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“First impressions bad, but settled in and enjoyed”

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Karawan Beach & Resort
Ranked #28 of 35 Hotels in Sousse
Reviewed August 18, 2013 via mobile

First arrived at hotel to be greeted by receptionist with no people skills, wanted us to pay extra 50 dinar per room for a pool view which we had already paid for, eventually got our rooms for no extra cost only to not be able to locate them. Went back to reception who found it funny that we couldn't find them. Explained we are tired and hungry don't appreciate being laughed at. Was then shown our rooms which to be fair, were basic but clean. Bath and shower, 2 double beds and a tv wardrobe. Our patio doors opened onto the pool with slides and I must say there were only 5
Rooms with this facility so we had a result.. The kids thought it was amazing. The next day we sorted out our differences with receptionist and he was pleasant after that. We were bed and breakfast NOT all inclusive.. Breakfast was basic omlette pancakes bread rolls cereal. Or salad cheese cabbage stuff Eastern European. We had a look at all inclusive food and it looked horrific.. Would not recommend. We found a restaurant just next to hotel called Caruso. We ate there every night for 2 weeks. Our waiter Negi was amazing and worked so hard. In the hotel Ali baba is a sweet heart and Hanz looked after us. They both book trips for you. We went with camels which was enjoyable and also quad biking which was such fun.. Would recommend taking bottles if water
With you as u have to pay for drinks.. Also with camels you are given head protectors but need to pay for £3 dinar each. Entertainment in hotel is dated but u can't help but get enticed to dance with the animation team- Moomoo was the friendliest of the lot and the big chief was lazy. A lot if Russian German and polish at the hotel who to be honest were ignorant and rude. Sousse itself is a complete dive, dirty streets, absolutely over run with stray cats and the smell is atrocious.. One night we went for a walk and turnt left it was horrendous, police everywhere a man in a balaclava and a machine gun. You get approached by men saying they are ur coach driver enticing u to go with them to
Medina- DO nOT GO.. It looks like a war zone on the main broadway!!! The beach side was pleasant and the beach itself was lovely, clear warm sea. They do have small medosa jellyfish which sting, but like a nettle rash- take tomatoe with u and rub on sting. It didn't put us off going in the sea.. Not a lot to do, not many clean restaurant hence why we ate at Caruso every night.. Very very cheap out there dinner
Plus drinks for 7 was 122,600 dinar which is like £40. We came home with half
Our spending money!!! Not a lot to buy out there souvenir wise..
All in all we had an excellent holiday as we made most of our time there. But would
Not recommend Tunisia
To anyone looking to go there on holiday

  • Stayed: August 2013
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Thank Michelle O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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184 - 190 of 384 reviews

Reviewed August 16, 2013

first off we had a great time mainly due to joking about hotel with other brits
food same everyday meat casserole potatoes in 38c weather
drinks beer like fizzy water in plastic coffee cups <buy more glasses.
towels not delivered to room till late afternoon and still damp
hotel FULL of rude drunk russians
on positive side ahmed door man very nice friendly guy and barman on all inc bar during day top man and chambermaids
if you brave this hotel take plenty of loperamide as everyone i met got the s...ts

Room Tip: allways choose sea veiw
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  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank C6325RCjohn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 16, 2013 via mobile

Upon arrival we were given a room with a lovely view of a main road, complete with view of old dilapidated buildings & rubbish tip.
Beds, Pillows & bed ware were absolutely awful. However after thee days of complaints we were offered a room with a sea view for three persons for 11 remaining days. This did cost an extra £20 English, That appeared to go straight into the pocket of whoever was working on reception. The food although barely edible, (5 out of our party of 9, were badly ill,) was left out uncovered until the serving dish was empty, deserts also. The pools are not only very small, but also very overcrowded. On noticing this in the first night we decided to PAY"again"and reserve our loungers on the "Karawan all-inc' section of beach". However three of OUR own beach towels were stolen from a supposed locked & secure beach bar overnight. The entertainment team pretty much suit the hotel itself & the immediate surrounding area. Tired, Delapidated, Dirty & money grabbing. Overall not a good waste of hard earned money, Give this one a miss.

