To follow our Gecko Weekend at Glen Oakes in The Hemel en Aarde district, Cathy thought it would be nice to extend our break-away with a visit to Guano Caves. We had never been there and neither had she and Alec but the reviews on the place were good. However, trying to book was not easy. Cathy phoned a few weeks before departure and was told to email. She did this and did not receive a reply. She phoned again and they said to wait 48 hours. She did but still no reply so again she telephoned and asked to speak to the owners. Only then did she manage to book! Because of this, we were worried that the place might not be all that it was cracked up to be but we were not disappointed.
We left Glen Oakes in slightly overcast weather on Monday morning and stopped at Ou Meul in Riviersonderend for breakfast. There was plenty of double parking for our two rigs. We ordered two teas, a cappuccino and an Americano. Cathy and Alec had bacon and cheese omelettes and the Earl and I had spinach and feta omelettes. They were served with sourdough toast and were very good. I also bought some croissants for the following day’s breakfast. It was a lovely place to stop.
Check-in at Guano went well and we were assigned Sites 26 and 28 which are next to each other. The sites were big, even and shady. The ablutions were excellent but you need to bring your own toilet paper and soap. If you want a plug you need to pay a deposit of R50 at reception. I am sure this is because some campers walk off with them! The ablutions were clean and Cathy and I were quite satisfied with the ladies’ section. Hairdryers were available. There is a built-in tile bench in each spacious shower cubicle. There is also a long ledge on which to place your shampoo, shower gel, etc. The men told us theirs did not have that but they did have a bench.
There are also several family bathrooms with baths and showers with double roses on the perimeter of the ablution block.
The camp kitchen only provides washup facilities. All cooking must be done at your campsite. There is a laundry but the washing machine was out of order.
The facilities are lovely. There are two pool areas with crystal clear cold pools. In the main pool area, there is an enormous outdoor pool and supertube as well as a heated indoor pool made to look like a Roman Bath. Treatments are available at a spa too.
The main pool and indoor Roman Bath are situated near reception, the shop and the restaurant. There are plenty of loungers and there is enough shade. We had a meal at the restaurant on Thursday and found the food very good.
Guano Caves Resort has a petting farm and there are a variety of exotic animals to see. They also have rabbits in enclosures and birds in aviaries. I am not in favour of animals being kept like this but they were well cared for.
On Wednesday after enjoying Cathy’s delicious breakfast of scrambled eggs, bacon and croissants we made our way to Montagu. Earl and I visited Leiwater Bird Hide in Barry Street. How surprising to find a bird hide on the pavement! It overlooks a lovely little dam where a variety of waterbirds nest. We did not see very much but what we saw was delightful.
We then met up with Cathy and Alec at the Montagu Museum. There are two to visit and they had already done the first one. After enjoying the second we popped across the road and had coffee and cake at the Rambling Rose which was excellent. Afterward, C and A went to buy wine and we went to see the church museum. Both museums were very interesting and it cost R15 each to see both.
When we were done the Earl and I took a short drive and went to Cape Dried Fruit Packers where we bought some dried apricots, nuts and olives.
Our campsite attracted wild birds which kept us entertained.
Overall the visit to Guano Caves Resort was most enjoyable. The water for all the pools comes from a spring at a temperature of 24 degrees C. By the time it reaches the pools it has cooled down so the Roman Bath is heated to 35 degrees C. Unfortunately they were experiencing technical problems so we did not get the full benefit of the really hot water. The pool was, however, warm enough to enjoy a swim each day we were there.
It is a lovely venue and we will certainly visit again.