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“Crater lodge fab, ascent road closed, not fab..”

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andBeyond Ngorongoro Crater Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed October 20, 2012

A update on the lodge and activities - the lodge is great as ever and the staff really looking after us. Food has been really tasty and actually better than I remember from my last few times with some lighter meals, great. Game driving in the crater today awesome, but NOTE the ascent road that comes out near crater lodge is closed so cars have to drive road from the Sopa / Lemala side which means a long 1 hour + drive around the rim, dusty and rough in places. So, if you are doing a dawn games drive this could mean a late arrival back, make sure you have some snacks as you never know what you'll see. A good general plan, depending on your surrounding itinerary and what YOU want, is a dawn game drive with picnic breakfast - lovely to have this at Ngoitokitok springs before 9am (the kites seem to be more active after this time and snatch food) and then head back for a late lunch and then sink into the bath OR If you have the desire or energy you can head out to visit the maasai in the western side with your guide - appreciate there are some different views on this but if you are respectful and want to see first hand the Maasai living here it can be very rewarding. Fr those spending more time here you can walk in some spots too with an armed ranger and for the very active an ascent of Mt Lemagrut or Makarot is possible - picnic lunch a must..

Room Tip: All views are pretty stunning, this is one place that despite the really high price tag the location...
  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with friends
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2  Thank ilovealtitude
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed October 20, 2012

this place is amazingly oppulent and beautiful. i can say this after a six week, four-country tour of africa in its finest lodges and hotels. but you better be a fancy person, because you might feel a BIT uncomfortable with your personal butler and personal waiter and the FANCINESS of it all.
the VIEW from the hotel is amazing. when we showed up there were zebra grazing in the front of the hotel. the food was great. and the cookie jars are always full in the main gathering area.
your house person will come and light your fireplace each night, and you will return to a bubble bath waiting with rose pedals. total oppulance. enjoy. i did!
oh, be prepared: all lodges along the crater require a LLOONNNG DRIVE up and down to the hotels and crater!

Room Tip: they are ALL amazingly situated. it doesnt matter!
  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank audballa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 14, 2012

We stayed two nights at the crater lodge. Yes, as other reviewers have commented it is expensive. However, doing a safari in Kenya and Tanzania is expensive. The real question for us was it worth it. In my opinion it was. From management down, the staff are wonderful and there is nothing they will not do for you. The breakfast was reasonable, the lunch box which we were given was the best food we had eaten in a fortnight in East Africa. We were asked if we had any dietary requirements and they were met without hesitation. Guests are provided with a butler, who in our case, made sure my wife had a hot bath waiting for her when she returned from safari.Of course, rose petals in a heart shape were on the bath mat. Liquor is supplied in your room as to are an assortment of chocolates. You even have a view of the crater from the toilet window. However, for $3,000.00 per night it would want to be good. If you really want to spoil yourself, you could not go past this establishment.

Room Tip: Seek a room as close to the main dining room area and one with uninterrupted views of the crater.
  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Frank Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 14, 2012

My wife and I have just returned from a safari in Tanzania, staying in 4 of the camps and lodges run by &Beyond. Of these, our last stop at Ngorongoro Crater Lodge was definitely the highlight. The lodge is situated on the rim with spectacular views of the whole crater, more than 1km below the picturesque chalets.
The accommodation was something to take the breath away: apart from the location and the views, the chalets are extremely spacious and luxurious. The bathroom was very special, with a free-standing bath enjoying the same views of the crater (as did the WC!).
The food was very tasty en beautifully presented. The game watching was also very worthwhile. We were first through the entrance gate and enjoyed a quiet first hour or so, before the hords of other safari vehicles descended on the crater. In the result, in did get a bit crowded towards noon, especially at sightings of any of the Big 5. Also, the ascent was closed for very necessary maintenance, with the result that we had to take a very long detour over very bad roads on our way back to the lodge. Nevertheless, the crater is such a very special and unique environment that it compensated for the discomfort.
Altogether a once in a lifetime experience - ons that should be on the bucket list of every nature/safari enthusiast.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank benrose
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 11, 2012

We booked our Safari through Enchanting Africa and they suggested this Lodge. It is over the top with luxury. They have these detached chalets that are pretty big. I would guess about 800 sq. feet maybe bigger. They have a fireplace, a large tub, large shower, kind size bed and of course the view is amazing looking down on the Ngorongoro Crater. Everything is in place and service is as good as it gets in any fine hotel. We had a small deck/porch off our chalet and within two feet of the deck/porch there were Zebras eating the grass. They were so close. After dark you have to be escorted to the dining room/lodge bar/reading room area due to animals in the area. One night as we were being escorted our guide shown his flashlight about 30 feet away from us and there was a big elephant eating grass. The next night going to the dining room there were about 10 Cape Buffalo eating and sleeping on the lawn. They were maybe 20 feet away. On the way back to our Chalet the guide had to take a couple of stones and throw at them to get them to move so we could get back. Pretty interesting. The lodge has excellent food and a fine bar. We had beef filet and a delicious lamb meal the nights we where there. The fireplaces add a nice touch and some warmth. The service is great with very polite waiters. I know this place is expensive but if you ever get a chance to stay here you should go for it. It takes about a half hour over the bumpy roads to get down in the crator from the lodge but it is very scenic.

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

This is an excellent hotel in an out of this world location but I can only award it very good because of the price. Yes it's all inclusive and you get a daily game drive but you expect at least that for USD2000 per night. Rooms are as wonderful and as over the top as others describe, the view is incredible and you might get the added bonus of seeing lions outside your balcony as we did - a bit scary actually. The game drives were better than our expectations. We were expecting the crater to be busy but we never saw more than a few other cars all day. We enjoyed the food which was very healthy and made good use of fresh local ingredients but we enjoy simple cuisine. I can see why others may have found it a bit basic. Overall a great experience and I would recommend it if you are happy to blow the bank.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank advice55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 24, 2012

Have just returned from a 3 week tour around Africa which included the ngorongoro crater lodge. This was a starting point for our adventure and as others have mentioned the trip to the crater is long and bumpy but its all an adventure. The lodge (we were in north camp) is lovely and the rooms best described as opulent. The service from the personal butler and game driver Noel was outstanding. Upon arrival we were asked of any dietary issues and pointed out my husband does not eat seafood or pork. Unfortunately 2 nights in a row seafood was the main choice on the menu with the 2nd option not that enticing. Little dissappointing that an alternative was not offered given their original enquiry. That aside we were there for the game drives not to stuff our faces so lets get on with it. They have closed the road next to the lodge which enters the crater so now it is a good 40 minute drive around a very bumpy dusty road with many other tour vehicles to access the crater. The crater itself is stunning however whilst they may have a good variety of animals it felt more like a zoo than the wild. Vehicles are restricted to the many dirt roads and upon sighting of animals you are quickly met by up to 30 other vehicles all jostling for position and photos (and this we were told was the quiet season). The lions for eg. are so used to the cars in the midday sun they come and lie in the shade of the vehicles. Yes it is the wild and I do not chance my luck by walking around outsdide the vehicle however it was not the safari experience I was expecting that came later (see other reviews). We visited a local masai village and took books pencils etc and the villages were very friendly and showed us around and explained their culture how they build their huts etc. this was very interested. In summary to see the crater which I had seen on many documentaries over the years was wonderful and breathtaking however I would suggest to other travellers do not detour to see it. If you are in the vicinity yes check it out however the costs for transfers accommodation etc for this detour did not add up to a good financial choice for us leaving us wanting more. I am glad that I have seen the crater however would not return.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank Holidayfixation
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about andBeyond Ngorongoro Crater Lodge

Address: Ngorongoro Crater, Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Tanzania
Location: Tanzania > Arusha Region > Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Hotel Class:5 star — andBeyond Ngorongoro Crater Lodge 5*
Number of rooms: 30
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Steeped in romance, each stilted, handcrafted banana thatch suite at andBeyond Ngorongoro Crater Lodge is adorned with graceful antiques and unforgettable opulence. Ensuite bathrooms, with a centrepiece of fresh roses, feature huge showers and chandelier-lit bathtubs, while floor-to-ceiling windows ensure breathtaking views from all around. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Ngorongoro Crater Hotel Ngorongoro Conservation Area
Hotel Ngorongoro Crater

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