  • Stayed: August 2013
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1  Thank Leon K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 16, 2013

The hotel is ok. its basic but clean with very helpful staff. You get what you pat for. The food was nice. Again basic but there was always a few meat dishes chicken dishes with rice, vegetables and potatoes and lots of pizza and chips for the fussy eaters.
It’s the staff at the hotel that keep it going. I think management could be more organized. But the staff work very hard to make it what it is. Occasionally they would run out of draught cola but the staff would go shop and stock up so there was always plenty to drink.
The maids are polite lovely and very hard working. The bar and restaurant staff and the trip sellers are very friendly and helpful. Also Midou who does henna tattoos is really nice and very talented and makes you feel comfortable.
It is definitely Enzo and moo moo from the animation team who made it worth the visit. They work hard to entertain and make you feel at home. 24/7 they are constantly working hard to include and involve you. From early afternoon sports and games, late afternoon entertainment. They welcome you to the restaurant, do the rounds at the poolside chatting with customers and making you laugh and feel at home, they did a kids mini disco and put shows on in the evening and dance with you in the disco until the early hours. They were very approachable and great with the kids.
Unfortunately the entertainments management team was very lazy apart from an occasional dance in the disco, they did very little, they just sat around drinking most of the time not interacting with customers. Hamsa the assistant manager for the animation team seemed unsocial and even gave dirty looks to customers.

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank Anitaz31
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 15, 2013

Firstly, we still had a good time and the kids had a great time :)
Now for the things you and the Hotel need to know .....
Health and Safety around the water slides is non existent .... children using the slides when they were turned off, people coming down them too close together and therefore landing on the person in front of them, youths going down them standing up (one lad split his head open when he fell just before the end), glass broken and not cleared up properly, pool must be dirty as an awful lot of people ended up with ear infections. It's only a matter of time before there is a serious accident unless they introduce some safety procedures.
Sunbeds around the pool are 'reserved' by people leaving towels on them all week! Some people turned up mid afternoon after the beds had been empty (except for their towel) all day! Unbelievable! Hopefully, since on our last night the sunbeds were all stacked up, the hotel are now rectifying this problem.
Hygiene standards are not great but this is more due to the hotel being old and in need of refurbishment rather than bad cleaning. The beds are very firm! Air conditioning in rooms is great. No sound proofing though!
Food ... there was usually something that all 8 of us could eat but sometimes it didn't look particularly appetising. There were pancakes and omelettes in the morning but only if you happened to be in the restaurant when the one member of staff was actually cooking them and if you could be bothered to queue for about 20 minutes! There were pizzas but again you had to queue and if you weren't one of the first 10 people you had no chance because people took enough pizza pieces to feed an army! Some people are just so greedy ... this is not the hotel's fault.
You also had to queue for drinks in the dining room! More soft drinks machines are needed so people can help themselves ... the availability should not be limited by facilities.
Drinks at other times were not sufficient ... frequently running out, frequently warm, often taking a long time to be served as the one barman (inside) spent most of the time walking round the hotel trying to find glasses or even plastic beakers. Cheap white plastic cups were usually resorted to - classy! No excuses for not having enough glasses or for not having enough drinks if you are taking all inclusive guests.
The staff were all very helpful and tried their best to help with any problems you spoke to them about.
I do think they should vacate rooms earlier than 12noon as incoming guests (including ourselves) frequently had to wait hours before being allocated a room and then often didn't have the correct number of beds etc. The problems were always sorted but the fact is they shouldn't be happening in the first place. Outgoing guests usually have to vacate by 10am and I think most people just live with the inconvenience.
The quad bike experience organised through Ali Baba was enjoyed by my 21 year old son and his friend although I am glad I wasn't there to see it as again, there were very little if any safety procedures followed!
A lot of the surrounding countryside that we saw was disappointing in that it resembled a tip! Litter everywhere ... such a shame.
The camel ride, also organised by Ali Baba, was horrendous! On arrival, three bus loads of people were left to stand around in the scorching sun whilst 'his 40 thieves' put a piece of white lining material on everyone's head and secured it with some embroidery thread before telling them they now owed them 3 dinar!! Not a lot I know, but an expense we weren't expecting as we were told everything was included. The organisation was appalling ... nobody seemed to know what was supposed to happen .... people from a coach that arrived last ended up getting on the camels first, there was no way of getting on the camels apart from being thrown up by 3 locals manhandling you! The people who were left went in a horse drawn trailer/cart. All the time one of the 40 thieves was taking photographs. The camels were tied so close together that their mouths (containing very large teeth) were next to the knees of the person on the camel in front! Half way the people on the camels swapped with the people in the horse drawn trailer/carts only some people didn't get to ride a camel because there weren't enough of them! We then stood around, again in the scorching sun, whilst people could feed a piece of cactus to a camel. We weren't allowed to take photographs because they were selling them! We then went to 'lunch' which was a piece of bread we had seen being baked with tomato and cucumber inside in a very spicy sauce and some water melon. Drinks had to be paid for ... even water! We hadn't taken money because we didn't want to take a bag as we were riding camels and we had a 5 year old, a 2 year old and a 77 year old .... they can not do without water! We should have been told. We complained to Ali Baba who told us he would give us our money back ..... then he changed his mind and said we could go again for free (hahaa) .... then he said he'd get us a present to apologise .... obviously we didn't get anything!
The entertainment was sometimes great and sometimes we didn't have a clue what was going on but the kids entertainment seemed to do just that .... entertain the kids :)
Paying for the internet via the internet café was a waste of time .... it wasn't available unless you were standing next to the café! Search for unsecured wifi near the bar which is located inside ... the one you have to pay for not the all inclusive one ... we used that all week.
Get the little train from the back of the hotel and go to the marina .... it's a lovely little trip and there are plenty of shops, restaurants and bars around the marina .... haggle, definitely haggle - I got a lovely chunky silver necklace that I was told would cost 140 dinar - for 50 dinar!! :) If you can put up with the hassling you can find some bargains.
We had a sea/pool view but a lot of people who had the other side of the hotel said they had a great time sitting on their balconies watching all the activities going on in the street!
As a woman I sometimes found it quite intimidating outside the hotel complex and wouldn't have felt particularly safe if there wasn't a big bloke with us!
Having said all this I want to reiterate my first comment .... we had a good time and the kids had a great time :)
I heard that this year is the first year they have had a license to accept British guests ..... hopefully they will learn that we have high expectations and up their standards.
The staff always did their best to help. All inclusive was cheap for August so basically you get what you pay for .... if you want 5 star you will have to pay 5 star prices!
Enjoy your holiday :) The weather was gorgeous :)

