12 sensational Western Cape campsites

Posted on 6 May 2021

Love camping? So do we. These are some of our favourite Western Cape campsites, our pick of the best camping in the Overberg, Cederberg and Garden Route. Whether you’re looking for a private stand with your own loos and views, a river to swim in or a crashing surf to send you to sleep, we’ve got a campsite for you.

Have we missed your favourite? Let us know in the comments section below.

 

Campsites in the Overberg

1. Dwarsberg Trout Hideaway, Rawsonville

Location: -33.7754813, 19.174017

Dwarsberg Trout Haven, Rawsonville. Image credit: trouthaven.co.za

Dwarsberg Trout Haven, Rawsonville. Image credit: trouthaven.co.za

On the cusp of the Overberg, Dwarsberg Trout Hideaway lies snug on the banks of the Holsloot River, 15km south of Rawsonville. Each campsite is private, with its own stretch of lush green lawn and private ablutions. There’s trout in the river and hiking and mountain biking trails in the vicinity. For sport events that you just can’t miss, ask in advance for access to the big screen and DStv.

Number of stands: 11 (private), plus 5 self-catering cottages
Braai facilities: Yes – braai drums with grids
Shade: Yes, but each stand varies so check when booking
Ground cover: Grass
Pets: No
Nearby activities: Fly fishing, hiking, mountain biking (free) and wine tasting on nearby farms
Important info: Dwarsberg is a working farm. Their irrigation pump is situated at campsite 1, so book one of the higher numbers for maximum quiet. 2 bags of free wood provided per night for weekend bookings. Fishing is catch and release (bring your own gear). No day visitors. Minimum 2 nights over weeks
Cost: R660 per person (15 people max)
Contact: Tel 0233491919, trouthaven.co.za

 

2. Badensfontein Self-Catering and Camping, Montagu

Location: -33.72427, 20.1151477

Badensfontein, Montagu. Image credit: badensfontein.co.za

Badensfontein, Montagu. Image credit: badensfontein.co.za

Baden Boskamp is tucked into a small, grassy hollow, 5km north of Montagu. Out of season or midweek, you’ll probably have the whole place to yourself – a huge rolling lawn surrounded by vineyards, shady trees, and a small pool to cool off in. There are two lapas with power points and communal fridge, and portable braais to wheel out to your camp. These are limited, however, so in peak season you might want to bring your own.

Number of stands: Open plan (about 25 stands), plus 5 self-catering cottages
Electricity: Yes, at the lapas
Braai facilities: Communal, or bring your own portable braai
Shade: Plenty of trees, and two thatched communal lapas
Ground cover: Grass
Pets: No
Nearby activities: Montagu Hot Springs, wine tasting, mountain climbing, walks in the surrounding farmland
Cost: R150 per person, per night
Contact: Tel 0236142187, badensfontein.co.za

 

3. Oewerzicht, Greyton

Location: -34.100448, 19.665242

Oewerzicht, Greyton.

Oewerzicht, Greyton.

Sunset on the Langeberg is one of the most beautiful sights in South Africa, and Oewerzicht is a wonderful place to enjoy it. Apart from the stunning scenery, there’s also fishing and canoeing in the Riviersonderend River which gurgles right past the campground, plus hiking and mountain biking through the surrounding farmland. The ablutions are modern and first class and if you need supplies, the charming town of Greyton is just down the road.

Number of stands: 25, plus various cottages and safari tents nearby
Electricity: Yes
Braai facilities: Yes – bring your own grid
Shade: Scattered trees. Gazebos and umbrellas recommended
Ground cover: Grass
Pets: Yes
Nearby activities: 25km mountain bike trail nearby, tractor rides, hiking, swimming and tubing, Greyton Saturday market
Important info: The dirt road to the campsite is potholed but sedan-friendly. Only one caravan per stand. Portable hot tubs are also for hire (R500 for the weekend)
Cost: R390 per stand (4 people), R90 per person thereafter (max 6 per stand)
Contact: Tel 0282549831, oewerzicht.co.za

 

4. River Goose, Bonnievale

Location: -33.975444, 20.148316

River Goose, Bonnievale.

