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“Great place; food, views and service”

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Ngorongoro Serena Safari Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Toronto
Level Contributor
41 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Great place; food, views and service”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 8, 2013

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay in this place. The food was well-prepared and well-served. Rooms had a nice rustic feel but amenities were entirely modern. My main beef was the internet access; it was restricted to the lounge and reception areas, not accessible in the rooms. At least we did not have to pay an additional fee like in some of the other places we stayed.

Another quibble was the walking safari, our guide (whose name slips my mind now) was mediocre and throughout the hour-long hike, appeared to be quite disconnected from the task. Only the spectacular views made it worth the $15 we were charged. Get ready to be winded though - I was initially puzzled at how taxing the hike was until I remembered that walking uphill at 7000 feet above sea level is always going to be a task for the non-acclimatized hiker.


The view of the crater is stunning but it's deceptive. It is absolutely impossible to appreciate, from the lodge, the quantities and diversity of wildlife resident on the crater floor.

On our way out, we felt more grateful for the skills and experience of our driver when we came upon an upturned jeep balanced precariously at the edge of the road. Our driver explained that inexperienced drivers navigating their way down the crater rim on the early-morning, mist-shrouded roads often make mistakes with consequences like what we saw.

This is a lodge we will definitely choose on our next trip to the area.

Room Tip: It's quite a hike to the more distant rooms. If you have a choice, ask to be roomed closer to th...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Deji O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,103 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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Hartford, Connecticut
Level Contributor
22 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 8, 2013

Our family of four stayed at this lodge which is beautifully perched on the rim of the crater. It can be a bit of a drive to get there (we drove from Mountain Village lodge in Arusha), but if you have a good driver/ guide, it makes for a nice drive. The rooms have awesome views of the crater. The food is superb. Overall, this has the feel of a 4-star lodge. But that is what I wanted for ourselves. To stay in a place where we could relax, recover from our jet lag and get ready for the next 10 days. This location also gets you into the crater pretty quickly. The service was pretty good. We did not have time to the activities (such as walk etc) offered by the lodge. In the grand scheme of things, you could argue whether or not to include a visit to the crater in a trip to East Africa. But if you do, you can not go wrong with this lodge.

Room Tip: Think all rooms have views of the crater.
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank srm33804
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sarnen
Level Contributor
96 reviews
54 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 7, 2013

Like all Serena Lodges they have very good food and nice and friendly staff. Just be Aware that this lodge is situated at a height of 2300 m above see Level. And it could get cold during the nite. However, the roomattendants are even preparing hot water bag for the nite. Very nice view down to the crater.

Room Tip: There is no swimmingpool .. its too high up in the mountain. If you have Walking disabilties you mus...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled on business
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank sarnentraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madrid, Spain
Level Contributor
9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 6, 2013

We spent 2 nights here and loved coming back from safari to the log wood fires for tea and coffee and seeing the evening performances of the maasai and the band before dinner enjoying a little drink while we kept warm by the fires before dinner! The food was good with a great variety. The real selling point is the view from the room down onto the crater which was nothing short of incredible. We loved the little touches of the water bottles in the bed when we came to settle in for the evening. The room decor is different, we still cant decide what we think of it, but for sure you smile and enjoy the fact you are for sure on safari! The only drawbacks are that the spa is average. There's no pool, but I cant see that anyone would want to be in one so high up! The atmosphere is top notch, as always with the serenas the staff are extremely personable.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank CVR2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
21 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 4, 2013

Ngorongoro is the most amazing place I ever visited. We arrived at the craters edge around noon when the haze was just burning of. From the edge you could recognize the herds, see a group of rhinoceroses, elephants, flamingos, etc, etc, etc. AMAZING.

The hotel provides the same. Huge terrace, huge windows in the restaurant and the view is everywhere and always amazing. Sunrise on your balcony, make sure you get up early to see the sun come up over the craters edge.

Hotel is average: they cater for large numbers, several groups, everybody goes in and out in maximum two nights. You don’t go there for the great hotel, you go there to see Ngorongoro and for that it is perfect.

Room Tip: All rooms have the same view, stairs are unavoidable...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank GeeeBeeeBeee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Beirut, Lebanon
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 3, 2013

Being on the crater of volcano is something special, the view from the top, the huge space, the traditional dance after dinner, even the cold you feel and the bottle of hot water in your bed, the walk from the room to the entrance, the breakfast and lunch prepared as take away during the safari, everything was special and had a touch of magic, something new but never ever forgotten.

Room Tip: rooms with balcony and a bit far from the lobby are recommended so you enjoy the walking while liste...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank laurahmak
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Level Contributor
139 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 29, 2013

We arrived at dusk and left the next morning at 6:00, so we didn't get to stay here long, but the grounds and the view were lovely. A perfect location to look out over the Ngorongoro Crater. The dinner was very good. A wide variety of foods and something for the vegetarian in the group. The hot water bottles in the beds were a cute touch, but something we really appreciated through the night. It did seem to have a very large number of rooms, as we were quite a ways from the main dining, bar and fireplace area. The copper fireplace was cozy - and it was a bit cold (August evening). The stone walls and rustic wooden steps were very attractive.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Cindy B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Ngorongoro Serena Safari Lodge

Property: Ngorongoro Serena Safari Lodge
Address: Ngorongoro Crater, Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Arusha Region > Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Amenities:
Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 37 Specialty Lodging in Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Ngorongoro Serena Safari Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 74
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Perched on the jagged rim of the crater, wreathed in morning mist, camouflaged in river-stone and cloaked in indigenous creepers, the Ngorongoro Serena Safari Lodge is a triumph of ecological and architectural fusion. Sensitively constructed so as to take nothing from its environment whilst affording endless vistas over the heat-shimmering reaches of the crater below, the clustered boulder-built buildings of the Lodge hug the crater rim, linked by rope-lashed timber walkways that skirt the buttressed roots of ancient, liana-hung trees. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ngorongoro Serena Safari Hotel Ngorongoro Conservation Area

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