Getting to Samara

Samara is located in South Africa’s Eastern Cape province, in the majestic Great Karoo, and easily accessible on good roads.

The reserve is a 40 minute drive from the nearest town of Graaff-Reinet, a historical gem and South Africa’s 4th oldest settlement which is well worth a visit. Guests travelling to Samara can opt for two main options: access by road or access by air.

Accessing Samara by road

Many of our guests choose to self-drive to Samara, either from the nearest international airport in Port Elizabeth airport (2.5 hours’ drive) or as part of a longer itinerary including the Garden Route or the Cape Winelands. Care hire is the most cost-effective method of getting to Samara. We can also assist with booking private road transfers between Samara and Port Elizabeth airport or other locations. Port Elizabeth is regularly serviced with flights from Cape Town, Johannesburg, Durban and beyond.

The recommended route from Port Elizabeth is easy and makes use of good roads. Take the R75 (Uitenhage Road) towards Graaff-Reinet. Proceed through Jansenville. After Jansenville DO NOT take the Pearston turn-off. This is a dirt road and very slow. Instead, continue along the R75 until you see the Somerset East/Pearston turn-off onto the R63. This turn-off is 24km short of Graaff-Reinet. Turn right and drive for 7km. Then turn left onto the Petersburg gravel road and drive 23km to reach Karoo Lodge. You will have to go through one single electronic gate and one double electronic gate once you are on the gravel road.

A gate code will be provided in your pre-arrival communications. Please call Reception on +27 (0)49 8910 880 once you reach the first gate to tell us that you are on the reserve. You will lose cellphone reception shortly after the first gate.

Accessing Samara by air

Samara has a 1.5km gravel landing strip for direct access by air to the reserve. Flying time from Port Elizabeth to Samara is 40 minutes, and flying time from Cape Town or Johannesburg to Samara is 1h30. Air charters can be arranged on request. Graaff-Reinet boasts a 1.5km tarred runway with landing lights which can accommodate a Gulf Stream jet. Transfers from Graaff-Reinet can then be made either by road (40 min) or by helicopter (15 min) directly to the lodge.

Why not make a roadtrip of it?

Samara is ideally situated within driving distance of two of South Africa’s most renowned attractions: the Garden Route and the Cape Winelands, and within the country’s serene and beautiful heartland, the Karoo. Why not explore our beautiful country at your own pace by taking a roadtrip?

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