The Adventure Province
Enjoy some of South Africa's finest hiking trails along the province's largely undeveloped coastline and through its mountainous, waterfall-filled landscapes. Private wildlife reserves and national parks abound; see the Big Five (lion, leopard, buffalo, elephant and rhino) or migrating whales and dolphins. Scenic diversity is one of the most striking characteristics of the region, ranging from the lush, evergreen Tsitsikamma Forest to the rugged Baviaanskloof Wilderness Area, the southern slopes of the Drakensberg and the arid Great Karoo.
Known as the "Friendly City", Port Elizabeth fringes Algoa Bay at the western end of the Sunshine Coast, regarded as one of the best sailing venues in the world, while scuba diving is of world class quality with beautiful reefs, shipwrecks, fish and colourful coral species.
The city offers many good bathing beaches and surf spots. It’s also a convenient gateway to the Eastern Cape and Karoo.
Where to Stay
Cape St Francis & St Francis Bay
Renowned as a water sport paradise with surfing, kite-surfing, surf ski and canoe paddling on the beautiful waters off both Cape St Francis and St Francis Bay as well as on the nearby Kromme River. St Francis Links offers the keen golfer an excellent challenge with the nearby St Francis Bay Golf Club offering an easier but still challenging round of golf.
Choose from a selection of accommodation options from conventional hotel rooms, three and four- bedroom cottages or luxury beach villas.
Where to Stay
Known as ‘the Kowie’ for the picturesque canal-like river that flows through its centre, Port Alfred is blessed with beautiful beaches and a Royal golf course, intimate small-boat harbour and 43 Air School, a world-class training facility for pilots and air traffic controllers. There is the Royal Alfred Marina - one of few in the world where every home owner enjoys private water frontage and a personal jetty! Visitors can enjoy boat cruises through the Marina canals and if you feel energetic you can hire a water pedalo or canoe to make the trip.
Where to Stay
Founded in 1786, known as the “gem of the Karoo” With over 200 buildings claimed as National Monuments and an entire street restored, including its slave cottages. Graaff-Reinet has retained much of the character of a typical 19th century town and is well worth a visit.
Where to Stay
Addo Elephant National Park
A day or two at malaria free Addo is a highlight of any visit to this region. It offers a wide range of game viewing and outdoor activities, which include horse-riding, guided walking, hiking and 4x4 trails. Look out for the rare flightless dung beetle, endemic to Addo. Nothing could be better if you are a bush lover!
Where to Stay
Woodall Country House & Spa
Tucked away on a peaceful citrus farm where miles of citrus trees bear fruit all winter and scent the air with blossoms in the springtime. It is ideally suited for nature lovers, food and wine connoisseurs, as well as those seeking time out in the spa.
Stay in understated colonial style luxury, with panoramic views of the Zuurberg Mountain Range. Camp Figtree features a variety of game drives, safaris and game walks. There is also an infinity pool and a restaurant.
Gorah Elephant Camp
This exclusive lodge recaptures the romantic mystique of authentic safaris from centuries past. Situated in the malaria-free Addo, tented luxury suites offer a private deck with panoramic views. Meals are served in the dining room at the colonial Gorah House and in an enclosed outdoor area around the fire, where guests can enjoy a gourmet barbecue and African cuisine. High tea is served every afternoon.
Zuurberg Mountain Village
This mountain-top resort surrounded by savannah, provides panoramic views of Addo Elephant National Park. It offers luxury accommodation, with an outdoor pool and an array of outdoor activities from horse riding to hiking.
This exclusive lodge is a must for every nature lover who enjoys relaxing and taking in the sounds of the wild, with views of the Karoo Plains and the Zuurberg Mountains. It offers Big-5 game walks, night safari drives, fly fishing, cave exploring and bird watching.
Founders Lodge by Mantis
A character-filled 1940’s manor house, situated on a private reserve directly adjacent to the malaria- free Big-5 Shamwari Game Reserve. Newly renovated to accommodate guests in exquisite 5-star comfort.
