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“An unforgettable week in an unforgettable country”

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Voyager Beach Resort
Ranked #2 of 60 Hotels in Mombasa
Reviewed September 30, 2012

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.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank L0nd0nCityGirl_1983
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BeutifulKenya64, Group Operations Manager at Voyager Beach Resort, responded to this reviewResponded October 1, 2012

Dear Guest,
Even as an employee i agree that there is lots of rationale in your 10 point agenda. We must thank for staying with us and taking time to post your comments on the TA Forum
Good Day
The Mara Team

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,204 - 1,210 of 3,071 reviews

Reviewed September 29, 2012

Key points about our hols
1. We had to change rooms as our shower didn't work, we had to complain a number of times o be moved
2. Buffet food was poor and gave us upset tummys
3. However, the Italian restaurant was much better, although not excellent
4. Surroundings were good; all 3 pools were good
5. Sellers on the beach were annoying, however once you told them politely no thanks, they usually left you alon
6. Rooms were very dated and in ours you could smell the drains
7. Staff were generally friendly
8. Not intending on going back

To summarise, very nice for relaxing and if your on a diet you will loose weight :) however after staying in the safari accommodation we were disappointed, as the safari accommodation was of a much higher standard (surprisingly). And always had hot running water (in the middle of a game reserve) this really amused us.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Phil_ClaireSki
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 26, 2012

Depending on the day I choose to reflect on, or whether I dwell on the negative or positive features of this hotel, the star rating I gave it could have been anything from one to five. We are just back from a fortnight's stay, arriving on the 4th September, and had an excellent time.
As suggested by previous reviewers, and given the reputation of this site (as contributors, it is incumbent on all of us to be candid), our choice of hotel was based on its ranking here.
We were booked through Thompson(Thomas Cook having "pulled" the holiday as Monarch had ceased flying Gatwick-Mombasa).
There are several different "standards" of room available at the Voyager, so ensure that you get what you are looking for. We booked a "standard" based on it being a 4-star, but the room wasn't quite what we expected (based on our previous two breaks in Cuba and the Dominican Republic). We asked for an alternative, which was provided and comparable to what we'd previously experienced in the Caribbean, but only after two attempts. The "trade-off" was that it was above the stage where the entertainment took place every evening (no peace till after 11pm) but it was worth it!.
We did view a room which was of the standard we expected, but it was classed as a "superior" and we were quoted an additional £44 per night to upgrade (over £600 extra for the fortnight!). Despite the hotel being around 50% full we could not be "upgraded" without paying this additional tariff as "reservations are made centrally and we (they) would need to show the additional income for this room being occupied".
Margaret who dealt with our initial disappointment was VERY helpful and we ended up very happy indeed...the room was excellent.
The shower was however pathetic (on a good day), with barely a trickle of salty water emanating from its multi-perforated, impressive looking nozzle. More like a leaky roof. Tap water was similarly saline, so brushing teeth, washing face and shaving took on a whole new perspective. Plenty bottled water was always on hand (free) to help with minor ablutions.
The beds were rock hard. I managed fine, but my partner had to ask for two duvets (folded over) to lie on to enable her to get a decent nights' sleep. She resorted, in the end, to sleeping on the (many) pillows provided, on top of the mattress.
HINT to Voyager....less pillows, proper mattresses.
There is a mini-bar in the room, which bizarrely (despite being all-inclusive) was chargeable at the end of the fortnight. This is because all branded drinks Coca-Cola, Fanta, Sprite etc (even in the Hotel Bars) are deemed to be surplus, luxury, items and therefore NOT included in your package. Gordon's Gin, Johnny Walker Whisky, Smirnoff Vodka etc will cost you a premium.
As a non-drinker, paying extra for the odd "proper" coca-cola seemed a bit of a slap in the face when I could have had unlimited house brand lager and spirits.
The food was varied and excellent, never a disappointing selection for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
The entertainment ,provided free of charge every evening, was of a decent standard; certainly good enough to keep grab(and keep) ones attention.
The pools, bars and grounds were immaculately maintained and as good as any we've come across previously. The situation of the hotel itself is impressive.
There are the usual "free" water-sports for any activity not requiring an engine, though the beach along this part of the Kenyan coast will be a huge disappointment for anyone hoping to regularly go in the sea. There are reefs and coral beds all along the foreshore and you will find few hotel guests venturing in for a swim.
There are glass bottom boat excursions available as there are diving lessons (in the pool) from qualified instructors(at a cost). Fishing trips can be booked via Ali "Big Fish" for anyone interested in catching something aquatic.
Hoping to catch your attention for something other than an "aquatic experience" are several local ladies who regularly frequent the main bar. I have to say I was a bit surprised given the reputation of the hotel.
Booking a Safari is a MUST. If you haven't been on one before and you travel all this way, then you are wasting your money without adding a safari. We did some snorkelling too which was fantastic.
In summation, this was an excellent stay after initial "teething troubles", but the hotel could still do better with just a few changes.

