It's winter. You're fumbling around still wrapped in your duvet, desperately clutching your third cup of coffee. You look out the window, and things don't look any better.
While this might be a slight exaggeration of winter in South Africa, it's always good to be reminded that the sun is always out in full force somewhere in a neighbouring province.
If the promise of sunshine isn't enough to lure you out of the house for a holiday, perhaps low peak rates and last minute availability will.
Whether you love the cold or not, we've rounded up our top pick of local destinations to help you escape or embrace it during the next few months…
It's always sunny on the South Coast
If you must head down to the sea for your next winter holiday, make sure it's a beach somewhere along the KwaZulu Natal South Coast. Leave your wetsuit behind and tempt yourself with a dip in the wonderfully warm Indian Ocean. During the cooler months, the glorious sight of aloes heralds the imminent annual Sardine Run (generally around June).
Go down to the Garden Route
Winter along the Garden Route is all about stocking up on good food and stopping in at independent roasteries to savour hot brews to keep you and your family warm. Don't overlook the annual Knysna Oyster Festival running from 01-10 July. Another winter highlight to anticipate? Whales sightings!
Winter in the Cape Winelands
Yes, the Western Cape has been quite nippy lately, but if you absolutely love snuggling up when it gets cold, make a beeline Franschhoek settled in the heart of the Winelands. Don your chunky scarf and coat, then hop on the fabulous Franschhoek Wine Tram. There's no better way to get around this region's most distinguished estates.
Take a break in the Berg
This winter, families in need of a centrally-located holiday destination can gather together in the Berg. Just picture it: roaring indoor fires, idyllic mountain views and plenty of hot chocolate (or wine if you prefer). It's just the place for those looking to break out their winter attire. The best part? Low winter rates at self-catering chalets, hotel rooms and family suites.
Life on the Lowveld awaits
The best time for game viewing within the Greater Kruger is, you guessed it, winter! As the foliage thins out, it gets much harder for the animals to hide, which results in generous sightings. Pack a bounty of padkos, and crank up the heater during an early morning self-drive. By mid-morning, it'll be time to apply a generous layer of sunscreen.
Kick it in Clarens
With cosy pubs and cafés around every corner, Clarens ticks all the right boxes for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle this winter. This eclectic little village gets seriously cold during the winter, but it may be worth a visit to witness potential snowfall during June and July. Beer-lovers take note: the annual Clarens Craft Beer Festival runs from 20-21 May.
Contact our reservations team here for an idea of what's available at our properties as the chilly fingers of winter extend their grip.