Get ready to have a ‘whale’ of a time at De Hoop Collection.
I am still daydreaming about our romantic weekend getaway at De Hoop Collection…
De Hoop Collection is a 3-4 hour scenic drive from Cape Town on the world renowned Garden and Whale Routes. With its ‘untouched’ display, the reserve includes 70 km of rugged coastline and white sandy beaches – and is also one of the world’s best land based whale-watching areas.
When entering this beautiful and tranquil nature reserve, you will immediately experience a calmness with crispy clear water, rich marine life and a variety of bird life and wild animals surrounding you. On the reserve you will also find over 80 mammal species including the Cape mountain zebra, eland, kudu, grey rhebuck, porcupines and more.
“An elegant adventure to escape from the citylife!” Annette de Wet, Editor
We arrived just in time for dinner at The Fig Restaurant where we received a delicious 3-course set menu to choose from.
Situated right next to the reception area, the cosy restaurant with its rustic charm is steered by the head chef, Marcia Tyobeka. It’s open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner and whenever you are craving a slice of cake and coffee.
For dinner you get to choose from a delicious set menu. On our second night I enjoyed the slow cooked oxtail which was impeccable while my husband’s favourite foodie-moment was when they served the traditional malva pudding with custard.
ROOMS FIT FOR A KING AND QUEEN
With so many accommodation options, it’s easy to choose the perfect option according to your needs and requirements. From campsite rondawels to their luxury suites, cottages and the Melkkamer Houses – there’s something for everyone.
We stayed in the Cloete Suite which has a spectacular view of the old majestic fig trees in the courtyard. Each suite is beautifully decorated and has a seating area and an en-suite bathroom with bath and shower. Cloete Suite 1 has a lovely fireplace for those chilly winter nights, making it the perfect romantic getaway for a weekend.
What I loved most about our suite was the freestanding Victorian bath and the king size bed with mosquito net which made me feel like royalty. The room was beautifully decorated with the finest attention to the luxurious details. I love the fact that the room also had a seating area with fully equipped coffee and tea facilities, because who doesn’t love to wake up with coffee in bed?
SURROUNDING & ACTIVITIES
On our first morning we took our own little ‘safari’ and explored some of the scenic nature reserve routes. We decided to make a stop at the stunning coastline, Koppie Alleen beach (about 13km from our accommodation) where we spent the entire morning baking in the sun and taking the perfect travel selfies for Instagram.
We also got to experience the 2 hour eco boat cruise while we enjoyed delicious house wines, local beers and lekker traditional boerewors and biltong. Just before sunset we had unexpected company at the poolside area as three baboons decided to join us – what a pleasant surprise. Even though they are tamed, you always have to keep your distance and never feed any wild animals.
One of my highlights was seeing a flock of flamingos flying across the lake with their magenta pink beaks. #INSTAGRAMMOMENT
On our final morning we did the 3.5 hiking trail along the lake enjoying the fresh morning air and wild life we passed along the way. On our next visit, we will definitely do the longer 12.5 trail route as well as challenge my husband on the tennis court.
Other activities include the De Hoop Spa, mountain biking, stargazing, guided marine walks and the new highly recommended vulture experience where a guide will accompany you to see the vultures along with a delicious picnic backpack.
DID YOU KNOW? The reserve is also home to the only remaining breeding colony of the rare Cape vulture.
The whole experience was absolutely astonishing with picture perfect moments I will never forget. Visit www.dehoopcollection.com to book your stay.
AUTHOR: Annette de Wet