This is the sixth of twelve posts on our safari in Tanzania. Check out our other posts here:
- One Week of Glorious Safari-ing in Tanzania
- 15 Tips for Better Safari-ing in Tanzania
- Moving in to the Maramboi Tented Camp
- The Elephants at Tarangire National Park
- The Start of the Great Migration: Lake Manyara
- 2 Nights at the Kitela Lodge
- A Close Encounter with a Lion at the Ngorongoro Crater
- Safari-ing in the Ngorongo Park: Day 1
- Glamping at Ndutu Under Canvas in the Serengeti
- Simba and the Rest of the Pride in the Serengeti
- Giraffe for Breakfast? Day 2 at the Ngorongo Park
- Hippo Serenade: Sleeping at the Lake Masek Tented Camp
While Mrs. Selfish and I enjoy hiking, scuba diving, snorkeling, and other outdoor activities, we are city people at heart. So while I enjoyed our time at the various campsites we visited during our African safari (especially because of the proximity to wildlife), I was absolutely blown away by our two nights at the Kitela Lodge.
The Kitela Lodge is the newest offerings from the Tanganyika Wilderness Camps group, the company that owned all of properties we stayed at during our Tanzanian safari.
I’m not entirely sure why it’s called a “lodge” as each guest stays in a private villa. The main building is pretty posh, and comes replete with indoor and outdoor dining, a pool, a spa, and a swanky fireplace area.
As mentioned above, each guest has their own private villa. By my count there were a little over 2 dozen villas on property.
A villa is comprised of a bedroom with a small living room area, a giant walk in closet, and a bathroom. While there is no air conditioning on property, the Kitela Lodge is at a pretty high elevation – so is pretty cool compared to the rest of Tanzania. We left the windows open and had no problems getting to sleep.
The bathroom is simple, but elegant with dual sinks, a free standing bathtub, and a European styled shower.
The real kicker of Kitela lodge, however, is their on-premises organic farm, which accounts for the lion’s share of the property. They also have their own coffee plantation, which has killer beans. If you’re a fan of Kenyan coffee, chances are you’ve had Tanzanian coffee without knowing it. According to our guide, Kenyan coffee companies often buy beans from Tanzania and re-label them. Dastardly!
Meals were a mixed bag. While I’d like to say that we noticed a marked improvement in meal quality (since the vegetables were grown on-site), the food at Kitela lodge was very similar to our other accommodations – buffet style breakfasts and dinners, with a self-serve take away lunch box.
The food we encountered tended to be catering to a Western palette, which unfortunately made it bland and under seasoned. The general order of the day seemed to be a lot of stews and curries with salads and bread on the side for good measure. Local food is similar to Indian in appearance, but lacks the punches of spice and flavor that the latter food carries.
That being said, they did have a free Happy Hour, so it’s hard to go wrong there.
Perhaps I came in with lowered expectations, but Kitela Lodge completely blew me away. From the room, to the grounds, to the coffee, to the Happy Hour our experience was tip-top. I highly recommend staying there, should you ever find yourself in the Ngorongoro Crater area.
Join us tomorrow when Mrs. Selfish will go over our hunt for the elusive “Big Five” at the Ngorongo Crater.