We stayed at the Voyager for seven days from 18th-25th September 2012. It was our first ever visit to Kenya and WOW, what a spectacular country! Below are my ten tips on how to make the most out of your stay there:
1. Invest that little bit extra in a sea-view room. The view out onto the Indian Ocean is spectacular and you'll while away many a peaceful hour sitting on your balcony admiring it - especially in the early mornings and as the sun goes down. So beautiful.
2. Don't worry about being up a 7am to reserve your sun lounger. You'll always get that few die-hard sunbathers who bag their spots at the crack of dawn, but regardless of what time you go down to the pool area you're sure to find a spot that suits. Super-helpful pool staff will be on hand to help you too.
3. Don't expect 4-star luxury room decor. Although always clean, it's true that the interiors of the rooms could do with updating. We tend to be quite relaxed about this sort of thing as we're rarely but we did get frustrated by the length of time it took for the hotel to fix an issue with our toilet flush.
4. Book the Italian restaurant for dinner as soon as possible after you arrive. It's part of the hotel's all-inclusive package, is in a different league to the buffet dining experience and once you've tried it the first time, you'll want to keep going again and again! You might even prefer it to the 'Smugglers Cove' seafood restaurant for which you pay a 50% supplement.
5. Take plenty of cash. There's no ATM at the hotel and you need to pay an 800KS (approx £5) return taxi fare to get to the nearest one at the local shopping centre. My advice is to take a combination of Sterling and USD with you in cash, change some into Kenyan Shillings at the Forex bureau in the baggage reclaim area of Mombasa airport (best exchange rate) and don't forget to save $50 per person in USD for the departure tax when you leave.
6. Don't let the 'enthusiastic' beach sellers put you off venturing onto the sand. They're lovely people, some are desperately poor and are they're only trying to make a living. Take the time to engage with them and browse what they have for sale. You're more than likely to find some great deals.
7. Be aware that all-inclusive drinks service ends at 12am in all bars. It's certainly worth ordering those few extra beers at ten-to-twelve...
8. Don't be afraid to venture out of the hotel. Take a taxi to the nearby shopping centre and you'll be able to cheaply stock up on drinks and snacks. You'll find that the taxi drivers are more than happy to give you a little tour of Mombasa too.
9. If you're considering booking a safari, absolutely go with JT (Julius Tact) safaris. You won't need to check out of your room at the Voyager while away which saves a good deal of hassle (note: I'll be writing a separate review about JT Safaris and their unbelievable service).
10. For the pasta-lovers among you, don't forget to visit the pasta station at the buffet restaurant. I found most of the buffet food average at best, but this was a big exception that I sadly only discovered on our final night!
Hope that's helpful.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Moored seven kilometres north of Mombasa city centre, Voyager Beach Resort's convenient 'berth' gives guests easy access to a huge variety of historical, sporting and cultural attractions. The vibrant themed resort is famous for hosting some of Africa's finest family entertainments and animation programs, including unique themed journeys across the seven seas, culinary extravaganzas, with very supervised kids' activities and days out with Africa's best-known and most experienced childrens' safari club. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Voyager Beach Hotel Mombasa
- Voyager Hotel Kenya
- Voyager Beach Resort Mombasa
- Voyager Beach Resort Kenya
- Voyager Beach Mombasa
- Voyager Hotel Mombasa