When Michael and I fell in love with Whispering Oaks and decided to buy a guest house our first thought was that we wanted this business to give back to its community. Firstly to the employees who work there, but secondly to the town of George. We had grand dreams of sponsoring a venue for events and blessing friends with the space for parties, but to tell you the truth, it's been a whirlwind first three years of starting this business.
Since opening our first two rooms, we did add a feisty little boy to our family, manage to renovate a couple of rooms and grow the business to a booming eight bedroom guest house... But somewhere in amongst the dust and sweat our dreams of Whispering Oaks serving her community was somehow put on hold.
Along came StreetSmart. We were first invited to their officially yearly 'hand-over' to one of the many amazing NGO's who work with our children in George. We immediately knew this is something we wanted to get behind. We loved the idea that the funds raised are being spent locally, where we can see it is needed.
So, we are so excited about this new season for our guest house. We are hoping we can set an example to other business in our industry and show just how simple it is to steward our business and give back to our beautiful country where it's so needed.
By Nelleke Elston (Owner) at Whispering Oaks Guest House
Critic's review by Nelleke Elston (2017)
East Head Café has become a popular stop for local and international visitors to Knysna, both for the breathtaking views of the world-famous Knysna Heads and the delicious food. This owner-run café showcases local produce where possible and takes pride in making everything to-order. Sit at tables inside overlooking the crashing waves, or in the shade of the Milkwood canopy on the patio and enjoy the sea breeze.
This is a favourite breakfast spot with the locals, so come early. There’s something for everyone, from the classic eggs Hollandaise to spicy free-range chicken livers and creamy vanilla oats served with local honey and Rheenedal Macadamian nuts.
The crispy battered fish and chips served with homemade tartar sauce is rumored to be the best in town, and the gourmet burgers are not to be missed. There are also choices like the Forest Fresh mushroom burger – grilled topside beef topped with truffle mushroom sauce, and the Po’boy burger with pulled pork, prawn and apple slaw. A weekly revised specials board showcases seasonal produce and fresh seafood as it becomes available, with dishes like beer steamed mussels and marinated octopus with chimichurri sauce.
The coffee bar is lined with freshly baked cakes under glass domes like moist carrot cake, vanilla baked cheesecake, dense dark chocolate brownie slices and their most popular Bar One chocolate cake with its gooey centre. The dessert menu offers decadent spins on old favourites like the banana nut sundae or the meringue crush, which is seasonal fruit with soft-whipped cream and chunks of meringue.
For those wanting to end the meal on a more savoury note, there is the option of an artisanal cheese platter with local hand-crafted cheeses served with crackers and preserves.
Start the day with a freshly pressed juice of the day served in tall glass bottles with straws. The wine and beverage menu features an exceptional choice of local craft beers and ciders, various South African wines, alcoholic and non-alcoholic cocktails and speciality teas and coffees. Try the artisanal gin cocktails with original names like Kaap ‘n Naar.
The waiters are relaxed but knowledgeable about the menu, and professional. The small team works like a well-oiled machine and stays cool and calm even in the height of season.
In summer a cool sea breeze blows through the open windows, making it a perfect oasis to take cover from the warm sun. In winter a wood-fired oven keeps the café cosy. Children have a designated play area, equipped with toys and crayons, and can explore the paths leading down to the beach and rockpools.
The restaurant gets very busy in season and unfortunately don’t take reservations. Come early and be prepared to wait for a table.
Eat Out critics dine unannounced and pay for their meals in full. Read our full editorial policy here.
Josephine, a local designer, displays her vibrant, cute, and trendy designs. She stocks home decor, accessories, childrens wear and a woman clothing line.
School holidays – open everyday
Open on public holidays
Cell – 072 67 21205
Facebook page – josephine handmade design
Schwaben Deli have is an authentic German-style deli that specializes in cured meats, cheeses and german products. Sausages such as the Landjager are produced by the owner, Anna’s father, Georg Heitzmann and his team, who have over 30 years of experience.
This is the place for you if you want to pick up ham for a picnic, grab a snack for the road or stock your kitchen with quality meats and cheeses. Their smokey Chorizo sausage is not to be missed and one of the signature products.
The Schwaben Deli is open Tuesday to Sunday. Closed Monday.
