Kichaka Expeditions was established in 2013 by Andrew 'Moli' Molinaro and his partner, Noelle Herzog, to concentrate primarily on walking safaris in the remote Ruaha National Park. Kichaka's main camp, also known as Base Camp, is seasonal, moving to different areas to be in the best game areas throughout the year. There is also a fly camp which can be set up in even more remote locations and is available for guests staying longer than three nights.
Activities revolve around long morning bush walks complemented by game drives. You'll be led by Moli, who's always eager to share his knowledge and love of nature, and will come away with an in-depth knowledge of the African wilderness and its wildlife. All bookings are exclusive so activities can be tailored exactly to your needs and wishes.
The three tents are of the traditional safari type, with canvas walls supported on sturdy metal frames. They provide comfortable accommodation in the bush and are always erected beneath trees, which provide welcome shade from the sun. The tents have plenty of standing space and have flysheets to keep the interior cool and provide protection in the event of rain. Each tent has washing facilities nearby, which include a short drop toilet, bucket shower with hot water on request, and hand basin. At the front of each tent there's a pleasant, covered veranda, ideal for passing the time between activities and gazing out over the vast expanse of unspoilt bush.
With a maximum of just six guests, Kichaka is an intimate camp where you'll soon get to know not just your fellow guests but also your guides and all the camp staff. Meals are served in the shaded mess area and eaten together around a large dining table. There are chairs and sofas for relaxing, and a campfire that is the camp's focal point at night.
Open: Kichaka Camp is open all year. The best months for walking are generally from April to November, though walks can be undertaken all year round. Wildlife viewing is good all year.
Location: Kichaka Camp is in Ruaha National Park. This is a mobile bush camp, the location varying from season to season as the camp is moved to optimise game viewing.
Rooms: There are 3 walk-in, 2-man tents. They have twin mattresses, which can be moved together to form double beds. Each has an adjoining shower area, with a safari (bucket) shower for which staff bring hot water, a short drop toilet and a basin. Each tent has a veranda with 2 chairs. The fly camp, which is available for guests staying 4 nights or more, has smaller tents and imore basic accommodation including shared ablution facilities. There are also opportunities for sleep-outs using comfy ground beds and shared bathroom facilities.
Activities: The main activity is walking. Kichaka specialises in walking safaris, which help you get close to the bush and gain an understanding of the animal and plant life at first hand. Walks usually take place in the morning and last for up to 5 or 6 hours, at a gentle pace with frequent stops. You donâ€™t need to be especially fit but should be able to walk up to 10kms in potentially warm weather and across rugged terrain. There is a back-up vehicle on call. On walks you should wear neutral coloured clothing â€“ greens, browns and khaki. Bright coloured clothing is not allowed. You can also go for game drives, covering greater distances than on foot, so seeing more of the park. Walks and drives are led by guides and accompanied by armed rangers. Bird watching is good here and specialist walks and drives can be arranged. You can pick up bushcraft skills from your guide, with sessions dedicated to tracking and survival skills. At night you can use the campâ€™s high-powered telescope to survey the night sky, its planets and stars. Kichaka offers 3, 5 and 7 day safaris.
Facilities: The mess area is the heart of the camp. It has a large dining table and plenty of chairs, sofas and beanbags for resting during the day and in the evening. Thereâ€™s a camp fire here, too. The camp has solar power, so camera batteries and laptops can be charged on sunny days. There is no electricity. Light is provided by kerosene lamps and candles. Itâ€™s a good idea to take your own torch and spare batteries.
Dining: Meals are eaten communally around the large table. The bush kitchen has gas burners, a coal oven and barbecues and the chef produces delicious and varied cuisine. There is a set menu and special requirements and diets can be catered for, if advised at the time of booking.
Children: Children aged 16 and over are welcome.
Health: This is a malarial area.
Communication: There is no cellphone or internet access. The camp has a satellite phone for emergency use.
Notes: Kichaka has a communal tip box. Money placed here will be distributed equally amongst the staff. The suggested amount is $10-15 per day, but this is entirely at your discretion. Credit and debit cards and travellers cheques cannot be accepted at Kichaka. Payment for any extras must be made in cash.
"Do you really want to get away from everything and everyone? Do you love the idea of just walking and being in the African bush – no vehicles? Are you comfortable with the idea of simple, but comfortable facilities? Do you want to spend time with one of two excellent safari guides – Andrew (‘Moli’) the owner, and Jacques? If this appeals, I’d highly recommend this unique and remote camp in Ruaha. Come and just relax into the African bush - I’d personally stay here for at least 5 nights, longer if I could."