South Africa is a brilliant place to be, and even more so for road trippers. That’s because it’s got endless coastline drives, some of the world’s most picturesque vistas, and loads of fantastic pitstops.
One of the best things to do in South Africa is drive along the Garden Route, which stretches over 190 miles from Mossel Bay to Storms River. On the Garden Route, there are tons of magnificent towns to visit, as well as national parks and expansive beaches.
With all this being said, you’re probably thinking of where to stay on the Garden Route. Don’t stress; we’ve found some of the best places to stay on the Garden Route.
Best Places to Stay On the Garden Route
Looking for the best Garden Route accommodation? Let’s get into it. There are all kinds of hotels and resorts in the Garden Route, whether you’re on a tight budget or if you’re looking for a deluxe experience.
The Garden Route starts in Mossel Bay, a charming harbor town that’s famous for its long white beaches, brilliant fresh seafood, and inviting atmosphere. This makes it a preferred holiday destination for many South Africans – and we haven’t even mentioned the views.
More than that, there are loads of things to do in Mossel Bay, from visiting the Cape St. Blaize Lighthouse to taking a ride on the Diaz Express Train. So it’s definitely worth it to stay a night or two here, and we’ve got some exceptional options lined up.
Where to Stay in Mossel Bay
If we’re talking about unique accommodation on the Garden Route, Mossel Bay doesn’t disappoint – from safari camps to luxurious hotels, there’s something for everyone here.
- Garden Route Safari Camp – While this hotel isn’t in Mossel Bay (12 miles away from the town center), it makes up for it with world-class service, spacious deluxe rooms, and exciting activities like game drives and bush walks. Moreover, each room comes with a private wooden deck, an outdoor shower, a king-sized bed, and coffee-making facilities. Prices start at $437 per night, which is well worth it for the experience you’ll have here.
- Diaz Hotel and Resort – One of the best Garden Route accommodations on the beach is this stunning hotel, with its infinity swimming pool, private balcony views, and delectable meals at the onsite restaurant. Onto the rooms, which are expansive with flat-screen TVs, en-suite bathrooms, kettles, and mini-fridges. Lastly, it’s 164 feet away from Diaz Beach, perfect for those looking to get that summer tan or simply to enjoy a dip in the Indian Ocean. Prices start at $91 per night – an absolute steal, in our opinion.
- Aqua Marina Guest House – Next up in Mossel Bay, we have this luxurious guest house, which is the perfect spot to relax, get some fantastic beauty sleep, and take in some unforgettable views of the Outeniqua Mountains. The rooms are just as calming, with white linens, neutral tones, tea and coffee-making facilities, and en-suite bathrooms with baths. Prices start at $65 per night, and breakfast is included.
Another lovely town along the Garden Route is Oudtshoorn, in the Klein Karoo. It’s well known for once being the world’s ostrich capital and the Cango Caves, a series of limestone caves with gigantic stalactite and stalagmite formations.
Additionally, the town comes alive in the months of March and April as it hosts the Klein Karoo Nasionale Kunstefees (KKNK), a bustling art festival. Besides this, it also has wildlife ranches, museums, and wine farms – just waiting for you to visit.
Where to Stay in Oudtshoorn
Oudtshoorn has some of the best luxurious accommodations on the Garden Route, so let’s get into it.
- Old Mill Lodge – Just a 10-minute drive away from the Cango Caves is this charming lodge and ostrich farm. Yeah, that’s right. Besides this, it has rooms where you can enjoy a calming bath with lovely garden views, air conditioning, flat-screen satellite TV, and coffee-making facilities. Additionally, it has self-catering units, an onsite restaurant, and three swimming pools. Prices start at $54 per night for this cheap accommodation on the Garden Route.
- Rosenhof Boutique Hotel – This 5-star hotel is a truly tranquil place to stay in Oudtshoorn. Whether you’re enjoying an enthralling novel on a sun lounger by the swimming pool or treating yourself to a spa treatment, this spot is truly deluxe. Prices start at $158 per night.
Almost five hours from Cape Town and surrounded by the Outeniqua Mountains, is the city of George. It’s a delightful city on the Garden Route and a fantastic place for golfers, with over 10 golf courses.
George is one of the biggest cities on the Garden Route, and with its charming Garden Route Botanical Garden and the Outeniqua Transport Museum, it’s a fun place to be. So, let’s look into the best hotels in George.
Where to Stay in George
Looking for unique hotels on the Garden Route? George has some luxurious options just waiting for you.
- Fancourt Hotel – If we’re talking Garden Route luxury accommodation, this is it. From the chic rooms and suites to the delectable meals at La Cantina, this hotel will blow you away with its attention to detail. Additionally, there are plenty of amenities, such as an outdoor swimming pool, three golf courses, a cinema, and a spa. Prices start at $163 per night.
- The Hawthorn Boutique Hotel – Right in the heart of George, you’ll find this modern hotel. The minimalistic rooms come with en-suite bathrooms, free Wi-Fi, bathrobes, and coffee machines. What’s more, there are brilliant amenities, such as an outdoor swimming pool, an onsite restaurant, and a lovely lounge overlooking the gardens. Prices start at $113 per night.
The following stop along the Garden Route is Wilderness, a town that quite literally takes after its name. In Wilderness, you are truly surrounded by nature, with breathtaking vistas of rivers, mountains, forests, and beaches.
This makes stopping here one of the best ways to get in touch with nature, from kayaking along Touw River in the Wilderness section of the Garden Route National Park to enjoying a walk on the beach.
Where to Stay in Wilderness
Looking for somewhere to sleep in Wilderness? We’ve got two fantastic options.
