Accommodation for SA trip

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Sep 18th, 2003, 10:26 AM
  #1
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Accommodation for SA trip

I?m now looking at accommodation possibilities for my SA trip. Because we?re spending a lot on the luxury trip to Botswana and Namibia afterwards I?d really like to keep the budget for this accommodation as low as possible whilst ensuring that accommodation provides the following:

*Ensuite bathroom (not just private) is essential.
--In destinations where we?re stopping only for a night or two (or in game parks where baths are less likely to be available) a shower is fine but a tub would be appreciated, especially if we?re staying longer

*Double rather than twins would be nice but not essential.

*Quiet rooms preferable ? so backpackers only suitable if they have quieter buildings away from the usual baying student travellers

Here are our destinations and possible ideas:

5 or 6 nts Cape Town

No ideas yet, but I?m looking for a bed and breakfast in a good location for strolling to a wide choice of nearby restaurants, if possible. Realise waterfront probably not feasible on low budget so open to suggestions. Have looked through portfolio collections and there are so many B&Bs that I don?t even know where to start. Secure or safe parking would be a strong benefit.

2 nts Western Winelands

Not even sure which town to base ourselves in here so open to suggestions of particularly special accommodations that fall into the low budget category.

1 nt Hermanus

One suggestion I?ve picked up for Hermanus is to stay at Princess Biko's B&B or "Ikhaya Lakwa Biko's" in Hermanus township area. The experience as described on my SA thread on Thorntree sounds very interesting and I?d be very keen to hear what anyone here thinks about it.

1 nt Swellendam
1 nt Oudtshoorn or Calitzdorp


Open to all suggestions for these stops?

1 nt Hell

I recently read a travel article on Hell and the B&B opened by Anne Joubert when she returned to this valley where she grew up. If anyone can provide input I?m thinking of adding in one night here at the expense of one of the two above or possibly one of the nights in Knysna.

4 nts Knysna area

This is a very open stop in that we?re not even decided on whether to stay in Knysna, Plettenberg Bay or somewhere else along this coast region. We could even split the stay into 2 x 2 nighters. Read about Storms River chalets on the net ? anyone know about those?

2 nts Port Elizabeth/ Addo

I can?t decide whether to stay in the rondavels inside Addo, in a B&B outside the gates or even in PE itself (or in between). Open to all opinions and suggestions.

Fly to Durban

2 nts Durban

Open to all suggestions?

4 nts Hluhluwe ? Umfolozi

Hilltop receives the most mentions for Hluhluwe ? though we need ensuite so have to check costs. Any thoughts on the other accommodation in the park?

I?m thinking of Mpila for Umfolozi (the 2 bedded safari tents not the huts) ? thoughts?

3 nts St Lucia wetlands
2 nts Sodwana


These 5 nights are very open as I?m not even definite on which areas along the coast we?ll actually stay at. I have seen recommendations in various places (ranging from newspaper supplements to Thorntree to right here on Fodors) and don?t really know how to decide. I?d love a lodge such as Sodwana Bay Lodge for at least one part but am not sure about whether the prices will be low enough.

Please suggest anything you feel might be of interest in this area.

2 nts Ithala

This is the suggestion of my favourite agent but we don?t know where we?d stay as of yet? We could use this two nights in a different place such as Pongola if we decide to?

3 nts Kruger

Now 3 nights because what would have been the 4th will be spent at Jo?burg airport.

Not sure what to do for this stay? open to ideas.

1 nt Jo?burg

Will probably choose something right by or in the airport for convenience for the flight next morning.


THANKS IN ADVANCE!

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Sep 18th, 2003, 10:26 AM
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Gosh darn it - I hate what fodors does to hyphens from text pasted in from Word!!!
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Sep 18th, 2003, 06:10 PM
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Kav, the only thing I can help you with is the hotel by the airport in J'burg. There is the Airport Sun Intercontinental in the airport, the transit hotel completely inside the airport (but I gather only good for sleeping) and I think there is a Holiday Inn not too far. There's one more that is more budget that's often mentioned on thorn tree but I forget the name.
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Sep 18th, 2003, 06:28 PM
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Kavey - Clematis is correct. There is a Holiday Inn at the airport - a shuttle bus from the terminal will get you there. Price is about 1/2 that of the Intercontinental.
 
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Sep 19th, 2003, 12:00 AM
  #5
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Thanks ladies...

I'm hoping Selwyn and others will also have ideas.

