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“A bit expensive for what you get??” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Sagala Lodge

Sagala Lodge
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Sagala Lodge
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Mombassa Rd, Voi 85868, Kenya   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #5 of 8 Specialty Lodging in Voi
Nairobi
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“A bit expensive for what you get??”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 14, 2013

We stopped at Sagala on the drive between Nairobi and Mombasa. We arrived later than expected (8.30pm) and the staff were wating for us and were ready to cook our evening meal straight away (we were the only guests). They gave us a warm welcome. Our room was clean and comfortable, although I'm not sure why it was equipped with a fan, given that they turn off the generator at 10.15pm.
Given that we travelled in low season, we didn't mind too much that the drinks we wanted were out of stock. Dinner was fine (chicken stew with rice, fruit for dessert- no options), however breakfast consisted of 1 egg and a slice of toast. And that was it. When we came to pay our bill to leave, we were told that they only accept cash, not credit cards. We had not been advised of this on booking, and it's lucky that we were carrying cash with us - could have been embarrassing otherwise!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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13 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    4
    7
    1
    1
    0
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (3)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Ukunda, Coast, Kenya
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2012

This lodge is a bit hard to categorize, since it is more than just a place to sleep, but not a wilderness experience in the same league as Treetops and other famous Kenyan retreats. There is a small herd of waterbuck that roam freely on the grounds, and they are impressive enough. Elephants are quite thick in the surrounding bush, but of course you are not guaranteed a sighting. They did not visit during the day that I was there, but they were noticed hanging around at night. I was told they have invaded the lodge numerous times, tried to enter the dining room and even drunk from the swimming pool!

The lodge has a "sanctuary" that is really just an area of fenced bush that is home to a few impala and a zebra or two. I actually found the unfenced areas more interesting. They are not lying when they say the lodge has a lot of bird life. The second-floor viewing lounge is a comfortable place to spot them, and the resident Maasai guide, Jacob, is well up on his bird and nature lore.

The rooms are bush-basic but tidy, with mosquito nets but no fans (power is supplied by generator until 10 pm only). The three-course dinner was not gourmet but it was very big and well-cooked, and the 750 shilling price is pretty reasonable for a set meal at a bush lodge these days. There is no a la carte menu; just ask the manager what kinds of meat he has (steak, chicken, etc) and he will build the meal around that. The gravy may be of the instant type, but food always feels better when eaten in the wild.

It is not a new lodge, but everything looked well kept. The dining room/lounge is a big, comfortable thatched affair and the pool was clean and blue. The staff are truly friendly and eager to please. If Sagala Lodge has any disadvantage, it is that it is an eccentric place that doesn't fit easily into any tourist category, hence it tends to be bypassed by the block booking agents as well as the overland circuit. It also has to contend with the fact that it is in the Voi area and hence lies close to many other lodges that offer better wildlife experiences. I would recommend it to visitors who have time to spare and want to see what else is out there. It is not, however, a first-rate "safari lodge" boasting an intensive wildlife viewing experience.

Room Tip: There are one or two rooms right next to the waterhole, for those who want to maximize their chances...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Kenya
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 11, 2012

Sagala lodge is small, intimate, and rustic. It feels like a camp in the bush 50 years ago, though it is only 2 miles from the busiest highway in Kenya. The cabins are spread out nicely, and the place is full of birds. The rooms are on the small side, but the beds comfortable, and very clean all over. For some reason, possibly to keep the rustic impression, the camp has no electricity. A generator provides help early mornings, and evenings from 1830-2200. There is no television or mobile phone network, which is a relief. That there is only water available in the cottages when the generator is running is however a bit of an oversight. The pool is however very nice.
The food is a bit of a surprise, and a time warp to the era that transport was indeed difficult to the Tsavo. There is a fixed menu. The soup comes from a packet, but was spiced up with some grated carrot and ginger. The main course was dried fish, and instant potato mash, again from a packet. We expected instant pudding or jelly for desert, but were pleasantly surprised by fruit salad. The rooms once again were typical of the browns and of the 1970's.
Overall a charming place, quite affordable, and a perfect stopover for people travelling with children between Mombasa and Nairobi, or for tourist who do not need the rather overpriced other lodges in the Tsavo.

Room Tip: The "big house" has 4 bedrooms, and a fantastic roof terrace
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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London
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 6, 2012

Myself and some friends needed a place to rest our heads before heading off to Kasigau and we found a soft pillow and a comfy bed at Sagala. it was fantastic - Anna and her staff welcomed us with open arms. A short walk through the bush is Sagala's own little nature reserve witha water hold frequented by buck and zebra. The food was great, rooms clean and the swimming pool crystal clear and very cool. In fact on our way back from Kasigau we managed another night at Sagala - fond memories indeed!

Room Tip: They are all similar - little chalets in the bush
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Top Contributor
81 reviews 81 reviews
42 hotel reviews
Reviews in 46 cities Reviews in 46 cities
119 helpful votes 119 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2012

I stayed for a couple of nights while visiting Tsavo game parks, the lodge is about 20 mins from the gates which open at 6.30 so is fine for visiting.

I liked the lodge as a) it was quiet b) had large grounds you can walk around with over 200 species of birds c) chance of seeing other wildlife eg Elephants d) rooms where spotlessly clean e) staff where very friendly f) liked the food g) resonably priced/low cost for lodge type accomodation

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sao paolo
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
41 hotel reviews
Reviews in 38 cities Reviews in 38 cities
47 helpful votes 47 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 24, 2012

The Swiss lady who runs the hotel is very friendly, but you get the feeling her staff may be running rings behind her back. All this however just adds to the charm. The birdlife and the mating tortoises are terrific, and meal time is Out of Africa meets school dinners. All in all, I'm not sure it's worth more than a pit-stop on the way to / from the coast.

If you want animals, then stay at a lodge that backs onto Tsavo East. If you want something cheap, then stay at the Silent Guesthouse in Voi. If you want an enjoyable, affordable but slightly surreal experience - then stay here!

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wundanyi, Kenya
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2012

We stayed at Sagala Lodge in November 2011 as well as in February 2012. It is a haven for difficult-to-see birds. And the best part about it is that you can walk around their property and to a little water hole. We drove to the waterhole at night and saw a huge group of elephants coming to drink in the dry season. Their vegetarian food is also good. They have a nice swimming pool and its very close for accessing Tsavo East. And the rates are very reasonable.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sagala Lodge

Address: Mombassa Rd, Voi 85868, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Coast Province > Voi
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 8 Specialty Lodging in Voi
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 24
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Sagala Lodge is ideally located between Tsavo East and West National Parks. It comprises of 25 bungalows, 1 deluxe suite bungalow and one cottage, pool, restaurant, shop, bar, lounge and a 5000 acre private wildlife park. Bungalows can be rented short or long term. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Sagala Hotel Voi

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