5 luxury cabins perfect for a quiet Autumn local retreat

A cabin in the mountain surrounded by a pine forest. Picture: Unsplash

A cabin in the mountain surrounded by a pine forest. Picture: Unsplash

Published Mar 5, 2024


With summer winding down and autumn coming up, cooler temperatures are set to take over.

Autumn is the perfect season for quiet travel and a staycation. Cooler temperatures bring on a desire for mental well-being, authentic experiences, and an escape from the noise of modern life.

Although you can still organise a host of physical activities including cycling, running and hiking during this period, travellers are more likely to seek out moments of stillness and solitude from destinations that offer that.

Quiet travel destinations are becoming increasingly sought after and fortunately, South Africa has plenty of options with naturally breath taking landscapes to forward to in the process.

Cabin stays are growing in popularity around the country and autumn weather provides the perfect excuse to cosy up together.

If you’re planning to embark on an autumn getaway, here are some luxurious cabin around the country to look forward to.

Safari cabin stay - Hluhluwe, KZN

Treehouse in Hluhluwe. Picture: Airbnb

Hluhluwe in northern KZN is a Big Five safari destination so it’s perfect for those looking for some quiet time to connect with wildlife and hear the sounds and calls of the bush.

Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Park is the oldest proclaimed nature reserve in South Africa. For those who are adventurous, consider a stay at Treehouse in Hluhluwe.

The treetop cabin is solar-powered and visitors can listen to the sounds of the hippos and hyenas at night and enjoy the company of giraffes and zebras during the day.

There are no TVs, microwaves or dryers at this treehouse so you have to settle for watching the stars at night.

It’s the perfect off-the-grid cabin and a stay at this property starts from R1 721 a night for two.

The Great Escape - Gqeberha, Eastern Cape

The Great Escape in Gqeberha with sea views. Picture: Airbnb

If coastal living is your favourite past time, then this cabin on the coast of Gqeberha is your destination. The cabin offers 180-degree views of the Indian Ocean.

Guests can also enjoy the tranquil sound of the waves while also being in close proximity to the bush as it is next to the Maitland Nature Reserve.

The reserve is a lush indigenous forest home to bushbuck, blue duiker and birdlife. Travellers can soak up the beauty of the forest by taking hikes in the reserve.

The Great Escape cabin takes up to six guests and is perfect for a large group including family or friends.

A stay at this seaside cabin starts from R1 850.

Woud Blokhui - Dullstroom, Mpumalanga

The Woud Blokhui in Dullstroom. Picture: Airbnb

According to the Mpumalanga Tourism and Parks Agency, Dullstroom is a Mecca for tourists, attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors every year. It is commonly referred to as ‘Scotland’s Only Outpost in Africa.

Though it may be a tourist attraction you don’t have to worry about bumping into people at Woud Blokhui. This destination is perfect for city slickers looking to escape the buzz of Johannesburg and Nelspruit as it’s only a two-hour drive from both destinations.

A small town offering a cool climate and clean air makes Dullstroom both a tourist magnet and a floral oasis.

The cooler conditions also make it a hiker’s paradise perfect for enjoying gentle strolls along the riverbanks or stretching jaunts up rocky escarpments, where you will find the most breathtaking scenery while being immersed in the silence and tranquillity of this beautiful location.

Woud Blokhui is a luxury timber cabin in a forest and 360-degree views of the surrounding forests, giving guests a calm and relaxed atmosphere. It can accommodate up to four guests and a stay starts from R2 360 a night.

Poplar Chalet - Sondagskloof, Overberg Western Cape

The Poplar Chalet in Sondagskloof in the Overberg region. Picture: Airbnb

Within driving distance of one of South Africa's busiest cities, Cape Town, lies a region of contrasts and wonder. The Overberg has rugged mountain ranges, fynbos, rolling wheat and canola fields, and splendid coastal vistas making it the perfect quiet travel or stay-cation destination.

The roads will take you on a journey through valleys with picturesque vineyards, orchards and beautiful landscapes of green, gold and brown.

This Western Cape region caters for sport enthusiasts and eco-adventurers alike, with its diverse activities on offer including a 4x4 trail, horse-riding , a sunset cruise or learn to fly fish or spot the whales.

Poplar is a bespoke built wooden chalet, situated next to a gurgling stream amongst towering Poplar trees. It is situated on a small farm, 22 km from the quaint village of Stanford.

The cabin caters for two, has a fireplace and is perfect for those looking cosy up in nature. A stay starts from R3 000 a night.

Love Shack 113 - Magaliesberg, North West

Love Shack 113 in Magaliesberg. Picture: Airbnb

The small town of Magaliesburg below the Witwatersrand mountain range is just an hour out of Johannesburg and Pretoria, where visitors find themselves unexpectedly transported from the hustle and bustle of city life into a quaint little town in the middle of nature.

There is plenty for for the quiet-seeking tourist to do in Magaliesburg, from game drives in the surrounding game lodges, to Quad biking, canopy tours, horseback riding trails as well as a variety of hiking and mountain biking trails and a wealth of fishing spots.

Love Shack 113 is an off-grid cabin in Utopia Nature Estate, a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve. It’s the perfect luxury escape offering a private and peaceful experience with an amazing view of the Majestic Tonquani Gorge.

A stay at Love Shack 113 starts from R2 105 a night.

∎ These cabins can be found on Airbnb.