Katavi National Park, Tanzania

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Most parks in Africa push the ‘ultimate wilderness’ line, but this one is hard to beat, being so far off the beaten track – even by Tanzania’s standards – that only a few hundred visitors get there each year. Its terrain comprises mixed woodland and two huge grassy plains, where the herds congregate. The only permanent water sources are the Katuma and Kapapa Rivers, which heave with hippos in the dry season. Elephant are plentiful, while lions tail the numerous buffalo.

This park is for safari connoisseurs who want the bush entirely to themselves. Flights to this remote corner of western Tanzania are expensive, and the park’s few, small permanent camps offer an upmarket and intensive wilderness experience. Distances are such that game drives often last the day. Walking is excellent, and overnight camp-outs – with all the trimmings – can be arranged.

Budget: High

When to go: Open all year; game viewing best May-Nov

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