IN PICS | Five SA escapes named among the world's top 50 resorts
Earlier this month, luxury and lifestyle travel magazine Condé Nast Traveler announced the results of its 34th annual Readers’ Choice Awards.
SA emerged as a favourite destination, clinching five places on the magazine's list of the 50 Best Resorts in the World — including three spots in the top 10.
The ranking is based on the results of a survey. It reflects the resorts more than 800,000 voters longed to visit during lockdown and couldn't wait to return to as soon as world travel opened up again.
The highest-ranking SA resort — Morukuru Family De Hoop — is the only local destination on the list that's not located in the bush. It clinched the number two spot for the second year in a row.
Situated three hours from Cape Town in the De Hoop Nature Reserve, Morukuru Family offers a luxury beach vacation in either its five-suite Beach Lodge or four-bedroom Ocean Lodge. Here, game drives happen on whitewashed sand dunes in the marine protected area when guests are not sandboarding, snorkelling, mountain biking, or relaxing in a swimming pool.
Singita Sabi Sand, a popular bush escape in the Sabi Sand Game Reserve, ranked seventh on the list.
Its Ebony Lodge, Boulders Lodge and Castleton Lodge each have a different charm, but all offer an unforgettable wildlife experience.
Following hot on its heels in ninth place is another resort located in the Greater Kruger National Park area: Royal Malewane in Thornybush Private Game Reserve. Between the classic Main Lodge and contemporary Farmstead, guests can enjoy spa treatments, daily game drives and fine culinary delights.
Coming just short of the top 10 and landing at number 11 is another Morukuru Family resort, this time located in the Madikwe Game Reserve. Recent refurbishments transformed its three villas into an exclusive-use bush haven during the Covid-19 pandemic.
In 44th place is Cheetah Plains, also in the Sabi Sands Game Reserve, where guests get to experience modern, sustainable safaris with its fleet of electric safari vehicles and green touches like solar panels and a grey water recycling system.