After spending 3 nights in Selous Impala Camp we came to Jongomero Camp.
At first disappointed by having to stay on the roads, we were pleasantly surprised by the variety of wildlife we encountered thanks to our wonderful guide Kimaro.
He took the greatest pleasure in pointing out the smallest bird or largest animal with equal enthusiasm.
Jongomero Camp in Ruaha National Park was the fifth of six stops in our safari tour of Tanzania, and it was our favourite.
That is saying a lot considering that we were absolutely enthralled with all of the other places.
The camp itself is very luxurious.
The tents were comfortable and it was quite wonderful to sit out on our veranda and watch Mother and Teresa (the two camp elephants) as they ate and wandered around on the dry riverbed in front of us.
The tents are not only comfortable and spotless, they are individually situated so that you have the impression that you are alone in the wilderness.
The food at this camp is quite delicious.
Coffee or tea and a snack is always part of the wake-up call, then breakfast is served in the dining room.
Lunch, after the morning game drive, is served family style around a large table over-looking the riverbed.
This was enjoyable with lots of conversation among travelers from all over the world.
Dinner was quite amazing and served by firelight on the dry riverbed in front of the camp.
Everything above sounds wonderful but honestly the basics could be used to describe any of the camps we stayed at in Tanzania.
There are, however, three things that totally set this camp apart from all others and are the reasons why I would recommend a visit here above all others.
Firstly, Ruaha National park where this camp is situated is true wilderness.
The ONLY vehicle you will see on your safari is another one from Jongomero if you happen to be in the same area.
It is, for instance, a two day journey for the camp staff to go by vehicle to the nearest village to shop for food.
So when you go on a game drive you have the animals all to yourself.
Secondly, the team of Molly and Noelle are absolutely the perfect hosts.
Noelle is a transplanted California girl who is now the co-manager.
She is the perfect hostess making everyone feel "at home" immediately.
Finally there is Molly. I think I can say with some level of authority that Molly is the finest guide we have ever encountered.
We were lucky to have him as our guide!
He is amazing! His knowledge of the animals is second to none.
There are many well trained and hard working guides but Molly adds a university degree in zoology, a vast knowledge of local history and customs, and a talent as a story teller that is second to none.
Not only is he a walking encyclopedia in the bush, but his obvious love and enthusiasm for nature and his job bubbles out whenever he talks.
If you have a chance to do a walking tour with him by all means do it
I would also be remiss if I didn't mention our final game drive of the stay. Noelle decided to come along because she is Molly's good luck charm. It worked. In one evening drive we encountered four of the big five
(There are no rhinos here so that's as many as you can get.), a pride of lions, surrounded by elephants, the road completely blocked by buffalo, and an amazing sighting of a female leopard in a tree.