Expect a warm welcome on arrival at the Serengeti Serena Lodge.
Serengeti Serena Safari Lodge: Our full report
At the end of a long winding road leading into the Kyabatero Hills, northwest of Seronera, lies the Serengeti Serena Safari Lodge. From its elevated location this large 66-roomed Maasai-village inspired lodge enjoys panoramic views of the Serengeti plains below.
Stone pathways lead from the parking area to the main areas of the lodge. The reception and curio shop are housed in two adjacent “rondavels". From here covered stone walkways and papyrus-filled streams lead to the rooms, the restaurants as well as the lounge and bar. The two restaurants are similar in size and style. Both are circular with a high domed roof. One has an outdoor covered terrace wrapping itself most of the way around the restaurant and is very popular with guests on warm days. Between the two restaurants is a covered open-air circular buffet with the chefs cooking in the middle. All meals are buffet-style and are served from here.
The lounge and bar are housed in a separate round building, similar to the restaurants with a high domed roof. It has rustic African-inspired décor and it is split over two levels, with some seating areas on a quieter mezzanine level.
The stone pathways lead through dappled acacia shade to the two-storey thatched bedrooms. Each “rondavel" contains two units, one downstairs and one upstairs. Each of the rooms is semi-circular in shape, with stone tiled floors dotted with African rugs. Twin or double beds dominate the room with individual carved wooden headboards and African print bedspreads. There is a dressing table, with mirror above, a luggage rack and built-in cupboards with hanging space and shelves. Sliding glass doors lead out onto a small balcony, with two canvas directors chairs, where you can relax and enjoy the views over the Serengeti.
The bathroom is small and functional with a tiled floor. There is a flush toilet, a single basin with round mirror above and a tiled shower with glass door. White towels, toweling bathrobes and branded toiletries are provided as well as a hair-dryer.
A large semi-circular swimming pool is located in the gardens with views of the Serengeti below. Terracotta striped sun loungers and umbrellas are located on different levels and there is also a changing room with toilets nearby.
Spa treatments are available, at an extra cost, and are available either in the guest rooms, or in the massage tent near the swimming pool.
Our viewThe Serengeti Serena Safari Lodge is a fairly large family friendly lodge. Its central location makes this a good base to explore the Serengeti at most times of the year. However it is also popular with tour groups making it very busy; guaranteeing a booking here is difficult and over-bookings are common.
Ideal length of stay: We suggest a two night stay to explore this part of the Serengeti
Directions: The Serengeti Serena is 340 km’s from Arusha (about 8 – 10 hours drive) or 60 minutes by air. Seronera airstrip is 27 km’s from the lodge.
Accessible by: Fly-and-Transfer
Owner: Serena Lodges
Food & drink
Usual board basis: Full Board
Food quality: On a recent visit to the Serengeti Serena Safari Lodge we did not stay long enough to enjoy a meal. However, the manager explained that all meals are served buffet style. Typically meals would be as follows:
Breakfast – a full English breakfast is available with a choice of eggs cooked to order. A Continental breakfast is also available with a selection of breads, pastries, cooked meats and cheeses.
Lunch is a choice of soup, selection of salads, stir fried vegetables, selection of pastas, meat from the grill (chicken, sausage or fish), selection of vegetables and curries, naan breads and a selection of different rice. A buffet selection of desert and fresh fruit.
Dinner is a selection of soups and salads. Grilled meat such as grilled pork chops, fillet of Nile perch or beef boerewors sausage. Beef curry with a selection of vegetables and rices. Pasta with a selection of sauces. This is followed by a desert buffet and cheese and crackers.
Dining style: Individual Tables
Dining locations: Indoor and Outdoor Dining
Cost of meal e.g. lunch: Included
Drinks included: Drinks are not included. Soft drinks start from US$2 and wine ranges from US$30–40 a bottle.
Further dining info: Room service is not available
Attitude towards children: Children of all ages are welcome at the Serengeti Serena Safari Lodge
Property’s age restrictions: No age restriction
Special activities & services: Early mealtimes can be arranged and baby-sitting facilities are available. The swimming pool is ideal for children. A qualified life-guard is available, however small children must be supervised by an adult.
Equipment: Cots and highchairs are available as well as children’s games.
Generally recommended for children: We recommend the Serengeti Serena for children. Interleading family rooms are available and the lodge caters well for children of all ages.
Notes: Children will need to be constantly supervised by their parents as the lodge is not fenced and game wanders in freely throughout the day and night.
Power supply: Generator
Communications: WiFi is available throughout the lodge. Cellphone reception is available in the main areas but not in the rooms. Direct dial telephones are available in the bedrooms.
TV & radio: There is a TV in the main lounge as well as in the only suite.
Health & safety
Malarial protection recommended: Yes
Medical care: There is a doctor on site. The nearest hospital is in Arusha, which is an hour away by air.
Dangerous animals: High Risk
Security measures: The lodge has guards on duty 24-hours a day and there is also a resident TANAPA ranger on site.
Fire safety: There are fire extinguishers in the main areas as well as at each room.
Disabled access: In Place
Laundry facilities: Laundry is available at an additional cost. The cost ranges from U$0.50 for a pair of socks, U$1 for a pair of shorts or a t-shirt to just under U$2 for a jumper or a safari suit.
Money: Digital safes are available in each room. The lodge is able to exchange small amounts of U$ dollars, euros, British pounds and SA rands.
Accepted payment on location: Mastercard, visa and American Express are accepted at no additional charge.