The Wild Coast of South Africa’s Eastern Cape remains a largely untouched land known for its rocky coastline of jagged cliffs, violent waves and hills blanketed in lush, green foliage. The area is a remarkable place to get your nature fix and go on a hiking expedition. But before you pack your bags for your John Muir-like trip, you’ll want to make sure you have a place to hang your nightcap and get well rested. And it doesn’t hurt to get pampered while you’re there too. Here are five hotels of the Wild Coast you must stay in on your next trip.
If the name makes you think of yoga, that’s because the hotel’s drive is to ensure its guests are at total relaxation and restoration of the body and mind during their stay. Prana Lodge is on Chinsta Bay, meaning guests will have their own private access to the beach to take in the full view of the ocean. Each room has its own flair of modern influence with a brush of colonial designs, giving guests a luxury atmosphere in the midst of the stunning landscape. There are only eight rooms available per night at Prana Lodge (all suites), so it’s advised to book your room as early as possible. While there, make plans to take advantage of its spa, where visitors can receive massages or soak in a hot tub while enjoying the view of the nearby forest.
Umngazi River Bunaglows & Spa
Stay in one of the bungalows with thatched roofs and a private balcony overlooking an ocean, hills and an indigenous forest (yes, all in one view). Umngazi River Bungalows & Spa looks like a traditional South African luxury accommodation from the outside, but once you step inside, you’ll find splashes of bright, kitschy colors. All rooms have spacious windows to invite the view of the outdoors inside. After a day of exploring the gorgeous coastline, head back to the hotel’s spa for an outdoor aromatherapy bath. Because of the hotel’s ideal location by the Umngazi River, getting outdoors is a popular activity for guests including hiking, mountain biking, fishing, and birding. Bring the kids along, there’s a Kids Club where your kids can go on a supervised adventure while you relax and unwind.
Get treated like a hot shot at Mayfair Hotel in Mthatha that’s only minutes away from gorgeous nature spots. The hotel is predominately a business hotel, but you’ll instantly feel like you’ve arrived relaxed once you see the breathtaking interior of velvet furniture, swanky bar, abstract lighting and gas-lit fireplaces. The hotel is a bargain with affordable prices for the accommodation and service you’ll receive. There’s also an in-house restaurant with a seasonal menu and a full breakfast buffet that’s available each morning during your stay.
The Estuary Hotel
Stay in a cozy, Cape Dutch-style hotel by the water at The Estuary Hotel in Port Edward. There are 44 rooms available at the hotel, but you’ll want to reserve a water-facing room for a grander stay. Because of the hotel’s location by the river, activities include jet-skiing and fishing as well as on land sports like tennis, horseback riding and mountain biking. Golf lovers will want to consider staying at the hotel since it’s in close proximity to seven prestigious golf courses. As dinner time arrives, head down to the on-site Fish Eagle Restaurant for an appetizing menu full of seasonal and local goods.
Ocean View Hotel
In Coffee Bay of the Wild Coast, Ocean View Hotel has a well-earned name. With the view of the Indian Ocean, the hotel is scattered across the beach in small thatched-roof bungalows, allowing guests to easily walk to both the indigenous forest and beach.The main building has been around since the 1920s and operated as a boarding house before it eventually turned into a hotel. The hotel encourages guests to be social, having its meals catered in a dining room where guests sit together to enjoy their home-cooked dinners. Activities at the hotel include surfing, hiking, fishing and much more.
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