I have some B&B recommendations already from people here and elsewhere which I can weigh up against whatever I am advised here...
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Sep 19th, 2003, 12:25 AM
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A few years ago, we stayed at Ithala, and I would go back there at the drop of a penny. We stayed in the camp in a self service bungalow with two bedrooms, etc. They have (had then) no fence around the camp, so the next morning when we woke up, a deer and her calf were standing right outside the window. Magic. See www.kznwildlife.com/ithala_acc.htm

There are a few hotels around JHB Airport but the Holiday Inn is as good as anything if you only want to sleep.
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Sep 19th, 2003, 12:28 AM
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Thanks John, that's the URL I was looking at myself - it's already in my bookmark list!
Can you tell me which accommodation your bungalow fell into? Was it the main area or one of the other options? I assume it had bathroom facilities?

THANKS
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Sep 19th, 2003, 04:09 AM
  #8
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Kavey,
We had good luck with the places listed in the Greenwood Guide. www.greenwoodguides.com
I would highly recommend Lemon Tree Lane in PE if you decide to stay there. In Kruger, you could save some money by staying at the rondavals in the park, or just wait and pick up a last minute bargain on www.mtbeds.za
 
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Sep 19th, 2003, 05:29 AM
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Hey Kavey - the "last minute" thing might be a good idea. A guy I met in RSA in August is originally from the USA but has been living in Nairobi for four years. He took advantage of a special they were running in the newspaper - a long weekend deal at one of the $500.-per-night-camps for $450. total. It was 3 or 4 nights.

Good Luck!
Cindy
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Sep 19th, 2003, 05:40 AM
  #10
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Cindy
I'd love to do that in a couple of places, possibly in one or two of the parks but the only trouble is that if I do that and there aren't any deals the cheap park accommodation will be fully booked.
What I might do is check cancellation policies, if they are not too bad (e.g. 48 hours etc) I can cancel them in advance if I do find late bargains...
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Sep 19th, 2003, 02:51 PM
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Hi Kavey,

I can offer advice when it comes to Cape Town and the Garden Route but dont know enough to be able to advise on all the other places you will be going to so here we go...
_________

5 or 6 nts Cape Town

No ideas yet, but I?m looking for a bed and breakfast in a good location for strolling to a wide choice of nearby restaurants, if possible. Realise waterfront probably not feasible on low budget so open to suggestions. Have looked through portfolio collections and there are so many B&Bs that I dont even know where to start. Secure or safe parking would be a strong benefit.

---

My suggestion would be to try Avanti Guest House. Well priced. Well appointed. 8 Km from Waterfront. 100 Metres from the sea,. Good hosts. Secure

http://www.avanti.co.za/

_____________________________________

2 nts Western Winelands

Not even sure which town to base ourselves in here so open to suggestions of particularly special accommodations that fall into the low budget category.

---------

I would suggest that you stay in Stellenbosch as opposed to Franschhoek. It is more central to want to tour the Winelands.

A really neat little guesthouse in Stellenbosch is "The Avenues" (http://www.sun.ac.za/unesco/Conferen...on/Avenues.htm) Well posioned to walk /tour Stellenbosch. Well appointed guesthouse. Parking available. Excellently priced.

_________________

1 nt Hermanus

One suggestion I?ve picked up for Hermanus is to stay at Princess Biko's B&B or "Ikhaya Lakwa Biko's" in Hermanus township area. The experience as described on my SA thread on Thorntree sounds very interesting and I?d be very keen to hear what anyone here thinks about it.

---------

I dont know the guesthouse that you are speaking of so I cannot comment accordingly. My suggestion would be that you stay at Auberge Burgundy in Hermanus http://www.auberge.co.za/

Rooms are excellent and position wonderful. Slightly pricey but worth it.

______________________

1 nt Swellendam.< b >

--------

I have said this before and will say it again. Look no further than Adin and Sharon's Hideaway. It IS worth the money. http://www.adinbb.co.za/

________________________________

1 nt Oudtshoorn or Calitzdorp

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I would suggest Oudtshoorn above Calitzdorp and my accomodation suggestion would be GumTree Lodge in their newly built accommodation (Important to ask for accommodation in new house) http://members.africa-adventure.org/...ebnb/index.htm
Well positioned and well appointed Excellent price.

_________________

1 nt Hell

I recently read a travel article on Hell and the B&B opened by Anne Joubert when she returned to this valley where she grew up. If anyone can provide input I?m thinking of adding in one night here at the expense of one of the two above or possibly one of the nights in Knysna.

