review budget lodges

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Jan 24th, 2006, 04:23 AM
  #1
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review budget lodges

does anybody have experience with the next hotels ? Karama lodge (arusha), Miguanga (?) Tented Camp (lake manyara), serengeti stop over (western serengeti) ? anybody know other 'budget' lodges with a minimum of comfort (for me that is an attached bathroom) ?
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Jan 24th, 2006, 05:27 AM
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Hi Janischa28,

Very interesting post. This is THE question that Iím always looking for an answer to. I havenít been to Tanzania, but Karama Lodge is an expensive place just outside Arusha. Migunga Forest Camp http://www.swalasafaris.com/migunga_forest_camp.htm would have been VERY interesting inside a park with amazing wildlife. It still looks like something worth investigating. Serengeti Stop Over http://www.cs.ucr.edu/~stephenm/home.php
looks more orientated towards Lake Victoria than the Serengeti, but still very interesting. In June 2004 I got a good deal at Tarhi Camp in Tsavo East, though I wouldnít call it a budget lodge.

Maybe you should specify more what youíre looking for. There are people who consider $ 300 pppn very reasonable. Iím looking for the cheapest possible smallish camps in areas with amazing wildlife, preferably right in camp, and with my own bathroom in connection with the tent.



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Jan 24th, 2006, 06:04 AM
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Hi Nyamera,
I have received rates from each of these lodges. I can't remember what they were exactly, but as far as I can remember, I thought karama was reasonably cheap (my best estimation would be around 130 USD for a double room), Migunga around 90 to 100 USD, Serengeti even less than that I think. but it's difficult to find reviews on them, and the lonely planet is not always 100% correct... if you're interested, I can look up the rates they offered and let you know tomorrow ? if anyone has other suggestions or experiences ?
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Jan 24th, 2006, 06:16 AM
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I've been to Karama and Migunga. For pics & rack rates:

http://www.go-safari.com/Manyara/Tentedcamp.htm

http://www.go-safari.com/Arushamoshi/Karama.htm

I've listed all lodges in/near the parks - most with rates. Just pick one!
Eben




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Jan 24th, 2006, 06:30 AM
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but did you personally like them ? the pictures on your website are very handy, but it might be a nice idea to add what you thought of them ? a tour operator I consider working with told me that moivaro coffe plantation lodge lies much more quiet relative to karama lodge ? before that i had a preference for karama actually
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Jan 24th, 2006, 06:40 AM
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janischa28,
I haven't stayed at any of these, but they do seem to meet your requirement of low-cost but with attached bathrooms.

I'm not sure Miguanga is necessarily the most budget option at Lake Miguanga, though. I didn't think Kirurumu was particularly expensive, and someone on this board recently stayed there and gave it very high marks. So you could also look into that.

We did stay at the Wildlife Lodges in Serengeti and the Crater and thought they were acceptable for the price, especially the Serengeti Wildlife, which has a magnificent location.

I think Karama is supposed to be fine, but maybe do a search on the Lonely Planet Thorn Tree as well. If you're just stopping over for one night, I personally wouldn't worry too much where you rest your head in Arusha. A "busier" location could mean that you're more in town, which might be fun if you want to get a taste for Arusha proper--it's an experience unto itself.

We worried A LOT about our budget accommodations and budget camping before our safari and prepared ourselves for absolute holes. Then when we got there everything was much nicer than we had imagined.

Whatever you do, don't let a lack of $ stop you from going on safari. It's an incredible experience!

Good luck.
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Jan 24th, 2006, 06:42 AM
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Thanks Eben. I should have looked at your website first of all.

Janischa, I thought Karama Lodge was expensive because it looks like itís in a countryside area very close to Arusha and not in a wildlife area. Iíd pay $ 15 for a double room with bathroom in Arusha and then go off to a wildlife area. For staying in a nice countryside area Iíd look for a $ 50 or less double room Ė if I were looking for a double room. Yes please, I want all the information you have.
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Jan 24th, 2006, 07:04 AM
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hi Leely, thanks, I saw somewhere that you will be travelling with ATR. At this moment I am also looking at going either with them, Tropical Trails or Sunny. this is in descending order of budget the reason why I like Karama as it was my 'relax' point in the whole trip.. a place where i can do cultural tourism things, enjoy small nature, but at the same time feel like I'm in a very charming lodge, and not too expensive... for me in the parcs itself it comes really down to just looking for a place to put your head on as there i will be in the parc most of the time
thanks guys, and i will look up the rates i have received
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Jan 24th, 2006, 07:06 AM
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Whoops, I guess I didn't get to my point (did I have one?). If I were you, I'd try to "save" everywhere so that I could stay someplace, anyplace well-located in the Serengeti. With limited funds, that's how I'd spend my dollars/shillingi.

What time of year are you going?
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Jan 24th, 2006, 07:40 AM
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Janischa, for me itís very important where I put my head down in parks, because there I might have the opportunity to listen to the grazing and breathing of a buffalo next to my tent.
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Jan 24th, 2006, 07:43 AM
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Nyamera also require a good mirror.

I looked at the photos on Eben's website, and Karama and Migunga both look nice. As I said, the part I'd worry to death would be where to stay in the Serengeti. And if I had to, that's where I'd go over my budget.

Good luck!
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Jan 24th, 2006, 07:50 AM
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Leely, thatís extremely important. I donít want to frighten the buffalos. I need a smiley that looks like me without a good mirror. Maybe this one 8-X

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Jan 24th, 2006, 08:21 AM
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Don't know when you're going, but Serengeti Seronera Wildlife Lodge in central Serengeti and Lobo Wildlife Lodge in northern Serengeti both have fantastic locations. We ate lunch one day at Lobo and thought the food & service were really good, and it has a lovely pool with an amazing view over a plain (which was full of game on the day we were there in late November, and we were told that there were only 8 guests at the lodge at that time). Haven't stayed at either one though but we certainly admired their locations. Also, Ndutu has pretty reasonable rates, relatively speaking -- just outside of Serengeti not far from Naabi Gate, and we liked it very much when we were there (the time of year you go will determine whether it would be productive for game viewing there).

Another place that has pretty reasonable rates is Ikoma which is also just outside of the Serengeti, and I know they have ensuite baths. I've never been there though.

Kia Lodge is not expensive, very nice, and is located near Kilimanjaro airport.
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