I’m not a camper. I use my hair straightener religiously, and bugs of all kinds make me scream in terror. I do, however, like stargazing, soaking up the sun and going for long walks with my camera– and if you’re anything like me, glamping is the way to go. Just an hour outside of Cape Town, Africamps at Doolhof wine estate in Wellington provides the perfect romantic getaway for couples, or even a family adventure with the kids. I still encountered the occasional bug, but at least I didn’t have to share a sleeping bag with them.
This spot, deep in the heart of the Cape Winelands, may not seem like the obvious choice for a romantic getaway, but its proximity to Cape Town and its quiet, peaceful surroundings make it ideal for a restorative getaway from the city.
All of the Africamps locations are different, and this one boasts a scenic river walk, views of the vineyards and the mountains, wine tasting, spa treatments (from the comfort of your tent!), horse riding opportunities and mountain biking trails. Last, but certainly not least, each tent comes with its own wood-fired hot tub from which you can gaze at the stars above you – and there are plenty of them.
Though the individual tents aren’t very far apart, there’s enough distance between them that one doesn’t feel like there’s any lack of privacy. Especially once the sun’s gone down. Each tent also comes with a fully equipped kitchen, wood for the hot tub and the braai area, and even a grid on which to cook your favourite braai foods. The beds are super comfy, loads of warm blankets are already in there, and wi-fi, towels, and some tea and coffee are provided, so really, if you showed up with nothing but the clothes on your back and some snacks you’d be sorted.
Each tent has five beds (two doubles and a bunk bed) so whether you’re looking to take someone special for a romantic weekend alone, or trying to get the kids out into nature, you’ll feel perfectly comfortable at Africamps at Doolhof. I can imagine if the neighbouring tents are full of families with kids it would be a lot less romantic, so perhaps for couples seeking to spend time alone a trip during the week would be best.
I’m a bit of a chicken, so the unfamiliar noises ( basically nature sounds and the wind on the outside of the tent) and the pitch black darkness at night freaked me out a little. If you struggle to sleep with sounds you’re not used to, I recommend you take some ear plugs along with you! Don’t forget to pack some bug spray too ( although I’m sure seasoned campers don’t need this reminder)
As far as social distancing, pandemic holidays go, Africamps at Doolhof fares really well. Not only does one not need to come in to contact with anybody, but sanitiser is provided in the tent with which to wipe down surfaces if you’re worried about that. The self check-in procedure allows guests to drive straight on through to their tent without having to see anybody, and the tent and kitchen are cleaned thoroughly between guests. According to their site, they even drain and replace the water in the hot tub before new guests arrive.
With such a convenient glamping opportunity so close to the city, there’s no reason to avoid taking some time off this summer. You don’t even have to brave an actual tent to experience the outdoors! Grab your swimsuit, a bottle of wine, and something to toss on the braai and escape to the winelands of Wllington next time you need to unwind.