Places to Stay

Santos Express Train Lodge

Spending time on train in Mossel Bay doesn’t sound like much fun, does it? I regularly take public transport and spending time being jostled by loud and overzealous commuters is possibly the exact antithesis of relaxation.

So when it was suggested that I check out the Santos Express Train Lodge for accommodations in Garden Route, my expectations weren’t high. Thankfully I was pleasantly surprised.

Santos ExpressMossel Bay is beautiful. It’s one of those places that doesn’t get much advertising, so it has remained unspoilt and untouched. A quiet seaside village where you can just sit back and relax in the sunshine, Mossel Bay turned out to be a dream come true. It seems the sun is permanently shining, the water is crystal clear and the beaches stretch for miles, golden sand glistening in the heat. Emerald and lilac in the distance are the Outeniqua Mountains, imposing and rugged. Mossel Bay is the perfect place to be on a hot summer’s day, with no worries and no fuss.

The Santos Express Train Lodge is a real train situated at Santos Beach. With sun, sand and ocean on your doorstep, this lodge offers views other hotels can only dream of. Roll out of bed in the morning and onto the beach, take a few steps and there you are, cool ocean lapping at your feet. Add a few palm trees sprouting here and there near the lodge and you have yourself a tropical paradise. Ecstatic is what most people feel when they arrive at this unique Southern African destination

Eclectic and eccentric stay in Mossel Bay, Santos Train Lodge offers you an experience you will never forget. There are five coaches, with five compartments (four of which offer 2-4 sleepers), two coupes (1-2 sleepers), two toilets and one shower. The fifth coach is divided into a 16 bed dormitory with a self catering kitchen. The compartments, facing the brilliant blue ocean, are simply decorated, but gorgeous none the less. A delicious continental breakfast is included in the rates which range from R75 – R250.00 depending on the season.

And if falling asleep to the sound of the ocean isn’t enough, there is also a restaurant, a bar, a beer garden and a sun deck. Is there lacking in Santos’s dedication to giving the ‘commuter’ an amazing experience?  Apparently not. The restaurant has everything from Bobotie on rice to a 450g T-bone steak. You can also enjoy the sun deck, while digging into a seafood platter, with its magnificent view over the bay and far-off mountain range. In winter the cosy pub with its bright colours and wooden chairs offer a friendly retreat from the outside cold.

The staff are gracious and efficient and can help out with all travel arrangements as well as offering useful advice on things to see and do, whether it be deep sea fishing, shark cage diving or quad biking. If you are lucky enough, you might not even have to leave the Santos Express Train Lodge to see dolphins, seals and whales as they are also easily spotted while sitting on the sun deck.

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