The Kilombero Valley is the largest seasonal wetland in East Africa. It is split into 2 districts, Kilombero and Ulanga, by the Kilombero River. The administrative capitals are Ifakara and Mahenge receptively. The TAZARA train passes through Ifakara.
Kilombero Valley is the main catchment area for the Kilombero River which is the main regulator for the greater Selous ecosystem.
It is home to several species of endemic birds (including the Kilombero Weaver), the only sustainable population of Puku (Kobus Vardoni - a large rare antelope) and a formerly high concentration of lions though this is in decline due to habitat destruction.
If you include Kilombero in your safari it will directly benefit local communities and conservation in the area, helping to provide education, vital medical assistance and an incentive for local communities to protect their environment.
Wild Things works with local schools and the Itete Mission to help fund the village dispensary and medical center in this one example there is currently a ward of 20,000 and just 12 hospital beds.
The Kilombero area is recently open to tourism and the routes have been chosen to highlight the high diversity of both population and habitat. Within the Kilombero Valley you will have the opportunity to collect medicinal plants with traditional healers, visit local dispensaries and schools,stay in an old German Mission or camp with the WaSukuma on the flood plain and visit a fishing village on the border of the Selous Game Reserve . There are opportunities to undertake walking, driving or canoe safaris and as a result your safari can be as relaxing or as energetic as you require. To truly appreciate the diverse, wild beauty of the valley, safaris should last a minimum of 2 days.
Kilombero Valley Locations view all
For a truly memorable African experience, nothing beats a stay with the Masai in this remote wilderness. You will drift to sleep with the occasional sound of lions roaring through the night and have the option of taking part in 'firewatch', to keep the camp perimeter fires burning all night, very exciting!
Mikeregembe is an idyllic fishing village situated on the border of the Selous Game Reserve. Its name refers to the particular type of rock found on the bottom of the river here which snags fish hooks! Here elephants sometimes walk through the village at night and there is a specially constructed observation platform in a tree to aid your safe viewing.
The Old Mission was built by the Germans shortly after the turn of the century. Situated in idyllic surroundings overlooking the flood-plain, the mission provides a comfortable base with beautiful views.
Kilombero Valley Activities
Birdwatching In Kilombero Valley
Kilombero Valley is an endemic bird area with the Kilombero Weaver, Kilombero Cisticola and the White Tailed Cisticola.
A variety of fishing trips are possible in the Kilombero Valley. This page details them all and the main species of fish found there.
Kilombero Canoe Safaris
Canoe trips on the Kilombero River can either take place over several days or just as a day trip. All canoe safaris start at Kivukoni ferry near Ifakara. This activity puts money directly into local communities