Reviews of Hatari Lodge
They do not necessarily represent the views of Expert Africa.
A different lodge - in a nice way!
We arrived to Hatari quite tired and in need of a few relaxing days with some gentle activity and we were happy we chose Hatari. Arusha NP is a beautiful place and devoid of the masses of cars and people (especially if you choose to walk rather then drive around!). We were picked up from the airport by Clinton, a great guide and chap, who was with us for the duration of our stay. He was very friendly and keen to accommodate our requests. At the lodge we were greeted by young Sabrina.
We realised there had been a small misunderstanding about walking into the Ngurdoto Crater as we were told by EA that we needed to pay for it directly to the lodge. Sabrina told us that this was not the case and we would have needed to book it a month in advance. The fact that we wanted to do a walk every day also did not appeared to be registered. We were glad we followed the basic rule of trying to sort things out on the spot so we asked Sabrina to have a chat and we did. By the end of the chat she understood exactly what we wanted to do and proceeded to re-arrange our activities to match our requests. This showed a great will to please us on her part and we appreciated it a lot! We then spent our 3 days there walking to the village, to the Meru Crater and Ngurdoto Crater rim (all highly recommended: the forest walk on the slope of Meru reminds you of the forest in the Avatars movies, it is just perfect and so beautiful and peaceful). We also had a couple of picnic lunches packed for us and Clinton always chose a great spot for lunch. The Momella lakes are also very pretty and worth a visit for the birds - not only the flamingos).
The lodge itself is a beautiful place with nice large bedrooms and luxurious bathrooms and a view. We were in room 9 facing Kilimanjaro (amazing sunrises) and had giraffes walking in front of our window in the morning! There is a beautiful deck for just relaxing or having a sundowner, always surrounded by buffalos. We liked the communal dinner tables and we met the owners of the lodge and enjoyed the company of other guests. Food was very good.
I almost forgot: there was a blackout once (generator broke down) and Sabrina and the other lady manager (sorry not sure about her name) were so worried about us not having electricity....despite the fact that we told them we could do with a shower but also survive without they went the extra mile for us. They even send us to a nearby room for showers so we could keep "our" hot water for later! They then organized a candle lit dinner and a star gazing after dinner, which was great fun - although the super efficient staff managed to fix the generator before we even finished our dinner. A nice touch was for them to thank the person in front of the dinner table so we could clap him. The place has a family feel and every member of the staff was smiling and efficient and kind; we loved them all!
A small comment: Hatari lodge sponsors a few local projects and it would good if this was somehow more emphasised on EA notes/websites and guest could possibly bring something ( or join the pack for a purpose lists perhaps).
Hatari Lodge review
This is a lovely lodge, a great place to get over jet lag. The bathrooms are amazing! The people lovely.
We have monkeys and warthogs pay us a visit.
Arusha Nat pk was amazing. We saw flamingos up close . We saw them as pink lines everywhere else. We also saw a troup of baboons with 3 albinos. Even our guide commented that he would encourage more people to come here as he normally skipped this but it was great.
Hatari Lodge review
So different from anywhere else! Spent 2 nights here. Rooms are in proper bungalow-type buildings around the lodge, with connecting paths and steps. Almost a proper garden and a separate walled vegetable garden. Shady trees + monkeys! Main building has a lovely shady paved terrace looking down onto grass and woodland, with bar,dining and lounge areas inside. I felt the furnishings were rather dark but very much in keeping with the 60's theme.
Our room turned out to have a bath - not expected, but most welcome! We were actually shown to another room at first (by Annelise) but she couldn't get the key to work. A word from a passing staff member sent her to a different room - the right one for that key - which turned out to have the bath. Most just have showers. So that was an unexpected bonus.
Big, spacious room with plenty of storage and a good sized bathroom. We were asked not to leave the door open, in case the monkeys got in - there were plenty of them, and you could hear them running about on the roof. The lighting in the bathroom was better than in the room. For the first night we had no bedside lights, although some appeared for our second night, but were not very efficient. Three wall lights - while artistic - were rather dim. The bed covers were a bit 'fussy'. Too many cushions and blankets on top of the duvet.
Dining was communal although there were not many people staying. Food here was better than some of the other camps. Plentiful supply of 'coffee table' books to read in the cosy lounge area. The 'welcoming' cold towels didn't small very fresh.
Our excellent guide was Ernest, and we had one afternoon trip out to see the beautiful (Momella) lakes. The trip the following day was through the forest, up Mount Meru. Picnic lunch provided We were able to have a leisurely breakfast and lunch on our final morning, both on the terrace, before leaving for our flights home.
WE enjoyed Hatari and were thrilled with our room under the main building, as it overlooked a watering hole about 100 ft. from our room.
We could sit in our room and watch the animals come to drink, which we did on more than one occasion. The location was especially nice, as with my knees short even walks are best. The guides were careful and considerate of my knees. The food was good and the one long table allowed you to meet the guests easily. Our room was decorated beautifully. It was a friendly lodge.