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“Beautiful gardens and warm sea.” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Karafuu Beach Resort and Spa

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Karafuu Beach Resort and Spa
4.5 of 5 Hotel   |   PO Box 71, Pingwe, Tanzania   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Pingwe
swift33
Top Contributor
73 reviews 73 reviews
30 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
“Beautiful gardens and warm sea.”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 29, 2013

We stayed for 7 days after a weeks safari in Kenya. It was a wonderful place to unwind. We had a garden room which overlooked the swimming pool/ bar at the back of the hotel, it was great because unless your room was here the guests didn't know about this other pool so, we had it ourselves most of the time. The main pool was a little busier but still room to swim. The gardens here are well cared for - stunningg
The beach had lovely soft white sand BUT there was a lot of seaweed most of the time, also you could not swim here unless you walked down the walkway to the lagoon, where there were no rocks. It is quiet and very few locals selling their handicraft, in fact we enjoyed looking at their products and it was easy and friendly to haggle.
We booked a tour plus English speaking guide for a morning in Stone Town ( an hours drive away)to see all the interesting places, like the slaves museum / church, the Sultans Palace, Freddie Mercury's house, the Fort, with a guy on the beach, we trusted him, and we did not have to pay until we returned, it was excellent and good value for money.

We found all the staff at the Karafuu very helpful, friendly and spoke excellent English although we learned some Swahili. The cottage had everything we need including a kettle and a fridge, it was cleaned every day before lunchtime which we like because when its hot we like to have a siesta. We found the breakfast restaurant by the garden swimming pool very quiet, usually we were on our own, however there were a lot of flies here. The patio by the main restaurant was lovely to eat lunch, again the flies were around but no problems eating in doors. I would say plenty of choice, pasta was always cooked fresh, and so was the fish of the day. We had booked 'all inclusive' but really it is FB + the so called inclusive cocktails are limited and the best or most popular you have to pay for.

We also booked an evening meal at The Rock restaurant which is about half a mile away - you can see it from the beach. We got a taxi there and the driver waited to take us back later. Again friendly staff and good food its certainly worth going to The Rock, probably best early evening and watch the sun set b4 eating.
We both had a pedicure, and enjoyed the Jacuzzi prior, paradise views from the Spa.
If Zanzibar was not so far away fro the UK we would definitely go again.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
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589 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (39)
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Lusaka, Zambia
Top Contributor
64 reviews 64 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2013

Spent 4 nights at Karafuu as a family (10 year old daughter) and it was really great. We had booked into one of the cottages towards the rear and found the room to be quite small and set far back. Obviously no sea view. Had I been on my own, would have stayed there, but the two ladies decided they wanted a spot on the beach so we moved to number 5, a larger cottage. The staff moved us across, no fuss.The accommodation itself was great, nice to have an aircon and plenty hot water. We spent so little time in the room though, really just to fall down and sleep. The pool area is where you will spend all your time. Fantastic. Towels available daily, take lots of sun screen, the sun was harsh. The sea was lovely, a path to take you past the rocky area to the sand. Take scuba booties and snorkelling gear as there are urchins and its slippery, but plenty opportunity to snorkel. The food was okay, a little dry and got tired of eating the same stuff. The Masai village supper was fantastic (highlight was the Masai Dance, the acrobatic show was breathtaking). The ala carte restaurant on the beach served up great seafood at a reasonable price. Drinks never came with ice? My daughter did the scuba entry course and we all did a dive to 15m for 50min with her, the staff were fantastic and made her first dive one that will see her progress in Scuba. I had to log onto work and bought the wireless access for a week. Had access in the room, though it was quite slow. The lodge itself is not 'city slick', its based on an 'African Island" theme, hope I explain myself? Really suggest that they clean the chandeliers in the Zanzi-Bar. They accept Visa, but charge a fee, so take some USD. Also go the all inclusive rate, works out cheaper. Overall, staff fantastic, we slept well, satisfied after the meals and my daughter had an awesome time which makes it all the more easier for parents to relax!

Room Tip: Its really worth it to take a place closer to the beach. But then again, you spend the time in the...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Top Contributor
89 reviews 89 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2013

Our tour guide suggested this hotel to us, they booked us a room according to their preference, and it appeared a perfect choice, plus their rate was cheaper than what we get through online booking.
The hotel has everything anyone would need in a such a trip,
pros:
- food is good, 4 restaurants, the main serves open buffet breakfast and dinner, with a different theme everyday of the week
- the boutique shop has almost all what you need from souvenirs, clothes, creams, etc
- daily snorkeling and diving trips with PADI certified diving instructor
- nearby good coral for diving or snorkeling
- nice beach with paved path to reach the water during low tide
- nearby local shops for souvenirs and paintings where you can grab very good bargains
- almost daily activities after dinner, parties, music bands, etc
- the staff are very helpful, the room is always clean

cons:
- no internet connection in the rooms, paid connection in the lobby, while some places offer it everywhere for free
- got a call at 11 pm asking me a silly question, was dead sleep from tiredness, unsuitable ringtone
- exchange rate at the hotel is different from the market by 10%
- all the boutique items are over priced

