Bucket list trips. Immersion in nature. Exclusivity. Sustainability. They’re among the most prevalent luxury travel trends today. At andBeyond Grumeti Serengeti Tented Camp in Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park, you can experience them all at once.
Unlike the central area of the Serengeti, where most luxury lodges are concentrated, this camp is ensconced in a remote western expanse; this area of the Serengeti is known for the Great Migration, where, between May and July, “an estimated three million antelope—mostly wildebeest—migrate to Kenya’s Masai Mara Game Reserve,” says Markus Schroeder, lodge manager of Grumeti Serengeti Tented Camp. But the camp’s setting on the banks of a tributary of the Grumeti River gives guests ample opportunities for wildlife viewing throughout the year—and the only crowds they’re likely to see are bathing hippos, roaming lions, and other native African animals.
“In this part of the park, with far fewer crowds and vehicles, wildlife lovers and nature enthusiasts can largely enjoy their own private Serengeti,” says Schroeder. “Twice-daily game drives from the lodge often encounter large lion prides and clans of hyena, big herds of resident plains game as well as the special black-and-white colobus monkeys, found nowhere else in the Serengeti. This part of the Serengeti is known for its big lion prides consisting of between 20 to 60 lions. Not only are the opportunities for seeing lions in the western Serengeti excellent, but you will, more often than not, find yourself alone at a sighting.”
If you prefer your safari by air instead of land, lift off in a hot air balloon tour, gliding above the park. You can also spend some time in the camp’s main guest area, enjoying one of the spacious decks overlooking the river or in the rim-flow swimming pool that looks onto the seasonal hippo pods below. Or, retreat to your suite’s shaded private veranda; with stunning vistas stretching over the river frontage, you’re all but guaranteed to spot a few—or a few dozen—beautiful creatures.
Newly redesigned with an emphasis on sustainability including a solar system that allows the camp to run on 80% renewable energy, extensive water conservation, and a substantial reduction in its carbon footprint, Grumeti Serengeti River Lodge also promotes energy-efficiency in its materials. Guest tents are formed by lightweight steel, clad in canvas and sustainably sourced local hardwood, and embraced by abundant natural light.
Just 10 total accommodations are offered at the lodge, adding to the exclusive nature of the experience. The spacious tented suites exude a quiet luxury with underlying comfort, taking the traditional safari tent feel and adding a layer of contemporary chic. Each suite is outfitted with a plush bed, indoor/outdoor shower, and private plunge pool, all oriented to the spectacular view.
In addition to the nine traditional guest suites, the camp boasts an expansive family suite, affording a unique opportunity to travel en masse. The family suite features a large guest suite with a passageway to an additional bedroom and full bath. Special, age-appropriate game drives are also offered at the camp.
“Over many years, we’ve welcomed everyone from honeymooners and couples on romantic getaways to families spanning multiple generations to retirees and groups,” says Schroeder. “The common denominator is visitors to the Serengeti who want to escape the crowds and retreat to a quieter, private vantage point.”