Since we arrived 2 days late on the island, we spent only one night in the first of our selected guesthouses – the Waru Guesthouse. For our next three nights, we were booked into the Samsara Guesthouse Karimunjawa, which was just 10 minutes walk from the main harbour.
Samsara’s is an inexpensive guesthouse. They charged us IDR 200,000 (€14) per night, including breakfast. This was for a room with private bathroom/toilet and fan. There was no mosquito net (nor any easy means to hang the one we brought with us).
Luckily, we’d brought mosquito coils – and the fan was powerful.
Immediately, we had issues with the faulty toilet. It wouldn’t flush and was permanently leaking. This meant the bathroom floor was always wet, and we needed to flush the toilet manually with a bucket of water.
As with most budget guesthouses, there was no storage space and just one small hanging rack. We had to more or less live out of our rucksacks, which was a little uncomfortable.
Samsara Guesthouse Karimunjawa – They’re Pet-friendly!
At Samsara’s they pride themselves on offering pet friendly accommodation. Well, if you keep your window open you’ll find plenty of stray kittens running over your bed sheets. Fine for some, but not everybody’s cup of tea
Breakfast was pretty basic: A chocolate pancake, and help yourself to a cup of tea.
As they say, you get what you pay for.
In the common area of the guesthouse was a seating area, a thermos with hot water, and some tea bags. We’d also brought some coffee sachets with us, so were always able to make ourselves a drink.
Samsara has 3 rooms and a dormitory. While we were there it got pretty noisy at night with people singing, and one sad bozo trying to play a guitar. If you want quiet and privacy, look elsewhere. Even with a private room, the experience is just like staying in a dormitory.
The place seems to be owned by a group of young Indonesian guys who prefer partying to running a guesthouse. As guests, they made us feel like we were a bit of an inconvenience. The place is lacking a lot of maintenance, not to mention cleaning. One of the guest notices – painted in large letters on the front wall as we arrived – should have given us an indication of what we could expect (see top image).
We stayed 3 nights at Samsara’s, though we came close to leaving after our first sleepless night listening to our hosts partying.
For our next guesthouse, we would hopefully be upgrading ourselves to the more promising Cocohuts Lodge, high up on the mountainside.
If you enjoyed Samsara Guesthouse Karimunjawa, check out our Central Java Travel Plan. You may also like: