We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Beautiful permanent tented camp atop a kopje with spectacular views”

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 1 more site!
Serengeti Simba Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed April 8, 2013

From February 24-28, 2013, we had the good fortune to stay at Serengeti Simba Lodge, just 20 minutes outside Serengeti NP - a lovely drive across the plain on the usual bumpy roads, wild animals all along the way, and up a hill (kopje) to the lodge. I don't think it is farther away than other hotels in the park, as there's always alot of driving, and it depends on where the animals are. The main lodge and swimming pool incorporate the rocks of the kopje, adding to the charm of the place. There are views all around out across the Serengeti. Beautiful sunrises and sunsets. The lovely permanent tents, with solid floors, are scattered around the hillside, each with a deck, comfortable bed, full bathroom with tub and an outdoor shower. We loved showering outdoors (total privacy) with the sound of the birds. Electricity is available 24 hours a day and is solar powered - we appreciated all of the lodge's efforts to be green. The staff was so helpful and friendly, one of the best in all the years of traveling we have done. We were grateful to be treated with such care and attention to detail. They do everything possible to make one's stay comfortable. The food in the dining room was very good as well as the service. Anderson and his staff prepare wonderful meals and are very accomodating to guests with special diet requests. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay here and would recommend it for those who want a very comfortable but more authentic experience on the Sergengeti, not an American luxury hotel experience. We stayed at very nice lodges and tented camps all through our tour, and this was one of our favorites. We would love to have the opportunity to stay there again. Thank you, Serengeti Simba Lodge.

Room Tip: All the rooms seemed to be good. We had Lion and were very pleased. Good view for the sunrise.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank SusanS_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
auroraafrica, Marketing Manager/Guest Relations at Serengeti Simba Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded April 14, 2013

Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for your wonderful review of Serengeti Simba Lodge. We truly appreciate you taking the time to share your opinion with other Trip Advisor members and users. We're delighted that you had such a good time at the lodge and that you appreciate the mission and vision of Serengeti Simba. We share your dream of returning one day.

Annie Birch
Marketing and Guest Relations
Serengeti Simba Lodge

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (220)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language
  • More languages

134 - 140 of 220 reviews

Reviewed March 12, 2013

During our 17 day trip, we stayed in 6 lodges and Simba, where we stayed for 4 nights, was one of my favorites. I loved the outdoor shower, secluded by a beautiful rock wall and the expansive blue sky overhead, with lots of hot water. The food was excellent and abundant, the staff friendly and always helpful. The room was spacious and clean. Being out where wildlife live precludes such amenities as the electricity we Americans are used to. I applaud Simba for its use of solar power. We could easily recharge our cameras, etc either in our room or at the reception desk. Unless people are willing to pay $1800-2000 per night, they will have to stay outside the Park. I found the terrible roads to be part of the safari experience.

Room Tip: No one in my 12 person group had any complaints about their room. Each room is in an individual stru...
See more room tips
  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank Gayle L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
auroraafrica, Marketing Manager/Guest Relations at Serengeti Simba Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded March 20, 2013

Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to review Serengeti Simba Lodge on Trip Advisor. We're delighted that you rated us amongst the favourite lodges of your safari and that you found much to enjoy about staying with us. Your appreciation of our commitment to solar energy means a lot.

Annie Birch
Marketing Manager, Serengeti Simba Lodge

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 11, 2013

This lodge is not suitable for travellers looking for some decent comfort. The staff was very friendly and helpful. The view from the lodge is also good and we were told that during the May migration, the animals would be passing through the grassland right below from the lodge. However, the lodge itself lacks some basic facilities.

