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“A creepy old place & too expensive” 1 of 5 bubbles
Review of Momella Wildlife Lodge

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Momella Wildlife Lodge
Ranked #67 of 148 Specialty Lodging in Arusha
Leuven, Belgium
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“A creepy old place & too expensive”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 27, 2012

We paid 170$ per night for what must have been the most lousy hotel of our trip to Rwanda/Tanzania (and one of the most expensive as well) and one of the worst price/quality hotels we've ever been to in our life.
We stayed there 2 nights (before & after our Mt. Meru climb), and we were the only guests.
The pool hasn't been cleaned in over a decade, the waiter looked like he ran away from the Addams Family, there are goats maintaining the grass in front of the rooms, electricity runs only between 6pm & 10pm (too expensive to put the generator on all day), the rooms were nice in the 70s but have not been updated since, bathroom really crappy with cracks in the shower wall, at night there are torch lights shining (we thought the guy who herds the goats)...
Plus you have to pay 35$ per person in park fees to Arusha national park when you want to reach or leave the hotel (one time entry fee...)
After complaining to the manager he did gave us a discount and mentioned that they would start renovation works soon...

In short: don't go there!!

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank siskadh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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24 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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    6
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (5)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
18 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 23, 2012

4 of us stayed in 2 "huts" in MOmella lodge in July 2012. It is a basic facility in a picturesque village with views of Kilimanjaro peeking out of the clouds occasionally. It looked like we were the ONLY family that was staying in the lodge for the 2 nights we were there! Their food is nothing to write home about. Us being vegetarians they had even narrower options!
But the staff were super nice and courteous and pleasant to deal with.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank ceevee97
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
92 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 16, 2012

This Lodge is unique and picturesque. With the scenic location, you can wake up in the morning (early, before sunrise) and see giraffes in the yard, or doze off in the afternoon to donkeys outside your room. The accommodations are little huts with thatched roofs. I stayed with a group of 16 students and 5 chaperones as we wrapped up our humanitarian trip by safariing at Momella and later on Ngorongoro Crater. Compared to our recent stay in a hospital in Kilema while we completed our volunteer work, this Lodge was a real treat.

Food: We loved it! I always went back for seconds -- especially at the one lunch we had during our stay. Bring nutella though, because they don't have any.

Rooms: the shower curtains don't do much to keep water in. Always use bottled water to brush your teeth. Bring flip flops for the bathroom.

Complaints: 1) Unless you are going on safari or planning to hike Mount Meru, or anything else OFF the Lodge, there isn't much to do during down time. Most of us students tanned by the pool or lazed in the chairs under the shelter by the lobby. We watched Hatari in the evening though, which was pretty cool considering Momella is the place where it was filmed.
2). Big problem that made me glad to leave: the bugs. Big spiders making their home at our front door, slugs attaching themselves to our doors, ants finding their way into our bed, spiders invading our floors, wasps meeting their doom in our bathroom... My advice: ALWAYS close your windows and doors when leaving the room. Tuck your mosquito nets into the mattress and spray the bed and nets with some OFF! My sleep quality would've been great had I not known there was a medium-sized black, long-legged spider quietly waiting below my mattress.

Other than that, the location is great, the service great, the food great, the overall place clean, but beware the bugs.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank VivienneJK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Blantyre, Malawi
Level Contributor
81 reviews
58 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 127 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 14, 2011

We were happy with our stay as it met our needs for a self organised trip up Mt Meru and the Manager (Moses) greatly assisted us with this. The lodge is only about 3 kms outside the park and the entrance from which climbs up Mt Meru commence. We could park our car whilst on Meru for $10 a night and the lodge assisted us in getting to and from the entrance for our climb. Moses was lively and informative and he made a big difference to our 2 night stay (1 night before going up and 1 night afterwards). When we were ready to leave he showed us the back route to the Arusha/Moshi road which meant that we didn't have to pay the fee for going through the park.

Having said that we really enjoyed our stay I must point out that not everything is perfect. We liked our hut as it was spacious, gave us privacy and is in very rural area with views of both Mt Meru and Mt Kilimanjaro (when visible) . However, it is rustic and for $115 a night is probably a bit over priced even when considering it is so close to Arusha NP. The sheets on the bed were too short and they therefore used 2 sheets on the top rather than 1. I agree with the previous reviewer that it can seem a bity spooky when you are the only ones staying there as the lodge isn't fenced off. Although they do have guards Moses did advise us to close our windows at night when we asked and luckily at 1600 meters it is cool enough to do so. There was plenty of hot water but it took several minutes for it to get through to our room. We also thought that the food wasn't that great and was a bit expensive. Luckily we opted for bed and breakfast, rather than the expensive full board in order to save money, and therefore only had a couple of dinners and breakfasts.

Mount Meru turned out be the highlight of our 1 month trip and we also liked Arusha National Park (can be seen in about 6 hours). Thanks Moses.

Room Tip: I thought that the huts looked better than the rondavels.
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank MalawiExpat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Copenhagen
Level Contributor
74 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 26, 2011

We found the place a bit scary - mostly because we were the only guest staying there that night. The food was ok, but far from great. We got a soup, one piece of chicken and some fruit salad. I think they might have a buffet when they have more guests.

On the positive side - this was the only lodge where we were allowed to eat dinner and breakfast with our driver/guide, which we enjoyed. Also - unlike the wildlife lodges - your room is VERY quiet at night, and you can hear every sound outside, which is kind of cool.

You sleep in small individual houses, each with hot shower, a toilet and electricity until 22.00. There was also a mosquito net over the bed - which was nice.

So not a bad place - just not a wow place either.

We stayed here as part of a bigger trip - and from the Lonely planet book the place is only 90$ per night (which is very cheap when you talk safari lodges) so I guess you just get what you pay for.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Mambo_DK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Momella Wildlife Lodge

Property: Momella Wildlife Lodge
Address: PO BOX 999, Arusha, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Arusha Region > Arusha
Hotel Style:
Ranked #67 of 148 Specialty Lodging in Arusha
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
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