Room Tip: If you want a view ..... choose sea/pool view If you want entertainment .... choose city view If y...
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  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Jackie H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 13, 2013

Hotel staff are really really friendly,
food is desprate.
Beer isn't very good.
Animation team do a marvellous job and earn there money,
I think tunisia is a culture that does not rush so do not expect things to be done in a hurry.
I enjoyed my stay but the food did let it down.
Karawan isn't that bad but the small things could make it a whole lot better like pool towels ice cream for kids and cater for English people.

  • Stayed: July 2013
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1  Thank Bodge63
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 12, 2013

A total dump, horrible staff, hygiene non exsistant, food disgusting and covered with flies, dont put yourself though this nightmare, luke warm drinks, warm water, rooms disgraceful, i have never experienced such poor hygiene didnt believe it could be as bad as the reviews but it was WORSE, the staff are rude and unhelpful, the locals use the beach as a dumping ground, dirty nappies every were, i do not have enough words to express how bad the whole place was dont waste your hard earned money

Room Tip: sea view or you will be on main road
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  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with family
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3  Thank sharon k
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Karawan Beach & Resort

Address: Avenue Hedi Chaker | Route de la Corniche, Sousse 4000, Tunisia
Location: Tunisia > Sousse Governorate > Sousse
Amenities:
Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#14 Spa Hotel in Sousse
#20 On the Beach Hotel in Sousse
Price Range: $22 - $71 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Karawan Beach & Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 256
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Karawan Beach Hotel Sousse
Karawan Beach And Resort
Karawan Hotel Sousse

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