River Goose, Bonnievale.

Beautiful, green lawns flow into the Breede River at Eureka Farm’s River Goose Campsite. Spend your day’s canoeing or tubing in the warm river water, or pop down the road to one of the many wine farms for a tasting (Van Loveren Family Wines does an excellent cheese and wine pairing). Campsite owner, Kelvin, also operates a large double-decker barge for river cruises.

Number of stands: 18
Electricity: No, but hot showers and solar lighting are available
Braai facilities: Yes – one drum and grid per campsite
Shade: Partial cover from large trees. Gazebos and umbrellas recommended
Ground cover: Grass
Pets: Yes, but by arrangement only
Nearby activities: Wine tasting, fishing, barge cruises on the river
Important info: No loud music. Pets must be looked after so as not to be a nuisance to other campers
Cost: R320 per person
Contact: Tel 0827595727, safarinow.com/go/rivergoosecampsite/

 

Campsites in the Cederberg

5. Houdenbek, Op-die-Berg

Location: -32.957148, 19.425338

Houdenbek, Cederberg. Image credit: houdenbek.co.za

Houdenbek, Cederberg. Image credit: houdenbek.co.za

You can’t get more private than one campsite, all to yourself in the wilderness. That’s Houdenbek – an exclusive sliver of rugged beauty on the banks of a small dam in the southern Cederberg. Pitch your tent and light a fire and prepare to do nothing at all, except perhaps a lovely, cooling swim. There’s mountain biking and climbing on offer too if you’re not the kind who likes to sit still.

Number of stands: 1 (private), plus two self-catering cottages nearby
Electricity: No, but hot shower available
Braai facilities: Yes, grid provided
Shade: Scattered trees, but gazebos and umbrellas recommended
Ground cover: Grass and sand
Pets: No
Nearby activities: Day hikes to see rock paintings, rock climbing (32 sport climbing routes), and mountain biking (10 to 40km trails/single track). Free
Important info: Minimum 2 nights over weekends and 3 on public holidays. Take refuse with you when you leave
Cost: R400 per person (max 15 people)
Contact: Tel 0836619912, houdenbek.co.za

 

6. Cederberg Oasis, Cederberg

Location: -32.551472, 19.3590963

Cederberg Oasis.

Cederberg Oasis.

Fancy a beautiful camping weekend, but could do without the prep? Cederberg Oasis is your answer. It’s 3.5 hours from Cape Town and has a variety of accommodation options – you don’t even have to take a tent. Or any food either: if you’d rather not cook, a generous breakfast, lunch and dinner is served daily (the steak and chips is excellent), and there’s a fully stocked honesty bar and ice for sale. There’s plenty of grass and a shaded pool area, where you’ll also find hammocks strung up and waiting for your afternoon nap. Just bring yourself. Oasis will provide the rest.

Number of stands: 7 stands, 1 with private kitchen/bathroom, plus 28 pre-erected tents, a cottage and rooms in the main house. Several new private 4×4 bush camps are also currently under construction a short distance from the main campsite
Electricity: Yes (at the main campsite)
Braai facilities: Braai places at each stand. Bring your own grid
Shade: Mix of trees and awnings, plus shaded pool and dining/bar area
Ground cover: Grass
Pets: No
Nearby activities: Various hiking trails (enquire at reception for permits), plus an overnight trail to Visgat Cave (R25 per person).
Important info: Silence after 10pm. Order meals in advance at reception
Cost: R250 per stand, max 4 per stand. R250 for a pre-erected tent (sleeps 2)
Contact: Tel 0274822819, cederbergoasis.co.za

 

7. Cederberg Sanddrif, Cederberg

Location: -32.488296, 19.270068

Cederberg Sanddrif.

Cederberg Sanddrif. (Wolfberg Cracks pictured left).