----------

I would DEFINITELY stay in Die Hel. It is an experience that you will NEVER EVER forget. Annejie Joubert is an enigma and she is probably the most hospitable person you will ever meet. Die Hel is called as such because of the very hot Summer heat as well as the difficulty of getting into the area (50 Km gravel single lane road which takes 2 hours to drive as you have to virtually inch your way forward over the steep cliffs). With all of that said it is an INCREDIBLE experience which I recommend highly. Be aware that travelling to Die Hell is NOT for the feint hearted but in the same vein rest assured that it is well worth the effort. Stay in one of Annetjie's houses and NOT the Nature Conservation houses and definitely have dinner and breakfast with Annetjie. Enjoy the dried fruit and witblits. (Moonshine) - All in all this is an event you will not forget believe me and the price is equivalent to legalised stealing -.

http://www.patourism.co.za/gamkaskloof.htm

__________________

4 nts Knysna area

This is a very open stop in that we?re not even decided on whether to stay in Knysna, Plettenberg Bay or somewhere else along this coast region. We could even split the stay into 2 x 2 nighters. Read about Storms River chalets on the net ? anyone know about those?

----------

I must sound like a broken record on this webpage when I keep saying OVERMEER OVERMEER OVERMEER. Look no further as there is no better for the money that it will cost you.

Today I received a mail from a Fodorite who took my advice and stayed at Overmeer. Read what she had to say:
_______________

Dear Selwyn,

I just wanted to thank you so much for the response you gave me below and to
let you know that we are just back from spending 3 weeks in your beautiful
country. We more or less followed your guide from Port Elizabeth to Knysna,
to Franschooek to Cape Town back to Johannesburg.

I've never experienced such wonderful hospitality in my life, the people
were fantastic, food was excellent and the accomodation everywhere was of
the highest of standards.

Your country was absolutely amazing from the landscapes to its history. We
were all touched by this and will certainly endeavour to return.

Once again, thank you so very much for your advice - it really went to good
use. Our best experiences being in Knysna at Overmeer - fantastic place and
so much to do.........

Best regards,

Gillian Macnair
____

Enough said Kavey. -

http://www.knysna.co.za/overmeer/intro.htm

__________________________


2 nts Port Elizabeth/ Addo

I cant decide whether to stay in the rondavels inside Addo, in a B&B outside the gates or even in PE itself (or in between). Open to all opinions and suggestions.
------------

I agree with Arlene when she talks of Lemon Tree Lane. I still advocate that you should stay in Port Elizabeth at Lemon Tree Lane and then travel back and forth to Addo, Schotia etc.

http://www.lemontreelane.co.za/

___________________


As a sideline there is MUCH happening in the Addo Game Reserve right now. They are becoming a Big 5 game reserve and will be running a close second to the Kruger Park very soon so watch this space....

OK Kavey hope this all helps.

Selwyn Davidowitz
Very proudly part of the wonderful nation of South Africa
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Sep 22nd, 2003, 09:42 AM
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Selwyn

Thanks for the ideas.

I was hoping to spend much less per night than your recommendations. It's not that they aren't extremely well priced. It's more a case of our decision to try as hard as we

can to do this on such a low budget.

Our (intended) daily budget is £140 (uk) between two and this will need to include car hire, petrol, food and entrance into parks etc. We don't want to spend much on

accommodation unless we actually need to in order to get something acceptable. Especially since we also have to factor in internal flights from PE to Durban.

We'd really like to keep accommodation costs to (gasp) less than £40 UK per room for bed and breakfast. At today's exchange rate 1 British Pound = 12.02 South

African Rand so that's only 480 Rand per room per night.

The less we can spend in the Garden Route area, where accommodation is plentiful, the more we have to play with when choices are less abundant.

If this budget is just ridiculously low, please do tell me. All we are looking for is a room with ensuite bathroom, clean throughout, pleasant and safe location (with breakfast if possible).

provided if possible. Whilst we'd love to add "intimate", "charming", "full of character" and other accolades to that basic requirement, we can manage without those, if we

need to.

Gum Tree Lodge looks just wonderful ? what we're looking for is accommodation of the calibre displayed in their website photos at similar prices to their published

rates.

Overmeer seems just gorgeous and I suspect it's out of our price range (but if we can find places below our price range in other destinations that would allow us to

spend more in one or two). There seem to be two Overmeer guest houses and when I go to the rooms page of the site you give me there is a link to Overmeer 2 at the

bottom. Do you know if they are similar? I assume they are owned and run by the same people. Any idea on rates would be very helpful.

Lemon Tree Lane also looks wonderful but I am unable to locate any information on rates. Can you help?

Thanks again Selwyn for your input.

