Pezula Castle. Knysna. South Africa
Why we love it
Yes, this is a real-life castle! It’s just metres away from the sandy cove of Knoetzie - one of the most enchanting beaches on South Africa's famous Garden Route. Pezula Castle is at the end of a steep drive lined by ancient Outeniqua Yellowoods and only visible from the beach. It stands proudly dominating this little bay and lords it over the sprinkle of cottages found up the little river that empties into the Indian Ocean here. While it is not exactly near anything, you do have access to Pezula Resort’s activities a short drive away, which include golf and horseriding.
What to expect
The main castle has 2 spacious en suite bedrooms and a living room – with solid stone walls and castellated turrets! And there’s a private patio overlooking the ocean with steps down to the beach and a heated swimming pool. It comes with a private chef, a full complement of staff and your own vehicle with which to explore the area.
What to do
Paddle gently up river in a canoe and take a dip in the dark water. There’s also mountain bikes, guided hiking trails and horse riding. The Castle also has full access to the facilities at Pezula Golf Estate and Spa, which includes a world class golf course, tennis, gym and extensive spa with excellent massages and other treatments.
Kids Our kids absolutely loved being in a castle complete with turrets! There is enough outdoor space and access to the sand to ensure kids are never bored. The chef will organize kids’ meals and the babysitter will be on standby should you feel like visiting some of Knysna's outstanding restaurants. This is an ideal family holiday hideaway as your kids can be as loud as they like because they really are kings of this castle!
The good news
Pezula Estate owns the castle and has high environmental standards. Much of the area was previously covered with alien pine and eucalyptus and since they have been removed these thirsty plants, the natural fynbos and forest vegetation have re-emerged. Local wildlife has returned and recorded birds species have increased from 30 to 130! All plants on the resort are indigenous and grasses requiring the least water and fertilizers are used. Recycled waste water is used for irrigation. Outside lighting is minimized so as not to interfere with the local environment.
When to visit
Being a beach destination we would recommend a summer stay, which in South Africa is from November to March. However, the castle has big fireplaces and the Knysna area has glorious winter days that encourage long forest walks and afternoon naps in the hammock.
How to get there
Knysna is served by George Airport which is a 50 minute drive away. The castle is a 5 hour drive from Cape Town.