5 great places to stay when backpacking South Africa
Back in the big smoke of Cape Town for a wedding I thought I would review some of the amazing places I have stayed at along my journey so far. Read on for part one.
Cape Agulhas Backpackers
This was where it all started. Genesis if you will. And it didn’t disappoint. The Southern most tip of Africa. Aside from a cool war story to tell everyone, it really should be a must for visitors to South Africa.
Cape Agulhas Backpackers is sweet as and handily own the activity centre across the road that offers all manner of watersports from Adrenalin Boat rides, Stand Up Paddle Boards and some of the best kite surfing conditions in South Africa. You can also hangout with stingrays in the harbor if you just want to get your toes wet.
Aside from all the usual goodness you’d expect at a Backpackers they have undoubtedly one of my favourite bars to have a beer in. I can’t really explain why. Maybe it was the start of it all. But the beer was sweet, the staff unbelievably chilled and friendly and it set the tone for the Going Homeless Project up perfectly.
It also was the first place I stayed longer than I intended. For good reason. Drop by. It’s full of goodness.
Aardvark Guesthouse and Backpackers
Ten minutes from the main gate of Addo is a little piece of paradise, hammocks hanging in trees, sunshine and wide open space. The Aardvark Guesthouse and Backpackers, beautifully decorated and adorned with local arts and sculpture, is the place to stay when visiting Addo National Park.
Graciously hosted by Daniel And Claude, the Going Homeless Project, discovered that the Addo area has a lot more to offer than just the national park. Local knowledge trumps the interwebs again. A canoe trip up the Sundays River with Criss Cross Adventures and a visit to Daniel Cheetah farm rounded out an unexpectedly epic stay in Addo. If you need road tripping or route advice chat to Daniel who is a veritable back road wizard.
Try their scrumptious breakfast, it is epic and save some time to chillax in the hammocks it’s good for your body and soul.
Away with the Fairies
Aside from the fact that I am totally captivated by Hogsback, it offers a very different and unique experience to the rest of my travels up the coast. Set inland in the magnificent Amathole mountains, it’s hard not to be wow-ed by the place.
Away with the Fairies, perched atop a cliff overlooking the beautiful indigenous forests offers the perfect base to do all that Hogsback has to offer. Walk from the bottom of the Garden into the forests to visit the numerous waterfalls, visit the local artists and potters. Be sure to drop by the Ecology Shrine for a different perspective and find the answers to life by walking the Labyrinth.
Hogsback is a truly beautiful place and offers a completely different experience to travelers. It’s a must visit place for those looking for a more than a costal view of South Africa. Oh and be sure to take a bath at the end of the world …
This place is legendary, if you haven’t heard about it you’re probably talking to the wrong people or reading the wrong travel information. Situated in a primo spot on the lagoon in Chintsa, Bucs offers an excellent all round place to stay, great accommodation, free daily activities, killer dinners and a very festive in-house bar.
Surf lessons and board rentals, horse riding and a multitude of other cool activities are available for those who feel the need to be active, or head to the beach for a swim and just laze in the sun. Grab a freebie bodyboard and hit the waves or canoe up the lagoon.
A free daily activity, often involving free drinks, kick off good evenings so be sure to participate. They also offer themed dinners fit for a king and are definitely bang for your buck, they also help create the awesome social vibe Bucs has got going for them.
Don’t skip Chintsa because its a small dot on the map – its pure awesomeness.
Uhm, one word should suffice. Heaven. Well there are also cool people and beer. And a beach. So probably better. Situated in Coffee Bay, Transkei, the Coffee Shack is epic. Comfy, welcoming and well pure backpacker porn so to speak.
Daily activities that waver between vaguely strenuous and super chilled. Perfect surf for both beginners and experienced surfers. Lessons and board rentals are cheap cheap – so learn to surf while you there. Hike to the Hole in the Wall, Cliff Jump and chow down in the local village and get the skinny on the area on the various day trips.
Yum Breakfasts and communal dinners and coffee i’d put my name to are available from the kitchen and make cooking for yourself obsolete they are so good. Cool, friendly and helpful staff make the Coffee Shack a “you’re stupid if you miss it” when visiting South Africa.
There is something about the Coffee Shack that gets everyone on the same page and that makes for late nights and fun filled days. Good times. Indeed.