrangements were made for our onward flight." See all these reviews: 12n in Tanzania
Every member of staff contributed to the excellent service. It seems there was nothing that was too much trouble. The food was creative and good quality.
Our guide during the four days of our trip was Christopher. He was knowledgeable and took the time to give context and background information about habitat etc. We were fortunate to have Christopher as our guide throughout our stay.
A unique experience for us was discovering many species of birds at a feeding frenzy of catfish after rainfall.
Siwandu is a bird spotters paradise." See all these reviews: 8n in Tanzania
Activities were excellent, with a combination of drives, boat on the lake and walks. Would like to see different levels of walking tour offered though, as we all found the walk too sedate, despite being incredibly interesting. But we had excellent sitings every day.
The only slight negative, which is totally beyond the reach of Siwandu to fix, is waking up to the sound of trucks rumbling down the newly widened road on their way to the dam construction site. We hope this doesn’t have a negative impact on Siwandu and the reserve as a whole in the coming years." See all these reviews: 9n in Tanzania
"A warm welcome"
Food and drink: The food was less fancy than some places of this type, but was very suitable to the weather and the activity level of the trip. In some ways, actually, this type of food is ideal being relatively simple, but is less spectacular than elsewhere. Overall, we preferred the food here to Ikuka. The wine however was a weakness and not of a good standard. Just a question of getting better advice I think, because the wines at Ikuka were absolutely fine.
Staff generally: Very willing and helpful although less refined than some places. Emil, the camp manager, is highly attentive and the room butler was exceptional. The atmosphere here is more of a camp with connections to its local community rather than the "colonial outpost" vibe of some places.
Guiding: Our young guide Amos was extremely knowledgeable and competent (although not as experienced as Geofrey at Ikuka who was exceptional)
Vehicles and game drives: A weakness - the vehicle was older and the roads in the Selous were considerably worse than other areas I've been to.
Game viewing: Very good for giraffe as well as hippo and other water dependent wildlife because of the lake. We were fortunate to see buffalo and lion relatively near by as we understand this is not typically the case and the long drive to get a sighting could be quite bad (as we discovered with a drive out to see some Wild Dogs). Also only two sightings of a single elephant here. This is all relative of course, and I'm nitpicking as one of our game drives in particular was absolutely stunning. Also a very interesting and entertaining walking safari with Allen, the head guide." See all these reviews: 7n in Tanzania
Premises all clean, tents/ rooms had lovely decor. Safari also good, with fun guides. Walking safari a bit tame, and felt a little staged.
We all enjoyed the delicious food, and the stories around the bush tv, as they called the camp fire.
Highly recommended." See all these reviews: 8n in Tanzania; 5n in Zanzibar
"Excellent stay at Siwandu"
The wildlife was not brilliant here. Everything else - the service, the camp, the food etc was great. However, I am not sure we would recommend it because there were long drives without seeing anything." See all these reviews: 13n in Tanzania
"Wonderful lakeside camp"
We loved the views at lunchtime, sitting around the fire before dinner, eating out under the stars and chatting with our fellow guests in the bar afterwards.
A lovely, cool, spacious tent but not overly keen on the arrangement whereby the flaps tied back afforded a view of the toilet but we did like the outside shower.
Heard interesting and sometimes scary animal noises in the night!
Great boat trips on the lake (including a surprise lunch on the boat)" See all these reviews: 8n in Tanzania; 4n in Zanzibar
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