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“My first time in South Africa”

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African Array Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 17 June 2014

Due to a disorganized bus service I arrived in Plettenberg Bay around 1:30am and caught a taxi from the bus stop to African Array Lodge. At first I was a bit nervous making my way down the long dirt-road. It was dark, I had never been in South Africa before, and my first interaction was a few quick words with Matthew before I got my keys and dove straight into bed.

When I woke in the morning I was surprised to find beautiful blue skies, the dogs playing in the bush (extremely friendly dogs -- they make a lot of noise when you show up, but don't be afraid, that's what they're supposed to do!) and one of the most amazing views I have ever seen in my life. Matthew and Vicky were quick to offer me breakfast and allowed me get my bearings by letting me have a few quiet moments to take in the cliff side view.

The rolling hills meet a small freshwater pond and the only openings to the forest are farms or horse ranches. You can see the Robberg Peninsula off in the distance and lush green golf course/driving range just below. There are multiple hammocks placed around the backyard, overlooking the view, that you can lay in and count the clouds as they go by.

All the worries that the darkness had given me had been alleviated by the light. All of the meals I had at African Array were properly cooked and every time I was ready to hit the sheets I had a neatly cleaned bed to fall asleep in. The dogs were gentle and over the time I spent here they actually helped me feel more comfortable (esp because I'm traveling alone).

Oh and don't forget about that dark, "long dirt-road." When I traveled it in the morning with Matthew into town, I realized that there was nothing to be worried about. Their property sits nicely within their electric fence that wraps their property and the forest adds a nice balance to the small town of Plett. It's intriguing to see forest and farm from the property and then within a minute you're sitting on the beach.

Overall, I would say, take a chance and live. Don't let one little road scare you away, don't let the word "guard" dog frighten you, and leave behind high-end "luxury" accommodation. African Array Lodge has everything you need for your stay in Plettenberg Bay. Matthew, Vicky, their children, and their staff provide a quality place to rest and play. Town is only a short drive and the lodge is located off a main road that will take you anywhere you need to go in South Africa.

I had an amazing time and I hope that my stay can help you make a sound decision on where to stay -- Enjoy your time at this wonderful place and I hope you look forward to being surrounded by wonderful people.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled solo
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2  Thank RPietrzyk90
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MatthewVictoriaRowe, Owner at African Array Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 1 November 2014

We always appreciate our guests' comments and we are pleased that you feel you can recommend us to others. We enjoyed having you stay with us and hope to see you again in the future.

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169 - 175 of 265 reviews

Reviewed 12 June 2014 via mobile

I agree with everyone. This place is a little bit of heaven on earth. It is everything you need when you are travelling, exhausted and looking for a spot to relax and load your battery again. I came back here after a week because I loved it so much. Love the fire, the dogs, the view, the staff, etc!

Stayed: June 2014
Thank Ronja v
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MatthewVictoriaRowe, Owner at African Array Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 1 November 2014

Thank you so much for taking the time to leave such a great and positive review! I am thrilled you had such a wonderful time during your most recent stay with us. We pride ourselves with the most amazing and spectacular views!

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Reviewed 12 May 2014

This was my second visit with the owners of African Array. I knew that it would be a great experience, based on a previous visit. The atmosphere is very casual. After check in, you can help yourself at the 'honour bar', take in the fantastic view and contemplate dinner plans. Matt and Vicky are very laid back, yet attentive in answering any questions anyone might have. The menu is varied and interesting. Matt made a fantastic breakfast, Feta and Spinach omelet to die for. Generous portions and organic where possible. There are several little zones where you can hang out and get away from everyone. Braai facilities are fantastic, should you choose to do your own thing. Even though one should always be alert when you travel, I felt that I could relax, knowing that my belongings are safe. African Array also attracts some really interesting fellow travelers, from all countries and ages. Families blend in with lone travelers and make friends really fast in this conducive environment.