- Views Boutique Hotel & Spa – Searching for accommodation on the Garden Route with a once-in-a-lifetime view? Look no further than this hotel, which has beach vistas from every angle, exceptional service, and ocean-inspired decor. It’s also got a rooftop swimming pool, a spa, and a reading lounge – talk about heaven on earth. Prices start at $316 per night.
- Pearl Moon Boutique Suites – For cheaper accommodation on the Garden Route, this spot does it perfectly. The rooms here are pristine and spacious, with coffee machines, flat-screen TVs, and private patios. It is a self-catering spot, but if that’s not your vibe, don’t stress, as it’s in the heart of the town – only a five-minute walk from Salinas, the closest restaurant. Prices start at $78 per night for this self-catering accommodation in Wilderness, Garden Route.
One of the best towns to visit on the Garden Route is Knysna, with its idyllic atmosphere, stunning lagoon, and bustling waterfront area. In Knysna, you can enjoy a multitude of activities, from walking in the biodiverse Knysna Forest to eating a mouthwatering meal at Île de Pain, which makes some of the best bread in South Africa.
The town is also famous for hosting the Oyster Festival annually, which many South Africans flock to for the freshest seafood. This occurs from the end of June until mid-July, and it’s a top thing to do in Knysna.
Where to Stay in Knysna
Stopping in Knysna and want to get some rest? Here are a couple of the top hotels in the town.
- The Lofts Boutique Hotel – This is one of the most beautiful Garden Route hotels with its views of the lagoon, swimming pool terrace, and masterfully decorated rooms. What’s more, you’ve got complimentary kayak access, bathrobes, free Wi-Fi, and lush furniture in your room. Prices start at $293 per night.
- Premier Resort – Found on the banks of the Knysna Lagoon and next to a forest is this Garden Route resort. There are plenty of amenities, such as a swimming pool, a children’s playground, BBQ/braai facilities, and an onsite restaurant. With all this, you can never leave here, although we seriously recommend walking around in Knysna. Prices start at $65 per night.
The next Garden Route town, Plettenberg Bay, is right on the coast, and boy, is it stunning. It’s a majestic place to be in the summer (although it does get busy), with its golden beaches, vibrant energy, and tons of things to do in the town.
In Plettenberg Bay, there is an abundance of attractions and spots to stay, including some of the top beachfront accommodations on the Garden Route. A fantastic nearby landmark is Robberg Nature Reserve, where you can hike, bird watch, and have a picnic.
Where to Stay in Plettenberg Bay
There are plenty of wonderful hotels in Plettenberg Bay, but here are two top exceptional options.
- The Plettenberg Hotel – As one of the most popular hotels in Plettenberg Bay, it’s truly stunning here, from enjoying a glass of wine on your room’s balcony to taking a dip in the infinity swimming pool. One thing is for sure: it’s a truly relaxing place to be. Prices start at $368 per night at this luxury accommodation on the Garden Route.
- The Junction Boutique Hotel – Right in the heart of Plettenberg Bay and just minutes from the beach is this delightful Garden Route stay. If you want modernly-designed rooms, delectable breakfasts, and comfy beds – you’ll never want to leave. Prices start at $121 per night.
The following town on the Garden Route is Nature’s Valley – a truly majestic place to be. It’s got to be one of the quietest towns in South Africa, especially mid-year, and it’s the ideal spot to be for on-the-beach living and nature exploring.
Yeah, its name is very literal, as it forms part of the Tsitsikamma National Park. Nature’s Valley is also right on the coast, with an expansive beach, a lagoon, and a river mouth. On the way to this Garden Route holiday resort, make a stop at Nature’s Way for delicious dairy and locally-made goods.
Where to Stay in Nature’s Valley
If you are looking for forest accommodation on the Garden Route, this is the perfect spot.
- Lily Pond Country Lodge – if you are looking for a way to relax, come here. This lodge is on a property surrounded by indigenous forest, with an infinity swimming pool, lily ponds, and luxurious rooms. Prices start at $132 per night.
- Tranquility B&B – Just minutes away from Tsitsikamma National Park and the beach, this spot is all you need for a tranquil time (sorry, we just had to do it). Plus, there are friendly staff, free Wi-Fi, and a swimming pool. Prices start at $68 per night.
Storms River is another darling town along the Garden Route. It is a terrific place to be for thrill-seekers, as there are all kinds of daring things to do in and around Storms River. This includes white water rafting, ziplining, bungee jumping, and kayaking.
Beyond this, it is one of the most picturesque spots of the Garden Route for nature lovers, as part of the Tsitsikamma National Park. With all this said, who wouldn’t want to stay a night here?
Where to Stay in Storms River
Looking for a spot to rest your head after driving along the coast? Here are two brilliant hotels in Storms River.
- Tsitsikamma Manor – Finish your Garden Route road trip in style by staying at this stunning bed and breakfast. Stock up on a full English breakfast before venturing to see the Big Tree or going tubing. Then, get a full night’s sleep in a comfy bed after enjoying a hot drink and a movie. Prices start at $43 per night.
- Tsitsikamma Lodge & Spa – Close to Tsitsikamma National Park, this lodge offers luxurious log cabins and a warm experience. Need some pampering after a long hike? It’s got a spa, a swimming pool, and private decks with each room. Prices start at $102 per night.
Final Thoughts On the Best Places to Stay On the Garden Route
In South Africa, you’re surrounded by beauty wherever you go. The Garden Route just happens to be one of the most picturesque parts of this vibrant and majestic nation. Not only that, but the Garden Route is also full of things to do, no matter if you’re a history lover, an outdoor explorer, or a beach bum.
There are also so many places to stay along the Garden Route, from Mossel Bay to Storms River and beyond. What’s more, a brilliant part of the Garden Route, Western Cape, is that it can work for all budgets, whether you’ve got loads to spend or even for those backpacking in South Africa.