I booked Boundary Hill Lodge after reading about it in a travel book and reading reviews at Tripadvisor. I was looking for a more upscale lodge in Tarangire National Park and was not interested in staying in a tent. In addition, I was planning a trip with friends who would be sharing rooms, and the only other property that was of interest was the Tarangire Treetops. But I had read reivews that the bathroom was completely open to the bedroom offering little privacy, so Boundary Hill Lodge became my first choice.
I booked my safari through CCAfrica and when I inquired about Boundary Hill Lodge, they were not initially aware of the property. I actually had to send them the website to make contact. But I am glad I pushed to get a room at this wonderful property. I only wish I had spent more than the one night we had booked.
After our rather long drive from Arusha and a game drive through the park, we arrived at the Lodge early in the afternoon. We were greeted by the staff and Simon, the manager, who gave us a warm welcome. The Lodge is situated just outside the park in a concession area high on a hill overlooking a stunningly beautiful valley filled with acacia and baobab trees. The rooms (or villas) are built into the side of the hill and are made of local bricks and concrete. They are quite large and have expansive windows and a large deck complete with an outdoor shower and bathtub. Because of how the rooms are built into the rocks and separated from one another, you feel as if you are far removed from your closest neighbor. The rooms are simply decorated, but clean and well kept. One of the best features is in the bathroom where they have installed a floor to ceiling window in front of the toilet to make sure you are never too far from the fabulous views. While I felt a bit like a fish in a fishbowl, you soon realize that there is no need to worry about privacy as there is no one else around for miles and miles.
Soon after exploring my room, we were greeted by a staff member who brought us some lunch. After a great meal, we walked around the property and then decided to take an afternoon hike led by a masai warrior. Well, we weren't more than 10 feet outside of the lodge grounds when we spotted a mother and baby elephant. It's definitely an exhilarating experience (if not a bit scary) to see large animals on foot. Of course, we gave the mother plenty of space and continued on our way.
After the walk, we prepared for dinner in the main dining room in a building overlooking the other side of the hill. Since there were only three of us at the lodge that evening, we were escorted to a special table set up on a rocky legde which was surrounded by candlelight. The sounds of hyenas could be heard in the distance. It was a wonderful steak dinner served by a friendly staff. We also enjoyed sitting and talking with Simon, our host, who shared some great stories of his Africa experience.
After dinner, we had the rare opportunity to take a night game drive. Although not a planned activity at the lodge, they were testing the idea of running this excursion. I must say, we didn't see much game, but we did see some impala, elephant, and servit (sp) cats which are only seen at night. After the drive, I went back the my room and went to sleep that night listening to the sound of lions and hyenas in the distance. Electricity wasn't working too well that night, so make sure a flashlight or cell phone is nearby your bed. And yes, my cell phone worked almost everywhere I stayed in Tanzania.
I woke up to the sun rising over the savanah...what a sight! There was a giraffe walking across the valley below. After taking a shower outside (which was a bit cold), we had a great breakfast and then headed out to our next stop, The Ngorongoro Crater.
I would highly recommend this Lodge but if the idea of a secluded room in the middle of nowhere with no airconditioning and a rustic outdoor shower is a scary to you, you might want to consider another option. But the service, views, and great food were all worth it for us.
Also, if you are thinking of traveling during August or September, Tarangire National park is a great spot for game viewing. We saw plenty of zebra, wildebeast, giraffe, elephants and lions. It was a great compliment to the Ngorongoro Crater and Serengeti.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Literally perched on the edge of Tarangire National Park, among trees and rock outcrops, the lodge is nestled into the cliffs and huge granite slabs. Built of natural materials, predominantly local stone, wood and burnt brick, Boundary Hill Lodge offers outstanding views over the Silale and Gosuwa swamps, where elephant and buffalo graze among the acacia and baobab trees beneath the vastness of Africa's sky. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Boundary Hill Hotel Tarangire National Park