Grootbos. – An invitation to join a group of storytellers and magic makers at a place I hold close to my heart, is what took me back to Grootbos Private Nature, my very wonderland, in late March.
Joining a bespoke group of online bloggers and instagrammers, the promise was of a mystical and mysterious journey of the Jules Verne variety, where one surprise unfolded after the other. Each showcasing the varied offerings of this special place and its surrounds.
My photo diary of a perfect weekend at Grootbos looked like this …
Transfer had us arriving and checking in to our rooms, mine was a beautiful spacious suite in the Garden Lodge, where fynbos grows right up to around the deck where loungers are perfectly placed for relaxing. Heavenly sunshine softened the afternoon into evening …
That evening we had dinner at The Villa where sundowners had us taking in the softening views of Walker Bay. That place is heavenly, I’ve never quite seen a private art collection like the one it houses.
We enjoyed a tour of the Grootbos Foundation, Green Futures and Growing the Future. Really admirable the work being done here to train, develop and sustain in collaboration with the local community. The greenhouse is just one of the growing spaces, with the food served at the lodges. I had on a previous visit joined their beekeeper in harvesting honey, a great privilege.
From here a 4×4 flower safari through the reserve, ending with a surprise lunch on top of the world. This fynbos kingdom overachieves at beauty and we were being treated as royalty.
My Fynbos collection 💚
That afternoon few of us opted for horse riding in the reserve. My gentle yet strong guide through the incredible fynbos reserve was Nicholas, an absolute beauty … Even if you aren’t an experienced rider you can take just an hour on on one of the horses. It’s wonderful to connect with nature in this way.
There’s actually a petting farm and children’s play area next to the stables, which I always like to visit. This time they had the tiniest baby bunnies which we were allowed to play with. Treat!
An empty beach. Sea creatures. Ocean dwellers. Walking. Unbridled happiness. These are the things of #GrootbosMagic we experienced whilst visiting De Plaat beach as we took to the shoreline for an exploratory walk.
Me below. Happiness top to bottom!
Whisked away, we took a cruise out of Gansbaai harbour onboard Whale Whisperer with Whale Watch SA to learn more about the Big 5 and marine life of the area, with sighting of great white shark, seals on Dyer Island, penguins and a bryde whale. Luck was on our side. I highly recommend this company for their ethical and fair practices, bear them in mind for your ocean adventure.
Shark cage diving with Marine Dynamics.
As though this wasn’t spoiling enough, a brilliant surprise was that we would fly in a 1958 Cessna with African Wings to get an aerial perspective of Gansbaai, De Kelder, Walker Bay. Overachieving in Magic.
This was an incredible thrill for me, something I have always dreamed of doing. Feeling rather Out of Africa right here, just after we landed.
This great Overberg Odyssey adventure was hungry work and we indulged in beautiful meals every chance we got. Food and wine pairing in the cellar, a romantic lantern-lit dinner under a canopy of trees in the boma. Breakfast buffets, light lunches, canapes – and bubbly to match.
Last look … The pool at Forest Lodge. An understated beauty brag. Vistas over green to the rather noisy ocean beyond. The sound of waves crashing carried on the wind and birdsong all round.
Very special mention must be made of our guide Billy Robertson who with his intense knowledge of the area, fauna and flora as well as intrepid spirit, enhanced the experience. Check out his Walker Bay tours and connect if you’d like a walking tour of the Overberg.
With thanks to Grootbos Private Nature for hosting me. I fall ever more in love with you … For all the above reasons, and many many more.
This certainly is a place of my soul.
Thank you for the pic Thaya x.