It gets hot in the Cederberg, but that’s not a problem at Sanddrif. The Matjies River has water year-round and if it’s not deep enough at the campsite itself, take the half-hour walk to Maalgat pool where you can jump from 10m and more into the cool, dark water. If you can handle a steep climb, don’t miss the 2-hour hike up to the truly spectacular Wolfberg Cracks, or make a full day of it and continue on for an 8-hour round trip to the Wolfberg Arch.

Number of stands: 31
Electricity: Yes
Braai facilities: Yes, bring your own grid
Shade: Plenty of trees
Ground cover: Mostly grass, but some sand in winter
Pets: No
Nearby activities: Swimming in the Matjies River and nearby Maalgat pool, hiking to Maltese Cross, and the Wolfberg Cracks and Arch (R60 permit available at reception, free to Wild Card holders), plus mountain climbing in the area. Don’t miss the wine tasting at the nearby Cederberg Private Cellar (campsite reception)
Important info: There’s a small shop with basic supplies, meat and wine at the reception. As of March 2017, hiking to the Wolfberg Cracks and Arch is closed due to recent fires. Check before planning your trip
Cost: R320 per stand (4 people), R80 per person thereafter (max 8 per stand)
Contact: Tel 0440040060, sanddrif.com

 

8. De Pakhuys / Rocklands, Cederberg

Location: -32.120813, 19.059582

De Pakhuys, Cederberg. Image credit: depakhuys.com

De Pakhuys, Cederberg. Image credit: depakhuys.com

If you like to climb rocks – boulders in particular – then you probably already know about De Pakhuys, Rocklands. The campground is just a short walk from the bouldering area and although the stands are sandy, there’s plenty of shade under the tall gum trees. If you’re not climbing, there’s a lake to swim in and a small waterfall to hike to, plus various other beautiful hikes from 4 to 22km in the surrounding mountains.

Number of stands: 11, plus various cabins, cottages and luxury tents
Electricity: 4 powered stands, and at the central kitchen area, which has communal fridges and cooking facilities
Braai facilities: Yes, bring your own grid
Shade: Plenty of trees
Ground cover: Sand
Pets: Yes, but by prior arrangement only
Nearby activities: Rock climbing and bouldering (permits R60 per day, or R200 per week – grants access to all rock climbing areas), various day hiking trails, swimming in the dam
Important info: Bring your own crash pad if you want to boulder
Cost: From R100 per person, R65 for kids under 12 years
Contact: Tel 0836041459, depakhuys.com

 

9. Enjo Nature Farm, Biedouw Valley

Location: -32.139006, 19.298495

Enjo Nature Farm, Cederberg. Image credit: soulcountry.info

Enjo Nature Farm, Cederberg. Image credit: soulcountry.info

Soak up the Cederberg Wilderness from one of its remotest corners, the Biedouw Valley, northeast of Wupperthal. Along the banks of the Biedouw River (which runs, roughly, from April to January) you’ll find Enjo Nature Farm’s three private campsites with beautiful views of the mountains beyond. Spend the heat of the day in the spring-fed swimming dam, and toast the late afternoon light as it creeps down the valley in a typically stunning Cederberg show.

Number of stands: 3 (private), plus 5 self-catering cottages
Electricity: Yes
Braai facilities: Yes – grids available on request
Shade: Scattered trees. Gazebos and umbrellas recommended
Ground cover: Grass and sand
Pets: Yes
Nearby activities: Hiking trails, spring-fed swimming dam with sunbeds, billiard table, and dartboard in the farmhouse games room. 4×4 routes
Important info: Breakfast and dinner can be booked in advance. Honesty bar available. Firewood for sale. Dirt road access, but not 4×4
Cost: R100 per person, kids under 12 free
Contact: Tel 0274700055, soulcountry.info

 

Campsites on the Garden Route

10. Buffalo Bay Caravan Park, Buffelsbaai

Location: -34.089365, 22.976346

Buffalo Bay Caravan Park.

