Tanzania's best kept secrets

Tanzania is often referred to as the go to safari destination for first timers as it has everything you would expect from a safari; amazing game, panoramic views of stunning landscapes, experienced guides, and more wild animals per square kilometre than any other country in Africa.

Tanzania however offers far more with fascinating and diverse scenery from beachy sandy shores to crater lakes it is also home to some of the oldest lakes in the world.

As fascinating as the legend behind this extraordinary lake, Natron forms part of Tanzania’s Great Rift Valley, this captivating deep red soda lake is a backdrop for some of the most dramatic scenery to be found in the region.

Unearthly and remote this lake’s incredibly high alkaline levels means very little wildlife can survive  and resultedly calcify the animals that retreat to the lake. This transformation gives 'truth' to the legend of the lake mysteriously turning animals to stone. Hence, making this one of the most unusual places of earth, even more interesting is the 2.5 million flamingos that survive by the lake and have made this area one of their only breeding grounds due to the barrier the lake creates to predators, which leaves them unthreatened.

This hostile environment makes for some of the most incredible photographs with the Oldoinyo Lengai Volcano providing a grand setting, this active volcano is one of the only in the world to produce black lava.

This region delivers many guided walks and different activities utilising the natural environment. Guests can take part in a diverse range of activities, including a climb up Oldoinyo Lengai Volcano. Warning not for the faint hearted! This climb usually starts at midnight and lasts for around six hours through the night to reach the stunning views at the top by sunrise, this is an active volcano with a very tough climb and therefore wouldn’t be suitable for everyone. Whilst in the region a recommended activity is a walk up to the Engero Sero Waterfalls, the scenery provides a blend of volcanic rocks and lush tropical plants, with the walk leading to a natural swimming pool, which you can enjoy a splash around in.

Located on the edge of the lake, Lake Natron Camp offers 10 luxury tents and amazing adventures around the area through Great Rift Valley Treks. Located within walking distance are the hominid footprints, Waterfalls and Lake Natron.

The concept of Lake Natron Camp is uncompromisingly eco-centric from the outset the goal for Lake Natron Camp was to employ as many locals as possible. Currently 17 women are on rotation to train and work in most areas of the camp, from assisting in receiving guests, room service to working in the kitchen. Guests will leave feeling they have made little negative impact to the environment and have helped support the local community.

This lake is the largest freshwater lakes in the world by volume and depth, making it the most biologically rich habitats. Home to over 350 aquarium fish, of which most are endemic, their popular bright colours make this area ideal for snorkelling and diving. For those wanting to discover areas a little more off-the-beaten-track, Lake Tanganyika can definitely deliver.  The shallow lagoons, clear water and sandy shores are framed by forests and waterfalls which provides the perfect environment for those seeking variations of adventure from kayaking and canoeing to tiger fishing.  The canoeing experience is less about sightings and more about accessing otherwise inaccessible areas and exploring parts of the lake not many have explored. Whilst visiting Lake Tanganyika it is unforgivable not to visit the Mahale Mountains National Park, situated right on the shore. This mountain range is home to one of the largest wild chimpanzee populations. What makes this place just magical is that there are no roads and the only way to access the park is by boat. For those wanting to explore Mahale, they will be rewarded with some sensational sights. Not only is the remoteness part of the areas appeal, the streams, the forest and other primates that can be found from red-tailed monkeys, red colobus, and many bird species all make it for a fantastic place to visit.

Mbali Mbali Mahale

Arriving by boat Mbali Mbali Mahale is set deep in the heart of the African interior on a stretch of secluded golden beach in Mahale Mountains National Park. Its 10 spacious tented rooms are strategically placed at the edge of the cooling forest canopy. All rooms are under thatch on raised platforms and have a private deck providing stunning views of Lake Tanganyika and the beach.