Rare safari experience in the Garden Route at Botlierskop

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.

Sip & Read | Giraffes

Giraffes spotted on safari

Sip & Read | Hippos

Botlierskop guided game drive seeing a couple of hippos

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.

Sip & Read | Botlierskop

A picturesque site set beautifully against the backdrop of the Outeniqua mountains

Sip & Read | Executive tented suite

The executive suite with its own jacuzzi

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.

Sip & Read | Horseback safaris

Horseback safaris offered at Botlierskop means fun for the whole family

Sip & Read | Fijnebos spa

The onsite Fijnebos spa will ensure ultimate relaxation on your vacation

Fine Dining

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.

Sip & Read | Botlierskop fine dining

Dinner with a view

Sip & Read | Botlierskop wine range

The Kanonkop Kadette Cape Blend and Tokara Reserve Sauvignon Blanc are just some of the many options on their wine list

There are also wines from Hartenberg, Raka, Diemersfontein and Fairview to choose from.

Under the rare finds on the wine list, is the Beyerskloof Diesel Pinotage and Waterford Kevin Arnold Shiraz, both from Stellenbosch.

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.

Sip & Read | Botlierskop Cheesecake

The Botlierskop cheesecake pairs perfectly with Tokara’s Reserve Sauvignon Blanc

Ingredients for crust:

1 packet tennis biscuits

150 g butter melted

Filling:

750g cream cheese

1 cup castor sugar

4 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

Topping:

500ml sour cream

150 g castor sugar

1 tsp vanilla

Method

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.

Sip & Read | Botlierskop at night

The perfect getaway under the African sky

Sip & Read | Buffalos

Book your stay at the magical Botlierskop today

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BY Maryke Roberts | September 13, 2021

Maryke Roberts Maryke is an award-winning, Cape Winelands based journalist who has been writing about local and international wine and travel for over three decades. When she's home, her days are almost exclusively concluded with a walk on the beach and a glass of South African fine wine or spirits.

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