Timberlake village supports local &
The slow food principles of good,clean and fair.
-Your salads are picked fresh from their onsite organic garden.-
"Gesondheid uit die grond uit"
Di Marshall, the small town girl from George has a pure love for pottery. Years ago she did not dream to be were she is now, sitting in her newly renovated studio in the town centre. Her name has become somewhat of a household name and her pottery, Wonki Ware, world-famous. These hand-made products will sure be an eye catcher in your kitchen cabinet, with every piece unique in it's imperfections and, 'wonkiness' if you may...
The studio and shop is definitely a stop not be missed when visiting the Garden Route. Owner and chef Nelleke Elston and the team from Whispering Oaks Guest House cooks up healthy, eye-catching breakfasts and serves them in the beautiful white Wonki Ware range.
"Wonki Ware is a product that was developed purely by chance" says Di. After starting the business by herself and she was then later joined by two excited and enthusiastic workers. Today, Wonki Ware has grown to be an employer of 70 woman and men, each with a unique story and a passion for the process of making these beautiful pottery pieces.
We are very lucky to have this source of culture in our small town. Wonki Ware can be found in most prestigious stores in South Africa and the world around, so make sure to buy yourself a little spoil, wether it be one of their beautiful salad platters or a small dipping bowl. You can find them at the heart of the town at 42 York Street, George.
This seaside village is getting ready for a festival of sound, colour and taste .
Be sure to join the Wilderness festival on 5 May -7May this year.
There will be plenty of good music by well -known South African icons like Anton Goosen and Andre Schwartz.
Be sure to catch our local radio station, Algoa FM as they will have a live three-hour broadcast with Wayne Hart's Top 30.
If the music moves you just enough make sure to participate in the 5km fun run (walk or dance). Be assured that this won't be the normal 5km run you know, but rather one where you will be blast with color powder thrown at intervals.
Food and beverage stalls of all types will be ready to satisfy your tastebuds. Wine will be a major force, with several wine cellars confirmed as exhibitors, but other tipples to treat, include gin, witblitz, beer and mampoer. On the food front, the range of offerings will include locally made cheeses, picnic baskets and spit braai, also many vegetarian options.
Tickets are available online, or at the entrance.
Hours: Friday 2pm to 10pm
Saturday 9am to 10pm
Sunday 10am to 4pm
Canoe in Wildernis at the Ebb & Flow Camp Site
Wilderness is one of the Garden Route's well-kept secrets and a protected National Park area. The beautiful Ebb and Flow Camp Site stretches out along the river banks and has a beautiful board walk through the forest ending in deep rock pools where you can enjoy a picnic and the forest sounds. The other option is to rent a canoe at the entrance of the camp site and watch the bird life while gliding over the water, it is really an experience not to be missed if you are visiting the Garden Route.
Visit Wilderness beaches - Leentjiesklip
This beach lies directly below the N2 highway on your way to Wilderness. The beach stretches for 10km and ends at the river mouth, where the lagoon flows dark brown water into the cool blue ocean. For a light lunch or cold drink and a break from the hot sun, you can pop into Salinas Beach Restaurant, one of the only restaurants over-looking the beach on the Garden Route. There is a lovely shaded play area for the children and the views are just breath-taking. Salinas can be found on the Wilderness, next to the NSRI's offices, on the main beach next to Leentjiesklip.
Lion Walk at Botlierskop
Walk alongside Africa’s most majestic predator and interact with young lions on foot. The walk takes approximately one hour to complete – depending on how fast the lions are prepared to stroll. No leashes or collars are used, but the walk is supervised by expert handlers. Botlierskop is situated in Gonnakraal Road, Little Brak River.
Ostrich Farm visit in Oudtshoorn
Tour a working ostrich farm and learn about the flightless, tallest and heaviest bird in the world. For the more brave guests, you are even able to ride on the back of an ostrich! For more details contact the Highgate Ostrich Farm at Oudtshoorn, Scenic Cape Route 62.
Cango Caves & Cango Wildlife Ranch
The Cango caves are an illuminated wonderland of mystery, with passageways and chambers far below. The tour will explore the narrow passages and vast halls filled with ancient stalactites. Book well in advance and come early as this attraction draws tourists from all over the world and can get very crowded over the summer months.
