With so many properties and regions to select from on safari, our three reasons to stay at a luxury tented camp explore why many consider it an essential safari experience.
Classic luxury under canvas, set in secluded and idyllic locations, would best describe a luxury, tented camp safari. A step up from a safari lodge and more luxurious than a mobile camp, this level of accommodation stands out as unique and exquisite.
Mostly built on a solid foundation, perhaps with solid walls, the high-ceilinged, spacious rooms in such camps offer a different viewpoint of the surrounding bush and are a popular choice with safari-goers.
Often known as “glamping”, a luxury tent should not be confused with the more traditional notion of camping. They are spacious, yet petite, and radiate luxury and romance.
Tented accommodation ranges from partial solid walls with canvas roofing, back to all-canvas, the latter offering a less intrusive impact on the environment and the thin walls providing an unerring immersion. Bathrooms typically connect to a luxury space, some with an escape route to a personal spa fitted with an outdoor shower.
The best time to go on an Africa safari may impact certain grounds, but some areas around the tent are secluded by means of tastefully constructed reed walls, lanterns lighting the way at the point where the tent meets the earth. Tents can be as grand and ostentatious as expected by royalty or subtle in their earthy design. Creativity has no end when designing a luxury tent for safari.
Private tented camps take glamour to the next level. From colors and fabrics used to small touches and attention to detail, stepping into your tent can be just like stepping into a fairytale, no matter which of the best African safari countries you choose to visit.
Some tents boast private plunge pools and sitting areas, with a daybed perfectly positioned overlooking an open plain or blocked-off bush area, denoting utter privacy. Some are solar-powered, others with full electricity, and yet more with lanterns and gaslights to show the way. Camps cater to a limited number of guests, usually having somewhere between four and 20 individual tents, exceptionally spaced and located to offer uninterrupted views.
At the heart of the camp is a central dining and meeting area, often with an outdoor fire pit where guests congregate into the evening. There is intimacy and seclusion, with guards quickly learning guests' names and adding many personal touches to a client’s experience, including when helping to explain the different ways to experience a safari.
Luxury tented camps elevate the wildlife experience, located as they are in pristine wilderness and national parks. The emphasis is on seclusion and maximizing immersion in an environment. This might be overlooking a permanent water source, hidden in a valley, or tucked on the edge of a forest. In most cases, the camp will be away from traditional trails through the park and other camps.
At night the sound of an animal brushing up against the canvas can be thrilling, sounds of the wild ringing out from the bush. Wake up, open the tent, and there's often something in remarkable proximity, wildlife wandering through the camp, feeding on the grass that surrounds the tents. After a day on safari, this can provide comfort and calm, while maintaining the impression of the wild.
These permanent and semi-permanent tented camps are found in most national parks and reserves in East and Southern Africa. They benefit from space and an uninterrupted location, allowing guests to sleep deep within a park.
Smaller reserves use luxury tented camps to offer guests an exclusive experience, an intimate alternative to staying in a game lodge. The tented option can be just one of the accommodation options offered at a particular safari establishment or the only type in a specific reserve.
Standing out in some larger parks and reserves, they intrigue all who come to stay, exuding the feeling of safari exploration from yesteryear. Find more information on the differences between National Parks, Conservancies, Private Concessions, and Private Game Reserves to learn about accommodations offered.
Stepping into a canvas haven in the middle of the African wild can seem surreal, yet this experience is at your fingertips. Your Zicasso safari specialist will help you create your tented safari dream, sharing various experiences and locations with you.
Learn more with our Africa safari guide and explore our diverse safari tours for more inspiration. Work with a safari travel specialist to find a destination expert ready to answer your questions and help you find the right safari experience for you.