Homely lodge in Nieu-Bethesda, an oasis in the arid Great Karoo. See Helen Martin's Owlhouse, a journey through light, darkness and reflection and the inspiration for Oscar award winning Athol Fugard's film, "The Road to Mecca"

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Details of rediscover yourself at the Owlhouse Backpackers, Nieu Bethesda, South Africa Youth Hostels Details for rediscover yourself at the Owlhouse Backpackers

Surrounding Area

Nieu Bethesda is a tiny hamlet, nestled at the foot of the Kompasberg, the highest peak in the Eastern Cape.

The main attraction is Helen Martin's Owlhouse, made famous by Athol Fugard's film, "The Road to Mecca". This intrigueing journey through light, darkness and the mysteries of reflection is impossible to describe, but brings thousands to the villge every month

The Great Karoo has many impressive landscapes, including the "Valley of Desolation" and the "Plains of the Camdeboo"

On the surrounding working sheep farms it is possible to view unique San rock art and some of the extensive premammalian fossil beds. Many beautiful walks, varying in length from a few hours to several days, can be undertaken.

The Karoo Nature Reserve and Mountain Zebra National Park can be visited on a day trip.

Graaff Reinet, the nearest town, is the 4th oldest in South Africa and has the most national monuments of any town in SA. There are several worthwhile museums


typical, old Karoo house in a large garden
in easy walking distance of all the village attractions
original wooden floors


Double rooms (some en suite)
dormitory rooms


internet and fax facilities
self catering kitchen
braai (barbecue)

Services Offered

local and countrywide booking service for transport, accomodation, tours and adventures

Policies & Restrictions

no smoking inside

Rates & Availability

double room (en suite) R120
double room (shared bath) R110
single room R70
dormitory bed R45
camping R20

Tel: +27-49-8411642
Fax: +27-49-8411657


30km North of Graaff Reinet on the N9 to Middelburg, turn west to Nieu Bethesda on a gravel road for 20km

we are on the East side of the main road, doen the road from the pub, across the road from the bottle store

Discounts Offered

VIP discount

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rediscover yourself at the Owlhouse Backpackers
Martin St
Nieu Bethesda, South Africa 6286

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Listing # RA-1023258