River Bend Lodge
This upscale, low-rise lodge is close to the Coerney River. Suites feature private patios with Wi-Fi and satellite TV, plus minibars and safes. An upgraded suite includes a Nespresso machine and a private plunge pool. A villa adds a kitchen, a living area and another pool. There's a refined restaurant and a wood-panelled bar, plus a lounge and a library. A lawn surrounds an outdoor pool. Other amenities include a spa and a playroom.
Baviaanskloof Wilderness Area
The area encompasses the World Heritage Site of Baviaanskloof and the Karoo towns of Steytlerville, Willowmore, Rietbron and Groot Rivier. It covers 200km of unspoiled, rugged mountainous terrain with spectacular landscapes hosting more than a thousand different plant species, including the Erica and Protea families and species of ancient cycads. A must-see for all nature and adventure enthusiasts.
The game lodges, safari lodges and bush camps of the Eastern Cape present visitors with endless choices when it comes to planning a safari adventure. Many of the reserves include the “Big Five”– rhino, elephant, leopard, lion and buffalo as well as an abundance of bird species, which makes this part of South Africa a hotspot for safaris.
Daily guided game drives are conducted in open safari vehicles and guests may experience a close-up and personal interaction with a cheetah. See other predators like hyena, jackal and lynx, as well as many antelope species or spot the rare Bontebok and Oribi.
While some of the lodges are luxurious 5-star escapes, others are comfortable camps or cosy suites in 3- and 4-star establishments.
Where to Stay
Hopewell Private Game Reserve
The malaria-free Hopewell Private Game Reserve is set on 3000 hectares of African bush with an abundance of wildlife and birds. Guests can enjoy panoramic views, game drives and free Wi-Fi.
Kwandwe Private Game Reserve
Offering a Big-5 safari experience, nestled in the heart of South Africa’s Eastern Cape. The five award-winning lodges offer a range of accommodation options and activities to make every African Dream come true.
Lalibela Private Game Reserve
Not only malaria free, but spans 5 ecosystems, resulting in a breath-taking diversity of flora and fauna. Home to the Big-5 as well as other predators like cheetah, hyena, jackal and lynx. Lalibela has its own airstrip making air charters directly into the Game Reserve possible.
Amakhala Game Reserve
Offers a wide variety of 3, 4 and 5-star owner-managed experiences in a selection of 11 Luxury establishments, made up of restored Country houses, Safari Lodges and Tented camps located in different areas of the large 18 000 acres Safari park.
Shamwari Game Reserve
The malaria-free reserve is home to vast herds of wildlife, bird life and ecological diversity and guests can spot Africa's Big-5. Luxury accommodation is offered in different lodges on the reserve and Long Lee Manor, originally built in 1910, offers a distinctive Colonial experience.
Sibuya Game Reserve
The unique ‘Sibuya Experience’ starts with a short boat transfer up the Kariega Estuary to River Camp, Forest Camp or Bush Lodge and is located close to the beach. Situated in a malaria-free forest., it offers Big-5 game drives, river cruises and tented accommodation.
Pumba Private Game Reserve
Water Lodge offers waterfront chalets overlooking Lake Kariega, while Bush Lodge is set on a floodplain with scenic mountain views offering luxury thatch and glass chalets. All Chalets open onto private game viewing decks boasting plunge pools and outdoor showers.
Kariega Private Game Reserve
Offers a combination of “Big-5” and general game viewing and a variety of fauna, flora and birdlife. Main Lodge offers families, friends and couples a relaxed and friendly environment to enjoy the African bush. Ukhozi Lodge truly captures the romance and intimacy of Africa. River Lodge is unique with 10 spacious, air conditioned and tastefully appointed thatched suites and The Homestead is a private lodge which offers guests secluded comfort, convenience and luxury.