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“When my feet touched the Earth it felt like "coming home"......”

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Songota Falls Lodge
Ranked #1 of 101 Arusha B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Landers, California
1 review
“When my feet touched the Earth it felt like "coming home"......”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 4, 2009

It had been my dream for many years to spend time in Africa....the birthplace of humankind. In August, 2005 I was afforded the opportunity to travel to Tanzania with a group of Kindred Spirits for a Prayer Dance. Songota Falls Lodge was our "base camp" and the energy of the incredibly beautiful owner and her son as well as "our" cook was right in keeping with the energy of the place.....beautiful, serene, breathtaking views, plant life.... It was an experience that will live in my Heart forever. We were welcomed as old friends and treated like family. It is a place on Earth well worth the visit!
Valerie Eagle Heart

  • Stayed August 2006
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank RainbowEagle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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216 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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Date | Rating
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English first
U.S.
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 8, 2009

My mother and I stayed at the Songota Falls Lodges for six nights. Joyce Kimaro has managed to create a peaceful, nurturing retreat just outside of Arusha, nestled in the mountains. The surroundings are cinematic, nearly impossible to believe. You may take walks up to the primary school on top the hill or head down to the villages for sight of stunning bougainvillea, small crop farms, villages, and the river. Because of an ankle injury, I could not walk all the way down to the falls, but I didn't feel I missed a whit of the beauty and I caught sight of Mount Meru crowned by mist one afternoon. The banda are comfortable and clean. But nothing quite measures up to Joyce Kimaro's cooking: expect multiple course breakfasts and dinners sinfully beyond the measly board fee. Homemade juices, daily fruit plates and soups with inimitable savory tastes (spice and herb combinations deliciously foreign to Westerners), curries, fish, and vegetables and legumes. Vegetarians need not fear. You may run into Joyce's son Raymond, who is a trained artist and whose work surpasses the arts and crafts sold elsewhere, in my opinion, and for the same money. For many days, my mother and I remained at the lodges and just listened to the sounds and gazed at the scenery. Tanzania need not be all about safari . . . there are other treasures, less scheduled, less organized and packaged, that can be had such as lingering at Songota Falls Lodges.

  • Stayed July 2009
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Proustina
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chattanooga TN
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 12, 2009

I loved the Songota Falls Lodge from the moment I stepped on the grounds and was greeted by Joyce with her delicious fruit juice cocktail. I stayed with 4 of my friends my first night in Tanzania after spending 2 weeks in Kenya. If I ever go back to Arusha, I will definitely stay at this lodge.

After we left, our group did a safari in the Serrengeti and Ngorangora Crater, and 1/2 our group returned to Songota Falls while the rest of us took off for the base of Mt. Kilimanjaro. We never made it because of a car accident that busted my head open and required stitches. I contacted my friends back at the lodge, and when Joyce found out what happened, so drove out to make sure I was ok. She was a tremendous help in translating the swahili for police reports and medical records. I don't know what I would have done without her. She is truly a warm, caring person and this is reflected in her accomodations.

If you visit, also check out the artwork by her son, the talented Raymond.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Ryan75Travels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Florida
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 1, 2009

I have visited Songota Falls Lodge twice, the first in August of 2005 and the last time in May of 2007. It is a safe haven for rest and relaxation or spiritual work. The grounds are well maintained, the individual lodges are clean and have hot water. Joyce and her staff take excellent care of her visitors. She is held in "high esteem" in the community and can arrange for all your needs - to the Serengetti or into town for exellent shopping. They will prepare the meals to your individual needs. (You must, however, taste the local peanut-butter and have them prepare fresh juice for you) Our group plans a return visit in the near future.

  • Stayed May 2007, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank sanctuaryofpeace
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Arusha, Tanzania
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 1, 2009

We have been to Songota Falls Lodge several times and always loved it! As long term residents we’ve seen quite a few places - but this is the one to go for if you are looking for a peaceful place away from the hustle of town(s). The lodge makes for a great and tranquil base before or after your safari, mountain climb or whatever you are up to while being in Tanzania.
Located in the foothills of Mount Meru it features several cosy one room ‘bandas’ (huts), beautifully built in local design but with the amenities of en-suite toilets and showers with hot (!) water.
Just a short ‘matatu’ drive away from the center of Arusha, THE hub for visitors in Northern Tanzania, it offers all the accessibility you might want or need and at the same time gives you a wonderful place to retreat.
The owner, Joyce Kimaro (or Mama Ray, as the Tanzanians would say) is a wonderful host and fantastic chef! We love her most delicious food which is always home made and freshly cooked from fresh and locally grown ingredients. Freshly baked bread will welcome you to your breakfast as well as fruits, being grown only a short walk from your ‘banda’. On several occasions Mama Ray has been asked to train other chefs and to cater on functions.
Enjoy the peace, the food, the views out on the great plains of the Maasai Steppe and don’t miss the walk down to the falls from which the Lodge derived its name!

  • Stayed September 2008, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank TheEuropeanVagabonds
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nebraska
Level Contributor
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 29, 2009

I have returned to Songota Falls Lodge on three separate occasions and know that anyone who visits it but once will do the same. The owner, Joyce, is an incredibly welcoming woman and an amazing chef (best soup I have ever had in my life!) Her son, Ray, is a constant source of entertainment, with his silliness, stories and artistic talent. It is a quiet place, away from the hustle and bustle of Arusha. However getting to Arusha is just a short scenic walk and a thirty cent matatu ride away. The bandas are always clean, the staff is always smiling, the food is always made with love, the view is always breathtaking, and you are always welcome.

  • Stayed December 2008, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank shawnaclement
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Annapolis, MD
1 review
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 25, 2009

Songota Falls Lodge is a quaint, economical lodge tucked away in the mountains of Arusha, Tanzania. Operated by Joyce Kimaro and her son, Raymond, this little known gem has small one bedroom huts where visitors can stay in a flower-filled, lush green paradise near Mt. Mehru. Located near the Songota Falls, one can be lulled to sleep at night by the delightful sound of falling water before waking up to enjoy delicious, superb meals prepeared by Kimaro and her smal staff. Afterwards, enjoy a day of shopping or take off with a boxed lunch to for an African safari.

Helpful?
Thank TravelingforPeace
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Songota Falls Lodge

Property: Songota Falls Lodge
Address: 1134, Arusha, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Arusha Region > Arusha
Amenities:
Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 101 B&Bs / Inns in Arusha
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 5

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