Ngorongoro: Lodges

Name ID 445

See also

Fosbrooke, Henry Ngorongoro: The Eighth Wonder
Page Number: 175

A brief chronology

1892 Baumann visits Crater (March)

1899c. Siedentopf establishes himself in Crater

1908 Fourie visits Siedentopf

1913 Professor Reek's first visit

1916 Siedentopf departs (March)

1920 British mandate over Tanganyika

1921 Sir Charles Ross, Barns and Dugmore visit Crater: first Game Laws introduced

1922 Holmes' photographic expedition: Hurst living in Crater

1923 The Livermore safari

1926c Veterinary camp established at Lerai

1928 Crater declared Complete Reserve

1930 All Ngorongoro and Serengeti declared Closed Reserve

1932 First motor road to crater rim

1934 Author's first visit to Ngorongoro

1935 Building of first Lodge commenced

1940 East rim road to northern highlands: first National Parks legislation: unimplemented

1948 First National Parks Ordinance receives assent

1951 National Parks Ordinance comes into operation: boundaries of Serengeti gazetted (1 June)

1952 Park administration moves in (August)

1954 D-O. posted to Ngorongoro: cultivation prohibited by law: 'squatters' evicted

1956 Sessional Paper No. i publishes Government's proposals re Ngorongoro and the Serengeti

1957 Committee of Enquiry Report (October)

1958 Government Paper No. 5 announces Government's decision

1959 Conservation Area inaugurated (i July)

1961 Arusha Conference and Arusha Manifesto: author takes over as Chairman of Authority (September)

1963 Authority disbanded and Conservator appointed

1963 Catering first started at Lodge

1965 First Tanzanian Conservator appointed (September)

Extract ID: 2928

See also

Fosbrooke, Henry Ngorongoro: The Eighth Wonder
Page Number: 207b
Extract Date: 1935

First Lodge

Colonel Hallier, then Provincial Commissioner in Arusha, quickly realised the tourist potential of Ngorongoro and obtained funds - a meagre �400 - to build the first Lodge.

Construction began in 1935 under the supervision of Gordon Russell, and Assistant District Officer. The idea of building in logs was suggested by an ex-naval man called Marks who was employed on the job, as also a farmer Prinsloo, who brought up a team of oxen from Karatu to haul the logs from the forest. The timber used is Pillarwood, Cassipourea elliotii, of which many fine specimens are to be seen from the road

Extract ID: 717

See also

Fosbrooke, Henry Ngorongoro: The Eighth Wonder
Page Number: 207g
Extract Date: 1952

Administrative camp and Masai dispensary

In 1952 administrative camp and Masai dispensary which I had built in 1935-6 were taken over [by Ngorongoro Lodge]: I never found out whether the Masai Treasury was compensated for the money they had put into the office and dispensary there.

Extract ID: 722

See also

Fosbrooke, Henry Ngorongoro: The Eighth Wonder
Page Number: 207c
Extract Date: 1936

The Lodge opened

The Lodge was opened on a do-it-yourself basis, and remained so for 27 years till the present concessionaire took over in July, 1963. Everything was on the basis of strict economy: thatched roof- so pleasing to the eye and cheaper than corrugated iron or shingles. Lighting was by kerosene lamp, and water hand-pumped from the adjacent valley; water heating was by firewood under 44 gallon drums and sanitation by pit latrine.

Extract ID: 719

See also

Fosbrooke, Henry Ngorongoro: The Eighth Wonder
Page Number: 207e
Extract Date: 1939 - 1945

The war put paid to tourist development

the war put paid to tourist development, but the Lodge was used by service men on leave from Kenya, Abyssinia and Aden. After the war development did not recommence till the park authorities took over on 1952

Extract ID: 721

See also

Tanganyika Guide
Page Number: 069
Extract Date: 1948

Typical safari starting from Arusha

It would take a book to describe the variety of sport to be had in the areas where shooting is permissible, and there is only space here to give a brief sketch of a typical safari starting from Arusha by car and motoring by way of Engaruka, Ngorongoro Crater, and the Serengeti plains.

Arusha itself may be reached by air, by road or by railway. Ten miles out of the town antelope, giraffe and zebra can often be seen. Forty miles further comes the first view of the Rift Wall, that great crack in the Earth's surface which cuts through Africa almost from north to south. Lake Manyara can be seen under the dark shadow of the Rift. At seventy miles out the road turns northwards along the Rift Valley through great herds of game to Engaruka. On the left there is the great wall of the Rift Valley, and away on the right is open undulating country, with many herds of game and Masai cattle sharing the grazing and living in harmony.

The green swamp and forest belt at Kitete conceals many buffalo and rhinoceros, and elephant and hippopotamus occasionally visit the place. To the right the plains are covered with hundreds of termite hills. Grant's gazelle, ostrich and impala will be seen on the way as well as giraffe, accompanied often by their young, who gaze with soft eyes at the car and sometimes allow it to pass within a few yards of them.

At Engaruka there are stone ruins of a great village where the inhabitants were perhaps once concentrated for defence against the Masai. On a frontage of about three miles tier upon tier of terracing is still clearly visible and closer inspection shows the rock-built homes, the graves and the huge cairns of a vanished people. From Engaruka Masai bomas may also be visited without difficulty.

During a stay of a week in this neighbourhood lion, zebra, Grant's and Thomson's gazelle, impala, wildebeest, rhinoceros, oryx and gerenuk may be obtained.

From here Maji Moto, sixty miles south along the Rift Wall, may be visited. The hot springs there seem to be a natural spa for wild life and there will be found spoor of elephant, rhinoceros, buffalo, lion and all kinds of smaller game. The place is a game photographer's paradise.

Lake Manyara, seen from the hot springs, has a great variety of birds, including thousands of flamingoes. On from here the route lies over the Rift Wall up steep slopes to the Ngorongoro Crater.

The first view of the crater is magnificent ; it is one of the greatest in the world, the floor, twelve miles across, lies 2,000 feet below the precipitous walls, covering an area of approximately 100 square miles. The drive along to the Ngorongoro Crater Rest Camp is one thrill after another, each succeeding view of the crater being more beautiful than the last. Suddenly the most delightful camp is sighted-a group of about twenty log cabins, in the most wonderful natural setting. A night or two may be spent here* and the great concentration of game on the crater floor may be watched with glasses. Thousands of animals make their home in the crater throughout the year.

