#TravelTuesday: hotel review of a jewel in Knysna

Image: Sanet Oberholzer

Location: The Turbine Boutique Hotel and Spa is in the heart of Knysna on the beautiful Garden Route. It is a stone’s throw from the Knysna lagoon, with views over the Thesen Island channels.

Rooms: The individually styled rooms of this boutique hotel are modern but filled with character. If you’ve spent all your money splurging on your stay, you can look forward to complimentary water, tea and Lavazza coffee as part of your room’s standard five-star trimmings. Try to snag a channel-facing room with a balcony – they come with the best views.

Food: Eating at the Turbine is sorted, from cocktails and restaurant dining at the Island Café to beers and pub grub at the Gastro Pub.

Activities: The Turbine Water Club can arrange a variety of outdoor activities, including lagoon and sunset cruises; bicycle and kayak hire and forest hikes. If you overdo it, staff at the Turbine Spa will gladly undo your kinks and knots as you relax to the max.

We loved: The quirky use of old turbines, steel pillars and thick pipes that have been given a fresh, bright coat of paint. They are a great backdrop for selfies and Instagram shots. If we had to sneak something home with us, it would be a painting or two by local artists as part of a "moving art gallery" provided by Knysna Fine Arts which are scattered around the hotel with price tags attached, indicating they’re for sale. 

Good for: The Turbine is perfect for a romantic getaway or the traveller with a thirst for outdoor life.

Don’t expect: A beach holiday. Although Knysna is on the coast, it’s not a beach town. Swop the beach bag for active gear to go on bike rides, forest walks and lagoon cruises.

In summary: This is the kind of hotel to visit when you feel you’re winning at life and deserve a spoil. You can expect to leave feeling relaxed after having received top-notch treatment from the staff and experiencing what the Knysna hype is all about: beautiful outdoors, boutique shopping and good food.

Contact: Visit turbinehotel.co.za for more information or to make a booking.  


  • The writer was a guest of The Turbine Boutique Hotel and Spa