1. The location is far from the central game viewing area. It takes an extra 2 hours to travel to and back from the game viewing. The road leading to the lodge is so rough that the last 10 minutes' ride was torurous.
2. The room itself (space, bedding etc.) is not bad. However, there is not sufficient electicity. The lights powered by solar energy were so weak that we could hardly see without a flashlight. I couldn't even use the washroom mirror without my husband shining a flashlight at it. You could definitely not be able to read in the room so we got pretty bored at night in the tent.
3. Due to the lack of power, there is no fan in the tent so it gets pretty stuffy if you stayed inside the tent during the day. If you stayed outside, the seating around the pool is pretty limited and we saw water from the drain pipes draining right into the pool so I don't suggest swimming in that pool.
4. There is a lack of amenities - no hair dryer so I had to sit up and wait for my hair to dry before I could go to bed; no safe so I had to lug around my passport and valuables on all game drives.
If you take your shower outside, you have to be very careful or else water would leak through the slit of the door and mess up the floor. Taking the shower inside the tent was even worse, as there are no shower curtain to hold the water back. We spent quite some time in mopping up the floor after each and every shower.
5. The food quality was really bad. On the day we arrived, we were served spaghetti with watered down tomato sauce with cauliflower, broccoli and carrots - not even a sliver of meat in it. At the next lunch, we were served egg curry with rice. I can understand that this is a smaller lodge so the food choice may be limited but the quality and taste of the food could be better.

There were 11 people in our group and none in the group thought that this should be a first class lodge relative to the other lodges we had stayed and nobody agreed that this was an upgrade.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
6  Thank Canadian9981
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
auroraafrica, Marketing Manager/Guest Relations at Serengeti Simba Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded March 20, 2013

Thank you for taking the time to post your comments on Trip Advisor. Your opinions are very similar to those of your travel companions who posted previously and our response would likewise be the same. Therefore it doesn't seem appropriate to repeat ourselves.

We sincerely regret that you were so very unhappy with your experience at Serengeti Simba Lodge. We are grateful and happy that the majority of our guests and Trip Advisor reviewers understand our mission and enjoy the experience.

Our intention is to continue improving our product and service in order to ensure our guests have a delightful and comfortable wildlife and wilderness experience in Serengeti while doing our best to preserve our precious planetary resources.

Annie Birch
Marketing Manager, Serengeti Simba Lodge

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 26, 2013

We stayed at the Serengenti Simba lodge for three nights over the holidays, including New Year's Eve. Staff was extremely friendly. Our room was more a building of its own. Sturdy, spacious and comfortable. Bathroom was well above expectations given location of lodge. We had no problems with hot water that are mentioned in other reviews. Plenty of super hot water. Electricity was also more then enough for our needs including charging camera batteries nightly. Food was influenced by management's Indian background, which we enjoyed. Views are stunning. The lodge threw a wondeful New Year's Eve party complete with entertainment from the local village. Much music and dancing by all. Only real drawback is the drive (lengthy) from the village to the lodge. Not much of road, but again sort of what you expect given the location. While there was a drive to get into the heart of the park, we encountered members of pride of lions early in our drive each day that we made the trip. Wildlife in the area is simply stunning.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank SGrabenstein
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
auroraafrica, Marketing Manager/Guest Relations at Serengeti Simba Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded March 2, 2013

Dear S Grabenstein,

Thank you for your wonderful review. We're so pleased that you liked almost everything about your stay with us. Our annual New Year's Eve party is a real highlight for us and this year was no exception. I loved the way guests, staff and the local dance troupe all got serious about the dancing! And I think the food was pretty wonderful too. I'm so glad you and your family enjoyed seeing in 2013 with us, we certainly enjoyed having you there. Perhaps you'll come again some day, we'd love to have you back.

Annie Birch
Marketing Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 25, 2013

The staff and management are very friendly, and the atmosphere is very rustic. No power--only 6:30 - 9:00 pm....no hot water --just heated solarly while it lasts....food is very poor and basic.....cold spaghetti, beans and dry cereal for breakfast...no choices. Remote location from lodge and access to aid if required, extra driving time (about 1 hour to great migration route in Feb/March). This means two game drives per day are not possible, but instead there will be one longer one, with a stale box lunch in the heat of the day, rather than a second one later in the cooler times.

