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Taking a Bucket Shower at Dunia Camp Tanzania

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  Site Where: Tanzania
February 25, 2014 at 8:48 AM | by | ()

Africa has many amazing safari lodges out in its vast, beautiful wilderness, with a specific subset being semi-mobile camps: having only temporary permission to set up in a particular location, a semi-mobile camp must be able to pack up and move on within a matter of days, leaving not even a hint of environmental impact behind.

This obviously protects the fragile ecosystem the camp passes through, but also allows for freedom to move with the seasons, and in the case of Dunia Camp in Tanzania, with the flow of the Great Migration through Serengeti National Park.

Semi-mobile means no plumbing, but that doesn’t mean you’ll lack any amenities: there are flush toilets in each luxurious tent, and one of the more charming bush experiences is only a butler’s call and brief wait away: the bucket shower, courtesy of old-fashioned boiled water and gravity.

Tents consist of three different sections: a covered front ‘porch’ with chaise lounge, the main bedroom, and bathroom at the back.

Behind the head of the bed is a vanity, with a thermos for drinking water and biodegradable toiletries. A bucket of water is refreshed when needed, with a jug to pour it into the sink if you just want to freshen up. The shower is just behind, with a simple lever mechanism to control the water. Best approach to showering is running the water until you’re properly wet, soap up, and then rinse – each bucket should give you a good five minutes in total. The toilet is opposite in a similarly enclosed area.

Facing east, we woke up every day to the sunrise filling the sky with color, at which point you’ll find a tray with tea or coffee on your porch to start the day. There are only eight tents, making this an extremely private experience: lined up in a row, but sufficiently set apart to offer privacy, it’s a short stroll to the main dining and lounge tents, where you’ll find a fire pit for sunset cocktails.

Having a candle-lit dinner at the communal table as night falls is pretty unique experience, and the quality of the food is outstanding.

Given that the camp is completely open (i.e. no fences), you can't walk to and from your tent alone unless it’s full daylight: any other time you are accompanied by an askari (local guard) or someone from the camp. Once in your tent, you have a walkie-talkie or flashlight to signal you want to be picked up.

With a camp this small, you need to book well ahead to secure a space – expect also to pay in the range of $400 or up a night.

[Photos: JasonD]

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