Travel

Rare Earth Retreats: The ultimate South African circuit

Rare Earth Retreats is a portfolio of seven distinct game lodges, country houses and boutique coastal hotels, each carefully selected to offer the most immersive experiences in South Africa.

The ultimate circuit to experience the country’s highlights –bush, beach and winelands – Rare Earth Retreats has cherry-picked the very best accommodation and experiences, curating a collection at a smart yet accessible price point.

Guests will be treated to unparalleled wilderness from a treetop bush retreat or solar-powered satellite lodge, the best of Cape Town’s Camps Bay coastline and Plettenberg Bay’s top Blue Flag beaches, as well as untapped winelands from a provincial wine farm homestead in the beautiful surrounds of Kay & Monty’s vineyards.

BUSH

THE OUTPOST – SECLUDED ARCHITECTURAL BEAUTY
Makuleke Contractual Park, Pafuri, Kruger National Park

Cantilevered over the secluded Luvuvhu river valley, The Outpost is situated in the northern Kruger National Park, with 12 expansive guest spaces and award-winning architecture.

Contemporary architecture makes use of state-of the-art retractable, remote-controlled screens offering 180º of uninterrupted views from the comfort of each room.

The private, free-standing spaces are inter-connected and the central lodge area by 500 metres of Zimbabwean teak walkway.

The area surrounding the property is known as the ‘Eden of Kruger’, home to 80 per cent of the park’s biodiversity and is a birder’s paradise, with over 350 species and an impressive list of endemic species.

Here, guests can immerse themselves in this unique wilderness with guided bush walks, twice-daily game drives, as well as historical and cultural tours.

Rates at The Outpost start from R8,170/approx. £445 per person per night based on two people sharing, excluding conservation and reserve entry fees.

PEL’S POST – EXCLUSIVE-USE TREETOP HIDEAWAY
Makuleke Contractual Park, Pafuri, Kruger National Park

Pel’s Post is The Outpost’s new exclusive-use, satellite lodge. With only four expansive, stand-alone guest spaces accommodating up to eight guests, it is ideal for small groups and families looking to indulge in their own bush hideaway.

Pel’s Post is solar-powered and was designed and built with sustainable materials to have the lightest possible environmental impact. With a private chef, guide and game-viewing vehicle, guests have a unique opportunity to set the pace and tailor their experience of the African bush.

Rates at Pel’s Post start from R80,700/£4,390 based on an exclusive use basis (8 guests), excluding conservation and reserve entry fees.

EKUTHULENI – FAMILY BUSH RETREAT
Welgevonden Private Game Reserve, Limpopo

Situated in the heart of the malaria-free Welgevonden Private Game Reserve, Ekuthuleni means Place of Peace. Catering for up to 10 guests, this five-suite lodge is particularly well appointed for bush-loving families and larger groups. Guests can enjoy expansive views from the comfort of the lodge and the big five from aardvarks to zebra.

Rates at Ekuthuleni start from R5,350/approx. £290 per person per night based on two people sharing, excluding conservation and reserve entry fees

TSHWENE LODGE – SURROUNDED BY ONE OF THE OLDEST MOUNTAIN RANGES ON EARTH
Welgevonden Private Game Reserve, Limpopo

Tshwene Lodge is a secluded oasis of romantic suites perched among the treetops along the rugged valley of the Taaibos River. There are a total of five luxuriously-appointed suites with private decks, providing an uninterrupted vantage to take in the wild beauty of the surrounding bush, the perfect romantic hideaway.

The malaria-free area is home to Africa’s famed big five as well as many bird and animal species unique to the Waterberg, one of the oldest mountain ranges on earth. The five strategically positioned suites all offer privacy amongst a canopy of trees while affording intimate views of the valley below and the hills beyond.

Rates at Tshwene Lodge start from R2,470/approx. £135 per person per night based on two people sharing, excluding reserve entry fees.

BEACH

CAPE VIEW CLIFTON – BREATHTAKING BOUTIQUE BEACH HOUSE
Cape Town, Western Cape

Seven elegantly appointed, expansive suites all open onto uninterrupted views of Cape Town’s iconic Clifton and Camps Bay coastline. The design and layout are crisp, clean and effortless, combining the luxury of a boutique hotel with the airy brightness of a well- appointed beach house.

Living up to its name – the view is enchanting, with every aspect of the property taking full advantage. Established high on the slopes of Lions Head, Cape View Clifton offers the perfect balance between privacy and utilising the personal concierge to plan adventures to Cape Town’s top restaurants, sights and beaches.

Rates at Cape View Clifton start from R6,875/approx. £375 per room per night based on two people sharing a Junior Suite.

THE OLD RECTORY HOTEL & SPA – BOUTIQUE HERITAGE RESTORATION
Plettenberg Bay, Western Cape

The Old Rectory is located on the iconic Garden Route coastline and has a vibrant history dating back to 1777. The heart of the property is a heritage building that has been immaculately restored and seamlessly integrated to become the hero of this boutique hotel.

Eighteen luxurious rooms, a leading spa and a haute cuisine restaurant are among the standout features. In a quiet cul-de-sac and just metres from one of the country’s top Blue Flag beaches, the hotel’s position offers guests perfect access to one of South Africa’s most picturesque and naturally beautiful seaside towns.

Rates at The Old Rectory start from R4,540/approx. £250 per room per night based on two people sharing in low season.

COUNTRY

RARE EARTH COUNTRY HOUSE – PROVINICIAL WINE FARM HOMESTEAD
The Crags, Plettenberg Bay

Built among the vines of the picturesque Kay & Monty Vineyards farm just outside Plettenberg Bay and in the heart of the Garden Route – Rare Earth Country House, the original manor house on this working farm, has been elegantly restored and accommodates up to 10 people for exclusive use only.

With its five individually appointed, ensuite rooms, wrap-around veranda and generous living area, it is the perfect family retreat. The rolling estate is home to many professional polo ponies and guests can enjoy an array of active adventures abound including hiking and biking. As Rare Earth Retreats also manage the beautiful Kay & Monty Vineyards, guests can be treated to wine-tasting and a languid lunch within the beautiful surrounds.

Rates at Country House start from R8,570/approx. £466 per night based on an exclusive-use basis (10 guests) in low season.

Rare Earth, South Africa _ www.rareearth.co.za

Rare Earth Retreats is a collection of privately-owned luxury game lodges and boutique hotels in South Africa. The construction and operation of each property is based on the principle that Rare Earth Retreats will make little impact on the landscape and environment – an evolving process that grows more efficient with new technologies and practices each year.

Today, Rare Earth Retreats proudly owns and operates eight distinct properties across the country in the bush, by the ocean and in the countryside. The collection has properties in the Kruger National Park, Welgevonden Private Reserve, Cape Town and Plettenberg Bay, and prides itself on offering the best immersive experiences in South Africa.

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