Tucked away in the rolling Ngorongoro Highlands, this homely guesthouse is a peaceful retreat.
Gibb’s Farm offers something quite unique in Tanzania. It’s not a hotel, nor a safari lodge – although it lies just half an hour from the crater rim so there’s still excellent wildlife viewing to be had close by. Instead, it’s a charming guesthouse that was originally a 1920s coffee farm, with lush floral gardens, coffee and vegetable fields, and views over the rolling hills.
The light and airy dining rooms and lounge are housed in the old farmstead, which has exposed beams, original artwork and stone fireplaces. Meals are prepared using lots of the farm’s own organic produce, fresh from its gardens and on-site bakery and dairy. There’s a sustainable approach too, with grey-water recycling, solar water heating and waste composting.
Rustic country cottages are dotted throughout the lawns and rose gardens. Inside, they are warm and characterful, with hand-crafted furniture, open fires and large bath tubs. Each has its own theme, with artwork commissioned through the farm’s artist-in-residence program. Sitting on your private terrace listening to the dawn birdsong is a soothing way to start the day.
There’s a gentle pace here. During your stay you’ll be encouraged to immerse yourself in ‘farm life experiences’, like joining the resident naturalists on morning bird walks, bread making, coffee roasting and taking afternoon tea in the gardens. After sunset, guests gather around the fire for drinks to listen to tales of Iraqw culture and tribal folklore. Away from the farm, visit the extraordinary volcanic landscape of the Ngorongoro Crater – the largest unbroken ancient caldera in the world that teems with wild game including elephant, lion, rhino and Thomson’s gazelle.
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Karatu in the Ngorongoro Highlands, a 30-minute drive from Lake Manyara and a 1½ hour drive from the Ngorongoro Crater entranceAirport transfer time:A 2-hour drive from Arusha or a 25-minute flight from Manyara airstrip Rooms:19
17 cottages and 2 two-bedroom family cottages
2 dining rooms, lounge