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“Nice spot in Lalibela”
Review of Tukul Village

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Tukul Village
Ranked #2 of 10 Hotels in Lalibela
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed December 12, 2013

My friend and I spent a few nights here while exploring Lalibela and thought the hotel was great. The rooms are unique and are beautifully furnished and decorated. Our room had a stunning view of the valley below from the balcony. Both the service and food at the restaurant were very good - we were especially fond of this delicious bread they served with each meal. Unfortunately, the hotel was the highlight of our time in Lalibela, but if you're making the trip to Lalibela, I highly recommend staying here.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank 383Traveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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171 - 177 of 416 reviews

Reviewed December 10, 2013

Sometimes vacations feel like a fairy tale… my stay at Tukul Village was just that –a fairy tale but in reality. Messy and his hospitable staff were amazing from start to finish… We were greeted at Lalibela airport with two amazing individuals –a driver and a tour guide who were amazingly personable. A vacation will not be a vacation if the individuals entrusted with your life and happiness for the duration of your visit are not social, engaged, welcoming and knowledgeable of their perspective crafts. Our visit to Lalibela was unique and in a category of its own.

I cannot express how beautiful–Tukul Village is. From the entrance to, the indigenous architectural design of the rooms, to the local design and make of the decors to the ULTRA modern and high-end (ALL WHITE) bathroom –It is a Village Wonderland. It is situated on a hill looking out to Bete Giorgis (St. George) and the 10 other churches in Lalibela. The views from any direction of the rooms are impeccable and picture perfect that it is so surreal to be in such a picturesque environment.

The food is prepared fresh daily and the menus section is also varies daily. One might wonder why? After having a lengthy conversation and spending time with the owner, I learned that the menu selection is different every day for two reasons –the owner believes in utilizing locally grown produce from local farmers hence, ensuring every meal is freshly prepared daily. Second reason is, he is an avid supporter of his local market therefore reducing the carbon footprint of Tukul causes on its direct environment and allowing his local small business owners (i.e., farmers who farm on a smaller scale to make a living.) For a vegetarian and philanthropist, this is all the reason I need to support the business –even if they were mediocre in service. But because they are impeccable in hospitality, room presentation, front house service, in-house service –and out sourced services, I will forever support them each time I return to Lalibela. I love nature and humanity. Business that support nature and humanity have a special place in my heart. Social change begins locally to impact globally.


There are so many unique things about this Village. It is within 10 minutes driving distance to all the 11 historical Lalibela churches. All the great tej bete (equivalent of a local Irish pub) but this is indigenous to Ethiopia and all the amazing azmari bete (traditional song houses) are within walking distance or 5 minute drive. I loved this small, historically vast little giant of a city and TUKUL is the center of it all.

It is always great to stay in places that make you feel like you’re visiting family and not staying at a strange place. WIFI connection is great more so at the lounge area than the rooms. The bathroom –Which I steamed every day after our long days is heavenly. It has all levels of warm, hot, cold whatever pressure you like water.

My stay at Tukul was as unique as Tukul Village itself. Thank you Messy! You ROCK!

Room Tip: My room was (# 27) I believe and on the top floor... it had a wrap around balcony and 380 degree vie...
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  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled on business
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1  Thank NuNuWako
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 7, 2013

The rooms have a wonderful view looking across at the town and down the valley. Very clean and nicely appointed. We were quite pleased with our accommodation. Service was another matter. When we arrived the desk man insisted that we have a "free" lunch. We explained that we were on Half board (breakfast and supper). No he insisted the lunch was free for us that day. OK we said. So we ate. Two days later on the morning we were to leave a different desk man walked up to us and said"You must pay" No Good Morning or Hello. He then said "You are on half board and you must pay cash for your first lunch here. You must pay". A little bit in my face. The food service was sporadic and slow. Table linen was not clean but they did try to place salt, pepper and other condiments on top of the stains to cover them up. The one redeeming feature of the food and beverage service was the cold beer, until they ran out of choices. I would stay here again due to the rooms and location but would definitely eat elsewhere.

Room Tip: Try to take a top room, 10, 11 or twelve. Good views.
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  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank David V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 3, 2013

There is a lot of choice these days in Lalibela in hotels and guesthouses, but for me Tukul village was one of the best I stayed, also compared to other hotels in Ethiopia.

