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“Nice hotel, but quite a drive to the Park”

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Serengeti Simba Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reno, Nevada
Level Contributor
567 reviews
148 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 304 helpful votes
“Nice hotel, but quite a drive to the Park”
Reviewed September 11, 2013

We were traveling with an organized tour group.

Overall, the hotel is very nice, but was much further away from the Park than we preferred - approximately 1/2 hour to the gate then another 1 hour drive into the Park for animal viewing.

Our room was very nice and I enjoyed the outdoor shower. The food was okay but not great and for the two days we were there on safari, they packed us box lunches.

The employees were all very nice and very professional.

The Lodge uses solar energy most of the time with the generator working from 6:30-9:30 in the mornings and evenings. I would recommend bringing a headlamp or flashlight along.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Linnbada
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 review, September 20, 2013
Dear Linnbada -

Thank you for your review. It means a lot to us to have such a positive review from an active traveller like yourself. We're sorry our location impacted your experience. The national parks of Tanzania limit the number of lodges allowed in the park and the government bodies have created the Ikona Wildlife Management Area, where we are located, to protect the animals outside the park (they don't pay attention to the boundaries), provide a corridor for the migration and allow for employment opportunities to communities near the parks. We're proud to be a part of this new process.

The Seronera area in central Serengeti draws the majority of wildlife at the time of year you were staying because of a permanent water source. During other seasons the animals are much more dispersed because of seasonal rivers and water holes resulting from rainfall. Your drive timings are spot on; most people do not realize how much time is spent in a vehicle on safari in Tanzania and how rough the roads can be.

Thank you for mentioning that prospective guests should bring a headlamp for reading in bed or assisting due to the strength of the solar lights in the accommodation. This should be a standard item on any packing list for a safari in Tanzania.

We're pleased you were satisfied with your overall experience at Serengeti Simba.

Annie Birch, Marketing ~ Simba Portfolio
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197 reviews from our community

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English first
Copenhagen, Denmark
Level Contributor
50 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed September 3, 2013

This wonderful lodge was our home for two nights - on top of the hill, top service, and top quality accomodation plus a wonderful view. After a full safari-day on the plains of Serengeti you really looked forward relaxing by the pool, take a shower in the out-door bath attached to the room, and enjoy the buffet-dinner and good RSA-wine

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
Thank SoerenSP
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 review, September 20, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to post your thoughts about Serengeti Simba here on Trip Advisor. We're so glad you and your family had a wonderful time here and enjoyed our amazing view.

Annie Birch, Marketing ~ Simba Portfolio
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
16 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed August 28, 2013

Cannot comment enough about this amazing lodge. Out of all 3 of the hotels we stayed at during our safari trip, this was by far the best. In terms of view, food, service, hospitality- this is hands down the best of the best! From the moment we arrived, we were welcomed with open arms. The staff are extremely friendly, the best part of this hotel. Everyone takes care of you and are always willing to go the extra mile for you.

Our room was the furthest and literally on the edge of a hill. This was an experience in itself. We stayed in the Zebra hut which overlooked the Serengeti Plains. If you look closely, you will get to see few animals walking around the plains. Its absolutely breathtaking. The hut has an outdoor shower- we loved it - very private and the water is piping hot. There are certain times to have showers as the whole lodge works on Solar power so lights are quite dim in the actual hut and the power does go off after 9pm which was fine as everyone has an early start the next day anyway- they do provide us with a torch just in case. The room is very spacious and the little toiletries they had provided were the best amongst all the lodges we stayed at. The bed was very comfortable, needless to say I slept like a baby even with all the animal noises which just adds to the experience.

They had a buffet laid out for us with a vast variety to choose from. I obviously went back for more. Food was of high standard and the service was brilliant. There is a constant smile on everyones faces which was good to see. The choices for dessert were amazing also.

We were advised to not be out of our huts after 9pm as it does get very dark and there is a likelyhood you will see some animals (hyenas, wildebeest, elephants, zebras) walking around. I did experience few scares in the middle of the night, you can hear them clearly and around you. They do have guards around the huts for our protection which was nice to know. Walking back to our room late night, you get to actually experience the whole "living out in the wild", as the only thing protecting you is the guard with his bow & arrow.

We were advised to wake up early to view the sunrise as we had the best views so thats what we did. It is extremely cold in the mornings especially if you want a shower- there is a bath tub inside however. We woke up to a beautiful view of the sunrise, slowly creeping in and becoming night to day. By far the best experience of my life.

The breakfast buffet was again amazing, cannot fault it at all. Out of all our picnic boxes, Seregeti Simba Lodge provided us with the best one.

The service is by far the best we have ever had. The managers were extremely friendly and through dinner we got to learn more about the lodge and the safaris we were on.

Again, cannot recommend this lodge enough. Thank you for making our stay wonderful.

