This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Learn more

Skip to main content

Talk to an expert 1-800-242-2434 Lines open now

User menu
Serengeti Bushtops
Serengeti Bushtops
Serengeti Bushtops
Serengeti Bushtops
Serengeti Bushtops
Serengeti Bushtops

Serengeti Bushtops: Our full report

Serengeti Bushtops is a stylish, permanent tented camp, situated in the Wogakuria area of the northern Serengeti, ...

... not far from the Mara River. Between June and November this is usually one of the best areas to stay to try and catch a glimpse of a dramatic wildebeest river crossing. The camp is set over a large area – it’s a 1km walk from the first tent to the last tent – and with only 13 tents, they are significantly more private, and isolated, than other camps in the area.

There are a few communal areas at Serengeti Bushtops. First up are the reception and curio shop, which stock quite a wide range of African ornaments, jewellery and artwork. The main focus, however, is the large lounge/dining tent. This is raised up on wooden decking facing towards the west – a perfect spot to sit and watch the sun go down after a long day on safari. At the centre of the tent is a vast circular bar – very well stocked, and bizarrely cover in cow-print. If you can’t find something to drink here, the very impressive ’wine shelf‘ behind the bar should have something to everyone’s tastes!

To one side of the bar, tables and chairs are set out for dinner, although guests are free to dine in their room if they prefer a bit more privacy. To the other is the lounge, where several sofas are placed facing a square fireplace. There’s also a library and a flat-screen TV here. The décor is very natural in style, with lots of wood and earthy colours (which we thought made the TV feel a little out of place).

The 13 tented rooms at Serengeti Bushtops, all named after various African animals, are essentially identical in style and design. All are raised on vast wooden decks with a veranda wrapping round two sides. Each deck is furnished with a table (where you can eat meals if you wish) and a sunken seating area with plenty of cushioned benches, and kitted out with a hot tub.

Inside the tent you’ll find a large bed covered by a mosquito net, and flanked by bedside tables. There’s a phone in each room which allows you to call between tents or to reception, a writing desk with various guidebooks and interesting fact sheets, a large wooden closet with plenty of hanging space, and an electronic safe.

Set to one side is the bathroom area, with a large ceramic sink and mirror, a hairdryer and toiletries provided. A canvas curtain separates the flush toilet from the rest of the facilities, and a huge rain-shower is open to the decking overlooking the hot tub.

Three ’honeymoon’ tents are so called simply because they’re set slightly further away, affording even more privacy, and have a king-size double bed. The ’family’ tent is essentially two standard tents joined by a wooden walkway.

A private butler service operates in all rooms. We’re told that this is a discreet service, whereby a specific member of staff is allocated to your room, and is on call should you require any drinks or service. We only popped in to Serengeti Bushtops on our last visit in 2011, so we didn’t get a chance to experience this service ourselves!

We noted on our last visit that the staff were uniformed, wore name badges, and were perhaps more formal than most camps. This combined with a feeling we had that the Bushtops feels less personal, and more like a hotel than a camp in many ways.

Overall we thought the rooms were incredibly spacious – some of the largest we’ve seen, and certainly some of the most private. As in the main area, the predominance of natural tones and wood gives them a really natural and fresh feel.

Many people will arrive here with their own driver-guide, but Serengeti Bushtops has six guides of its own, and six vehicles (two of them closed; four open-sided). We understand that on game drives they take a spotter, who is usually someone from a nearby village who is said to know the area and animals well.

Other activities at Serengeti Bushtops include a massage service, which is included in the rates for all guests. They tell us they have three resident masseuses who are all local Tanzanians, who will bring a massage bed to your room and carry out the massage on the decking. They can also offer walking safaris, although these are at an extra cost of US$50 per person and are taken by a TANAPA park ranger – not one of their own guides.


Our view

Serengeti Bushtops is remarkably stylish, and the rooms very spacious and private. The service seemed friendly and efficient. It lacks the communal ‘bushcamp’ feel of some of the smaller, more intimate camps in the area – and is a little more ‘hotel-like’ and formal – but for those wanting privacy and luxury this could be a good choice.

