Treetop Lodge

Set Amidst the Treetops of an Age-Old Indigenous Forest

by Gabriella Ribeiro
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There are lodge experiences and then there is Tsala Treetop Lodge. This South African hideaway is a reclusive retreat beset by a legendary backstory that is enough to captivate even the savviest traveler. As the legend goes, the people and wildlife of the north migrated south in pursuit of food and water, and what they discovered were powder-white beaches, majestic mountains, towering forests of trees and an abundance of natural resources. They settled here, built impressive homes with natural elements, lived off of the abundance of the land and a new world was built here at Tsala, known as “the elevated resting place”

Today, travelers seek solace at this gorgeous retreat where it is said that if one listens carefully, they can hear the laughter of those past whispering in the winds.  The ancient civilization’s memory shines through upon arrival at Tsala, where it’s impressive stone entrance gives way to an elaborate afro-baroque décor, opening out to stunning views over the verdant forests and adventure awaits each guest.

The Treetop Suites are tucked away into the canopy of the forest and are elegant sanctuaries complete with fireplace, exquisitely appointed bathroom with oversize stone bathtub, private infinity pool on the secluded deck and completely stunning views. Similarly constructed of wood and glass, with floor to ceiling windows are the collection of Treetop Villas which feature 2 bedrooms. All rooms are interconnected with beautiful wooden walkways.

Meals at Tsala Treetop Lodge are an exceptional affair. Great care from the culinary team is evident with every freshly prepared dish and the capability to cater to any dietary request possible. The dining room is a stunning feat, a glass-walled cocoon surrounded by a deck high above the forest floor while the signature Zinzi restaurant delights guests equally as visually with stunning touches such as handmade mud chandeliers, hand-printed fabrics, comfortable furnishings and fabulous dishes served on antique tables.  Tsala’s Wine Cellar is perhaps one of its best-kept secrets, hidden below with an incredible, proud selection of South African wines from every region.

What’s beautiful about this property is the fact that it provides a sense of seclusion, so guests such as honeymooners seeking a romantic hideaway love it equally as much as families do and children are not only just accepted, they are extremely welcomed with little special touches that complement the sense of wonder and thrill of residing in a treehouse for a brief moment in time.

When it comes to activities nearby, guests at Tsala are spoiled for choice with everything from swimming with seals to beach experiences on the nearby coast, aromatherapy massages en-suite to shark cage diving, flower safaris, horseback riding, hiking and more.  Tsala is located in the Harkerville Forest between Knysna and Plettenberg Bay along the famed Garden Route, just an hour from George Airport.

Gabriella Ribeiro