Set amidst 400-year-old milkwood trees and a profusion of birds and plants, Moontide is the most romantic of retreats.
Located on the shores of the Wilderness lagoon, with gardens that flow into its tidal waters, the lodge is a birdwatcher's paradise, and the seven en-suite cottages and rooms, each with their own entrance and outdoor seating area, are designed to provide you with those real 21st century luxuries: space and privacy.
Spend the day exploring the forests and waterfalls of Wilderness National park, or sightseeing the quaint towns of Knysna or Oudtshoorn, but make sure you set aside enough time to unwind in your Moontide hideaway before wandering down to the jetty to catch the ferry to a nearby riverside restaurant. What could be more romantic?
Start the day with a great breakfast, served on the terrace overlooking the lagoon. Help yourself to a buffet table of cereals, yoghurt, cheese, breads, juice and milk.
The on-duty manager will then offer you a choice of hot breakfast options, served with a bottomless pot of excellent filter coffee, or breakfast or Rooibos tea.
The temperate climate, responsible for the luxuriant foliage of the aptly named Garden Route, means that temperatures are comfortable - all year round.
Rainfall occurs throughout the year but usually at night, though this is not guaranteed. Winters are never below 8º C; summers average at 28º C.
Despite the large tracts of water throughout the region there is not usually a mosquito problem, though rooms have Peaceful Sleep repellent should you be bothered.
Pack plenty of lightweight clothing, with a few jumpers to layer for evenings, and a hat and bathing costume.
A timber treehouse built on stilts, with sliding doors opening onto a private terrace with wonderful elevated views of the lagoon and verdant hillsides of Wilderness from your queen size bed.
Entrance is via a staircase that winds through the bush.
Luxuriate in the green reflections of the indigenous bush that surrounds you - so close you can literally reach out and touch it from your bath.
There's nothing like showering in the great outdoors - come rain or shine: totally private; totally refreshing.
A spacious double-volume thatched suite, part of the main house but with private entrance, and great views of the garden.
The large Zen-style bathroom (with bath and separate shower) is filled with natural light and private garden views.
The mezzanine bedroom under attractive thatch is ideal for those travelling with a young child or children (though steep staircase is not suitable for toddlers).
A richly decorated room that can potentially sleep four, with a kingsize bed looking out onto your private seating alcove, shaded by a 400-year-old milkwood tree.
Bathroom is large (bath and separate shower) and splendidly appointed, with large cupboard space.
Your private seating alcove, shaded by a 400-year-old milkwood tree.
The upstairs bedroom, right under the thatch, is also richly decorated with kelims; note that the upstairs double bed is low (to fit under the eaves) so not suitable for the elderly traveller.
A century-old stone and thatch dwelling, furnished with antiques and Egyptian-themed artworks, the stone cottage exudes comfort and warmth. The twin beds (can be made up as kingsize) overlook a large semi-private seating area. Parking bay located a few steps away.
Bathroom is also under thatch and features double basins, large shower and door leading out to small courtyard.
Large semi-private seating area shaded by a 400-year-old milkwood tree and screened off by plectranthus - spectacular when in full bloom.
The smallest room, but for many Moontide's most romantic choice, the Boathouse is located right on the river - wake up in your double bed and watch the changing light on the water and aquatic birdlife preen. Bathroom is compact (corner bath; hand shower) but comfortable.
Entrance is via a short stone staircase leading to the riverfront.
Double doors open onto a charming outside seating area with more great lagoon views.
The bed (can be made up as twin beds) overlooks a semi-private seating area. Parking bay located a few steps away.
Large bathroom (bath and separate shower) with indigenous yellow-wood detailing.
Double doors open out onto a patio with riverviews. Parking bay located a few steps away.
A huge suite with two sets of double doors leading onto a large patio with riverviews. Separate walk-in cupboard; ideal for those travelling with a lot of luggage or staying for more than a few nights. Parking bay located a few steps away.
A large bath - big enough for two!
Two sets of double doors leading onto a large patio with river views.
Moondance is one of the owner's favourite rooms, comprising a spacious bedroom with separate seating area - all under a gorgeous thatch canopy - and leading into a dressing area with plenty of natural light. The king-size bed can be made into twins, and the sofa can become a third bed for those travelling with a young child.
The bathroom features both high-pressure shower and corner tub.
The outside seating area has river views and is shaded by magnificent milkwoods.
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