I just wanted to start off by saying that I was in no way, shape, or stretch of the imagination compensated for this post. In fact, I’m pretty sure I was ripped off by this hotel (I’ll explain later). Still, some places are so good that they deserve publicity on my blog. If you read my last post, you’ll learn that I stumbled upon this place by accident. Well, sort of by accident. The hotel has cleverly placed signs so that you might think you’re headed to Udzungwa Mountains National Park. If you follow these signs, you’ll wind up at this quaint little lodge on a hill.
This lodge is the cutest little thing I’ve seen in Tanzania. Although we didn’t stay at the hotel (we already had one booked somewhere else) and we didn’t actually see any of the rooms, the exterior was fabulously decorated. It was clean, bright, and artsy. Everybody was super friendly. There are beautiful gardens. The lodge itself is located right up in the Udzungwa Mountains. It is surrounded by rainforest and there are no other hotels or businesses around. We ended up hanging out for a bit, and it was so peaceful that I didn’t want to leave.
At the front desk, you can hire a guide to take you on hike to a waterfall, lookout, and watering hole. I think it was only about 20,000tsh a person (which is about $12 USD).
So here’s where I think we got ripped off… as we were headed to the trailhead, the hotel manager, who was walking with us, told us we were welcome to swim in the pool when we were finished with our hike. It was a beautiful pool, and since Eva wasn’t able to swim in the freezing cold natural watering hole we took him up on his offer when we got back. As we were leaving, our waiter (who was serving us delicious drinks poolside), informed us that we hadn’t paid for our pool session. WHAT? Homeboy made it seem like it was part of our hike or something. It was 10,000tsh a person (about $6), which isn’t that bad but it was the principle of the matter that upset me.
STILL, I’m almost 100% certain that this is where we’ll be staying next time we’re in the area. It’s about $90 a night (which is about $25 more than what we paid at Tan Swiss) but it seems worth it to me.
There are really only two disadvantages to this place:
1) The dirt roads leading to it make it about an hour drive from Mikumi National Park.
2) We kept trying to order food and it seemed they were out of everything we wanted (which really isn’t that uncommon anywhere in Tanzania, but still).