Let's Go Glamping: Western Cape Edition | 9Lives Travel
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My boyfriend had one wish for his 30th birthday; to go glamping. My heart sank. Growing up we spent every June – July holiday camping across the country as a family. And although this fostered my love for travel, South Africa and the outdoors, I’ve had my fill of camping as a whole. Despite this, we compromised and headed to the Overberg in early July.

What Exactly Is Glamping?

Glamping is where the outdoors and luxury meet. It also allows more and more people to head to the outdoors without needing the expensive camping equipment and outdoor gear.

In South Africa specifically, it has allowed people in the hospitality industry to get really creative with their offerings. From secluded tented camps in the forest to beach-side glamping spot close to popular December getaways such as Plettenberg Bay, there is really something for anyone.

Choosing The Spot

The Western Cape has really been a forerunner in the glamping industry, with several innovative spaces popping up over the last few years. We have made a list of a few of our current favourites, and make sure to bookmark the article as we’ll keep adding to it.


The Africamps group manages a portfolio of different boutique camping sites in the Western Cape. All of their campsites are located on working farms and you are welcomed by the landowners themselves.

If one thing is clear from visiting any Africamps site, it’s that they love to cater for families. All the campsites are filled with a bunch of different activities, for young and old, that can be enjoyed during your stay.

Their camps are currently situated at the Kambati resort in Swellendam, Oudtshoorn, Robertson, Stanford, Plettenberg Bay and Hazyview. They also have an additional camp opening in October 2018 in the popular Wilderness area.


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Old Mac Daddy

Hidden in the Elgin Valley and situated off the N2, the Old Mac Daddy farmstead is a very unique experience, part caravan park and part designer farm lodge. Their offering includes revamped airstream trailers, tented camps, as well as self-catering villas.

What makes Old Mac Daddy really special is that each of their airstreams are decorated according to a theme. Even more than that, all of these airstreams have the most interesting names such as Dirkie Sanchez, Mills & Boon, Private Life Of Plants and Yellow Submarine.

There is no shortage of experiences at Old Mac Daddy. Their ‘Daddys Adventure Gurus’ present guests with loads of activities such as archery, mountain biking, nature walks, Stand-Up Paddle Boarding, tractor rides and more.


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Sanbona Wildlife Reserve

Nestled in the heart of the Klein Karoo, between Montagu and Barrydale, lies the Sanbona Wildlife Reserve. Decidedly more upmarket than the rest of the list, this reserve caters for the overseas market. Their Dwyka Tented Lodge features glamping at its most luxurious.

Each of the tents in the camp has its own balcony and jacuzzi, situated in a dry Klein Karoo ravine. With exquisite rock formations as background, the camp is really something to behold. Included in the price is three daily meals and therapy rooms to ensure maximum relaxation.

Sanbona is well-known for their wildlife and safaris. Staying with them ensures that you can join in on game drives, wilderness walks, stargazing and photography tours. The game drives venture through 3 different biomes and is headed by qualified rangers. Although a bit more expensive, it is definitely worth saving up for.


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What To Pack

Outdoor Wear

If you do not regularly tackle the great outdoors, this might not be as straightforward as it seems. Us city-dwellers sometimes just need a little reminder to pack proper walking shoes, breathable cotton activewear, a hat and sunscreen.

There willl also often be water activities, so remember to bring your swimsuit and towel. More often than not, the evenings can be quite cool – especially if you decide to go early July like we did – so remember to pack a jacket and closed shoes.


My absolute favourite part of glamping was the snacks. Heading to our campsite through the Swellendam Hermitage Road, we stopped at local farm stalls for locally produced cheese, bread, wine and more. Our favourite was the Wildebraam sundried tomato mustard – yum!

The little kitchen in the tents is set up perfectly for basic cooking and we were able to make the most yummy snacks to enjoy between activities and whilst waiting for the braai. Tasting our way through the area in this manner was quite a treat.

Braai Gear

Being South African, we want to braai – even on vacation or at a weekend away. Let’s face it, camping wouldn’t be the same without making a fire and smelling a tjoppie on the coals.

With most of these camps being quite secluded and not close to amenities, remember to pack a good amount of wood and firelighters. If you are heading out in the winter, also remember to bring extra wood for the fireplace inside the tent.

You might not be able to run to the shop every day, so also remember ice and drinks. Resorts such as Africamps also give you the option of delivering a breakfast basket and braai pack to your tent, which you can then prepare yourself, while Old Mac Daddy has a full-licensed restaurant on premises.

Do you have a favourite glamping spot? Pop your recommendations below, we’d love to hear from you.


Free State-girl, living in Stellenbosch. Love to explore small towns, read in Afrikaans and everything pop-culture. My favourite yoga move is 'The Pigeon' and one day I'd like to own my own vintage cinema.

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