Elizabeth Chapman

Elizabeth Chapman

Tanzania expert

Geographics

Location
Serengeti Migration Area, Tanzania
Ideal length of stay
Stay for at least 3 nights between June and November when the wildebeest migration is likely to be within the area.
Accessible by
Fly-and-Transfer

Food & drink

Usual board basis
Full Board
Food quality
On our last visit (June 2011) we didn't get a chance to sample the food at Serengeti Bushtops, but we'd expect the food to be of a good quality, with international style cuisine. Dining takes place either in the main restaurant area, or on the decking of your tent.

Children

Attitude towards children
Serengeti Bushtops generally welcomes children, but young children are considered on a case-by-case basis.
Property’s age restrictions
There are no specific age restrictions, but the manager suggested three years plus.
Special activities & services
Serengeti Bushtops has archery, board games and a TV for children.
Equipment
There is no special equipment.
Generally recommended for children
The family tent at Serengeti Bushtops is well set out for families with older children travelling together. They also told us that up to two children can fit in the same tent as their parents. However, the camp has quite a mature feel to it, and is really in the middle of the bush, so we'd recommend it only for children from the age of 8 who have an interest in wildlife.
Notes
This camp is not fenced, and wild animals can roam through so parents should be aware children are always their responsibility.

Communications

Communications
Serengeti Bushtops has free WiFi in the central areas and a laptop which guests can use at no extra charge.
TV & radio
There is TV in the main area.

Health & safety

Malarial protection recommended
Yes
Medical care
Serengeti Bushtops has a basic first-aid kit. They also have links to the flying doctor service. They are only 2km from Kogatende airstrip and we understand that helicopters can land on the site, too.
Dangerous animals
High Risk
Security measures
The lodge has security guards patrolling day and night, and guests are escort to their tents after dark.
Fire safety
There are fire extinguishers dotted around Serengeti Bushtops.

Activities

  • 4WD Safari

    4WD Safari

  • Birdwatching

    Birdwatching

  • Hot air ballooning

    Hot air ballooning

Extras

Disabled access
On Request
Laundry facilities
Laundry is included; it is hand washed and line dried.
Money
There are safes in all the rooms.
Accepted payment on location
Serengeti Bushtop can accept cash payments, but they prefer payment by credit card. They can take Visa, MasterCard and Amex with no surcharge.

Other lodges in Serengeti Migration Area

Alternative places to stay in this same area.


Olakira

Olakira Camp

Comfortable, friendly and relaxed, Olakira Camp moves between the Mara River and the southern Ndutu area, in line with the wildebeest migration.


96% (60 reviews)
Sayari Camp

Sayari Camp

In the northern Serengeti, near the Mara River, luxurious Sayari Camp offers excellent wildife all year – boosted further by the wildebeest migration.


98% (58 reviews)
Nomad Serengeti Safari Camp

Nomad Serengeti Camp

Serengeti Safari Camp is a well-appointed tented camp that moves several times a year to follow the predicted path of the migration.


97% (48 reviews)
Dunia Camp

Dunia Camp

Dunia Camp is well located for the migration from December to March, and has excellent game viewing for the rest of the year.


93% (44 reviews)
Lamai Serengeti

Lamai Serengeti

Set high in the kopjes with fantastic views, Lamai Serengeti offers top service and guiding and good migration sightings from Jul-Oct.


99% (32 reviews)
Namiri Plains Camp

Namiri Plains Camp

Namiri Plains is one of the best camps in the Serengeti and its remoteness ensures a fantastic wildlife experience away from the crowds.


97% (31 reviews)
Ubuntu Camp

Ubuntu Camp

Ubuntu Camp has several locations in the Serengeti, following the wildebeest migration, so it is often in a great location to see the herds.


99% (22 reviews)
Kati Kati Camp

Kati Kati Camp

Kati Kati is a small, simple camp, which is well-positioned to explore the wildlife-rich Seronera area.