Room Tip: Book a superior room with a sea view. Period.
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank NorrieT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 26, 2012

nice hotel, needs touching up in places, staff were very friendly, entertainment was good the showers and sinks use salt water and some of the rooms had no hot water, beautiful beach but you can't use it because of the beach sellers hounding you. it varied from 27 people to 47 people trying to sell you something, which can be quite intense at times. Good points the free water sports the catamaran was brilliant. the snorkeling is better in sham El sheik. but if you do go into the sea its like getting into a bath so warm. the food was ok but make sure that you take your imodium because you will probably need it. the Italian restaurant is very good. watch out for the monkey's make sure that you lock your patio doors when your not in your room.the beds are very hard. the downside was all of the prostitutes which openly use the hotel.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank sam c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 26, 2012

We spent a week here after a week of safari and really enjoyed the resort
We had a wonderful deluxe room overlooking the lawns with huge beds, a very nice bathroom and big balcony.
The food here is excellent and always a wide choice - can especiall recommend the egg-station for breakfast.
There is a choice of 3 pools - all wonderful. We tended to stay around the activity pool and joined in the water earobics and other water sports organised by the animation team. This team of youngsters were a great bunch - so friendly and helped to make us so welcome.
You can get straight down onto the beach and swim in the perfectly safe lagoon cut off from the wilder ocean by a reef about a mile out. The sea comes right up to the resort edge and when the tide comes in there are great waves to splash and dive in.
We never left the resort but a couple of highloghts were - a massage in the spa, most relaxing and therapeutic - and the snorkelling trip and walk on the reef (at a small extra charge) where we saw plenty of fish.
To sum up this is a great resort with lots to offer and even more if you are interested in excursions etc

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank hardwil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 26, 2012

We visited Kenya and the Voyager Beach Hotel from 10 September until returning yesterday - 25 September. It was one of the best holidays we have ever had. It was just the two of us but it was lovely. Our bedroom was a superior garden view, but we could also have a good view of the sea between the trees when sitting on our patio.The gardens in the hotel are so well looked after and look lovely all the time - a little army of gardeners work behind the scenes to make things special. 3 pools to choose from but we chose the one by the Kaskazi bar as it was good, close to the bar if we wanted anything and just friendly! The food was always plentiful and good - not always to my taste but why go on a holiday abroad if you want egg and chips - although you could have had this if you wanted - they catered for all tastes! The lunches by the Kaskazi bar were great - ranging from salads - the chicken one is great through to pizza and burgers - which they make fresh everyday. The drinks were great and you could have wine any time of the day - this doesnt happen in an all inclusive hotel everywhere. Night time entertainment was varied and usually quite good, with the animation team producing shows on occasions. But the greatest thing about this hotel is the staff! They are so friendly and helpful and smiling all the time - and its not just that they want a tip! Whilst they were all good, I must mention Roberta, Bernard and Nixon from the restaurant, Philip and John from the Kazkasi bar, Dominic from the pool and Vincent who was our cleaner. On the first night we were there we were invited to attend the Captain's table for dinner - a really special evening with only 12 guests invited per week. It was a lovely evening and Captain Tom was really good company along with our other guests who had got married on the Friday. We went on a safari with Sunset Tours - a local travel agent - Victor - , whose details we obtained when we arrived in Kenya. Our safari to Tsavo East was fantastic - just the two of us in the bus with our driver - Anthony - who had eyes like a hawk and was really knowledgeable! We stayed overnight in Voi Safari Lodge and unfortunately, we werent really impressed by the staff there but still had a great time. We also booked to go to a bush village and a school - taken again by Anthony - and I was so moved by the children being delighted to receive a boiled sweet each and then singing for us that I cried when leaving - through emotion - but I am so glad we went - such an insight. We also visited the dowh - the Tamarind, again through Sunset tours - which was lovely. All in all a wonderful holiday - one which we would recommend to anyone!! Make sure you use Sunset Tours - you save a bit but get better value! Thank you Voyager for a memorable holiday!

Room Tip: Nearly all rooms have a sea view - but we chose a superior garden view - which was great. Apparentl...
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank AngelaB13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 25, 2012

Just spent 11 days here after returning from safari. Room was ok but needed updating as looking sad staff great food was ok lovely having 3 pools to choose from all very clean. What spoilt it was we were'nt leaving until 4.45pm and had to vacate our room at 10am the 'boss' on the front desk was obnoxious and unhelpful there were many empty rooms and felt we could have had 1until at least 2pm. Also missed out on the Italian meals as thought we had to pay for them found out on last day we could have eaten there as many evenings as we wanted free! Would think twice about staying here again.

Room Tip: maybe go for a seaview room although heard they had shower problems
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Linda G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Voyager Beach Resort

Address: Nyali Off Links Road, | Mount Kenya Road, Mombasa 80100, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Coast Province > Mombasa
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Mombasa
#1 Family Hotel in Mombasa
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Mombasa
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Mombasa
#2 Luxury Hotel in Mombasa
Price Range: $142 - $369 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Voyager Beach Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 232
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

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