We had previously paid for and stayed in lodges comparable to the Hlton (with private inside bathrooms and showers and walls and roofs that don't leak. This is a MINUS Motel 6 category. Our travel hotel was changed at the last minute, and we were told we were "upgraded" to this lodge, but not even one person in our group believed this--although we paid very highly for this downgrade.... The towels are not changed, but are dried on bushes outside. One member had red ants throughout her clothing and many bites as a result of the laundry methods here. The rooms are very dark and dreary--only solar lit by a tiny light bulb high in the ceiling (20 ft up).... and as access is down a steep rocky slope--treacherous in the rain--access to the outdoor lobby is difficult--and not desirable in the rain as water pours down the roof, through the lobby (which is outside) and into the swimming pool... Little to do in the evening without light for reading, or power for recharging cameras, etc.

If you want a really rustic atmosphere....go for it....but if you expect some conveniences such as power for charging your cameras, or clean towels etc.... forget it.

Room Tip: Choose a different hotel--or bring your own towels and food Fitness center is walking to your room.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank Eyebrow2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
auroraafrica, Marketing Manager/Guest Relations at Serengeti Simba Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded March 2, 2013

Eyebrow2:
It certainly is a shame that your first choice of lodges, a huge mass tourism property catering to hundreds of guests, was not available for your safari during the February high season in Serengeti. However, that was not our fault and we’ve been advised that your group was told of the change well in advance. Had there been any accommodation whatsoever in the Serengeti your American tour operator would have happily moved you even after you arrived. Globus responded to your complaints immediately on arrival and gave each member of your group a $188 refund plus the cost of two drinks per day along with a profuse apology and regret that you were unhappy with the substitution.

Your complaints are more of the nature of being unhappy with your tour operator for the change and not getting the accommodation you expected rather than being disappointed with the lodge you chose. Given the situation our lodge management and staff did everything in their power to make your stay as pleasant as possible.

We make no pretense or claim to be anything other than what we are: a small eco-lodge located in a remote area of the Serengeti eco-system with basic amenities, a super staff, amazing views and a sense of adventure required. All our literature clearly spells this out and most safari outfitters in Tanzania are aware of our limitations as well as our great assets. The majority of reviewers here on Trip Advisor also spell out these facts. True, we may not be for everyone and it’s quite certain we’re not for you. It sounds as if the weather during your stay also impacted your enjoyment.

We have seen the letter from Globus as well as the report from your tour leader and it’s quite clear that there were about four members of your group who complained constantly and about everything. Globus, the tour leader and the Tanzanian tour operator all agreed that Serengeti Simba was an upgrade over the lodge originally proposed for your tour.

I would like to address some of your specific complaints and point out that four other groups who checked out on the same dates as you from four different tour operators ranked our all categories of services as excellent and among your group there were 17 excellent, 12 very good and 7 good ratings on the various categories.

Food: breakfast consists of a selection of seasonal fresh fruits, baked beans, cereals, crepes, toast and eggs (most styles) to order with sausage and bacon. I would not say this means “no choices”.

Towels: there is a sign in the rooms advising guests that we will change towels daily if that’s your request or, in an effort to help us save water, the room stewards will dry the towels in the sun and return them to the rack. You ALWAYS have the option of fresh towels daily. If there is excess rain there may be a problem in that our laundry is sun dried. We are stocking more towels to help alleviate this problem.

Power: Our generator timings are 6:00-9:00 am and 6:30-10:00 pm. These timings don’t vary but are strictly kept. I was informed that the generator also was run throughout the night during your stay in order to accommodate several of your group’s sleep apnoea machines. We can only accommodate such machines that have a battery back up system but we ran our generator all night for your group at great expense. We always do everything in our power to ensure guests camera and phones etc are charged and have a solar backup invertor for this purpose. Let us be clear to all prospective guests- we cannot accommodate hair dryers at our lodge, it will blow our generator.