91% (20 reviews)
Ndutu Safari Lodge

Ndutu Safari Lodge

Large and economical, but not luxurious, Ndutu Safari Lodge is well located in the southern Serengeti, so book early to get space.


93% (11 reviews)
Kimondo Camp

Kimondo Camp

Kimondo Camp is based in the remote Lamai Wedge in the northern Serengeti from Jul–Oct, and on the southern Kusini plains from Nov–Mar.


98% (11 reviews)
Kleins Camp

Klein's Camp

Klein's Camp, in a private area of the northern Serengeti, sets high standards. Activities include walks, nights drives and Maasai village visits.


98% (10 reviews)
Serengeti under Canvas

Serengeti under Canvas

Two of the three Serengeti under Canvas camps move through the Serengeti National Park every few months to follow the wildebeest migration.


100% (10 reviews)
Grumeti River Camp

Grumeti River Camp

Grumeti River Camp offers a laid-back atmosphere combined with top service, first-rate food, expert guiding and an excellent location.


93% (9 reviews)
Alex Walker's Serian Serengeti

Serian Serengeti

Serian Serengeti is a mobile tented operation run by Alex Walker which moves between two locations following the wildebeest migration.


98% (9 reviews)
Lobo Wildlife Lodge

Lobo Wildlife Lodge

The large Lobo Wildlife Lodge has simple, functional rooms in a stunning location. It's a good base for exploring the north-eastern Serengeti.


72% (5 reviews)
Lemala Kuria Hills

Lemala Kuria Hills

Lemala Kuria Hills is a luxury permanent camp that is ideally located for wildlife all year around, but especially during the wildebeest migration.


100% (5 reviews)
Kusini Camp

Kusini Camp

Kusini Camp is permanent, luxury camp located on a beautiful kopje in a quiet, wildlife-rich corner of the south-west Serengeti.


65% (4 reviews)
Kubu Kubu

Kubu Kubu

Kubu Kubu is a contemporary, tented lodge, well located in the central Seronera area of the Serengeti National Park.


100% (4 reviews)
Mbalageti Lodge

Mbalageti Lodge

Mbalageti is a well-run lodge in a quiet part of the Serengeti's western corridor – an ideal location during the Apr-Jun migration.


80% (4 reviews)
Lemala Ewanjan

Lemala Ewanjan

Lemala Ewanjan is a comfortable and stylish tented camp in the Seronera area of the central Serengeti National Park.


100% (4 reviews)
Faru Faru Lodge

Faru Faru Lodge

On the north bank of the Grumeti River, Faru Faru is a small, chic hideaway in this exclusive corner of the Serengeti.


100% (3 reviews)
Singita Mara River Tented Camp

Singita Mara River

Singita Mara River Tented Camp is a luxurious camp in the isolated and rewarding Lamai wedge region of the northern Serengeti.


87% (3 reviews)
Serengeti Walking Mobile Camp

Serengeti Walking Mobile

This fairly simple camp offers only walking activities, but it's very well done and combines well with more conventional camps or lodges.


87% (3 reviews)
Serengeti Sopa Lodge

Serengeti Sopa Lodge

Serengeti Sopa Lodge is an international-style hotel offering good-value accommodation in the central Serengeti, with lovely views of the plains.


100% (3 reviews)
Serengeti Green Camp

Serengeti Green Camp

Serengeti Green Camp is a comfortable camping experience, in your own private safari camp and at the heart of a great wildlife area.


93% (3 reviews)
Serengeti Migration Camp

Migration Camp

Serengeti Migration Camp is a smart tented camp, good for the wildebeest migration from Jul–Aug, or to explore the Lobo Kopjes any time.


93% (3 reviews)
Lemala Nanyukie

Lemala Nanyukie

Lemala Nanyukie is a comfortable and stylish tented camp that opened in 2018 in the central Serengeti.


100% (3 reviews)
Sabora Tented Camp

Sabora Tented Camp

Sabora Tented Camp is a smart tented camp – one of the most luxurious, professional and stylish properties to be found in Tanzania.


