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When you think of backpacking, visions of hostel beds with stark walls and dim lights come to mind.
In reality, this form of travel can be quite luxurious while still offering you all the perks of exploring a new country without any restrictions. If you plan your trip carefully, you could hop from a bed and breakfast to a hotel, lodge or even an Airbnb.
If you are looking for a little more luxury and sophistication, these stunning locations are a must for your next adventure:
Richtershuyz Guest House, Gauteng
Richtershuyz is a luxury guest house in Brooklyn in Pretoria. Stretched over 2 550m² and eight indulgent suites, this guest house has been voted one of the most desired and recognised for excellence by Hotels Combined, Bookings.com. At Richtershuyz, the staff go above and beyond to ensure your time there is sublime and has every comfort, with complimentary wi-fi, laundry, car wash, parking, free access to the business centre, rock swimming pool and a scrumptious breakfast package on request. Visit richtershuyz.co.za
The Spa House, Western Cape
This luxury retreat has walls of glass that overlook the pool and lush hillside of the quaint fishing village of Hout Bay. The grand structure was the brainchild of an award-winning architect and features loungers that appear to float on a blue lagoon. The mini deck is an adventurous hop across stepping stones, and the marble underwater spa includes a sauna, steam room and salt bath. With three bedrooms, baths and room for up to six guests, if you’re looking for a five-star escape while on your travels through the Western Cape, this would be it. Visit www.airbnb.co.za/ luxury/listing/20472795
Goble Palms Guest Lodge, KwaZulu-Natal
This charming guest lodge in upper Morningside in Durban is a blend of tradition and elegance. The beautiful Edwardian buildings are set high up on the ridge, overlooking the sea and city. Here guests can relax and sip on a complimentary glass of sherry. Every morning you can enjoy breakfast served in the elegant dining room or on the colonial patio overlooking the pool. This location is perfect for travellers looking to enjoy city life, with Florida Road’s range of restaurants, bars and spas, as well as the golden mile, lagoon and beaches, practically on your doorstep. Visit goblepalms.co.za
Southern Cross Beach House, Garden Route
Surrounded by blooms and greenery, Southern Cross is a colonial-style home, tastefully decorated in the colours of sand, sea and sky. With a deck that seems to stretch outwards towards the ocean, the magnificent house consists of five en-suite bedrooms. While dining, you can take in the views of the bay and Tsitsikamma Mountains from the breakfast patio, where you can spot dolphins, whales and seals. Robberg beach can be reached directly from the house via a boardwalk, and its 5km of unbroken sand offers easy walking and jogging at low tide. During your visit, you’ll find that emphasis is placed on relaxed informality with truly heart-warming service. Visit www.southerncrossbeach.co.za
Boulders Lodge, Mpumalanga
Every backpacker looking to explore South Africa should make at least one pit stop at a game reserve. Set along the boulder-strewn banks of the Sand River, Boulders Lodge seamlessly echoes the beautiful light, colours and textures of the surrounding nature, transforming the elements into sweeping interiors that spill on to grand wooden decks. The well thought-out communal spaces such as the Copper Bar – serving freshly pressed juices, espressos and cocktails – provide intimate opportunities for guests to interact and share stories of their travels. The lodge has a swimming pool and fitness centre on site, ideal for those down days when you aren’t 4x4ing through the bush. Visit singita.com/lodge/singita-boulders-lodge
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