Room Tip: The corner rooms with private patio recommended. BTW..there is no pool or fitness centre,hence the...
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  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled with friends
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Thank ilseallen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MatthewVictoriaRowe, Owner at African Array Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 1 November 2014

Thank you for your kind comment. We are delighted that you enjoyed your stay with us and hope to see you again in the future.

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Reviewed 4 May 2014

It's an awesome spot, great view, great food, great people.......very affordable......what more needs to be said.....going to plett......stay with these people ......you won't regret it.....very friendly and helpful, very knowledgable about were to go and were to stay almost anywhere in South Africa....Third or fourth visit now, and the place just gets better and better..

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Darren B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MatthewVictoriaRowe, Owner at African Array Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 1 November 2014

Thank you for your kind words. We always appreciate our guests' comments and we are pleased that you feel you can recommend us to others. We enjoyed having you stay with us and enjoyed your second visit.

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Reviewed 3 April 2014

Best backpacker ever!!! Beautiful view and the service is amazing! Everything they do is carefully done , thinking just in the best for you and your stay there. The only problem is if you don`t have a car, because it is quite far from the city centre and attractions, and you`d have to take a cab, which will cost a significant money.

Room Tip: I stayed in a double room, and it was really good
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  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with friends
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Thank Isabella910
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MatthewVictoriaRowe, Owner at African Array Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 1 November 2014

Thank you for your kind comments which we much appreciate. We hope to see you again in the future.

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Reviewed 25 March 2014

All 56 previous reviews say it all: (apart from the one that was written obviously by a 'dropped at birth Stevie wonder') This place is TOP NOTCH.
The spectacular view, the amazing food, the superb owners, excellent reception on the free WIFI, the nightly fires (inside and outside) and BBQ/Braai are all of the highest quality which makes it an ultimate place to chill out and relax.
I have been here well over two weeks now and don't want to leave.
To the person who complained about security: I think a 2km driveway, a surrounding electric fence, four guard dogs, four CCTV cameras, a night guard and a surrounding cliff side just about covers it unless you last accommodation was President Zuma's 246 million rand security upgraded house?
Micky Lenehan England

Room Tip: I stayed in a lovely dorm room but treat yourself to one of the private rooms as I've had a look...
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  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled solo
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Thank Micky127
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MatthewVictoriaRowe, Owner at African Array Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 1 November 2014

I want to extend my sincerest thanks for your kindhearted review! I am so thrilled that you had such a great experience.

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Reviewed 16 February 2014

The best hostel my friend and I stayed in during our 5 month trip around the world. Awesome scenery, fantastic service, food was divine. It has a lovely homely feel and is the perfect place to relax and unwind. I would definitely recommend staying here, facilities are great and the owner and staff are very friendly and extremely helpful. If only I was still there!

  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank BGillan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MatthewVictoriaRowe, Owner at African Array Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 1 November 2014

Thank you for your wonderful comments and recommendations. We are happy to read you enjoyed your stay. We do look forward to welcoming you once again in the near future. Yours sincerely

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about African Array Lodge

Address: 30 Ladywood | 30 Ladywood, Plettenberg Bay 6600, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Western Cape > Plettenberg Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #11 of 75 Speciality Lodging in Plettenberg Bay
Price Range: £15 - £71 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This one of a kind hostel and lodge is nestled between an array of Fynbos(Wild flowers)on a cliff with a 270 degree panoramic view overlooking a lake all the way to the warm Indian ocean and the Robberg Peninsula. We believe we have the most fantastic view on the Garden Route and seeing is believing. A true hidden GEM.Relax with a book in the garden on one of the hammock under the trees or surf the net on our free WIFI. The building is a beautiful Villa with high ceilings and large windows so you never miss out on the view where ever you are in the Lodge. All our bedrooms have a fantastic view with lots of natural light at anytime of the day. The atmosphere is homely and we pride our self on giving our guest the VIP treatment at all times. Fancy catering for your self, our kitchen is well equipped and you will need nothing else to prepare any meal. If you feel like having a braai(BBQ) then we will light up the fire and provide you the spices. The beers is always cold and the fires always hot so why not spoil your self and pay us a visit. ... more   less 
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