Room Tip: Ask to stay in Zebra as thats the furthest away without any other huts in front of you or beside you...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank RMorar
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 review, September 20, 2013
Thank you for the wonderful review. It's a real pleasure to know that we rated so highly with you and you had a super experience at Serengeti Simba Lodge. We appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts with the Trip Advisor community

Annie Birch, Marketing ~ Simba Portfolio
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed August 25, 2013

We stayed 2 nights here on a fly in safari. We were picked up by our guides from Simba Lodge (Steve and Bill) at the airport and went straight on our game drive. For about 6 hours we were treated to a whole host of wildlife- giraffe, lion kill, leopard, zebra, hippo, elephant, etc. Both Bill and Steve had excellent English and we were told about each of the species in more depth than we were expecting. Steve had an answer for every question we had. They were incredibly professional and knowledgeable and we felt in safe hands- especially being about a metre away from a lion! We had a second game drive the day after and saw even more wildlife and thoroughly enjoyed every minute. Both Bill and Steve had every intention of making the most out of our short time in the Serengeti and we spent longer on our drives than we thought just so that we could see as much as possible.

We stayed in 'Rhino' stone lodge- like a little cottage- have stone built, half tent. A lovely hot shower outside, lovely toiletries and a view to die for! It was our honeymoon and it was just what we wanted. The food was good and we enjoyed having Steve and Bill join us for dinner and breakfast- it was a chance to find out more about Tanzania and for them about the UK.

We liked being escorted back to our rooms by staff with a bow and arrow or rifle- made us really feel out in the wild!

Room Tip: Go for a stone lodge. Rhino room had a perfect uninterrupted view. Just beautiful
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Lucyandben
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 review, September 20, 2013
Lucyandben: Thank you for your wonderful review. We're so glad we were able to fulfill your expectations and that you found so much to enjoy about staying with us.
Annie Birch, Marketing Simba Portfolio
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Honolulu, Hawaii
Level Contributor
107 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
Reviewed August 24, 2013

This is the end of our 33-day tour through southern and East Africa. We were staying at the Serengeti Simba Lodge for four days. They passed in a hurry. We usually left before sunrise and returned at sunset. The Chef packed us some very nice picnic lunches - with everything imaginable - for our safaris.

The staff was truly excellent. We usually met our group for "sundowners" on the terrace, overlooking the valley. Early in the morning, we heard the wildebeests and zebras during their migrations.

Our room was comfortable; our bed solid. The attached bathroom featured a tub and an outside shower. The lodge has a swimming pool and campfire area. It is a peaceful place.

On safari, we saw seven male lions with a kill, as well a leopard with her two young ones. Close by were endless hippos in an ever shrinking pond as the drought continues.

On our last evening, we enjoyed the "Simba Dancers" from the Ikoma tribe. A wonderful end to our trip.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Ingrid70
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 review, September 20, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts about Serengeti Simba Lodge. We're happy you found your experience to be very good overall and that you had a wonderful trip through Africa and that we were able to provide a lovely ending for your safari. We're also quite fond of the Simba Dance Troupe!
Annie Birch, Marketing Simba Portfolio
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Paris, France
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed August 21, 2013

Because of the Hotel, we had to have breakfast and dinner with our driver at the hotel. In an honey moon where you are looking for some time alone with your wife, It was not a good moment...

We were only two couples in the hotel and they did not provide us the best room. Others rooms with better view...

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
Thank Amaury B
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 review, August 21, 2013
Thank you for your honest review. Our policy of guides eating with guests is not a must, but is one of three options available for them. We're very sorry you were uncomfortable on your honeymoon. SSL always make a special effort for honeymooners and we're not aware of any room on the property that does not have an amazing view. We do hope you enjoyed your time in Tanzania overall.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St. Helena, California
2 reviews
Reviewed August 20, 2013

I have stayed at Serengeti Simba twice in March 2012 and June 2013. I would go back in an instant! The setting is gorgeous, overlooking the Serengeti. You will be treated to stunning sunrises and sunsets. The staff are welcoming, attentive and knowledgeable. The rooms are very large, beautifully decorated with a luxurious bathroom: soaking tubs, outdoor showers, bath products! The food is exceptional, buffet style, western with at least one African dish each night. We asked to try ugali and the chef prepared it just for us! Serengeti Simba is a special place that represents the very best Tanzania can offer. If you are traveling to the Serengeti, don't miss a stay here!!

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
Thank kmondavi
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 review, August 21, 2013
Thank you so much for your stellar review. We were delighted when you opted to return again this year with your family and are so happy that you, and they, enjoyed the lodge. We do hope you'll come back again. Annie Birch ~ Marketing and Guest Relations, Serengeti Simba Lodge
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Additional Information about Serengeti Simba Lodge

Property: 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 115 Specialty Lodging in Serengeti National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
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 
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