Location: The lodge is in a perfect location for the migration for about 2-4 months out of the year. The remainder of the year the migration can be quite far. The main game viewing circuit of Serengeti is only about an hour’s drive away and it’s true, to optimize game viewing the “two game drives per day” schedule does not work well from our location but most tour leaders and drivers confer with their guests to ensure they have an optimal wildlife viewing experience over a two or three day stay with us. Guests can go with a picnic breakfast and return for a late lunch and rest then go out for ‘sundowners’ later in the day as there is also good resident wildlife around including cheetah, lion, giraffe and many plains species.

We too regret that you had such an unpleasant stay with us and hope that Trip Advisor members who are considering a stay with us take all the facts of your review from both sides into consideration..

Annie Birch

Marketing Manager
Serengeti Simba Lodge

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 16, 2013

We moved from Wildlife Seronera to Simba and everyone love this place so much. The lodges are comfortable. Some of the rooms have great view (especially the stone rooms). The rooms are big and clean with good ventilation. Bathrooms are good as well. We love the food here. This is an eco lodge so the light and hot water are not 24 hours. But they alternative arrangement so we can get our batteries fully charged. The staff are nice. One of our friends left a few hundred US dollars in the room by accident. Simba called our safari guide after we left and offered to courier it to park gate. We were too far away to get back. So Simba coordinated with our travel agent to return the cash to us before we leave Arusha. We appreciate their effort and will definitely recommend this place.

Room Tip: stone room great view. tented camp depends.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank herbalsense
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
auroraafrica, Marketing Manager/Guest Relations at Serengeti Simba Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded March 2, 2013

Dear Trip Advisor Member,

Thank you so much for your review and we're delighted you found Serengeti Simba Lodge "excellent" on so many accounts. We're especially pleased that the staff and management were able to get the cash inadvertently left in the room back to you safely. We appreciate your referral and recommendation and hope that you thoroughly enjoyed Tanzania.

Annie Birch
Marketing Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 6, 2013

The hotel is very nice, the view from the room is stunning and the new years eve was gorgeous, full of life. But, in the first night we stayed in the "stone house" that was average, but when we moved to the tent (Collobus) it was a great experience!

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank King T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Travelers also viewed these Serengeti National Park hotels
29.2 mi away
Melia Serengeti Lodge
Melia Serengeti Lodge
#1 of 4 in Serengeti National Park
11 reviews
29.2 mi away
Mbalageti Safari Camp Ltd
Mbalageti Safari Camp Ltd
#14 of 128 in Serengeti National Park
480 reviews
23.5 mi away
Serengeti Serena Safari Lodge
Serengeti Serena Safari Lodge
#18 of 128 in Serengeti National Park
943 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
40.5 mi away
Serengeti Mawe Tented Camp
Serengeti Mawe Tented Camp
#28 of 128 in Serengeti National Park
57 reviews
44.6 mi away
Asanja Africa
Asanja Africa
#23 of 128 in Serengeti National Park
194 reviews
9.9 mi away
Mapito Tented Camp Serengeti
Mapito Tented Camp Serengeti
#58 of 128 in Serengeti National Park
125 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Serengeti Simba Lodge? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Serengeti Simba Lodge

Address: Ikona Wildlife Management Area, Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Serengeti National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #32 of 128 Specialty Lodging in Serengeti National Park
Price Range: $211 - $557 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Serengeti Simba Lodge 3.5*
Number of rooms: 21
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located outside Serengeti National Park’s Ikoma Gate with endless views across the plains. Built of local materials and using solar power and hot water in the rooms, this lodge is unique to the area. Reception, lounge, bar and dining incorporate a natural rocky outcropping (kopje) into the design. Fifteen creatively designed large canvas rondavels reveal the romance of a tent with the security of a permanent structure. Each bathroom has an outdoor stone shower. Family rooms are in a ‘stone house’ with equally impressive views. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Agoda and Priceline so you can book your Serengeti Simba Lodge reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing