MAGICAL FORESTS & COMMUNITY SPIRIT
Eco-friendly Accommodation Natures Valley – Western Cape; Garden Route. Check in: 14:00 ; Check out: 10:00
From R130 – R150 per person per night/Dorms *Seasonal
Wild Spirit Backpackers Lodge is situated on the picturesque Khoinania farm, an unspoiled haven in the heart of the Garden Route. The Lodge is a magical place surrounded by the indigenous forests of Tsitsikamma National Park and is just up the road from the pristine beaches and lagoon of Natures Valley.
Everyone is welcome here; the warm hospitality and profound energy coupled with the intense natural beauty ensure a memorable stay. The Lodge respects and celebrates all walks of life, diversity and wild creatures, and is inhabited by friendly, open-minded people with a very natural determination to “tread lightly”.
Designed for the discerning independent traveller, Wild Spirit Backpackers Lodge provides well priced, quality accommodation and wonderful communal facilities for individuals, families and larger groups. The vibrant tree-house deck and boma area is a social area where everyone can relax, enjoy meals together, have a sundowner at the Night Owl bar and marvel at the incredible views of the valleys, forests and mountains.
You will find organic gardens, up-cycled artwork and alternative energy designs all over this peaceful farm which flows into the Tsitsikamma National Park. There is an 80m waterfall, rock pools, enchanting forest hikes and a plethora of activity to keep you enthralled on the farm, but it is also the perfect base from which to explore the many local attractions.
With a wide and varied range of accommodation options, Wild Spirit is also an ideal place for small intimate country weddings, meetings and workshops. Opportunities also exist for volunteering at Wild Spirit or engaging in local community projects supported by Wild Spirit.
Most of the guest rooms and dorms are located within three double-storey garden cottages, nestled beneath giant trees. They are cosy, comfortable, clean and well-appointed to ensure easy access to the main gathering at The Treehouse Deck but far enough away to ensure a good night’s sleep.
The private en-suite double and twin rooms (R400 – R450 / room) are ideal for couples or friends travelling together. Most of these rooms have beautiful views of the mountains and forests of the Tsitsikamma National Park.
The en-suite family room (R600-R1200) provides privacy and versatility and can comfortably sleep up to 8 people, great for a family or group of friends. This room has its own balcony looking overlooking the abundant natural beauty of the Tsitsikamma National Park.
The dorms (R130-R150 / person) are spacious and sleep up to 8 people in comfortable single beds (no bunks). Each room has en-suite bathroom facilities and a sun deck overlooking the indigenous forests and mountains of Tsitsikamma.
The Forest House (R100-R120) has been renovated to provide unusual, rustic, dorm-style accommodation, ideal for large hiking groups or families of up to 12 people.
For camping there are cosy pre-pitched Safari Tents which sleep 2 people (R300-R320), located in the forest garden. The Safari Tents are located near to the communal bathrooms in the Main House, and have beds, linen and lighting. Alternatively, you can pitch your own tent in the cool shade of the off-the-grid campsite for a wilder experience under the stars.
Between 1 February and 31 November, your 4th night is free! Discounts for larger groups available.
GUEST FACILITIES & MEALS
Breakfast Served from 8am-10am Wild Breakfast Buffet includes: home-made bread, organic butter and choice of local jams, fresh fruit, home-made muesli and yoghurt, other cereals with fresh farm milk, and organic filter coffee. R40-R50
Dinner served from 7pm (African Time) Healthy, home-cooked meals lovingly made with organic, local and free-range ingredients wherever possible. Meat/poultry/fish: R80-R90. Vegetarian: R70-R80. Home-made dessert: R30-R40
Self-Catering Facilities: The new communal kitchen overlooking the veggie garden is equipped with gas-burners, fridges, a recycling station and cupboard space for use by guests. Braai (BBQ) sites and firewood are available. No oven or freezer space available. Complimentary tea and coffee with farm-fresh milk are available all day, as well as free Wi-Fi and use of a computer in the Log Cabin lounge.
A bookings and shuttle service for all local activities is also available from their friendly Reception. This is an official Baz Bus stop.
ENTERTAINMENT & ACTIVITIES
There are 3 short forest walks on the farm (the Magic Forest Trail is a must!), as well as a yoga and meditation room, conscious library and book exchange, board games, recycling depot and craft corner. Jubilant live music nights, drumming circles and themed dress-up parties are also regularly on offer for Wild Spirit guests. For more information see activities at and around Wild Spirit.
WILD SPIRIT: GREEN ACTS FOR SUSTAINABLE TOURISM
Recycling, Green Cleaning, Use of local & organic produce, Water Wise practices, Sustainable energy acumen, Eco architecture, Community upliftment projects, Land rehabilitation, Conservation.
“The focus of our life at Wild Spirit is simple: We invite guests into our extended family home, which we have opened to all as a friendly communally run backpackers. As committed environmentalists, we are constantly exploring ways in which to live lightly upon our Earth, treating the environment which supports us with the respect it deserves. As such, current and future projects on the farm are geared towards self-sustainable living in its entirety. These include permaculture gardening, the development of a biogas digester and grey water catchment system, a bio-fuel ring main for water heating, solar energy, removal of alien vegetation and introduction of water-wise, indigenous and medicinal wild flowers. Our guests are encouraged to participate in these initiatives as part of their experience here.” Find out more about our wild and inspired projects.
RECYCLING: Practicing the Reduce, Reuse, Recycle philosophy, the crew at Wild Spirit are constantly finding ways to re-use their ‘waste’ by ‘Up-Cycling’ it. Some ideas include turning glass bottles into drinking glasses, stuffing clean plastic into 5l water bottles to make Eco Bricks, using tin cans to make planters, and composting all of their organic waste to feed the chickens and vegetable garden.
GREEN CLEANING: Use of environmentally-friendly biodegradable cleaning products, locally made, means that all of the waste-water generated by the Lodge can be neutralised by running it through various grey and black- water systems before redistributing it into the gardens, ensuring the health of the water-table, soil and earth.
LOCAL & ORGANIC PRODUCE: Sourcing ethical suppliers and goods from the local community and ensuring predominantly organic ingredients lowers the carbon footprint of Wild Spirit’s delicious home-cooked meals. The team are also into sprouting ‘micro-greens’ and growing everything which baboons don’t eat to include in their wholesome dinners. .
FAIR TRADE PRACTICES: This Lodge has a team of permanently employed local staff whose families are directly supported by their endeavours.
WATER WISE PRACTICES: Wild Spirit has an array of various grey-water systems, indigenous succulent gardens, and they have also developed a simple user-friendly ‘Bongi Bucket’ system, which encourages their guests to get involved and collect all the excess water from their showers in order to share it with the gardens.
SUSTAINABLE ENERGY ACUMEN: During ‘Load Shedding’, Wild Spirit runs their Lodge on a combination of Solar energy (geysers and panels), a diesel generator, oil lamps and candles. Their aim for the near-future is to build a large Bio-Gas digester which would transform most of their waste into a ‘clean’ and renewable fuel for various uses on the farm.
ECO ARCHITECTURE: Hosting Natural building workshops, which aim to use local resources and labour, and implementing these techniques wherever possible as they develop the Lodge are some of the ways in which Wild Spirit attempts to share and showcase alternative methods of building and living in a green, healthy and sustainable way.
LAND REHABILITATION & CONSERVATION: The Land team at Wild Spirit approach alien invaders with respect: they cut down the bigger wattle and gum trees for firewood, and use the younger ones to weave huge baskets for their terraced vegetable gardens. They also use these aliens in their natural building methods. As they cut and clear, they replant the bare areas with indigenous trees which form part of their on-going re-forestation project on the farm.
COMMUNITY UPLIFTMENT PROJECTS: The Barefoot University Foundation has been set up at Wild Spirit in order to educate the local disadvantaged youth in a wide range of topical and current issues such as Environmental custodianship, responsible and safe sexual practices, and discussion around violence and substance abuse in their local village so as to offer a support network and find practical solutions to socio-economic problems.