January 2020

Essential Destinations and Carbon Tanzania

Essential Destinations has always been in the front line in regards to conservation and protection of natural resources and the environment.  We have been reducing green house gases emissions since several years, minimising energy consumption as well as utilising solar power.  We have eliminated use of plastic bottles as well as we recycle all other plastic, tins, glass and paper.

Our green gas emissions are already off set and paid for through Carbon Tanzania, who protects forests in Tanzania. www.carbontanzania.com

We are currently carbon neutral for all our fossil fuel emissions!

We are now going another step forward in our contribution to protect more land and trees!
Further from off setting our own emissions, from now on, anyone booking local flights with us will be charged 1 usd extra for flights from Znz/Dar to Selous or Ruaha return which will be devolved to Carbon Tanzania to off set the contribution of the plane emission of each passenger.
Together we can make the world a better place!



News from Selous Game Reserve

Our final goodbye to 2019 was held on the banks of Lake Manze Lake facing the mountains. Guests sipping on G and T’s admiring the view and the awesome sunset. 2020 was welcomed in style.

Elephant activity in camp has been a revelation. Strutting their wares as they proudly display their magnificent ivory. Shaking the Doum palms to collect its precious fruits and stretching their trunks to the limit to reach for the sweetest leaves.

With the rain we have had, the area is luscious and green with plenty food and water about. Even the monkeys joined in on the new year party as they sat around discussion their new year’s resolutions.
Our guests were lucky to spot, not just a Lion up a tree climbing down, but the elusive Leopard as well. The adage “right place at the right time “certainly gave meaning to a very fruitful safari.

Bird life as usual was prolific with the Northern Carmine Bee Eaters following the vehicles as they gorge themselves on the insects disturb by the vehicles.
If you are a birder December and January is the time to visit.

We want to wish all our guests a fantastic 2020 with many travelling opportunities and we hope to see you here on safari.

See you soon.

Safe travels.
By Shaun, Milinda and all Manze Team.


Boat sunset

Bright blue


Cleaning company

Curly tusk


Done and dusted

Evil eye


Fast asleep

Fighting mood

Food for thought

He got home late


I spy

In for the kill


Job done

Lake is brimming

Last day of 2019

Moisterizer required

More ivory

Old years eve

Pearly whites



Scratching an itch

Splash about


Suppe rtime

Toilet inspector

Click for more pictures


News from the wild side

The new year brought a new wave of life at Mdonya Old River Camp. Despite the rain, safaris started off on a high note.
Buffalos, elephants and lions were mostly seen but also the rare serval cats as well as bat eared foxes, even leopards pointed out the tip of their noses outside.

An explosion of butterflies gives the landscape of Ruaha a feeling of wonderland, while driving around splashing the car with mud, there is a real thrill to it.
The rivers, flowing, brought prosperity to the entire ecosystem of the park. Going on safari at this time of the year is more than an activity, it is an adventure on its own.

Despite the abundance of water, elephants made a clear appearance this month in camp. Our dear troublemaker Sikio Mbovu was spotted, playing the loyal gardener by ripping the fresh and tall grass between the tents. And surprisingly, moved off without breaking a pipe. Tizo, Shida, Mampimpan and many others spent hours in our company, but that wasn’t all. A complete herd of elephant also walked through the camp, giving our guests the chance of a lifetime to admire calves and young pachyderms only a couple of meters away from their verandahs. But the summer guest is a complete other.

Remaining most of the season almost invisible and quite inactive, the tree hyrax makes sure to be heard and acknowledged on summer nights. There is no denial, their call is horrendous although it certainly attracts mates. Sleeping under a tree in summer can be tough and entertaining!

With the fresh cut grass, a herd of zebras moved in camp and can be seen every morning for breakfast. Giraffes and impalas are also enjoying the abundance of resources around us, keeping us entertained and in ‘ aww ‘ every hour of the day. The local gang of vervet monkeys welcomed new members and enjoy too, the ripe mushrooms and flowers heads of the different bushes nearby.

Needless to say that this month was full of surprises. Despite the rain and moody skies, our guests were spoilt and our camp was thriving. Nothing was more special to enjoy Ruaha at its most colorful time.
Photo credit: Jimmy guide and Iris

In the hope to see you soon,

Iris, Kingsley and all Mdonya Team.



































Click for more pictures


“Thank you for having us stay here. It was a very enjoyable experience and the food especially was lovely! Hopefully see you again!”
Isaak & Samuel, in Mdonya in January 2020

“Asante sana for a wonderful stay and unforgettable memories. Thank you all for your heart warming hospitality & friendship”
Salome & Bora, in Mdonya in January 2020

“We had the best safari we could wish for. Our first safari. We were so lucky with the tree climbing Lions and even more with the Leopard. Thank you so much for the good care, I felt safe every minute. Thanks to the whole staff.”
Henry and Yvon in Manze in January 2020

“Thank you for a wonderful 4 nights. I have enjoyed it all. The wonderful sights and sounds by night. Thank you to all the staff for their friendliness and helpfulness. I hope to return one day. ”
Judy Gorie. Hastings UK, in Manze in January 2020

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