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“paradise found” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Fundu Lagoon

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Fundu Lagoon
4.5 of 5 Hotel   |   Wambaa Peninsula, Tanzania   |  
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Hotel amenities
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Ranked #2 of 5 hotels in Pemba Island
Charleston, South Carolina
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“paradise found”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2013

My husband and I came to Fundu Lagoon after a week of Safari in Kenya. We had a night overlay in Stone Town and the hotel there was an utter disappointment. So we were really worried what the last 5 nights of our honeymoon at Fundu would be like... we shouldn't have - as soon as the boat dropped us off at the pier we knew we were at the right place. We were welcomed warmly and check-in was a breeze. We arrived mid-afternoon and told we could eat something at the pool restaurant. The food was excellent and from there on out we ate like kings! We went snorkeling (highly recommend), my husband went deep sea fishing while I spent a quiet day at the gorgeous pool, we had wonderful massages, enjoyed the most beautiful sunsets at the pier bar and relaxed like never before. The Wahoo my husband caught were served to us as ceviche at the pier bar! The service was impeccable and the staff was friendly, without being 'over the top'.
The only negative is that it is hard to get there, no easy plane connections, so nothing for a 'quick' trip... unfortunately since we would love to go back sometime soon!!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ellis f, Creative Director at Fundu Lagoon, responded to this review, July 24, 2013
Thank you very much for your review of Fundu Lagoon. I was so pleased to read that you appreciated the gentle and relaxed atmosphere of the resort. I am proud of the high standard of service that we offer to our guests, and I will make sure that your comments about your enjoyment of the food on offer are passed on to our staff. I will also make sure that your feedback is sent to our masseuses – they are indeed extremely skilled, and they will be so happy that you enjoyed their massages. I must admit that I always try and book in for a massage myself whenever I’m visiting the resort.

Well done to your husband on his splendid fishing catch, and I’m delighted to learn that you both got to sample the Wahoo that he caught later that evening at the jetty bar; all fish caught by our guests is always handy for our restaurant!

I can’t argue with you on your comments about getting to our location – unless you happen to live around Dar es Salaam or Unguja, quick weekend trips aren’t realistic at all! However, I hope you’ll agree that the long journey is worth it, and although Charleston isn’t exactly on our doorstep, we would all really look forward to welcoming you both back to Fundu sometime in the future. I am thrilled that Fundu Lagoon made the end of your honeymoon so special. Many congratulations on your recent wedding, and I wish you both a long and happy future life together.

Ellis Flyte (Creative Director)
c.c. Hannes Wolters (General Manager)
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 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 (36)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
london
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2013

We spent a week here at the beginning of the season so the weather was generally overcast but it was still warm enough to make use of all the outside areas including hammock. I had read previously that the ethos was relaxed shabby chic, and it was. I loved it. All the staff were fantastic and couldn't do enough for you, you only had to ask. Food was simple but plentiful. 3 courses for breakfast, lunch and dinner can't be bad. Drinks were local but good, just remember to ask for singles if you want taste your mixer but my tip is go for the cocktails, lime daquaris and screw drivers were particular favourites. Our thanks go to Hannes and his fabulous team. If you are lucky enough to visit here, you will see the piece of my heart I left at the jetty bar watching the sun go down every evening. Perfection.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ellis f, Creative Director at Fundu Lagoon, responded to this review, July 21, 2013
What a great review to start off Fundu Lagoon’s 2013 season! I was so pleased to read that you enjoyed the style and ambience of the resort, along with our menus and amenities. I always think that nothing beats a few cocktails on the jetty bar at sundown, and over the years our bar staff have indeed become serious mixologists!

Hannes will be very pleased to read your review and I know that he’ll pass on your kind comments to his team. The piece of your heart that you left here will be well cared for, and I hope that one day we’ll be able to welcome you both back to Fundu Lagoon once more.

Ellis Flyte (Creative Director)
c.c. Hannes Wolters (General Manager)
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2013

Staying at Fundu Lagoon was a highlight of our trip to Tanzania. From the moment of arrival at the airport the service was impeccable but unobtrusive. The setting is gorgeous, with the Indian Ocean in front and lush vegetation behind. Canoeing among the mangroves at high tide is a must, as is a snorkelling trip. The food is fresh, simple and delicious, and the fact that everything is prepaid means you never have to think about prices. All the staff were incredibly attentive without seeming to fuss, and nothing was too much trouble. The safari-style looks simple and rustic, but is in fact extremely comfortable. I would definitely go back.

Room Tip: Obviously beach front rooms are premium, but hillside rooms are better value and in some ways offer...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ellis f, Creative Director at Fundu Lagoon, responded to this review, April 29, 2013
How very kind of you to write such as lovely review of Fundu Lagoon. I am so pleased that you found our transportation arrangements impeccable and unobtrusive, and also that you enjoyed the location and ambience of the resort, along with our menu and amenities.

I am very proud of the high standard of service that we offer to our guests at Fundu, and I will make sure that your kind comments are passed on to all of our staff, as they will be much appreciated.

I do hope that we will be able to welcome you back to Fundu Lagoon at some future date. Feedback from our clients is important to us, so thank you again for taking the time and trouble to write – it is much appreciated.

Ellis Flyte (Creative Director)
c.c. Hannes Wolters (General Manager)
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Petworth, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 9, 2013

We have just got back from a safari trip to Tanzania which ended with a four night stay at Fundu Lagoon. We had a fairly tiring (five stop) journey from Ruaha National Park to get to Pemba and were slightly put off by the "cool" driver and guide who met us at Pemba airport to drive us to the harbour. The guide seemed to have a set speech which he delivered in somewhat parrot fashion and we didn't learn as much as we would have liked from him about the island and its people. As soon as we arrived at the resort itself, however, we were reassured. The staff were universally friendly, the service excellent and the atmosphere relaxed. The food was excellent and plentiful and the choice of drinks superb. There were not that many people staying in the resort but there was no indication that the programme was in any way curtailed. We enjoyed a splendid outdoor dinner on the jetty and a sunset dhow cruise with only one other couple as company. We were particularly impressed by the french couple who run the diving centre. They could not have been more helpful. It would have been easy for them to be do only the minimum for a late middle aged couple such as ourselves who were only interested in a day's snorkelling trip - but they were extremely friendly and helpful, providing us, for instance, with wetsuits to help prevent sunburn.
Thank you to all the staff at Fundu lagoon.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ellis f, Creative Director at Fundu Lagoon, responded to this review, March 25, 2013
Thank you for your very kind review of Fundu Lagoon. I am so pleased that you enjoyed your recent stay with us and I am proud of the high standard of service that we offer to our guests, and will make sure that your kind comments are passed on to all of our staff. I was, however, sorry to hear about the somewhat ‘cool’ response from the driver who initially collected you, and I will be discussing your comments with our Head of Transport when I return to Fundu in a few weeks time.

I am delighted that you both enjoyed your day’s snorkelling with Marlene and Sebastian – at Fundu we cater for people who are advanced divers or people such as yourselves, who are happy to have a day out snorkelling. Everyone is welcome, and yes, the wetsuits are really handy for helping to prevent sunburn. I still go out on the sunset dhow cruises myself after a long day when time permits during my visits to the resort; it is so peaceful watching a magnificent sunset.

Feedback from our clients is important to us, so thank you again for taking the trouble to write; it is much appreciated and I do hope that you will consider revisiting us at some future date. We would look forward to welcoming you back.

Ellis Flyte (Creative Director)
c.c. Hannes Wolters (General Manager)
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lymington, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2013

This was an idyllic place ( almost as idyllic as Aitutaki in the Cook Islands). Luxury cottage was fabulous but a long walk! Appearance was deceptively odd but it did all work perfectly and was ideal for the situation. Delightful deck with plunge pool was perfect for cooling down. Wonderful main pool area high up with amazing views.

Food in restaurant was not wonderful but definitely "good". Restaurant service was "variable" but there was nothing to rush for so it really didn't matter. This is definitely a place to chill out and stop stressing.

The house wine which was inclusive but the white was OK the rose quite nice but the red poor.
Addiitional cost wines and drinks were most reasonably priced.

Took the village walk experience - very interesting guide who seemed the be a Tanzanian athletic champion. It was quite a steep climb and very hot which he insisted on taking at a fast pace. When he slowed down as we requested he just sped up again. Had a long siesta after the lunch!

The day diving trip to Misali was wonderful - the whole island is a nature reserve with very informative guides.

Liz, the hotel manager, was very helpful although difficult to locate.

An unpleasant send-off was the 6% charge for paying by debit card.

Room Tip: The luxury cottages are much better but a long walk. This is in a remote location which can only...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ellis f, Creative Director at Fundu Lagoon, responded to this review, March 25, 2013
Thank you very much for your review of Fundu Lagoon. I was so pleased to read that you enjoyed your accommodation and plunge pool, and yes, I would agree that some walking is involved to get there, but it is on soft sand! I also agree with you that our infinity pool does have the most stunning views.

I take on board the few criticisms that you had during your stay with us, and they will be dealt with when I return to Fundu in the coming few weeks. The 6% credit/debit card charge is an unfortunate fee that is levied by just about every hotel in Africa, but maybe we need to consider making that clearer to our guests before they arrive.

Feedback from our clients is important to us, so thank you again for taking the time and trouble to write – it is much appreciated.

Ellis Flyte (Creative Director)
c.c. Hannes Wolters (General Manager)
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
East London
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2013

Hi Ellis

We just wanted to thank you & your crew @ Fundu Lagoon - our experience at your resort deserves a place in Sir David Attenborough greatest places on earth !!

Having our wedding @ Fundu was an experience it almost feels impossible to surpass, but look forward to trying

I did however want to spend more time thanking everyone, especially you and all @ Fundu for the amazing way which everyone rallied to assist us. It is an amazing tribute to you, Hannes & the Fabulous Fundu team to be able to cope with our disorganisation, last minute changes & dramas. Nothing could have prepared us for people continually committing and bailing until the last minute, but Hannes, Martie & Lizzie etc. picked up the pieces and we didn't even notice a blip as the entire process just seemed to carry on seamlessly in the background ( and I'm sure it wasn't behind the scenes !! :)

Hannes we owe you a special thank you for handling the ceremony sprung on at the end, because nothing could have prepared us for the response and participation of all Fundu's staff and Wambaa friends, our new Pemban family !!

The week @ Fundu was an absolute dream, the way everyone looked after us - it's the closest, I think any one of us would come to experiencing the luxury of royalty - but nothing could have prepared us for the overwhelming luxury of life as a wedding guest @ Fundu. We feel honoured to be able to have shared our vows with our extended Pemban family and can't wait to spend every wedding anniversary there !!

J&B

Room Tip: No. 11 & don't forget your sunscreen :)
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  • Stayed November 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ellis f, Creative Director at Fundu Lagoon, responded to this review, March 25, 2013
Hi Bronwyn,

Thank you and Jonathan for being our very first couple to get married at Fundu Lagoon. It was quite memorable wasn’t it?! It was our pleasure to help to make your day so special, and all the staff enjoyed the magic of having a wedding take place at the resort.

We look forward to seeing you both on your 1st wedding anniversary and many more to come. Your kind words are much appreciated.

Ellis Flyte (Creative Director)
c.c. Hannes Wolters (General Manager)
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London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 23, 2013

My husband and I were looking for a luxury diving location and we certainly found it.

We came across the hotel in a book including the best and most luxurious diving locations in the world and thought the pictures looked. We checked on TripAdvisor and saw almost 100% good evaluation but were a little nervous of booking because we don't normally choose full board. We are just back and I felt I had to do a review to say how absolutely delighted we were with every aspect of the holiday (except the journey which was long!).

The hotel is beautiful, isolated and peaceful. There are only about 18 rooms, so a maximum of about 36 guests staying at any one time but the feel of the place is much larger. There are two restaurants serving delicious food and a Jetty bar where people go to watch the sun going down and drink a cocktail. The service is extremely friendly and polite and surprisingly efficient. Almost best of all, all the drinks are included and the wine is actually really rather nice (South African). Snacks and basket meals are available in the Pool Bar whilst the main restaurant offers three courses at lunch and supper and a huge selection of dishes at breakfast, all freshly made, and also includes cereals and pastries and croissants. My only complaint is that I am sure I have put on loads of weight!!!

The diving centre is excellent and very efficient and the equipment they provided for me was all new and of very good quality. the diving was not taxing and I suppose the really adventurous diver might think it a bit tame - the main attraction is the abundance and quality of the coral - simply amazing!

All in all, we had a wonderful week and very much hope that we can go back there again. We thought the hotel offered incredible value for money.

Beware if you are someone who needs constant communication with home - there is no wifi and only one computer for the use of guests and there didn't appear to be any mobile phone reception. This was exactly what we wanted but if you need to be in touch with people, it is a little tricky.

Room Tip: If you want the sound of the rolling waves, choose a beach room. The hillside rooms have lovely vie...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ellis f, Creative Director at Fundu Lagoon, responded to this review, March 5, 2013
Thank you very much for your kind review of Fundu Lagoon. We are indeed a long way away from everything, but that distance does make Fundu so special as it gives the resort that sense of peace and tranquillity which you and your husband clearly felt from your wonderful remarks.

I am very happy to hear that you both enjoyed the food and beverage menus on offer at Fundu. Our General Manager and chefs constantly liaise with creating new dishes, and we try to grow as many vegetables as possible on site too.

Our special away-from-it-all location does mean that modern day technology can be somewhat haphazard. We do not have wifi at Fundu, but there is a dedicated internet station available for guests to use in our gift shop.

I was pleased to read that you enjoyed your diving excursions. We are very fortunate in having the most wonderful underwater life on our doorstep, and the corals are indeed quite stunning.

I am however, particulary delighted that you feel that you got ‘incredible value’ for money, and I too hope that we will be able to welcome you both back to Fundu at some future date.

Ellis Flyte (Creative Director)
c.c. Hannes Wolters (General Manager)
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Fundu Lagoon

Also Known As:
Fundu Lagoon Hotel
Fundu Lagoon Pemba Island
Fundu Lagoon Hotel Pemba Island
Address: Wambaa Peninsula, Tanzania
Phone Number:
Location: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Pemba Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 5 hotels in Pemba Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Fundu Lagoon 4.5*

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