Then the way leads into the Serengeti Plains which may one day become the greatest national park in the world. In a stay of a few days in the Serengeti great concentrations of game will be seen, It is not uncommon for visitors to photograph as many as fifty different lions in a stay of only a few days, and the masses of game have to be seen to be believed.

On the return route the visitor can go to Mongalla, west of Oldeani Mountain, where hippopotamus, rhinoceros and other big game may be hunted, then pass through Mbulu, camp in the game area at Basotu Lake, go past Hanang Mountain and Babati Lake and so back into Arusha. Such a trip gives a month of enjoyment . which for the lover of wild life cannot be surpassed, and it is only one of many that can be made in the game areas of Tanganyika Territory, the finest hunting ground in the world.

Extract ID: 4355

See also

Fosbrooke, Henry Ngorongoro: The Eighth Wonder
Page Number: 207g
Extract Date: 1952

Administrative camp and Masai dispensary

In 1952 administrative camp and Masai dispensary which I had built in 1935-6 were taken over [by Ngorongoro Lodge]: I never found out whether the Masai Treasury was compensated for the money they had put into the office and dispensary there.

Extract ID: 722

See also

Fosbrooke, Henry Ngorongoro: The Eighth Wonder
Page Number: 207f
Extract Date: 1952 Aug

a European manager was installed

For the first time a European manager was installed [at the Lodge], a shop opened where visitors could purchase their food, to be cooked by the camp attendants: some new huts were built, but again funds were a limited factor and clapboard and corrugated iron roofing made their ugly appearance on the scene.

Extract ID: 723

See also

Marsh, R.J. and E.P Safari Diaries
Page Number: 01
Extract Date: 1953 August 13


Packing and preparing for our journey to Ngorongoro Crater before visiting Oldeani at the weekend. We eventually got away before 11am, discovering at the last moment that the car bonnet would not open to let me put water in the radiator! It was too late to do anything about it, and we decided to get going and hope for the best. We had a good journey down the Dodoma Rd. and decided to call at Oldeani on the way, although it meant an extra 24 miles.

It was about 100 miles to Oldeani, and we found the Notley�s estate easily, arriving about 4. We had some tea, left some of our things there, not wanted until Sunday, and then made our way back to the road to the Crater. At the junction of the roads it was 16 miles to the Rest Camp, slowly climbing all the time, 11 miles of which were continuous bends around the mountainside, surrounded chiefly by forest.

To compare the heights - Arusha is about 4,700 ft: Oldeani 5,500 ft and the Crater Rest Camp about 7,500 ft.

We arrived at the camp about 6.30 p.m. having had to stop once on the way to let the engine cool down. So we had to settle into the camp in the fading light - unpacking, making beds, seeing to a meal all by hurricane lamp. We had one of our houseboys with us, so he saw to the kitchen fire and cooking.

The camp is really quite well equipped - tho� you have to bring all food, kitchen utensils and crockery. We had quite an assortment of things in the back of the car! We had two log huts, a kitchen, a bathroom (all log huts) between us. The two 'rooms' had beds + armchairs and tables etc. We brought bedding, although blankets could be hired - it got cold at night, and a good wood fire in the hut was appreciated! We concentrated on feeding and getting the boys to bed, and then decided on an early bed ourselves anyway.

Extract ID: 566

See also

Marsh, R.J. and E.P Safari Diaries
Page Number: 01a
Extract Date: 1953 August 13

Extract ID: 4080

See also

Marsh, R.J. and E.P Safari Diaries
Page Number: 01b
Extract Date: 1953 August 13

Extract ID: 4081

See also

nTZ Feedback
Page Number: 2004 12 30
Extract Date: 1955-58

Eric Six - Arusha School 1955 - 1958

My name is Eric Six, Geoff Jones gave me your website, and it was fascinating to read about folks about whom I had not thought in years, surprisingly I was more familiar with the adult names than fellow students. I attended Arusha 1955 to 1958, then went on to Iringa, where I stayed till it closed in1963. There were only a handful that saw the entire life of StM & StG. I completed High School at Prince of Wales in Nairobi.

For those that knew me in school it comes as a surprise that I eventually became a Neurosurgeon, as I have to confess being a fairly lousy student, being more familiar with the tacky, and cane or cricket bat (if you crossed HA Jones); than with prizes in the school magazine. I too was brought up in the bush, in Kiru Valley about 100 miles from Arusha on the way to Babati.( David you were familiar with North Lewis, they lived about 25 miles from us off the Singida road.) Hunting was a way of life on the farm, but after doing that much hunting as a youth, I shoot only with a camera now.

David, I noticed that Elizabeth Palfry also lives in Texas---- I would appreciate you giving her my web address if she would like to write. I am familiar with her Dad, through my parents of course. Funnily enough I also knew Pete Hugo, and a number of the farmers from the Olmolog area.

I was sitting here trying to recall the names of classmates from 50 years ago with little success.

Geoff Jones (BLs son),

Corky Morgan {Father's namesake the old man liked to pull on your ears.},

Gerald Hunwick, {TFA}

John Cashin {PWD},

Clara De Liva,

Paul Marsh,

David Ulyate {farm},

Leslie Hague {The Beehive Restaurant}

Bizarrely I cannot recall but the one girl!

(Fritz Jacobs, Erik Larsen.Klaus Gaitja, Alex Zikakis, Hannes Matasen, Ivo Santi Barry Jones Louis van Royen Kevin Legrange were on either side of us) I am told that George Angelides still lives in Arusha and has a great reputation as a hunter guide.

Do you remember that little dog of Hamshire's, the miserable devil loved to chase us, I happened to be amongst those she caught and got bitten by, I still have the scar..

Sorry about all the parentheses but saves a whole lot of explaining.

After independence my Dad built a number of hotels in Tanzania ,amongst them Lobo lodge, Ngorongoro crater lodge ( the hotel on the rim just before getting to the original rondavels) and rebuilt the hotel on manyara escarpment, those all happened in the late 60's. They also managed Hotels in Zanzibar, and Dar-- the New Africa and Kilimanjaro being better known.

Enough from me. Please remember to pass my address to Elizabeth.

