As other reviews can tell vouch, the hotel is very good at organising tours of Kilimanjaro (we took the Machame route) and at taking care of their guests at the hotel. The staff at the kitchen and at the shops were especially nice.
The almost idyllic experience was marred by just a few annoyances:
1) The tents we were given for the climb were horrid. Zips failed and they weren't the most water resistant. If you rolled next to the skin of the tent during the night you'd start to freeze. Far from ideal in those climates.
2) During the briefing we were told that at the end of the trip we'd "be expected" to give a tip to our guides, and that a basic rate was of $100. This came as a surprise after the amount of fees we had to pay beforehand. The idea that a tip is optional is not the case: it is as obligatory as can be to the point that the certificates are only presented AFTER the tips are handed out. This felt a bit extra. I would have rather paid it in advance as part of my expenses without having the worry of dividing tips after the climb. But it felt a bit worse due to:
3) ...the wages and food the guides and porters are given for the mountain. Their rations were so poor, our group enjoyed leaving left overs during our dinner so that the porters would have slightly more to eat. Their wages are so poor that they depend highly on the tips they get afterwards.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Marangu Hotel is set on 12 acres of beautiful garden and has been open since 1932. We have been organising climbs of Kilimanjaro, on all routes, for over 80 years. The original farm buildings (now offices and reception) were built in 1907 as part of a coffee farm before being converted in 1932. Guest accommodation is provided in cottages around the gardens, and meals are prepared with vegetables from our own gardens and home baked bread. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Marangu Hotel Moshi, Tanzania - Kilimanjaro