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“Wonderful!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Stilts Backpackers

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Stilts Backpackers
Diani Beach Road, Diani Beach, Ukunda 1824, Kenya   |  
Hotel amenities
Certificate of Excellence
Mombasa, Coast, Kenya
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Wonderful!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 16, 2012

My husband and I stayed at Stilts on a recommendation from a friend and we were not disappointed! Andy, the owner, is funny and very friendly and helpful. We loved the location - super close to the beach, a fun bar (40 thieves), and some shopping centers. We also really enjoyed the look of the place. The main house is large enough to not be too crowded but still a cozy place to chat with friends or make new ones! True to the name, all the buildings are up on stilts which allows the wind to blow through and keep the temperature down. The food is pretty good and is reasonably priced and you can even feed the bush babies in the evening. As far as hostels go, we thought it was unique and fun! If we get a chance to visit Diani again we will definitely be staying there again!

  • Stayed April 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
    • 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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107 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    84
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (19)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
40 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 9, 2012

For the price, Stilts was a great place to stay, and the location was convenient. I met a lot of interesting people, and overall had a good time. Still, it was frustrating that you couldn't leave things in the treehouses or really spend time in them - not only are they not secure (there are safes provided for valuables that are downstairs from the main gathering area and bar), but they aren't much of a structure. Woven mesh and some wood are all the are between you and the outdoors. At night it was impossible to read without getting attached by bugs, which fly in through the open/woven walls. My room also got broken into by a money, who went through all my belongings (and pooped on my floor), to get to my tic-tacs. The owner didn't seemed concerned when I raised the issue (I didn't leave food in my room to avoid attracting monkeys), and even told me to wait until morning to have the poop cleaned off the floor! Overall, not a pleasant night, and I was happy to leave. I wouldn't go back...

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Norwich, England
Level Contributor
9 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2012

I spent a week at Stilts and it was quality. Very chilled out and very sociable. The staff were fantastic. The food was good. Good security. Met some great people and had some great times. Nice and close to Diani beach and Forty Thieves beach bar - 5 min walk. The only downer was saying goodbye, or should I say 'Kwaheri'.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled solo
    • 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
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san jose
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2012

I really enjoyed my time at Stilts. The staff were very friendly, the food was tasty and the people we met that were staying there were laid back and not into the whole drinking and going crazy at hostels thing. I had a relaxing time which is what i wanted, and 40 Thieves is a 5 minute walk away where you can have some drinks and dance. And there are bushbabies at night who want to eat bananas.
I did find the tree house a bit too expensive though, the staircase going up is quite scary with no light and huge gaps. But overall a very enjoyable experience.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Malakal
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 24, 2012

I spent 6 days in Stilts in a nice tree house.
The owner and the team are very helpful and welcoming. And Ray, the cook, can make you very good dishes !
Situated just few meters from the beach and 40 thieves restaurant, Stilts is offering calm and a very interesting atmosphere.

It's the place to stay in Diani for small budget travellers !

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 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
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Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
19 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 18, 2012

It's not everyday when you can say you stayed in a treehouse while on vacation. Stilts is a very affordable place to stay while in Diani Beach, which has tons of premium-priced resorts. There are a handful of treehouses and ground-level cottages with the bar/lounge area occupying the main treehouse. We were in a triple treehouse with the third bed actually being "outside" on the deck. The treehouse doesn't really have solid walls per se, but large screens to allow for ventilation. Diani Beach is a warm place but there is enough of a breeze to allow for a relatively comfortable sleep.

Showers and toilets are in a separate block near the central treehouse and are very clean. Water pressure is very powerful, which felt great. Note though that the water that comes from the shower and tap is salt water, so don't drink it!

Meals and drinks are served in the main treehouse (not on Sundays though) and are affordable and tasty. Beware during breakfast though as the Sykes monkeys that live in the surrounding forest will steal your food if given even the slightest opportunity. They will also try to break into your treehouse and steal things. We met people who had their hats, birth control pills, and bracelets, stolen from their treehouse! One girl had a jar of cashews taken right out of her hand! There are secure lockers underneath the main treehouse where you can store your valuables.

The bush babies that come every night around 7pm are much more pleasant, eating the banana slices that are offered them. Very cute. Talk to Andy if you can. He's definitely a character.

The spectacular beach is a 5-10 minute walk away. You'll pass through Forty Thieves Bar to get there, which is a nice place to have a meal. Stores and banks are a long walk or a short matatu ride away. Take the matatu or a tuk tuk to save your feet. They're really cheap by Western standards.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Nairobi
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 16, 2012

A bunch of friends and I were able to make a quick turn-around reservation at Stilts during the Easter Holiday (one of the busiest weekends of the year in Kenya). Andy was super accommodating, and he has opened two new cottages that were fantastic base camps for this big group of 10. We love the monkeys and the bush babies that frequent the bar.

Truthfully, this is one of the best backpackers on earth, very chill, very affordable, easy to make friends at the bar and delicious food from the kitchen. one day during our visit, Andy came back from the sea with some beautiful gigantic fish to serve up for the night that he had caught himself.

I am grateful that such a beautiful places exists, and it stands in stark contrast to the super upscale places that litter too much of the Kenyan coast and make the sea side and the beach jungles inaccessible to normal kenyans and adventurers on a budget.

Hats off to Stilts!

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 Stilts Backpackers

Address: Diani Beach Road, Diani Beach, Ukunda 1824, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Coast Province > Ukunda > Diani Beach
Amenities:
Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 46 Specialty Lodging in Diani Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Our accommodation consists of 5 Tree Houses and 3 cottages and a 12 bed dorm.The Tree Houses are built out of native materials off the ground in the tree canopies, they do not have their own bathrooms. The rate for the Tree houses are: Single Ksh 1,800 per night, Double Ksh 1,400 per person per night and Triple Ksh 1,000 per person per night.Dorms is Ksh 800 per night. The cottages have their own bathrooms and Fans, still basic but part of our surroundings. The cottages are Single Ksh 3,000 per night, Double Ksh 1,800 per person per night, Triple Ksh 1,400 per person per night and 4 people Ksh 1,000 per person per night. Cheers ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Stilts Backpackers Hotel Diani

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