he Nyerere National Park, previously known as Selous Game Reserve, is Africa’s largest stand-alone national park, spanning over 30,000 square kilometres in southern Tanzania. The park attracts far less visitors than its northern counterparts. This – accompanied by its pristine and untouched landscapes – has earned Nyerere a reputation as one of Africa’s last remaining wildernesses.
The main wildlife-viewing circuit follows a string of five connected lakes fed by the Rufiji River. The Rufiji is one of Africa's great rivers, with palm fringed channels and swampy islets.
The Rufiji River is teeming with hippo and crocodile, and the birdlife is fantastic. Lion sightings are very common as the opportunistic creatures tend to laze around the lakes waiting for animals coming to drink. One of the attractions of the park is the chance to encounter wild dog.
The Dry season (June to October) is when you should travel to Nyerere, even though you'll be joining the crowds attracted by this period's clear blue skies. It's at this time animals converge on rivers and waterholes, and the dry bush is sparse enough for views of wildlife to be unobscured. If you do visit in the wetter months, be aware that numerous lodges close their doors from March to May.