Where to stay in Arusha, Tanzania

Arusha, Tanzania is often the first and/or last place people visit on their Serengeti safari. Many international flights land late in the evening and weary travelers are quickly ushered to their hotels in Arusha only to catch an early morning flight into the Serengeti. Some safaris give people to end their safari with several hours in Arusha, where they can visit local markets, get a day room and freshen up before their return flight home later that evening.

Arusha has evolved substantially over the last 10-15 years and it certainly merits more than just dayroom status. Whether you’re seeking pampering and tranquility or if you wish to be within walking distance to markets and restaurants, Arusha has you covered.

East of Arusha

Onsea House

Located about 10 minutes outside of Arusha, Onsea House offers gorgeous vistas in an intimate setting. Guests can opt to stay in one of five rooms at the house itself, or stay in the country inn, which has two double suites and a family suite overlooking the Meru valley. There is also a self-contained guest cottage where each room as its own balcony. It can accommodate up to six people. In addition to the fine dining options and tranquil vibes, guests can also enjoy the spa and wellness facilities of neighboring Machweo, which shares the same owners as Onsea House.

Kigongoni

Kigongoni is only about a 20-minute drive from Arusha and offers some stellar views of Mt. Meru.  The individual chalets are nicely spaced and bright and airy.

Kigongoni ALTB

The views from the pool are what keep us going back—the vistas and proximity to Mt. Meru means people often mistaken it for Mt. Kilimanjaro. Best of all, Kigongoni won’t break the bank.

Ngare Sero Mountain Lodge

Although this lodge is just a few more minutes down the road from Kigongoni, it feels like it’s hours away. From the moment you arrive, you’ll feel completely isolated from the surrounding environs.

Ngare Sero ALTB

To access the lodge, you’ll need to cross over a quaint bridge and then go up a flight of stairs to the main reception area. Ngare Sero offers yoga (private and group classes), mountain biking and even croquet.

Arumeru River Lodge

Arumeru is the furthest out of town of our picks but it’s also the closest to Kilimanjaro International Airport. The chalets here are nicely spaced out and, while the rooms are simple, they are adequate in size and have nice, high ceilings.

Arumeru

The pool area is relaxing and the central dining room is a nice place to unwind and chat with fellow travelers.

Near the center of town

If you’d rather have easy access to markets and local restaurants, both the African Tulip and Destination 3 Degrees City Lodge Arusha are great options.

African Tulip

African Tulip has modern, air conditioned rooms and a nice, albeit smallish, pool you can lounge by.

African Tulip ALTBjpg

Its proximity to several good restaurants and markets means you don’t need to get back in a vehicle once you’ve arrived.

Destination 3 Degrees City Lodge Arusha

The name of this lodge may be large but the lodge itself is quite intimate. Comprised of 15 rooms, this lodge is clean, quiet and comfortable. Its restaurant serves some delicious, local fare and its central location means you can also walk to nearby restaurants and markets.

West of Arusha

Arusha Coffee Lodge

Just a few minutes outside of the city center is the Arusha Coffee Lodge. The chalets are set in a coffee plantation and are nicely spaced out.

Arusha Coffee Plantation

The rooms are decorated to a high standard and some offer outdoor tubs and showers. This lodge’s close proximity to Arusha Airport also make it an ideal choice for those with early morning flights.

Javier Luque is a Co-Founder and Director of Your African Safari.

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Comments (2)

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  1. alice says:

    I have stayed at the Arusha Coffee Lodge-it is fantastic! My only “complaint” is that the stay was too short!

  2. Paul Johnson says:

    I have stayed at the Arusha Coffee Lodge also, and would have to agree! Such a wonderful welcome for our first night in Tanzania, after a rather bumpy ride from Kilimanjaro Airport!

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