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“Great base of Kilimanjaro Climb/Safari”
Review of Karama Lodge & Spa

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Karama Lodge & Spa
Ranked #11 of 195 Speciality Lodging in Arusha
Reviewed 21 April 2014

stayed at karama Lodge for a total of 5 nights over the course of 3 weeks in February, prior to climbing Kilimanjaro and before/after a 5 night safari. First of all, if you are looking for a luxury resort, don't stay here. This is more along the lines of an "Eco Lodge." That said, the cabins are nice, with hot water in the showers and seperate toilet/sink area. This hotel is located on a hill above the city of Arusha, so it is quite cool and mosquitos are minimal. Many reviews comment that this hotel is noisy, but you will find that to be an issue pretty much any where in the city (you will hear stray dogs, the mosques' early morning call-to-pray, and the particularly loud cry of the Bush Babies at night). Despite the noise, the lodge is very relaxing. The pool was very refreshing after a long day. The grounds are beautiful and very safe. The staff, while not excessively talkative, are very gracious and accomodating. From my experience Tanzanias are very reserved around foreigners but are incredibly friendly and gracious once they are comfortable with you.

The owner and manger are both very friendly and happy to provide reccomendations of places to see and arrange transportation for you.

The foot at the hotel was excellent and reasonable priced as was the wine and bar selection (there were not many other options within walking distance). In general, for the price we paid, this hotel was an excellent choice and perfect place to stay for a few days while in Arusha.

Room Tip: If you want to take a trip into the city of Arusha but are nervously about travelling alone, have th...
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  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled solo
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Thank Sunshine649
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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102 - 108 of 304 reviews

Reviewed 20 March 2014

The rooms, amenities, and scenery of Karama Lodge are all very nice and make for a relaxing stay before or after a safari. We liked our bungalow-style room on the side of the hill, the restaurant/bar was delicious, and there are vervet monkeys roaming the grounds (you will be warned to keep your balcony door closed so they don't steal your things!). The "spa" is essentially a massage lady, but she did a good job and it was very much appreciated after the four-hour shuttle ride from Nairobi. The major downside was the noise - the city has grown into the valley below the hill, so what I'm sure was originally a peaceful location is peaceful no more. On a weekend evening you can hear the DJ on the loudspeaker and music from some sort of dance club in the valley below, and on Sunday morning there is just as much noise and music for church. Also, the laundry service was very overpriced, and upon checking out the credit card machine malfunctioned while printing my receipt and they wanted me to call my bank to make sure it had gone through. I ultimately told them that I had paid when they ran my card and I needed to catch my flight, so we left with the cab driver that Karama Lodge had called for us. The cab driver was worst of all - we agreed on a price for going to the airport and he tried to raise it when we got there. He attempted to hold our luggage hostage until we paid the extra amount - I would have appreciated it if Karama Lodge had done a better job screening who they call for airport transfers.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Rayland44
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 March 2014

Lodge is located in a very green environment on a hill. There were many steps in a relatively steep climb to our cabin. The cabin looked quite large on the outside, but inside the room to manouvre is small. It was not really quiet during our stay as one picks up sounds from the nearby road and much barking of dogs from the surrounding community. The walk further up to Suye Hill is very short, but one gets a nice view of Mount Meru and Kilimanjaro in the distance.

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Nico M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 February 2014

We stayed at the karama for 3nights after a basic camping safari and a climb up mt meru.
It is a authentic lodge with lovely touches, great food but the staff seem afraid to interact with the guests unlike other lodges we stayed in on our 3 week trip plus our two previous trips to tanzania.
We witnessed staff running to inform each other the 'manageress was coming' this to us made it obvious that the staff are on edge when she was around. We spoke to all the staff in our very laid back way but to us their moral is very low
This is just our observations but would explain the situation that in our opinion exists there.
As we stayed for 3nights we probably witnessed more than if we just had an overnight visit as most do.overall a lovely restful stay but a huge part of our holidays are the people and staff we meet it was quite sad to witness withdrawn staff that obviously wanted to give more.

Room Tip: Avoid room 9 it is right next to the bar/restuarant
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Stayed: February 2014, travelled solo
Thank Liz J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 January 2014

Karama Lodge has a beautiful setting and cute rustic cottages and everything was fine but there was something missing that we couldn't pinpoint. The atmosphere was just a little weird. We really did not like the bathroom being in the room only behind a curtain - not private at all. Really a lot of noise from the surrounding villages so not as peaceful as the setting would suggest. Footpaths were very uneven and a lot of steps to get to each cottages so not ideal for elderly or those not so secure on their feet. Food was awesome though!

Stayed: October 2013, travelled with friends
Thank redchilli780
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 January 2014

We stayed one night in this lodge before flying to Zanzibar. The tree houses are really cute! It was very peaceful, maybe this had to do also with the time we were there (end of November). There is also a small village very close to the lodge, where you can have a walk, it is very safe, I really liked that! Good food, nice atmosphere, especially with daylight next to the pool but also at night drinking a bier (there were no mosquitoes!). I totally recommend it!

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank annet_85_2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 December 2013

This place is so beautiful and really a great location from Arusha. The staff were very friendly and helpful. The food was really good. The cabin was very cool with earthy, natural décor. We loved sitting on our balcony, sipping a glass of wine, and watching the cutest troop of monkeys romp and play in the trees. You can lounge around the pool and have lunch, sit in the cozy living room/bar and enjoy the views. I thought the value was great. The only negative thing I can say was there were some dogs barking down the hill at night that created a bit of a ruckus. A fan would have cut the noise substantially. I would highly recommend Karama but bring ear plugs just in case the dog situation hasn't been resolved.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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Thank Bigfishkelly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Karama Lodge & Spa

Address: Suye Hill (Old Moshi Road, Arusha 1573, Tanzania
Region: Tanzania > Arusha Region > Arusha
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #11 of 195 Speciality Lodging in Arusha
Price Range: £89 - £108 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Karama Lodge & Spa 3*
Number of rooms: 22
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
“Eco-friendly, artistic, chic, relaxing….”Nestling in Suye Hill National Park, just 10 minutes from the center of Arusha, Karama Lodge & Spa is the ideal home base for Tanzania safaris or for a restful night’s sleep before climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro. Accommodation is consisted of 22 stilted cabins made of local materials in total harmony with the surrounding forest. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Karama Hotel Arusha

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