The South African Garden Route is a popular tourist attraction and whispers of the magic of days gone by with Knysna elephants, magical forests and adventure, hikes, bird watching and river sports. For a true safari experience, Botlierskop Private Game Reserve, midway between Mossel Bay and George, is the perfect hideaway.
Botlierskop Private Game Reserve
Set against the magnificent Outeniqua Mountains as a backdrop and sweeping views out over the glistening Indian Ocean below, the 4 200 hectare reserve offers a range of luxury accommodation from tented lodges and stately manor suites to spectacular, self-catering villas and an entire village built with children in mind.
This family-owned and privately-operated game reserve is malaria-free and home to four of the Big 5 (lion, elephant, buffalo and rhino) as well as a host of antelope, including rare black impala, zebra, giraffe, wildebeest, hippo and more.
Botlierskop is just 4.5 hours’ drive from Cape Town and less than half an hour from the George airport. If you are looking for another gorgeous getaway along the Garden route, the 5-star Turbine Boutique Hotel and Spa is well worth a visit.
Activities at Botlierskop
The reserve is also a popular destination for a day with activities such as safari game drives, horseback safaris, pampering spa therapies at the Fijnebos Spa, restaurant options, children’s activities, spacious decks and swimming pools. The new Day Centre features a swimming pool for adults, a pool with water slides for the kids and a fountain pool for the little ones. Enjoy a picnic at the new shady picnic areas on wooden decks at the dam with the pod chairs and watch the animals grazing and abundant birdlife.
A meal at the restaurant, where herbs and vegetables are picked fresh daily, is an extension of the safari experience, with venison part of the menu. The extended wine list include:
Tokara Reserve Collection Sauvignon blanc from Stellenbosch is handpicked at optimal flavor ripeness on Tokara’s Highlands farm in Elgin. The wine displays a light straw color with a green edge. Inviting aromas of granadilla, cape gooseberries, lemon grass and hints of fresh cut grass entice the senses. There is a freshness as the wine enters the palate, with fresh citrus, grapefruit flavors leading to a creamy mid-palate and a lingering crisp finish.
The L’Avenir Glenrosé Pinotage Rosé from Stellenbosch has a lively and layered nose with candy-sweet strawberry mingling with a delicate rose-petal note and ending off with an abundance of citrus aromas. A deceptively dry wine with a refreshing acidity that complements the fruity taste of this wine.
Haute Cabriere Chardonnay Pinot Noir from Franschhoek, an enticing blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir shows elegant fruit underlined by firm acidity. An abundance of zesty fruit – most notably white peach, lychee and red fruit – with a delectable full mouth feel and balance.
The Kanonkop Kadette from Stellenbosch, a Cape Blend due to truly South African cultivar Pinotage with Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. The wine has a deep ruby, red color. It shows ripe raspberries, black currant and mocha flavors on the nose and has dark chocolate and blackberry fruit on the palate. This wine has good length with a dry finish.
The Beyerskloof Diesel Pinotage is a dense blood red, shimmering color. Enticing, feminine perfume, Burgundian with savory mushroom notes. The more you nose, the more comes to the fore. Silk smooth entry, but solid tannins, rounded, polished. Perfectly balanced and great depth. Spice, but also berries, violet and other florals. Great future of Burgundian complexity after maturation. Pinotage at its peak, showing a remarkable elegance.
The Waterford Kevin Arnold Shiraz with its vibrant red fruit, earthy and cold stone lead the aromatics of this Shiraz, accompanied by soft plum fruit and leather spice undertones. Natural acidity and the classic granular tannins are very characteristic to the nature of a Stellenbosch Shiraz.
The lodge is famous for the Botlierskop signature twice baked cheese cake, the perfect pair to the Tokara Reserve Collection Sauvignon blanc.
Ingredients for crust:
1 packet tennis biscuits
150 g butter melted
750g cream cheese
1 cup castor sugar
1 tsp vanilla
500ml sour cream
150 g castor sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Preheat the oven to 160 Celsius. Blend tennis biscuits in food processor until fine, mix butter with crumbs, press crumb mix into a spring form pan lined with greaseproof paper place in fridge and allow base to set.
In a mixer beat eggs and sugar until creamed, mix in cream cheese and blend until smooth. Add vanilla extract. Pour cream cheese mixture over biscuit base and bake at 160 degrees Celsius for 1 hour, top should have slight wobble. Remove and allow to cool.
Once cooled, make the topping – beat together sour cream, sugar and vanilla – pour over baked cheese cake and bake at 180 degrees Celsius for 8 min until sour cream mix is set. Refrigerate until needed.
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