5 Types of Tanzania Safari Accommodations: Where to Stay on a Tanzania Safari

When planning your Tanzanian safari adventure, choosing the right accommodation is crucial to enhance your overall experience. Here are the key factors to consider:

Budget: Determine your overall safari budget before selecting accommodations. Tanzania offers options ranging from USD 80 to over USD 1500 per person per night (excluding other fees). Align your accommodation choices with your budget and preferences.

Location: Prioritize the location of your accommodation over the type. Opt for accommodation situated near parks for maximum wildlife viewing time.

Type of Accommodation: Tanzania offers various accommodation types, from budget camping to mid-tier and luxury lodges, tented camps, and tented lodges. Choose based on budget, interests, itinerary, and comfort level.

Now, let’s explore the five types of safari accommodations available in Tanzania:

1. Lodges

Safari lodges are substantial structures, often constructed from concrete, positioned either within or on the outskirts of national parks. These lodges seamlessly blend materials like stone, thatch, and wood, harmonizing with their natural surroundings.


  • Extensive grounds with central communal buildings housing amenities such as reception areas, lounges, restaurants, bars, and sometimes gyms, spas, and shops.
  • Many lodges feature a swimming pool.
  • Typically offer uninterrupted electricity, running water, laundry services, Wi-Fi (often limited to reception areas), hair dryers, and secure lockers.
  • Range from mid-tier to luxury, with luxury lodges offering amenities like four-poster beds, expansive balconies, elegant bathrooms, private plunge pools, and air conditioning.

Recommended for: Travelers seeking amenities such as on-site restaurants, swimming pools, and spa services. Ideal for families and larger groups.

Not recommended for: Those seeking a more rustic and immersive safari experience. Lodges can be too formal and busy, and may be cost-prohibitive for budget-conscious travelers.


2. Tented Lodges

Tented lodges offer a blend of traditional lodge comforts and immersion in nature through canvas walls. These permanent structures feature wooden or concrete floors, elevated on stilts, and topped with thatched roofs.


  • Walls consist of canvas with large, netted windows, providing a connection with the outdoors.
  • Usually accommodate 15 to 25 rooms (tents) with a central common area including a dining room, lounge, small terrace, and sometimes a swimming pool.
  • Range from mid-tier to luxury, with luxury options offering amenities like indoor/outdoor bathtubs, plunge pools, air conditioning, spacious viewing decks, and spa services.

Recommended for: Clients seeking an authentic and immersive safari experience without compromising on comfort and luxury. Ideal for those who want to enjoy savannah vistas and wildlife sounds.

Not recommended for: Guests with limited mobility or those who prefer soundproof accommodations. Not ideal for families with young children due to the need for extra care in a wild setting.

3. Tented Camps

Tented camps are the most sought-after accommodation within Tanzania’s national parks, providing a blend of comfort and connection with nature. These walk-in tents, made entirely of canvas, offer private ensuite bathrooms and solid beds.


  • Some camps are permanent, while others move based on wildlife migration patterns.
  • Typically powered by solar energy with diesel generators for backup, with electricity cut off at night.
  • Limited Wi-Fi access, if any, usually in common areas.
  • All meals served in a restaurant tent, with options for drinks and bonfire gatherings.

Recommended for: Travelers seeking an immersive and authentic safari experience. Ideal for those who want to be close to nature and enjoy a smaller, more rustic accommodation.

Not recommended for: Those who prefer more luxurious settings with consistent access to electricity and internet. Not suitable for families with young children or guests with mobility issues.

4. Budget or Basic Camping

Budget camping is tailored for adventurous travelers seeking an economical safari experience.


  • Set up a tent at a designated campsite, sleeping in a sleeping bag on a foam mattress on the ground.
  • Shared toilet and shower facilities.
  • Essential camping gear provided, with meals prepared by a camp cook.
  • Campsites typically inside national parks, with shared washroom facilities.

Recommended for: Adventurous travelers comfortable with minimal amenities. Suitable for physically fit individuals with camping experience.

Optimized by JPEGmini 0x0e7f3b91

Not recommended for: Those who prioritize comfort or travel with young children. Campsites can be crowded and noisy during the dry season.

5. City-Based Hotels and Lodges

City hotels and lodges are found in towns and cities near national parks, offering budget-friendly options and strategic locations.


  • Often the most economical rates, sometimes cheaper than basic camping.
  • Located to minimize transfer times, such as hotels in Karatu for stays between Tarangire and Ngorongoro/Serengeti.
  • High-end lodges in towns like Karatu and Arusha offer scenic views and amenities.

Recommended for: Budget-conscious travelers, those with itineraries accommodating consecutive nights in Karatu, and families or larger groups seeking spacious lodging.

Not recommended for: Travelers seeking a genuine wilderness experience. City hotels and lodges lack the adventurous and authentic feel of accommodations in the national parks.

Choosing the right accommodation for your Tanzania safari will enhance your experience, allowing you to enjoy the stunning landscapes and wildlife to the fullest.