Dear Eric,

I am just catching up with things after Christmas, and realise that I didn�t reply to your email from 30 November. However, I was away in Zambia for most of the month of December.

By bcc I am copying Elizabeth Palfry with your email, and shall leave it to her to get in touch with you.

Thanks for all your memories of Arusha and Tanzania. If you ever have time to write more, do please keep in touch. I hope to have your email up on the web site in the next few days. You will also be interested in a History of Arusha School (up to 1971) which will be available in full. I found it a fascinating read, and help me to understand some of the things that happened at the school, which made no sense to me back in 1953-57.

You mention the North-Lewis�s. I think that when we left Arusha in 1957 we gave them one of our dogs, which within a few weeks was eaten by a leopard!

Did you find the photo, probably of their home, at I seem to remember on that trip that a snake was found under our car, and it had to be shot before we could leave!

You mention Paul Marsh � my brother!

Thanks again for you memories � keep them coming

Extract ID: 4962

See also

Marsh, R.J. and E.P Safari Diaries
Page Number: 09
Extract Date: 1955 August 1


We were up early on Sunday morning, and I decided to have breakfast first with the boys, and then leave them at the Rest House while I went out for the 8 am service. ...

then back to the Rest House for a quiet hour before packing up everything to go to the Ngorongoro Crater. Nothing had opened up for us to stay elsewhere in Oldeani, and as the Oldeani Rest House was only available for us up to Monday night, I decided to spend the next two nights up at the Crater, and come back to Oldeani district on Tuesday morning.

We left the Oldeani dukas about 4pm ... we had a good journey up to the Park entrance, and then got stuck with petrol trouble again at the gates where we stopped. This took a little time to clear so we were later getting up to the top than I had hoped. It was a fine afternoon, clear and sunny, so we had wonderful views of the Oldeani farms as we climbed the road up the crater hill taking us up to over 6,000 ft. We made all the hilliest part without any trouble, and the car pulled very well and rode very comfortably.

We stopped at the viewpoint looking down into the Crater, 7 miles from the camp - then had the old petrol trouble again. We were comforted this time by a passing car, whose occupants reported that they had had similar difficulties. We were helped a bit by them and then moved on, only to find our companions stuck within a hundred yards. They told us to carry on and when we saw them next morning they said that they took nearly two hours to get into the Camp and do the seven miles.

We arrived at the Camp site about 6.30 p.m. It was a fine evening and a moonlit night, which helped the atmosphere for settling in. We had a two bunk, single room to ourselves with a separate kitchen, not being shared while we were there. There was reasonably hot water on tap so we were glad to have a good bath. D & P were happy to play around for a while with a couple of other boys, which gave me a chance of getting unpacked and organising beds and a meal.

The Camp has grown since we were here last - more huts, including 'double-roomed, self contained' ones and a Club Room, with a lounge and bar! Also a large telescope to view the Crater from the doorway of the lounge. It�s almost too comfortable for a camp. Needless to say once we got sorted out all we bothered about was baths, supper and bed. The boys thoroughly enjoyed safari camping and tackled all meals with great gusto, existing on cocoa with mixed milk powder as the chief drink! The evening was clear and we could see into the Crater from our hut, which was much further down than the one we had before. We were glad of the fire in the hut, as later on the night became very cold. The boys seem to have slept well and warm, but I found a camp-bed on the floor a bit draughty. Wooden logs huts usually have a few cracks somewhere or other.

Extract ID: 574

See also

Marsh, R.J. and E.P Safari Diaries
Page Number: 18a
Extract Date: 1957 January 1

Extract ID: 4083

See also

Marsh, R.J. and E.P Safari Diaries
Page Number: 18b
Extract Date: 1957 January 1

Extract ID: 4084

See also

Fosbrooke, Henry Ngorongoro: The Eighth Wonder
Page Number: 213b
Extract Date: 1963 Jul

The Lodge was opened on a do-it-yourself basis

'A.B.' Fletcher from the United States provided the drive and energy to get the new buildings up, whilst 'Ben' Benbow, an experienced British hotelier, brought in the know-how which got the catering off to such a good start. Though this team failed to survive, they laid such good foundations that by 1967 the 105 bed Lodge provided 20,724 bed nights accommodation in a single year.

Further accommodation added ... was the Forest Lodge or Dhillon's Lodge, so named after the energetic and charming Sikh couple who were the first concessionaires, and the Youth Hostel to accommodate educational parties, with an annex to cater for hitch-hikers.

Extract ID: 725

See also

Reuter, Henry J. Official Touring Guide to East Africa: 1967 International Travel Year
Page Number: 068
Extract Date: 1967

Ngorongoro Crater Lodge (Advert)

Extract ID: 3471

See also

Reuter, Henry J. Official Touring Guide to East Africa: 1967 International Travel Year
Page Number: 070
Extract Date: 1967

Ngorongoro Forest Resort

NGORONGORO FOREST RESORT LTD., is a unique innovation in that it provides inexpensive yet comfortable accommodation. It is organized on a "do-it-yourself" system, of providing one's own food, which can be cooked and served by the Resort staffer the tourist himself, with crockery and cutlery provided.

The Rest House is situated near the rim of the Crater in a Valley with a beautiful view sheltered by forest glades, often frequented by big game, such as Elephant, Rhino and Buffalo, which can be seen at close quarters from the Verandah.

There are six fully equipped bedrooms in the house. Some are family size, with fire places having three beds and a cot, whereas the others are twin bedded. Running hot and cold water, electric light and indoor toilets and baths are all available.

Food supplies can be bought from the Resort Store such as eggs, bread, butter, tinned foods, chocolates and cigarettes.

Light meals are prepared to order if preferred.

Booking at:

Ngorongoro Forest Resort Ltd.

Barclays Bank Building P.O. Box 792


Phone 2694

Extract ID: 3472

See also

Reuter, Henry J. Official Touring Guide to East Africa: 1967 International Travel Year
Page Number: 071
Extract Date: 1967

Ngorongoro Crater Lodge

Most visitors take in a trip to the famous Ngorongoro Crater, either on their way to the Serengeti or on their way back to Arusha, The Ngorongoro Crater Lodge is 112 miles from Arusha, reached via the Arusha-Serengeti road in-a spectacular three-hour drive which takes the visitor to the base of the Great Rift Wall (3,000 ft) past the entrance to the Lake Manyara National Park and then on to the Mbulu Plateau, past the Karatu and Oldeani wheat and coffee farms, and finally through the temperate forest up to Crater View (7,500 ft.) and along the Crater rim to the Lodge.