Buffalo Bay Caravan Park.

If Buffalo Bay Caravan Park was any closer to the sea, it’d be underwater. The grassy stands sit on a rocky peninsula, surrounded on three sides by the wild Indian Ocean, wide empty beaches stretching for kilometres in both directions. Although the stands are closely packed, the crashing surf is an excellent noise canceller and you’ll rarely hear your neighbours. Out of peak season you’ll probably have the whole place to yourself anyway. Just take something for shade, and be aware that mornings can be damp.

Number of stands: 85
Electricity: Yes
Braai facilities: Yes – bring your own grid
Shade: None
Ground cover: Grass. Concrete slabs for caravans
Pets: No
Nearby activities: 20 minutes from Knysna, local shore fishing, beach walks
Important info: Cash only. Coastal fog and sea spray common, so pack accordingly. No music. Popular with caravans and motorhomes and can get busy in peak season. Laundry facilities available
Cost: From R320 per stand (2 people), R100 per person thereafter (max 6 per stand). Kids under 4 free. Full rates info here
Contact: Tel 0443830045, buffalobay.co.za

 

11. SANParks: Diepwalle Camping Decks, Knysna

Location: -33.949090, 23.155747

Diepwalle, Knysna.

Diepwalle Camping Decks, Knysna.

Deep inside the Knysna forest, 10 beautifully constructed wooden decks perch beneath the indigenous canopy. Some have permanent tents, some are bring-your-own, but all have lights, power, a wooden counter/kitchen area with a small roof, and a fabulous outdoor braai. The Diepwalle Camping Decks are relatively small and can fit just one large, or two small tents, so book a few if you’re a large group. There are also braai and benches on the grassy slope nearby.

Number of stands: 10 private decks, 4 with pre-erected tents
Electricity: Yes
Braai facilities: Yes, with grids
Shade: Full tree canopy
Ground cover: Wooden planks
Pets: No
Nearby activities: Day and overnight hiking trails, small but interesting woodcutters museum, forest picnic sites, birding. 30 minutes from Knysna
Important info: Dirt road access, but not 4×4. Tents that require pegs for setup will struggle on the wooden deck – bring extra string for securing to boards and rails. Of the tented decks, number 10 is most secluded and of the open decks number 4 is most secluded. Beware the monkeys
Cost: From R190 per deck (2 people, own tent), from R82 per person thereafter (max 4 per deck). R30 daily conservation fee (not applicable to Wild Card holders). Full rates and tariffs here
Contact: Tel 0443025606, sanparks.org

 

12. Plettenberg Forever Resorts, Keurbooms River

Location: -33.995008, 23.400686

Plettenberg Forever Resorts campsite. Image credit: Chris du Plessis, 360 Image Film.

Plettenberg Forever Resorts. Image credit: Chris du Plessis, 360 Image Film.

Enjoy the peace and quiet of the Garden Route from this beautiful river-side sanctuary. Plettenberg Forever Resorts is perfect for family camping, with plenty of kids’ activities, plus boating, fishing and lots of chilling on offer for the adults. The bustle of Plettenberg is just 10 minutes away, but tucked away on the banks of the Keurbooms River, you won’t even know it’s there. Just be warned it can get busy in peak season.

Number of stands: 116 (33 on the river), plus self-catering cabins
Electricity: Yes
Braai facilities: Yes, but best to bring your own grid
Shade: Plenty of trees, most stands shaded
Ground cover: Mostly grass with some sand. Paved caravan sites available
Pets: No (guide dogs allowed)
Nearby activities: Swimming, boating and canoeing, fishing, and plenty of kids’ activities (trampolines, Putt-Putt, play park, baby pool). 10 minutes from Plettenberg Bay
Important info: Minimum 2 nights over weekends. Pensioner long-stay discounts available. Disabled access
Cost: From R170 per person off-peak. Full rates and tariffs here
Contact: Tel 0445359309, foreverplettenberg.co.za

 

 






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