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“We will definitely be back!”
Review of Outspan Inn

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Outspan Inn
Reviewed 6 May 2014

My husband and I spent our first night of our Honeymoon at Outspan Inn and it was well worth it!
Kathryn and her team made it very special for us.

We arrived a bit late but the friendly receptionist helped us check in and showed us to our room and Steve's restaurant on the property.
Dinner, lunch or breakfast at Steve's is really a must if you're in Port St. John's!

The rooms are spacious and tastefully decorated, the shower and bathroom is big and the veranda is great for your morning coffee!

We had a lovely walk on the beach before a delicious breakfast the following morning.

Kathryn is a lovely person and very helpful, she is very knowledgeable about Port St. John's and told us of some lovely places to go during our stay.

My only regret was not booking for a longer stay!!

Room Tip: Room 1 was absolutely lovely!
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  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Nikita-JadevdM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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15 - 21 of 31 reviews

Reviewed 5 January 2013

We made a last minute booking with our family of to stay at Outspan Inn between Xmas and New Year. Kathryn Costello was extremely helpful and fitted us into the cottage next to the pool. She warned methat the cottage was her most basic accommodation as the rest of Outspan was full. She was right, it was basic, but it was fine for us. The main lodge looked very comfortable. Our kids camped on the lawn and were happy. The owner John Costello was a very attentive host and is extremely knowledgable about the area in terms of fauna flora, geology, history what to do and where to go etc. He pointed us in the right direction for things to do. John also went out of his way to assist us with all sorts of things including sorting out my tyres, for which I was very grateful.

Port St. Johns itself is in a sad state of disrepair, many of our friends thought we were crazy to go there. This is not an entirely fair reputation. To enjoy the area one must look beyond the town and see all the other beauty which is to be seen - it is abundant!! A sense of adventure and a keen outdoors spirit will ensure a great time there. We would go back and we would do it during the annual sardine run between June and August. That has got the be a bucket list item for anyone keen on wild life. Outspan is centrally situated and is right on the river mouth.

  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled with family
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4  Thank SummitPlace
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 July 2012

When you go on location for a long period of time on a shoot that involves spending long hours at sea, you dont want your accommodation letting you down when you get back in. This is why I will always base myself at the Outspan Inn when I come to Port St Johns. It is perfectly situated close to the river mouth but not too too close that its cold at night, has spacious grounds and rooms, and a very attentive staff who make the experience that much more personal and enjoyable. For me its a cultivated oasis with an old world charm that I call my home away from home in Port St Johns.

Stayed: June 2012, travelled on business
2  Thank PelagicDrifter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 July 2012

I have to say I'm very biased toward this b&b. I've been coming here for the last 9 years annually and stay a month each time to enjoy chasing schooling fish.
This is a wonderful place, quiet and well maintained. My room is well decorated and the staff are honest and great.
I've stayed at a couple of other places in PSJ 9 years ago and found the Outspan to be perfect for my purpose of holidaying in a quiet environment, with easy access to the town and sea.
The Costellos, who run the place are the loveliest people and the most wonderful hosts. I cannot ask for anything more in a B&B.
I've stayed in ultra modern hotels and if PSJ had one, I'd still pick the Outspan because it's like home, which is the point of a B&B!
That said, there are various levels of rooms and I stay in the nicest rooms. The budget rooms are more spartan, but that's why they are called fishermen's cabins etc. Eskom also periodically has creates power shortages due to the power situation in South Africa and the Outspan has no backup generator.
PSJ is one of the most beautiful places in South Africa and the Outspan Inn for me is the best place to enjoy it from.

Room Tip: Choose the rooms in the main building. In winter, the upper rooms are warmer but the lower rooms mor...
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  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled solo
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2  Thank VagabondFoodie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 June 2012

I've stayed there for 3 weeks in 2011 and 2 weeks in 2008 and I'd happily go back there again. I just cant understand some of the reviews. A beatiful location with friendly, helpful staff and the brakfasts are excellent.

  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled with friends
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1  Thank Colin R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 June 2012

Have stayed here twice, each time for about 2 weeks, over the last 2 years. Reading some of the reviews, seems to me there have been some people with unrealistic expectations, just had a bad day, or perhaps they simply hadn't travelled very much - Port St Johns is not Provence.

I have only stayed in the main rooms, and find them cosy (in a nice way!) and very pleasant, well put together, nice verandah onlooking the extremely pleasant garden, with a huge number of visiting birds. Fridge and simple appliances, easy to make toast, tea etc during the day if that's what you want. Nice little anteroom in my room too with a TV, so I could watch Wimbledon when my wife was sleeping in the bedroom. The place is fantastically quiet, which I appreciate a lot - absolutely NO traffic noise.

The breakfasts are superb, and the staff will cook you whatever cooked breakfast you want, always to my fussy standards, with a good selection of cereals, yogurts etc. I particularly enjoyed eating outside on the verandah, again overlooking the great peaceful garden. There is a lovely cafe opposite which has nice coffees and snacks during the day too.

South Africa can be a dangerous place, but I have never had any problems in Port St Johns, walking around at night, going on jogs etc. I felt more at risk in the back streets in London. And, by the way, I have lived in 11 countries (currently Indonesia) in my 50 years, so I think I have a reasonable understanding of "dangerous places". But you clearly do want to be on your toes anywhere in South Africa, but don't let the small chance of a bad event stop you from enjoying yourself.

In a month altogether here, I have never had an electricity problem, never a security issue, etc. And the other visitors I've met at Outspan have all seemed happy and there seem to be many repeat customers.

The people who run Outspan are a delight, and in fact one of the reasons I like the place so much. John has more (real) stories than most people can take at one sitting. Kathryn is charming and intelligent (reading some of her comments to a couple of the spurious reviews here, she, quite rightly, tolerates no nonsense!). All the staff, ie Patrick, the cooks, cleaners etc are lovely people, and have always been very helpful to me. The dogs and cat are nice too...

Finally, while this is a review of the Outspan, it's worth a line or two about Port St Johns. You need to get out and about. Go up to the airstrip to watch the sunset. Visit the (many) waterfalls. Walk up to the Lighthouse. Go on a day trip with one of the local Operators for the Sardine Run if there in June-July. Drive around the local villages and countryside. Ask John and Kathryn where to go. You're not in Kansas anymore...

  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Colin M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 June 2012

A very spacious property in a very scenic area. Just a short walk through their beautiful gardens you find a beach where the nearby river joins the Ocean. There is just an abundance of beauty.
I am astounded by people complaining of how expensive it is although my stay was in 2006 and I am sure prices have gone up but they seem reasonable amounts to me. The food was delicious and gave the perfect amount of energy for a day of adventure which is easy to do from this great location in the middle of everything.
PSJ was a great place to stay, whilst the area is still quiet and mostly untouched by tourism on a mass scale there are some great places to eat out and enjoy a drink while still getting to go explore and be the only people there.

If I was to go back to this area I would stay here again in a heartbeat, the warm friendly manner of the hosts was great, the rooms were clean, spacious and perfect to get some well earned rest after some fun days out.

While it has been a while since I stayed here I can guarantee I would get the same experience again as I know others who still do.

Room Tip: It's basic accommodation done very well, don't expect modern frills and aesthetics. Enjoy a...
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  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled with friends
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1  Thank gilesshaxted
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Outspan Inn

Address: Main Road, Port St Johns 5120, South Africa
Region: South Africa > Eastern Cape > Port St Johns
Amenities:
Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 8 B&Bs / Inns in Port St Johns
Hotel Class:3 star — Outspan Inn 3*
Number of rooms: 10

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