There are two scales of fees and charges for entry into the Ngorongoro Conservation Area - one for visitors and another for Tanzania residents.

For visitors entry to the area costs 20/- per dav, with children over 3 and under 16 at half-price. The charge for taking motor vehicles into the area is 10/- per day up to 30 cwt. Tw., and 20/- per day for vehicles over 30 cwt. Tw.

Tanzania residents pay the reduced rates of 5/- per day for adults, and 2/50 per day for children, for entry into the area. Motor-vehicle rates are unchanged. All classes of visitors pay 10/- per day for hiring a guide.

The crater itself has been described as "Africa's Garden of Eden". The first view of it is breathtakingly lovely. It is 2,000 ft. deep and ten miles across, with an area of 102 square miles,

Most visitors stay at the Ngorongoro Crater Lodge and spend days exploring the crater, either in their own four-wheel-drive vehicles or in hired vehicles. Ordinary saloon cars are not allowed in the crater.

It is estimated that the conservation area contains 14,000 wildebeeste, 5,000 zebra and numerous gazelle and other plains game, in addition to the "big five" - elephant, rhino, lion, leopard, hippo and buffalo.

No other game-viewing area in Tanzania offers such a healthy and bracing climate (at 5,000 to 7,500 ft.) or such a beautiful setting, with six 10,000 ft. mountain peaks constantly in sight. The area is free from mosquitoes and tsetse fly, and mosquito nets are not necessary.

The Ngorongoro Crater Lodge itself, with 105 beds and a superb view over the crater, is believed to be the oldest, largest, yet most up-to-date Game Lodge in East Africa. The earliest buildings date back to 1937. The latest - the new log-style dining room and lounge, providing full restaurant and bar facilities - was completed in July, 1963.

Most buildings are of log construction with shingle roofs, their rural aspect contrasting strongly with the internal appearance of comfort, with log fires, gasheated bath water, and indoor sanitation.

Tariff: There are two tariffs for the Ngorongoro Crater Lodge, according to the season.

From April 15th to JuJy 15th and September 15th to December 15th the tariff is:

Single room with private bath, 75/-',

double room with private bath, 120/-;

single room share bath, 60/-;

double room share bath, 100/-.

From July 15th to September 15th and December 15th to April 15th, the tariff is:

Single room with private bath, 110/-;

double room with private bath, 180/-;

single room shai~ bath, 90/-;

double room share bath, 140/-.

All rates include the "best food available in East Africa",

Land-Rovers may be hired at the Lodge. A full day tour of the Crater with driver/guide costs 200/- or individual seats of 50/- each. Land-Rover hire when not staying overnight at the Lodge is 250/- a day,

Bookings to Ngorongoro Crater Lodge Ltd., P.O. Box 751, Arusha. Tel. Arusha 3192.

Extract ID: 3476

See also

Reuter, Henry J. Official Touring Guide to East Africa: 1967 International Travel Year
Page Number: 072
Extract Date: 1967

Citizens' Lodges

For local people who may find the cost of staying at the Lodge beyond their pockets, Ngorongoro offers alternatives, in the form of three kinds of cheaper accommodation. Firstly, there is a youth hostel, designed primarily for youth groups) clubs etc. This has a 24-bed dormitory and a supervisors' bedroom, a lounge-dining room, an adequate kitchen and ablution facilities, and its use is free to any organised educational group.

Secondly, there is a 12-bed annex to the Youth Hostel, where the casual traveller with a knapsack or bedding roll on his back can get a bed for 5/-, or 10/- with sheets and blankets.

Thirdly, the authorities have established a "Forest Resort" to meet the needs of the local family man. This has six-bedrooms with electric light, indoor sanitation and hot baths; service is on a do-it-yourself basis, but food can be bought on the premises and cooked by resident staff,

The Resort Rest House is situated near the rim of the Crater in a valley with a beautiful view, sheltered by forest glades, often frequented by big game, which can be seen at close quarters from the verandah. There are six fully equipped rooms in the house. Some are family size, with fireplaces, having three beds and a cot. Others have two beds. Food such as eggs, bread, butter, tinned foods, chocolates and cigarettes can be bought at the Resort store.

The Resort tariff is: Single accommodation, 25/-; double room, 40/-; children under 12, 12/50. There is also a 10 per cent service charge. Full day tours of the Crater in a Land-Rover can be arranged at 200/-.

The vehicle seats six persons. All other trips by Land-Rover cost 2/50 & mile.

Bookings for the Forest Resort should be made to Forest Resort Ltd., Barclays Bank Buildings, P.O. Box 792, Arusha. Tel. Arusha 2294. All bookings must be confirmed with a deposit of 10/- per person, per night, plus 200/- if the Land-Rover is required,

A new, modern lodge is being planned for the Ngorongoro Crater to cater for the growing demand for visitor accommodation.

Extract ID: 3474

external link

See also

nTZ Feedback
Extract Author: Robert Norris
Page Number: 2003 04 08
Extract Date: 1967

George Dove

In January 1967, with four of my Peace Corps colleagues (vacationing in East Africa from Liberia), we stopped at the Kimba Tent Camp on the rim of Ngorongoro crater and were welcomed by George Dove. We didn't have enough money to stay at the Lodge and they said go to the tent camp nearby. We were glad we did. We spent a memorable night as George recounted over dinner hunting safaris he had been on facing lions and other wild beasts. The next morning he took us in his Land Rover to the crater floor and we saw lions, rhino, hippos, etc. and photographed them. I am enclosing two slides from that memorable day.


What great photos, and a great memory of George. Thanks for taking the trouble to send them.

May I take it that you will be happy for me to add them to the web site?

If I may I will also send them direct to the people who run the Ndutu Safari Lodge. They have a photo of George displayed in the dining room. (In fact it's recently been cleaned up and remounted - a copy of a photo

of the photo is attached). George's son visited them (from Australia) and there were still many of the staff who remembered him and his father. See the Ndutu newsletter for August 2001

Have you had a chance to go back? If you do, do find time to visit Ndutu. (I'm slightly biased because I look after their web site -

Thanks again for your feedback



Please feel free to add them to your Web site and to send them on to Ndutu. I am sorry they are of such poor quality. They were 36-year old faded slides that I scanned into the computer. Unfortunately I have never been back but still hold out a hope that one day I will.