The trip to the hotel is one hour and a half, but you can plan your visit to the forest and butterfly center half way

Overall happy with this place

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
    • 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.
carmeloZanzibar, Direttore generale at Karafuu Beach Resort and Spa, responded to this review, October 20, 2013
Hi, I would like to thank you for your comment.
Furthermore I will check because normally the WIFI work in all the rooms.
Thank you for your advice.
Karafuu management
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Bergen, Norway
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2013

If you consider visiting Africa I can strongly recommend Zanzibar and the hotel Karafuu Beach Resort and Spa. We stayed there for a week and was pampered by the staff and we just loved the Place. Beautiful Beach Next to the hotel/ bungalows and Nice swimmingpools and restaurants/ bars with pleasant staff. A good variety of food both for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
carmeloZanzibar, Direttore generale at Karafuu Beach Resort and Spa, responded to this review, October 20, 2013
Thank you for your nice comments.
Kindest regards
Karafuu Management
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rome, Italy
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 7, 2013

Just spent a week at this amazing hotel with my friends. The hotel is immaculately kept and the staff are very friendly. The location is ideal and the room was amazing with all the luxuries you would expect and views of the Indian Ocean to die....The food is exquisite and with a great variety, complements to the chef all was fantastic and the buffet breakfast, lunch and dinners were brilliant. Loved eating papaya fruit every morning! The spa was wonderful loved the massage.
Excellent treatment from Zakaria, Betty and all staff at reception, Freddy and his staff in the restaurant and Anissa and the girls at the spa and Suleman at the travel desk. They all really go out of their way to ensure you have a good time and a successful business meeting. Any issues or problems are dealt with a smile.

I'd recommend this hotel completely.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled on business
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rome
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 30, 2013

Just back from a stay there - the location is ideal and excellent treatment from Betty and her staff at reception, Freddy and his staff in the restaurant and Anissa and the girls at the spa. They all really do go out of their way to ensure a you have a good time and a successful business meeting. Any issues or problems are dealt with with a smile.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
carmeloZanzibar, Direttore generale at Karafuu Beach Resort and Spa, responded to this review, October 1, 2013
Google Translation
Buongiorno e ben tornato.
siamo soddisfatti che il soggiorno sia stato di suo gradimento.
Porterò il suo messaggio a Betty e Freddy.
Arrivederci
Karafuu management
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Zagreb, Croatia
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 14, 2013

This beach resort is absolutely the best place in Zanzibar for those who want to get away from everything and just relax. It is ideally situated on a part of the east coast where there are no small hotels or local villages nearby and, consequently, the beach is not crowded with people. The beach boys are not too annoying either and they quickly get your message if you're not interested in their deals.
As for the hotel, the place is set in a beautiful surroundings fringed by tall palm trees and full of tropical vegetation. The cottages are super comfortable and each has a terrace and a sea view. Public places are very elegant and well-kept, the pool is large, clean and there are always enough sunbeds and pool towels, too! All staff members, starting from GM, Mr Zacharia, the restaurant supervisor (sorry to have forgotten the gentleman's name), to pool bar staff and room attendants, are extremely kind, friendly and helpful and they are one of the greatest assets of this hotel.
The food is as delicious and varied as can be and I have never eaten such fresh fish and seafood in a restaurant. A la carte restaurant menu offers the best Indian Ocean can offer at reasonable prices. The hotel has recently been extended and there is also another pool in the back, with a pool bar and a new A la carte restaurant. The new part also boasts 4 great self-contained villas with a private jacuzzi!
The hotel offers different kind of trips covering basically the whole island. I would recommend Spice Tour, which you can combine with a visit to Stone Town. The Diving Centre offers diving and snorkelling trips.
Entertainment is good and the Maasai Village dinners and Swahili dinners held in the back of th property are an excellent idea as the guests can see and enjoy a bit of genuine African culture.
As I've been returning to Zanzibar for about 20 years, I can honestly say that Karafuu is my favourite place and the best location on the island because it is a bit "off the beaten track", there is more privacy than in the north or a bit more south to Pingwe village. And, most importantly, the beach is stunning: at low tide a small lagoon is formed about 100 metres off the coast and you can actually swim neck-deep in the beautiful, calm ocean halfway to the reef.
In a few words: I'll be back!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Karafuu Beach Resort and Spa

Address: PO Box 71, Pingwe, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Zanzibar Archipelago > Zanzibar > Pingwe
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Pingwe
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Karafuu Beach Resort and Spa 4.5*
Number of rooms: 94
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
On a deserted white sandy beach, at 65 km from Stone Town, lies Karafuu Beach Resort and Spa, an international five-star hotel, winner of the World Travel Awards as Tanzania Leading Resort and Africa Leading Beach Resort 2011 .It is one of the most luxurious hotels on the east coast of Zanzibar, where, even during low tide, it’s possible to enjoy a comfortable swim in the ocean. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Karafuu Beach Hotel Pingwe
Karafuu Hotel Beach
Karafuu Resort Beach
Karafuu Beach Resort And Spa Zanzibar/Pingwe

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