I have found lower priced places using http://www.portfoliocollection.com/ and http://www.places.co.za and am considering places such as:

Bergzicht Guesthouse, Boulders Beach Guesthouse, Clovelly Lodge, Enchanted Garden Guest Chalet, Francis House, Floreal Guest House, Liberty Lodge, Olaf's Guest

House, Sloan's Guest House, Braeside Bed and Breakfast, Parker Cottage, David?s (in Green Point), Atlantic Beach Villa, Villa Christina, Liberty Lodge , Lady Victoria

Guest House, Withycombe House, African Sun, Valley Heights, Seaviews , The Cape Colonial, Radium Hall Guest House and Bayview.
.

There are loads of options in Hout Bay and Constantia too, though I'm guessing those are a little too far out?

But without personal recommendation of some kind it's always a little bit of a lottery isn't it? Do you know any of the above establishments?

Also I saw a gorgeous looking property called Kensington Place but I reckon it's so far above my budget I can't even count that high!!



Anyway, hoping for further comment and does anyone else have any thoughts on the KwaZulu Natal and Kruger portions of the trip?

Thanks!

Kavey
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Sep 22nd, 2003, 09:43 AM
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No idea why I got those funny line breaks, above... I tried to get rid of the funny ? I usually get and ended up with some other problem instead!

Sigh!
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Sep 22nd, 2003, 10:29 AM
  #14
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Kavey - here's an idea or two - very reliable.

Hermanus - Auberge Hermanus - [email protected]. Ask for Elsabe de Villiers, or Esme. Tell them I'm the one in the Mercedes who "cleaned up" rather well for my flight out of Durban. They will remember!! Oh, yes.

Ask them to reserve for a meal for two at the Seafood Restaurant in a hotel near the cliffs.

CT, only the Cape Grace. As a fall-back, Victoria and Alfred Hotel. Try [email protected] or [email protected]. Superb!!!

 
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Sep 22nd, 2003, 12:08 PM
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Thanks, but I think the Cape Grace might be just a leeeetle bit higher than my budget!

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Sep 24th, 2003, 10:45 PM
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Hope this works .....

I can't remember if I've posted this for you before or not - but it suits your search needs 100%. Try the AA website: www.aatravel.co.za

They have accommodation listings where you select the province, town and type of accommodation. The listing is really comprehensive and rates are included as well. I just had a quick look and there are a number of B&B listings in Umhlanga Rocks/ Berea/ Durban North and Durban Central for about R300 to R400 per double room per night which fits in with your budget.

I have not tried any of them myself, but the good thing about this listing is that the establishments have been vetted by the AA. When searching definitely enter the towns/area - else
you will end up with a search result that is pages long!

Your best bet in Kruger is through the National Parks Board (www.parks-sa.org.za)
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Sep 24th, 2003, 11:58 PM
  #17
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Thanks very much - they seem to have many places that are nearer to my budget.

Next question - does anyone know cancellation terms for bookings within the park chalets/ rondavels/ safari tents?
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Sep 25th, 2003, 01:08 PM
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Kavey -- Regarding Kruger, here are the terms from our booking for this coming November which I booked directly through Kruger reservations by calling 011-27-12-428-9111: Olifants river view bungalow with kitchen, bath ensuite, and air conditioning, 460R per night. http://www.krugerpark.co.za/olifants...mmodation.html. Lower Sabie bungalow with ensuite bath and air conditioning, 460 R per night. http://www.krugerpark.co.za/lower-sabie-camp.html Paid deposit of one-third via credit card. Cancellation policy: up to 30 days prior, refund all but 5R. 30-14 days prior, refund all but 25%. 14-7 days prior, refund 50%. 6 or fewer days prior, forfeit 100%. Hope this helps.
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Sep 25th, 2003, 01:27 PM
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Kavey -- Forgot to mention one other option you might want to think about in your price range in Cape Town. We've reserved the Holiday Inn Waterfront for 350.00 ZAR per room, per night (parking is 20 ZAR additional). We reserved this well in advance so maybe that's why the rate was so good; I noticed it's higher now. Haven't seen the place with my own eyes, but others here (and on other boards) have said good things about it. I know it's not a guesthouse and will surely lack the charm of one, but the price is right, and I believe even Selwyn thought it was OK as hotels go. You could always book it as a backup and then if you find something else later you can cancel.
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Sep 26th, 2003, 12:00 AM
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Thanks Lisa
We'll stay in lots of places with character so in CT location and price are key. I'm going to check HI immediately to see what I can get.
THANKS for both tips.
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