With the exception of Rosenhof Country House, most options described in detail below are located outside Oudtshoorn. One in-town option in Oudsthoorn is the new, chi-chi Pictures (tel. 044/272-6751; www.picturesoudtshoorn.co.za; doubles range R975-R1,600), good value for the money. You should be prepared to do a bit of driving to stay at Die Ou Pastorie (tel. 044/272-2493; www.pastorie-de-hoop.com; R720-R1,820 double), if you'd like to stay in a lavishly decorated old parsonage dripping with bold color, gilt, and character. (It's 12km/7 1/2 out of town on the R62, to be exact.) First prize here is the Studio, an enormous cavern of open-plan space with a self-catering kitchen, lounge, and countless antiques. This is an incredible interior to return to after the dusty outdoors; the only downside is that you'll have to cook or drive to find dinner. Note: Check that the room you book is en suite. Closer to town is La Plume (tel. 044/272-7516; www.laplume.co.za; R1,100-R1,820 double), a Victorian guesthouse on a working ostrich and cattle farm with some tasteful and comfortable accommodations, particularly the four honeymoon and one superior suites, and good Karoo cuisine and service. Lastly, nature lovers who don't mind being on their own may like the compact two-bedroom timber cabins on a bird-filled dam at De Zeekoe (tel. 044/272-6721; www.dezeekoe.co.za; R800-R1,140 double). These are self-catering, but 5 minutes down the road is the restaurant, a wonderful pool, and more modern accommodations (note that the luxury rooms aren't huge but probably offer better value than the superiors, which are close to twice the price, at R2,400 double). De Zeekoe also has strong links with Grant McIlrath of Meerkat Magic -- the meerkats sometimes live on the property's reserve.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.