Best regards,

Robert Norris

Extract ID: 4141

See also

nTZ Feedback
Extract Author: Robert Norris
Page Number: 2003 04 08
Extract Date: 8 April 2003

George Dove at the Crater

Extract ID: 4142

See also

nTZ Feedback
Extract Author: Robert Norris
Page Number: 2003 04 08
Extract Date: 8 April 2003

Kimba Camp

Extract ID: 4143

See also

Fosbrooke, Henry Ngorongoro: The Eighth Wonder
Page Number: 207d
Extract Date: 1968

The Lodge mess hut

The [Lodge] mess hut was built at that time [1936] - later reception and office before it was burnt down in 1968 and replaced with the present larger office and shop - and two lines of huts, one along the Crater rim and the other up the valley.

Extract ID: 720

See also

Fosbrooke, Henry Ngorongoro: The Eighth Wonder
Page Number: 229
Extract Date: 1971

A memorable day

A memorable day, concluding with dinner in the new Wildlife Lodge, which is to me a dream come true. The last occasion on which I visited the site we had been choosing the exact location of the proposed lodge: now it is there, with all modern amenities, yet blending in with the landscape in a most unobstrusive manner.

Extract ID: 726

See also

Frater, Alexander Travel Tanzania

Only three lodges are permitted on the rim

Only three lodges are permitted on the rim. The Sopa, almost brand new, is sprawling and welcoming,

Extract ID: 728

See also

Crowther, G and Finlay, H East Africa

Sopa Lodge

...on the eastern rim of the crater, is the last of the lodges. This is the stunningly beautiful Ngorongoro Sopa Lodge. If any lodge in Tanzania deserves an international design award for imagination and environmental sensitivity, it's this one. Built to resemble an African village, at least in layout, it consists of an interlocking series of stone-walled and shingle-roofed suites, each with it's own verandah overlooking the crater, and with palatial interiors. The vast reception, dinning and bar areas are equally courageous and the landscaping excellent. There's also a swimming pool.

Extract ID: 727

See also

Marsh, Natasha Private Diary
Extract Date: 1994

Crater Lodge

Natasha Marsh 1994 Diary

Accommodation - Crater Lodge. Nice atmosphere. Nice rooms. Had a bath. Colin and Alex had some trouble with their taps but it was sorted out. It was amazing to walk back after dinner and find zebra outside the rooms - we were on 'Zebra Walk`!

This was the 'old' Crater Lodge, now serving as staff quarters to the new Lodge. Natasha was 12 when she wrote this.

Extract ID: 729

See also

Goring, Barry ON SAFARI: Spot the leopards in Tanzania
Extract Author: Barry Going
Extract Date: 2000 January 8

ON SAFARI: Spot the leopards in Tanzania

I've just spent three hours waiting for a leopard to appear. It was wonderful. This is what safaris should be about: the patient pursuit of quarry, camera in hand, not frantically barrelling around a game reserve ticking off sightings like a beginner. I did all that yesterday.

I was in Tanzania's Ngorongoro crater, a circle 10 miles across left by an imploding volcano billenniums ago. On the rim 500 yards above me I could just make out the Ngorongoro Crater Lodge, a splendidly eccentric designer hotel made up of strings of circular chalets with big chimneys.

The lodge provided me with a van, for just me, Emanuel the driver, and his assistant George. So while other vans resounded to debate about whether to wait for a leopard or go in search of warthogs, we sat down to a picnic lunch - pasta, salad, home-made bread, cakes, fruit, cold drinks - and waited.

We knew the leopard was lying in the long grass in the shade under a tree; his tail occasionally waved lazily to chase flies away. Sooner or later the shade would have to move, and he with it.

In the event he held out quite a while before the sun became too warm. He looked up, yawned, stretched, and finally got to his feet, fit and muscular and indifferent to the cameras, and padded behind the tree to resume his nap.

Leopards are always worth seeing, if you manage it. They are tough, solitary hunters, flourishing from Cape Town to Siberia, and they did not earn their success as a species by being conspicuous. Definitely one to tick off - if you go in for that sort of thing.

There is plenty more to see in and around the crater. The Ngorongoro Conservation Area was split from the Serengeti National Park in 1959. The Masai people, traditionally Pastoralists, were unwilling to be moved away from their grazing land around Ngorongoro to make way for animals, as they had been in the Serengeti, so the land is now used for both. They are not supposed to graze cattle in the crater itself, but the ones I saw had obviously not been told.

Ecologically, the crater has something for all its residents: savannah, woodland, marsh, lake, rainforest. There are no acacia trees, so no giraffes; and no female elephants, because the slopes of the crater wall are too steep to bring babies down. Lusty males living on the crater floor have to climb the hill to make conjugal visits.

But there are black rhinos and black-maned lions, and so many hyenas that, in a role reversal, they are reported to have taken up killing their own meals, which the lions then rob them of.

Pink and white flamingoes stand one-legged in the lakes while jackals wait for them on the shore, where they are reduced to little piles of feathers. Kites and vultures soar on thermals, then spiral down for lunch.

In pools under the noon heat, snorting hippos submerge to nostril level, flicking water over their backs with their tails and occasionally rolling over and waving their stubby legs in the air like puppies.

And all this against a background of golden grass, shady trees, and blue hills still licked by morning mist.

For a less enclosed safari, you can go to the tourist-free Serengeti nearby. I stayed at two of Crater Lodge's counterparts there: tented Grumeti River Camp (the river is so thickly covered with plants that I didn't spot it until a hippo's head poked up), and Klein's Camp, whose rondavels overlook a long valley leading north to Kenya.

These are great places to see the mass migration of millions of wildebeest and zebra north to the Masai Mara every June and back again in November in search of fresh grazing.

The travelling companions make a good double act: zebra eat the tall grass, discouraging the tsetse flies which torment the thin-skinned wildebeest and tourists. The wildebeest then eat the short grass. Zebra have good eyes, wildebeest good noses - and the sixth sense which tells them when to hit the road. This is the cue for the lions, crocodiles and other predators to look for vulnerable migrants.