It 's well designed and specially the new rooms are very nice with the wood carved furniture. But the whole construction and used materials like for the bathrooms, floor etc is well chosen.
The service is nice, the staff is very friendly, the breakfast is good with some extra detail for the nice decorated cups and plates etc. The restaurant might need some extra attention for decoration and the menu in English should come without spelling mistakes….
The owner told me they are planning also another Tukul for bar and relaxing and that is a good idea, because the outdoor space now is a bit limited to sit and relax. The wifi connection was working well during our stay.
The garden is also beautifully and most plants grew a lot since I was there 2 years ago ! There is a possibility for overlanders to camp there !
In short: highly recommended !

Room Tip: Ask for a room on the second floor of the Tukuls for a better view and for the newer rooms to get th...
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  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank EthiopiaMarilou
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 27, 2013

We spent two nights at Tukul Village, changing rooms after the first night as one of the beds (we had two twins) had a seriously deficient mattress. The rooms are large, and the second floor room's balcony is a nice addition. However, the "view of St. George (the rock hewn church) is quite far away and with the vegitation, only one of the wings of the cross is barely visible. Its a view of the mountains and the town built down the slopes of the hills; the UNESCO awnings that cover the rock hewn churches are very visible, but not the churches they protect. We did not have any problem with the sheets in either room, and did not note a hygene problem mentioned by another visitor. The shower was comfortably hot, but we did "ration" our time so both could shower consecutively. If one takes a long shower, then allow perhaps an hour for the tank in the bath to reheat water. Our only minor complaint (the bed aside) was they did not expect to replenish the bottled water (2 - 1 liter bottles) each day; they viewed this as a "per rental" item, but relented when I mentioned that I usually reviewed lodgings on Trip Advisor. We noted they do laundry (for very little cost), and appreciated their effort to get it done for us before we left at 9 am the next morning (still a bit damp, but they have not drier so just a clothes line and the wind). We would return. But from what we saw at the plans at the Lal Hotel nearly across the road, it is likely there may soon be alternatives just as nice. But it should be understood that Lalibela is surprisingly poor (the town) despite the major tourist sites, so there are not significantly better tourist facilities here than in, e.g., Gonder or Axum, and maybe not as good! The restaurant has very limited offerings, so we instead walked across the road to the Lal Hotel restaurant and found it the best we enjoyed on the "historic circuit" towns.

Room Tip: Check the beds in the room before accepting it. The upstairs rooms have a balcony with view, but th...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Reamor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 21, 2013

It's hard to give points as this is an atypical location so everything is relative. The reviewers who praise the design and the style are absolutely right. Charming furniture, nice little balconies, great views, pretty patio and dining area. The little "lending library" with discarded paperbacks from other travelers is a nice touch, too. The Wi-Fi mostly worked. BUT!!!!
What to be aware of and ready for: the hygiene may have suffered since the earlier reviewers wrote in. We were a large party and had three rooms, same problems were noticed separately by all parties. The sheets are too small for the beds and slide off the mattresses during the night. Pillowcases were not clean - we put our T-shirts over them as the staff had gone home for the night. Worst of all: bedbugs. You must bring bug spray or your own sheets. Lalibela is pretty rustic so I doubt you would do better in a different local hotel. Also take note: while they claim to take credit cards and have the logos of all major cards prominently displayed, in fact they do NOT take credit cards and ATM's are spotty, so bring cash. And check your bill. They are not trying to cheat you, but the accounting is random. And lastly: if you have an alternative, don't take the hotel shuttle. It is NOT free, and they jam as many people and as much luggage as possible into the vehicle so you will sit in the bus waiting and waiting until they reach full capacity. If you are booking a tour guide, you can book your airport transport through them also and it will cost the same and be more comfortable and prompt.

Room Tip: Bring bug spray and check the linens upon check-in, ask for clean ones if they look sketchy.
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  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank checkpointcheryl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 21, 2013

Beautiful rooms and grounds. Amazing food, and staff. They have internet access, but the visa machine doesn't always work, bringing cash for room payment should be considered. Would stay there again !!

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank sncoyle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Tukul Village

Address: Main Road, Lalibela, Ethiopia
Location: Ethiopia > Amhara Region > Lalibela
Amenities:
Restaurant Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 10 Hotels in Lalibela
Price Range: $62 - $82 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 253
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Also Known As:
Tukul Village Lalibela
Tukul Village Hotel Lalibela

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