Luxurious Magazine Deputy Editor Reena Patel heads to Tanzania for the safari adventure of a lifetime…
We received an arrival like no other at andBeyond Grumeti Serengeti Tented Camp – the first destination on our bespoke safari trip.
Big friendly smiles by our private butler and his entourage warmly welcomed us to check-in at the laid-back guest lounge, while the calls of wild resident hippos gave us their own striking serenade. andBeyond Grumeti Serengeti Tented Camp is tucked into a strip of riverine forest in the remote western reaches of the Serengeti National Park. It lies near to the Grumeti River, which is the perfect vantage point to view the thundering herds of the Great Migration, its entrancing wildebeest crossings and enormous Nile crocodiles.
We embraced our short but perfectly sweet three-night stay here and eagerly accepted the invitation to an early evening game drive.
It wasn’t long before we were out on the road in a comfy open 4×4 safari vehicle, spotting impalas, lions, buffalos, baboons, zebras and more – just minutes away from our camp. Here, you can also see black and white colobus monkeys that inhabit the riverside thickets (found nowhere else in the Serengeti).
Drives are hosted by professional guides and rangers, who have an unsurpassable wealth of knowledge and expertise on all walks of bird, plant and wild life for a truly well informed safari. We were lucky to encounter an abundance of such wildlife. Most of the action was unbelievably caught literally right within our camp: hippos leisurely lounge in the crocodile laden river and along muddy banks, while a 200 strong herd of elephants and some 50 giraffes gathered around the area for an enthralling drive.
Evidently, nothing is ever done by halves with andBeyond. Before heading back to the camp, our ranger set up a mini-bar with snacks on a pop-up table in the remote surrounds of the Serengeti for an exclusive scenic sundowner. For those who set out on daytime drives, a gourmet picnic hamper is prepared so you can stop for lunch mid-way.
On return, our very own private butler (who attentively took care of our every imaginable need during our stay) was already primed to safely escort us back to our room.
Suites here are the epitome of tented luxury, granting contemporary touches without losing the rugged, outdoorsy charm of an authentic safari experience. Ten flamboyant tents under shady palm frond roofs feature a colourful interior design with huge king size bed and al fresco shower open to the sun and stars. A complimentary same-day laundry service is also included – another special touch that’s offered at most andBeyond sites,
Continental-style breakfasts are complemented with pan-African cuisines for dinner, using traditional jikos (fires) and outdoor ovens. The magically lit boma open restaurant makes a stunning backdrop for a romantic dinner under the night sky.
During the day, if it’s hot enough and you’re not in the mood for a game drive, guests can also relax in the camp’s pool, or lounge on the spacious decks, which overlook the river.
Part two of this amazing adventure to Africa will follow over the next couple of days. For more information on the andBeyond Grumeti Serengeti Tented Camp visit : www.andbeyondafrica.com
You can view part two of Reena Patels amazing journey here.