Sadly for me, the migration always seemed set for yesterday, or tomorrow; I saw hundreds of animals milling around but not migrating. If you must see the migration and can come at short notice, register with the camps and they will let you know when it begins. Live coverage should eventually appear on their website,

The other place to visit, an hour north-west of Ngorongoro on a bumpy road (Tanzanian pot-holes could double as giraffe traps), is Olduvai Gorge, where the Leakeys and fellow palaeontologists have discovered some of the earliest human remains. Apart from a small but good museum, there is not much to see, but it's a pilgrimage any homesick hominid might make.

And after a dusty day in the gorge or with the wildlife, retreat to the comfort of the Crater Lodge. The rooms are strung along the rim, so you can see the crater from your bed, lavatory or bath.

The duties of Safari, my butler, included not only meeting me on my return with Emanuel, taking my order at dinner, lighting my fire and/or switching on my electric blanket, but also running hot baths and sprinkling them with rose petals.

I was lying back submerged to nostril level when it dawned on me: surly buffalo, pregnant rhino, somnolent lion, lonesome elephant, and of course the leopard: for the first time, I had seen the Big Five in one day. But don't think I go around ticking off lists.

Extract ID: 1472

See also

Jackman, Brian Safari Elite
Extract Author: Brian Jackman
Extract Date: 2000 June 4

Safari elite

Africa's five-star lodges and camps have truly raised their game

As you drive across the savannah in your Toyota Land Cruiser, or fly above it by light aircraft en route to your next cosy camp with its swimming pool and candlelit cordon-bleu dinners, spare a thought for the old safari hands of the 19th century who did it the hard way - who rode on horseback or travelled on foot for hundreds of miles, who ate roasted locusts when all else failed, endured malaria and never heard the clink of an ice cube at the end of the day.

Now 'soft adventure' is the name of the game, and a new generation of upmarket camps and lodges have sprung up to cater for today's more finicky clientele. Among them are the small, low-impact, luxury tented camps - often with no more than eight beds - as pioneered so successfully by Wilderness Trails in Botswana, where clients pay handsomely for the exclusive use of a private safari concession area.

Faced with this kind of competition, several older, traditional camps and lodges have either been given a makeover or have been demolished and completely rebuilt, as at the swanky new Khwai River Lodge in Botswana's Moremi Game Reserve. What it means is that today, unless you choose a mobile safari, your canvas home is likely to be equipped with all mod cons, from electric light and ensuite bathroom to cool-air fan and four-poster bed.

For the uninitiated it is probably worth including a word to the wise about the differences between safari camps and lodges. Lodges are solid, permanent structures, built of local stone and timber under a thatched roof. Some of the older ones (Hwange Safari Lodge in Zimbabwe, Voi in Kenya's Tsavo East National Park) are simply bush hotels with gardens and swimming pools. But the best lodges are those like the Manyara Serena - a cluster of twin-bedded rondavels scattered around a central bar, dining area and pool with stupendous views of Tanzania's Lake Manyara National Park.

Different again is the luxury tented lodge, where the main building is a permanent construction but all the living accommodation is under canvas. Boy-scout camping this is not. Instead, you are welcomed with ensuite luxury, in spacious, twin-bedded, walk-in tents, often on wooden decks. Tented camps, on the other hand, can be just as luxurious and even more expensive as they tend to be smaller and more exclusive. But the biggest difference between sleeping in a room or a tent is that living under canvas brings you closer to the magical sounds of the African bush without in any way compromising your safety.

What makes a good safari camp? Good food, comfortable beds, hot showers and friendly, smooth-as-silk service; these should be taken for granted. But the best camps and lodges offer more besides. Each one is furnished with individual flair and style, which creates its own special atmosphere. Even the smallest camps boast a plunge pool and their overall design is often stunning and always ingenious in the ecofriendly way they blend with their surroundings.

Congenial, bush-savvy professional guides are another bonus. Ambience, too, is important. Places with a feelgood factor, like Ndutu Lodge in the Serengeti, will always attract their devotees. But to fall back on estate-agent jargon, the three best selling points will always be location, location and location. How can you put a price on the view from Ngorongoro Crater Lodge? And great game-viewing, of course. After all, that is still the main purpose for being there.

10 of the best


Elsa's Kopje, Meru National Park

Meru, home of Elsa, the Born Free lioness, is Kenya's least- visited park, and Elsa's Kopje, which opened last summer, is the country's newest lodge. Built on a rock overlooking George Adamson's first camp site, it has a swimming pool, bar and dining room, and eight thatch/stone ensuite cottages with sunken baths and stunning views.

When to go: either early June to mid-October or late December to mid-March; these are the dry seasons, and good for viewing the wilderness with few other tourists around.

Ol Malo, Laikipia

Ol Malo - 'The Place of the Greater Kudu' - was designed and built by Colin and Rock Francome on their idyllic 5,000-acre ranch and game sanctuary in the Laikipia high country. Just half-a-dozen cottages and a swimming pool, built into the rock on what feels like the edge of the world, looking over a water hole to the distant, broken-tooth silhouette of Mount Kenya. Small and intimate, with bags of atmosphere.

When to go: November to March for elephants; January to March for the best game.


Ngorongoro Crater Lodge, Ngorongoro Crater

If you're looking for unashamed luxury and romance, this is the one. It's worth coming for the view alone - to see dawn break over the lost world of the crater floor 2,000ft below. Although the lodge sits right on the crater rim, it is virtually invisible from below. Architecturally, it's a fantasy marriage of ethnic Africa and old-world Europe: king-size Zanzibari four-poster beds, banana-leaf ceilings, chandeliers and gilded mirrors. Hence its nickname: the Masai Versailles. Some old safari hands can't abide its over-the-top opulence. My advice: lie back and enjoy the greatest night out in Africa.

When to go: there is plenty of game (and minibuses) year round, but avoid the wet months of April, May and November.

Sand Rivers, Selous Game Reserve

For the wilder side of East Africa, head to southern Tanzania and Selous, Africa's biggest game reserve. Elegant Sand Rivers has an idyllic setting on the banks of the Rufiji river, where you can watch crocodile and hippo from open-to-the-bush rooms on stilts. Though it's hard to drag yourself away from the good food and fantastic service, you should - taking a bush walk to an Out of Africa-style fly camp on a river of white sand makes for a unique safari.

