Visitor Experience of the Year

Strandloper Ocean Boutique Hotel

THE STRANDLOPER OCEAN BOUTIQUE HOTEL Not just another place, it’s another world Tucked away on the beach in the charming West Coast village of Paternoster, the exclusive Strandloper Ocean Boutique Hotel offers the perfect barefoot luxury getaway with 14 suites and rooms, each with its own terrace or private courtyard. Here contemporary beach style fuses with nature and breath taking views across the beach, fynbos and beyond. Just 90 minutes from Cape Town, 5-star Strandloper Ocean Boutique Hotel is a haven set between nature and the sea, offering countless extraordinary experiences. Enjoy hiking trails and beach walks, bird watching, biking and fishing. Indulge in a relaxing massage in the Elements Wellness Suite, or on a sunny day, take a refreshing dip in the sparkling swimming pool. Paternoster is a seafood and crayfish Mecca, a perfect destination for gourmands, the Hotel’s restaurant Leeto presents the freshest seafood and creative dishes with a strong regional influence, which also serves up breath taking views of the unique surroundings.

34. Paternoster beach walking by Alison Stewart

Chokka Trail

The Chokka Trail - so much more than just a hiking trail. The Chokka Trail, established in 2013, is a 4 day/3 night hiking holiday in the greater St Francis area, situated in the Adventure Province of South Africa, the Eastern Cape. Over 62km hikers enjoy the diversity of the Oyster Bay coastline, a 16km long dunefield connecting Oyster Bay with St Francis Bay, coastal thicket and natural forest, the shoreline west of Cape St Francis known as the Wild Side as well as the footpaths around Shark Point towards the St Francis canals. Along the way they visit the only privately owned working harbour in South Africa, Port St Francis, as well as the SANCCOB Rehabilitation Centre for Sea Birds situated adjacent to the Seal Point Lighthouse. They enjoy a calamari tasting and learn about chokka (squid/ink fish), and finish the hike off with a leisure cruise on the famoust St Francis Canals. The untouched coastline between Oyster Bay and Thysbaai greets hikers on the first day of the trail, where quite often the cape clawless otter puts up a show in shallow waters. If you are not lucky enough to see small buck, you will find their spoor on the beach and the birdlife is prolific. The highlight for many hikers is the Oyster Bay Dune Bypass System, also called the Sand River, to be conquered on the second day of the hike. The 16km sea of sand is a forever changing scene, as wind and rain can change the height and shape of the dunes overnight, early morning mist can reduce visibility to a few metres, or windy days just make this a challenge of note! The trail leads from Oyster Bay to the Duneridge Nature Reserve on the outskirts of St Francis Bay, and could be the most challenging of the 4 days. The moving dune field sometimes opens century old middens, with pot shards, bones, teeth and huge shells, protected by sand for future generations to see. The wetlands become a hive of bird activity during the wet months, changing the scenery completely. The third day’s hiking goes through one of the last sections of natural coastal forest into coastal thicket, down to the Wild Side, the coastline to the west of Cape St Francis. Here awaits many highlights – the second largest blow hole in southern Africa, an unknown Khoi grave, shipwrecks, more middens, the tallest masonry lighthouse (Seal Point) situated on the south eastern most point of Africa as well as the visit to the SANCCOB Seabird Rehabilitation Centre. On the last day hikers enjoy a tour of Port St Francis where they also do a calamari tasting and see a chokka cleaning demonstration. Their final hike is the Two Harbours Walk to Grannies Pool, from where they are transported to the famous St Francis Bay canals, where they enjoy a farewell canal cruise on the most successful manmade canal system in South Africa and a final lunch at a restaurant overlooking the canals. The Chokka Trail is so much more than just a hike, it is a hiking holiday plus educational experience while you enjoy the untouched and unexplored beauty of the Eastern Cape. The trail is moderate and suitable for ages between 12 and 80. While hikers are enjoying the 62km trail, their luggage is transported to the next accommodation establishment where a hot meal, warm shower and cold beer awaits. It is fully catered.

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Abalone House Boutique Guesthouse

IMAGINE the most decadent escape possible, cocooned in opulence and surrounded by intricate indigenous gardens – the cool Atlantic Ocean as backdrop. Picture utter elegance in the midst of wind chime music and flowing water, tangles of orchids, vibrant art and cosy intimate spaces. You’ll find it all at Abalone House - Paternoster’s newest, five-star boutique guesthouse – and without question, it’s most glamorous.  Room to cocoon/Sumptuous suites Abalone Guesthouse boasts 10 magnificent suites, designed around a tranquil, central courtyard. There’s even a rooftop Jacuzzi, with a panoramic sea view, for the enjoyment of guests. Or you can cool off in the elegant swimming pool, surrounded by a colourful potted garden. In the suites, every earthly desire has been thought of and catered for. Beds are oversized and extra-length, festooned in monogrammed percale linen. There’s under-floor heating beneath the thick, luxurious carpets as well as in the bathrooms – which also have heated towel rails and wall heaters for winter.

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ATKV Natalia Beach Resort

The inviting silver sands and sparkling blue waters of ATKV Natalia beach resort can be found just 40 km south of Durban … a tropical paradise with balmy, blissful weather all year round. Accommodation at ATKV Natalia consists of a choice between spacious and comfortable self-catering apartments in various sizes and a lush green caravan park with top-class facilities. In addition to all the recreational facilities in the resort, Natalia is but a stone’s throw away from all sorts of exciting and interesting tourist attractions in the area. With modern facilities for up to 400 people, ATKV Natalia is also well able to host conferences and even school groups.

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Segway Gliding Tours

Come and experience Durban on a Segway! Bring your family and friends to the world-renowned Moses Mabhida Stadium. Glide effortlessly in and around the stadium, stopping for picture-perfect photo opportunities. Experience the majesty and sheer engineering genius of our Stadium. Or

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Route 22 Elephant Coast

About 220km of unspoilt beaches from Mapelane on the south to Ponta do Ouro, Mozambique. Warm waters of the Indian Ocean guarantee unlimited swimming in St Lucia; Cape Vidal; Sodwana Bay and all the way to Kosi Bay. Sodwana Bay renowned as a prime diving site in the world, it is home to the southern most tropical coral reefs on the planet. In mid-June and November you are guaranteed to see giant Humpback whales at a close range; this is complemented by dolphin and turtle tours during the season. The area is a fisherman's paradise for Deep Sea Fishing. Estuary Boat Cruises

Cape Vidal beach