Can I participate in a simple tent tomorrow alone?

Safari in Tanzania: Alone in a tent - in the middle of the hippopotamus highway

It's not that I wasn't warned. It is remote, wild and deserted here. A place that only belongs to the hippos, elephants, herds of buffalo and predators, the lions, hyenas, leopards, cheetahs and crocodiles. In the middle of the Katavi National Park in western Tanzania. But I felt like going on an adventure.

And it is indeed adventurous here. Since we flew in from Kilimanjaro Airport in a tiny Cessna and landed on a strip of sand in the middle of the African bush, we have left civilization behind us.

Two other safari guests, the employees of the tent camp, a couple of national park rangers - otherwise we didn't see a soul. This is where I will spend the coming night. There are only tents for guests, no huts, no running water, no internet, no cell phone reception.

Thousands of hippos for that. In the dry season they crowd in the remaining pools and puddles so as not to dry out in the heat. Drought makes them even more aggressive. Hippos are territorial and do not tolerate anyone except their family in their vicinity.

Because fatal accidents with humans occur again and again, the animals, although vegetarians, are statistically among the most dangerous mammals in Africa. Under cover of night they come out of the mud holes to graze. In doing so, they cover long distances. Their beaten paths run through the plain. Our guide calls them “Hippo Highways”, “Hippo Highways”.

Wild camping in mini tents

And right here I am now. In a tiny two-man tent. Alone. In the dark. We are on “Fly Camping Safari” somewhere on the edge of the Katsunga plain, half a day's drive away from “Chada Katavi Camp”, whose comfortable large tents are equipped with nostalgic safari wooden furniture, bucket showers and eco toilets. Civilized, so to speak.