When to go: the season runs from June to March; until November it is dry and good for general game. January and February are also good, but hotter.


Nsefu, South Luangwa National Park

Completely rebuilt for 1999, Nsefu's six thatched rondavels blend perfectly into their riverine woodland setting. Shady verandas at the front; ensuite showers at the back. What more do you need? And the dining area, dwarfed by a giant termite steeple, provides a wide-screen view of the winding Luangwa River, with its hippos, elephants and waterbirds.

When to go: the June to October dry season for general game viewing, particularly leopards.


Chikwenya Camp, Mana Pools National Park

A superb location in its own exclusive safari area at the confluence of the Zambezi and Sapi rivers. All the rooms are raised off the ground on teak decks, with ensuite bathrooms, canvas walls, indoor/outdoor showers and shady thatch canopies. Lots of big game to see - elephants, buffaloes, lions - either on a canoe safari or on foot beneath a lofty canopy of giant winterthorns.

When to go: the dry season is from late May to October; but the best time for big game is July to October.


Abu's Camp, Okavango Delta

The home of Randall Moore's elephant-back safaris and named after the giant tusker that is Randall's favourite riding elephant. Luxury accommodation is in five custom- designed tents, with teak decks, four-poster beds and verandas overlooking a peaceful delta lagoon - and a private concession area of half a million acres.

When to go: the season runs from March to December, but the best time to go is May to October for riding elephants.

Jack's Camp, Makgadikgadi Pans

Jack's Camp is in a class of its own; a quirky, one-off, 1930s time capsule, set in a palm grove on the threshold of the Kalahari. It was founded by Jack Bousfield, a Botswana adventurer, and is now run by Ralph, his desert-wise son. Thousands of migrating zebras arrive during the wet season, pursued by Kalahari lions, but this is not big-game country. Instead, Jack's Camp offers the complete desert experience - quad-biking across saltpans the size of small countries, searching for Stone Age axes and sleeping out under the stars. All this plus damask tablecloths, bone-handled silverware, Persian rugs and chambray sheets.

When to go: year round; the wet season (November to March) when the pan fills and attracts flamingos and other birdlife, or the dry season (April to October) for desolate landscapes.


Sossusvlei Mountain Lodge, Namibrand Nature Reserve

The newest lodge in Namibia (opened in December 1999) consists of 10 air-conditioned thatched cottages with inside/outside showers, plunge pools, and the main lodge. Perched on a rocky pile, it looks out across a sweeping baked-earth plain to a distant desert horizon of Martian-red dunes, some of the highest in the world. There are lots of nice touches - including a high-powered computerised telescope for desert star-gazing. The isolation factor is impressive.

When to go: year round for the dunes and wilderness, but this is not a destination for game viewing. Namibia is a desert country, so the rains from November to March are not heavy.


Londolozi Tree Camp, Sabi Sand private game reserve

A 35,000-acre slice of Lowveld with three secluded camps overlooking the Sand River, it was the first reserve in the world to be accorded Relais & Ch�teaux status. Meals at Londolozi Tree Camp are served on a balcony perched 70ft up in a riverside ebony tree. There are only six cottage suites, all equipped with every conceivable creature comfort, from air con to indoor/outdoor showers. Completing the picture are a plunge pool fed by a forest cascade, and Big Five game-viewing - famously for leopards.

When to go: year round, but the best time for game viewing is in the dry season of April to October. If combining this with a stay in Cape Town, it is better to go November to March.


The best camps and lodges don't come cheap. You may be under canvas, but the prices would not look out of place at a five-star hotel. For example, a five-night elephant-riding safari at Abu's Camp in Botswana will set you back more than �4,000pp. The camps featured above are not all as expensive, but be prepared to splash out at least �3,000pp.

Most safaris combine two or more camps set in different terrain and therefore attracting varied wildlife. Three nights at Elsa's Kopje and three at Ol Malo in Kenya, all-inclusive with British Airways flights and private air transfers, costs �2,730pp in high season (July and August), with Safari Consultants (01787 228494). Two weeks in Botswana staying three nights each at Jack's Camp and three other good camps - Eagle Island, Little Mombo and Zibalianja - all- inclusive, with South African Airways flights, costs from �4,330 with Hartley's Safaris (01673 861600).


Some companies offer escorted departures but most do tailor-made packages. They include: Abercrombie & Kent (020 7559 8500;; Africa Exclusive (01604 628979); Art of Travel (020 7738 2038); Carrier (01625 582006;; Cazenove & Loyd Safaris (020 8875 9666;; Hartley's Safaris (01673 861600); Journeys by Design (020 8332 2928; www.journeys; Okavango Tours & Safaris (020 8343 3283;; Safari Consultants (01787 228494); Scott Dunn World (020 8672 1234); Sunvil Discovery (020 8232 9777;; Union-Castle Travel (020 7229 1411); and Worldwide Journeys & Expeditions (020 7381 8638).

Extract ID: 1509

See also

Sher, Antony The greatest show on earth
Extract Author: Antony Sher
Page Number: 1
Extract Date: 2002, Feb 18

The greatest show on earth - Ngorongoro

As our jeep starts up the steep slope, the terrain changes dramatically. For hours we've been rattling across the flat, dusty bushland of central Tanzania, but now, suddenly, there are towering forests of strangler figs and deep dark valleys. Jungle Africa. This is more like it.

I'm on holiday with my partner, RSC director Greg Doran, and our friend, the actor and director Richard Wilson. We reach the top, crest a rise, and stop. "Good heavens," Richard says quietly, while I inadvertently blurt out: "I don't believe it!" (The phrase is forbidden in his presence.) Greg's eyes are filling. "I've waited 35 years to see this," he says. Tanzania was his project at primary school, with special emphasis on the remarkable sunken landscape before us. The Ngorongoro Crater.

About two million years ago, the cone of this giant volcano fell away, creating a ridge of walls around 100 square miles of grassland. The great plains of Africa are legendary, but here, curiously, is one great plain all on its own. Perfectly outlined. An Eden, containing one of the best collections of game in the world. I never expected to see the entire cradle of land in one heart-stopping view. We stand there, hushed. The place holds power and tranquillity in equal measures.

