Katavi National Park, in the far west of Tanzania, is somewhere that, even today, few people have been lucky enough to visit. Perhaps because of this, it feels untouched almost like traveling back in time; Chada Katavi sits in the midst of this truly wild place.
Thu, Jan 8, 2015
Late last year journalist Anna Chittenden visited some of Nomad's more remote camps. Her first time to Africa, and struck by the wildness around her, she produced this photo diary of her escapades.
"It was love at first sight when I arrived at the ever so remote location of Chada Katavi, in Katavi National Park. After a couple of days travelling, first from Singapore to Kilimanjaro, and then from Arusha to Katavi on a light propeller plane I was beginning to wonder if the destination could match up to the expectations mounting during this marathon of a journey… I wasn’t disappointed. It was an early morning start leaving from a shack of an airport at Arusha, past an active volcano and then coming into land skimming the tree tops below where you could see the heads of giraffe munching on green leaves from your little plane seat.
Chada Katavi is an intimate boutique safari camp, with only six canvas tents accommodating a small group of 12 people at a time. The design is stylish, whilst maintaining the simplicity that fits with the raw nature of the environment. So while there is a strong focus on being sustainable, comforts aren’t forgotten. The rooms are decked out with lovely antique wooden beds and old fashioned campaign furniture, the storm lanterns are solar powered, and the shower consists of a 20 litre eco bucket shower which is filled up with warm water on request.
As well as the usual game drives, Chada Katavi also offer a ‘fly camping’ experience, where they take you to a secret location somewhere on the plain and set up a simple mosquito netted tent as your home for the evening. The whole point of the activity is to bring you back to nature, where you can get a chance to hear the animals howling in the night while sleeping in their territory. Again, the little luxuries are taken into account during the evening, with a fully stocked bush bar for round the campfire drinks, followed by a 3 course alfresco dinner underneath a palm tree.
A big thank you to all the fantastic Nomad Tanzania staff that runs Chada Katavi that made our trip so memorable!"
Touchdown on the sandy runway at Katavi
Keeping it high class in the VIP lounge
Flying over Ol Donyo Lengai - an active volcano
The camp at Chada Katavi
Outdoor living at Chada
Some of our group in the mess tent with our host Mohammed
Our cosy bedroom decked out in home comforts
Our 'loo with a view' tent
Of course you need a wardrobe in a tent (with white bath robes)
Antique bed and solar lantern detail
Getting up close to this beautiful leopard
The famous 'hippo pools' of Katavi
A lion on the lookout
Having my morning tea to this scene!
Our picnic breakfast out during a drive, next to a pod of hippos below, with the view of elephants under the trees.
Elephants marching towards us unfazed
The simple mosquite netted tents...our only protection against the wild on our night out fly-camping.
Not forgetting the little luxuries, a wooden loo is placed over a long drop, a bucke shower has been installed between the palm trees.
Our knowledgeable guide Emmanuel talks us through the animal footprints during our walking safari.
Saying goodbye to the amazing staff at Chada Katavi
Words and photos, Anna Chittenden from Lost Guides
Wed, Sep 17, 2014
Erstwhile Nomad camp manager and ace photogrpaher, Mark Sheridan Johnson, sometimes pops in to take over when other managers are on leave. We're always delighted when he comes because he takes some amazing photos and shares them with us. Like these rather "in your face" pics of our Katavi resident hippos. You can see more of Mark's work on his web-site: http://www.marksheridanjohnson.smugmug.com
Mon, Sep 15, 2014
An excited Samwel Turoto, Nomad guide at Chada, sent this fab photo in this morning. Although the leopard seems not to care less...
Fri, Aug 29, 2014
Relief manager and pro photographer, Mark Sheridan Johnson, captured these wonderful images of a gutsy little wattled lapwing mobbing a brown snake eagle. Clearly there was some concern that the eagle was a touch too close to a nest or some eggs for comfort.
Mon, Jul 21, 2014
Chada Katavi guest Dale Davis kindly sent us these great photos of a rather acrobatic elephant he spotted while staying at the camp. Clearly tamarind pods are super tasty.
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