100% (2 reviews)
Lemala Mara-Ndutu

Lemala Mara-Ndutu

Lemala Mara-Ndutu is a semi-permanent camp that moves between the north and south of the Serengeti to witness the wildebeest migration.


100% (2 reviews)
Serengeti Serena Safari Lodge

Serengeti Serena

The Serengeti Serena Safari Lodge is a large, hotel-style lodge and a good family-friendly base from which to explore the central Serengeti.


100% (2 reviews)
Sasakwa Lodge

Sasakwa Lodge

On a hill looking over the Serengeti plains, Sasakwa Lodge is grand, luxurious safari camp, one of the most opulent properties in Tanzania.


100% (2 reviews)
Ndutu Kati Kati

Ndutu Kati Kati

Ndutu Kati Kati is a seasonal tented camp, based in the southern Serenget from Dec-Mar, ideal for the migration as it passes through.


80% (1 review)
Seronera Wildlife Lodge

Seronera Wildlife Lodge

Seronera Wildlife Lodge is large hotel-style safari lodge in the heart of the Serengeti, offering good value and a great location.


80% (1 review)
Olduvai Camp

Olduvai Camp

Olduvai Camp lies between Ngorongoro and the southern Serengeti plains. It's a good base for the southern plains during the rainy season.


60% (1 review)
Lake Masek Tented Camp

Lake Masek Tented Camp

Ideally located for the wildebeest migration from Dec–Apr, Lake Masek Tented Camp is a good, mid-market safari camp.


100% (1 review)
Four Seasons Safari Lodge Serengeti

Four Seasons Serengeti

The Four Seasons Safari Lodge is the only hotel in the Serengeti offering international facilities such as a gym, spa and children’s club.


100% (1 review)
Mkombe's House Lamai

Mkombe's House Lamai

Mkombe's House Lamai is a fully staffed private house in the Wogakuria Kopjes district of Serengeti National Park.


100% (1 review)
Mara Kati Kati

Mara Kati Kati

Mara Kati Kati is a simple bush camp in the northern Serengeti, based from Jul-Oct near the Mara River for the wildebeest migration.


No reviews yet
Kirawira Camp

Kirawira Camp

Set high on a hill, in the Serengeti's western corridor, Kirawira is a relatively large tented camp in the Serena group.


No reviews yet
Kirurumu Migration Camp

Kirurumu Migration Camp

Kirurumu is a rustic tented camp which moves around the Serengeti twice a year to follow the wildebeest migration.


No reviews yet
Nimali Mara

Nimali Mara

Nimali Mara is a luxurious safari lodge in a quiet region of the northern Serengeti with good access to the wildebeest migration.


No reviews yet
Mwiba Lodge

Mwiba Lodge

Mwiba Lodge is a luxurious property located on a private concession on the edge of the southern Serengeti.


No reviews yet
Mara Mara

Mara Mara

Mara Mara is a smart tented camp in the northern Serengeti, situated on a small hill close to the Mara River.


No reviews yet
Mbuzi Mawe

Mbuzi Mawe

Mbuze Mawe is a comfortable tented camp in a convenient, central-north location when driving through the Serengeti.


No reviews yet
Serengeti Pioneer Camp

Serengeti Pioneer Camp

Serengeti Pioneer Camp is a luxurious tented camp in the central Serengeti, styled on African explorers' camps of the early 20th century.


No reviews yet
Taasa Lodge

Taasa Lodge

Taasa Lodge is a slightly quirky option offering guided walks and night game drives, which are not permitted in Serengeti National Park.


No reviews yet
Nimali Serengeti

Nimali Serengeti

Opened in July 2017, Nimali Serengeti is a smart, permanent tented camp located in the Seronera area of the central Serengeti.


No reviews yet

Login to Expert Africa

Sign in with password

Sign in with email link


New to Expert Africa? Create an account

Forgotten your details?

It's free & quick to set up

  • Order a brochure
  • Save your wish-list
  • Send us an enquiry
  • Pay online for your trip
  • Subscribe to our newsletter
  • Give us feedback on your trip
  • Full site benefits of the site

Need some help? Talk to our team

Africa