Our hotel, the Crater Lodge, is situated high on the rim of the southern side. Created by an Italian designer, this is European camp meets African primitive, and surprisingly the mixture works. The rooms are wattle-and-daub huts with private verandas. Inside, chandeliers hang from the woven palm ceilings and luscious taffeta drapes adorn the French windows. These overlook the crater. As do the windows in the bathroom, and even in the toilet. A loo with a view.

Serious luxury is on offer here - good food, fine wines, a personal butler for each room - but the main focus is the daily game drive into Ngorongoro itself. Our guide is Haruna, a cheerful, grizzled character wearing a baseball cap. Down on the crater floor, the morning light has a rare, delicate quality which makes the walls seem to float around you. Incredible. But then you are inside a volcano that's blown its top. We have terrific sightings. A massive black-maned lion stalks towards us with what looks like deadly intent, then goes straight past and crosses the plain, clearing it in his stride - herds of zebra and wildebeest break into a run at the first sight of him. The flocks of flamingo look like a pink heat haze on the soda lake - Lake Magadi - and the scene is noisy with their buzzing, haw-hawing chatter. A huge troop of baboons process past our jeep - every shape and size from swaggering muscle-bound males to curious, stumbling babies - while we watch, beaming, cameras clicking away. Meanwhile, I notice some British tourists in another vehicle secretly photographing Richard. What entry will they make in the game book at the hotel? "Today saw lion, baboons and a telly star."

Lunch is alongside a water hole. A family of hippos lie half-submerged, occasionally rolling over in the mud, which acts as their sunblock. You're allowed out of your vehicles here, but Haruna warns it's best not to eat in the open. Kites can snatch the food from your hand, leaving ugly talon wounds. Wondering if he's exaggerating, I throw some bread on to the ground. Immediately there's a rushing noise. I look up to see an enormous black bird take aim, tuck in its wings, and dive - a terrifying funnel of energy - scooping up the prize. I stagger back. And now the whole sky is whirling with a mob of kites, their big shadows flashing over the grass. This makes The Birds look like a Disney film. I leap back into the jeep, saying: "I think Haruna's right - let's eat in here."

Before dinner one night, all the hotel guests assemble on the lawn for champagne. Then we're led round to the back where an extraordinary spectacle awaits us. Two hundred Masai warriors with flaming torches are lining a route to the South Lodge. As we walk between them, they chant a hypnotic, insistent song. Fairly sloshed by now, I wonder if I'm in a dream or movie. At the other end, the entire Masai village is present: women bobbing their multicoloured neckplates, youths performing the traditional bouncing dance, men rushing at one another in mock attacks, then falling to the side, corpsing like actors.

We've already noticed the Masai grazing their cattle and goats down in the crater, and it's an arresting sight: the herdsmen in red robes, armed with only spear and stick, guiding their livestock through herds of wild animals. So there are humans in this Eden, too. Haruna explains that lions wouldn't dare attack them. Time has taught both sides who's master here.

Extract ID: 3368

See also

Valentine Marc Nkwame The ancient romance at Ngorongoro Crater Lodge
Extract Author: Valentine Marc Nkwame
Page Number: 222
Extract Date: 31 May 2002

The ancient romance at Ngorongoro Crater Lodge

Since this world boasts to be having its own small luxury hotels, it is therefore very fair (and quite heart warming I may add) for one of these luxurious babies to be in Tanzanian northern tourist circuit.

The lodge is packed with antique treasures collected from all over Africa.

Standing on the rim of the ancient Ngorongoro Crater, is the architectural masterpiece of Ngorongoro Crater Lodge, one of the Conservation Corporation Africa�s brainchild.

It is difficult to believe that, the lodge comprising 30 suites, is only four years old in its latest yet ancient looking, Maasai inspired stilted design.

Ngorongoro Crater Lodge is located on the plot which used to be a private hunting lodge for the British governor in the colonial period.

Well! Probably that�s why the lodge�s gigantic suites have colonial styled interiors with floor to roof glass window and thick heavy curtains.

Even the most vagabonds heart would feel at home in Ngorongoro Crater Lodge, which is probably the most romantic place one could ever be.

Built in 1997, the lodge has three villages namely: the North, South and Tree camps. Two of these villages have 12 suites each and one has six private or exclusive suites.

The lodge is packed with antique treasures collected from all over Africa and these include an 18th century mirror that was used by the Sultan of Zanzibar.

Sitting at a fire place in one of the three dinning rooms, one can almost feel the presence of bygone historical figures such as Lord Dalamere.

Everything inside both the dinning rooms and suites, are handcrafted and made to look as ancient, as possible.

"After being made, the doors were then scrubbed, mauled beaten so that they made look worn, while the latched were forced to look rusty!" said an employee at the lodge who was present when the "new" lodge was being built.

Looking at the design, one may also wonder if the person who planned them was genius, wizard or plain demented. I mean, this is stretching imagination beyond the permitted horizon.

Again, like all other CCA owned lodges, Ngorongoro Crater Lodge has been built with great respect to the environment.

All the buildings have been raised a few metres off the ground, to allow the natural shrubs and grass to grow freely unhampered.

A gigantic tree cuts through the dinning room at the tree top camp, where one can get a very clear view of the crater (without the aid of binoculars) its animals - the crater lake, and even the vehicles going round the crater routes.

Come to think of it, actually, we found the lodge itself to be more interesting than the park around it or the crater below it.

Perched at an altitude of 7,000 feet above sea level, the area can be rather cold, but who cares, the suites have electric blankets, hot showers, hot baths and great fire places.

Mind you, the floors are all wooden and if that is not enough, there are rugs to step on, plus it is rather romantic to wake up into a misty morning.

Also known as the "Earth�s Wild Miracle!" the lodge has been named a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World (SLH) and is living up to that title.

In our privacy, we discussed the possibility of the Government forcing other hotel owners operating within the game reserves to emulate Ngorongoro Crater Lodge as far as their hotel buildings are concerned.

Let�s face it, is there any point of building a modern brick and concrete, iron roofed or storeyed premises in areas meant for natural growth and wild animals?

Steel and concrete should be strictly for town hotels while it is high time that, investors go fore traditional influenced structures if they are to attract serious visitors in their hotels within national parks.

Extract ID: 3394