The Cango Wildlife Ranch is a sanctuary to some of the world’s most endangered animals that contributes to the conservation of over 60 species. This neat, well-managed animal sancuary is a not-to-be-missed attraction for children when passing through Outshoorn. This is your opportunity to experience personal ‘Animal Encounters’ – touch cheetahs, hug Bengal tiger cubs, wrap yourself in a python, and even dive with Nile crocodiles
Spend a day in Mosselbay
Many people who come to Mossel Bay, come for the beautiful beaches, but there is so much more to see than that. Walk through the quaint town centre, which has been beautifully renovated, explore the antique shops, cafe's and Diaz Museum with it's own mini aquarium. Don't miss the Blue Shed coffee roastery where you can enjoy a coffee while lounging on their daybeds in the sea breeeze. Also, for the adventurous traveller, there's the once in a lifetime shark cage diving experience with boats launching from Mossel Bay.
By Nelleke Elston
Does the world really need another pancake recipe, is a good question to ask at this stage… I thought I’d share my story of how I became known as the ‘pancake-asaurus’ in our family. Yes, that was one of those little family words that we took the liberty of making up based on the amount of fluffy Canadian pancakes I could pack away, leaving my bigger brothers in the dust at age three. As I’ve mentioned on my blog before, my childhood was filled with vibrant adventures with my family that took us from living in a desert country on the West Coast of Africa to a small village in Canada where my father worked as a doctor.
If there’s one thing that the Canadians added to our quirky array of culinary favourites it is breakfast pancakes with maple syrup and bacon. To this day when we have family gatherings it usually involves my father (who’s specialties include this, and cooking fish to absolute perfection) to don my mother’s apron and get his hands dirty. So, living back in Southern Africa today we take it upon ourselves to educate our friends and family about the absolute wonder that is pure, imported maple syrup combined with salty bacon and a knob of melted butter. Even my husband has had to resolve himself to the fact that this is one bit of Canada he can’t get out of me and he’s embraced it to become part of our repertoire. I must say, my husband and I have added fresh berries and Bulgarian yoghurt to the mix. Yes, that’s Bulgarian yoghurt with bacon, I know what you are thinking… So on that note, if you haven’t tried this combination, I’d strongly recommend it. Here’s a delicious recipe for buttermilk pancakes I love to make:
Canadian Buttermilk Pancakes
(Makes 14 portions)
In large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In another bowl, whisk together buttermilk, egg, butter and vanilla. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and whisk until combined and smooth. Lightly brush large nonstick pan with some of the oil. Heat the pan over medium-high heat. Using a 1/4 cup per pancake, pour the batter into the pan and allow it to spread slightly to form pancakes. Cook until bubbles appear on top, about 3 minutes. Flip and cook until the bottom is golden brown, about 1 minute. Transfer to a platter, cover and keep warm at 120°C in the oven.
The Strawberry Festival presented by Ola will be held on 1 & 2 October at the George Redberry Farm. If you have the weekend free, this is a family outing you don't want to miss out on! There are loads of activities for the little ones, an outdoor market to enjoy and for the adults, craft beer and wine tasting. For the more adventure type, there is a MTB Relay; Trail Run/Walk and a Crossfit Competition.
The Saturday programme includes the Toddler Dash; MTB Relay and the main events - CrossFit, Kids Strawberry and Ice Cream eat-offs and dance performances. The Sunday programme include a 5km and 9km trail run/walk, headline artist Jesse Clegg and crafted beer tasting. Please see the The Strawberry Festival Official Website of all the activities and times these activities will take place.
The Third Thousand Sensations Crafted Beer and Food Festival will take place on 16th till 17th September 2016 at the Wilderness Hotel in Wilderness.
30 Breweries will participate with more than 120 different craft beers. The craft beer is complemented by a variety of food dishes to complement all the different beer styles. There will also be local food stands to enjoy and to jazz up the mood, live music. This is a festival you don't want to miss out on.
Whispering Oaks Guest House is situated 15km (19 minute drive) away from the Thousand Sensations Craft Beer & Food Festival venue.
18 Caledon Street, George 044 8730451 0761987421 firstname.lastname@example.org
© COPYRIGHT 2019 NELLEKE ELSTON| ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
© COPYRIGHT 2019 NELLEKE ELSTON| ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.