Away with the Fairies




Hostelz.com's Review

Away with the Fairies is a wonderful hostel located in the mountains of Hogsback, South Africa. As soon as you arrive in Hogsback, the place already has a magical feel to it, and once you enter the themed hostel, it adds the final touch to make this place seem truly enchanted. The lodge caters to overlanders (no four-wheel-drive required), campers, people who want a dorm bed, as well as those who want their own room.

The Location

As far as Hogsback goes, Away with the Fairies is centrally located, only a five-minute walk from the town center and restaurants; the town itself is quite small, with only a simple grocery store and a handful of restaurants from which to choose. That being said, it's easier to bring in your own supplies than it is to buy them there, if you can.

Rooms and Bathrooms

The rooms in Away with the Fairies are fairly simple, cleaned daily, and pretty standard as far as hostels go. The bathrooms are a bit small, and also have hot water that is heated by solar panels.

Common Spaces

There are a number of common spaces throughout the lodge, and almost all of them have a fireplace to take away the bite on cold nights. The lodge itself is broken up into two main buildings. The first houses the staff kitchen, the bar area, and a big common area. The second houses the dorm rooms, a kitchen for the guests, as well as another large living room.

The lodge offers free Wi-Fi and a very friendly atmosphere. In addition, the hostel has a fifteen-meter-high treehouse that offers wonderful views looking over the valley below. If climbing the treehouse isn't your thing, there is also a unique outdoor bathtub, complete with hot water, that overlooks a cliff's edge and down towards the valley below. There is also an abundance of hiking trails to view the waterfalls of the area, one of which departs directly from Away with the Fairies.


Away with the Fairies is a wonderful hostel in Hogsback that adds to the charm of the area. With an ample supply of outdoor things to do, from hiking, abseiling, horseback riding, and relaxing, Away with the Fairies is the perfect choice for a place to stay.
by Richard Ballentine
Hostelz.com Staff Reviewer
December 2013


(Location is approximate. You may need to pan/move to find "Away with the Fairies" at Bag End, Hydrangea Lane.)


Bag End, Hydrangea Lane, Hogsback (Amatola Mountains), Eastern Cape, South Africa
-32.601060, 26.941051
hogsback1@gmail.com, hogsback1@iafrica.com
+27 (045) 962 1031
+27 (045) 962 1345
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Hostelz.com Guest Reviews

Been there 4 times & still theres so much we havent done, wow
The Venue is Absolutely Good, U get that outdoors feeling ínside' Always that "excited" feeling when u arrive, & u can b sure of finding a lavender flower on ur cushion evryday as long as u stay. Very clean rooms & bedding, Sitting by the Fireplace in the huge lounge makin new traveler friend, even sharing the kitchen with Others Is a great joy. Then we all leave for Adventure round 9am & return late. The coffee shops in town are really nice, friendly, nice food, not expensive, love the vibe in town. u dont need ur car!! nothing better than walking & smelling the fresh air in the mountains & the Spring Festival is a must! its awesome!
(Eastern Cape)
Friendly, helpful, amazing -- awesome location, just fantastic
I visited here towards the end of March 2010 for a night, and ended up staying for 3 nights. What an amazing location!! The staff were very knowledgeable, helpful, and friendly. I can't comment on their hostel facilities for sleeping as we had a tent, but the kitchen and bathroom facilities were just fine. My experience in Hogsback & Away With the Fairies is very high up in my top five South African experiences, and I plan to revisit for a week next year. The party atmosphere of the bar, should you choose to partake, was fun with a great variety of people to chat too. The places I stayed after this experience left me feeling very let and disappointed over the month of my visit.
Kerri Young
(New Zealand)
Friendly owners but be prepared
I did enjoy my time at away with the fairies. The staff was very friendly and I had a great time in the bar, but I think that one needs to know what I saw there. In the bar, people were passing pills around in plain sight, and the barman and one of the staffers were openly discussing which drugs were the best. Therefore I think that families should avoid the place. If you wish to party, go there. Do not go there for peace and quiet. Another thing I disliked was the cleaning staff. They occupied the lounge area and communal kitchen for most of the day. I couldn't really cook and then enjoy my food in the lounge as it was taken by them.
Couldn't be better
Had the pleasure of staying a couple of nights in november. Great place, great food, and even better people. Frodo's room has incredible view and a fireplace.
The best I've ever known.
I stayed here in Dec. 2007 after hiking the Amatola Trail. Excellent. Cosy lounge with fireplace, clean rooms, beautiful garden with a kickass tree house (serious bonus points), nice bar area. The only downside is that there isn't much to do in Hogsback, so I reckon after a few days you'd get bored. Apparently some nights can get quite wild; the night we were there it was very peaceful. And the chef will make you the best supper you've ever had in a backpackers, for about R40 (about US$6).
(South African)
Away with the Fairies is an enchanting hostel in an idyllic spot, with breathtaking views over the 'Hogsback' hills. It is the only hostel in town but does not take advantage of this fact. Owned and run by an Englishman who visited here ten years ago and has never left, the management are very friendly and helpful. Hogsback is a small quaint town in the middle of the forests and hills. The area has a Lord of the Rings theme, with a pub called 'Rivendell' and the next town called 'Hobbiton'. In July, they celebrate a winter Christmas, as well as in December, seeing many more guests and the locals wearing Santa hats and selling ox-drawn cart rides down the main road. There are no buses or trains to Hogsback so to get to there, a self-drive car is needed. The hostel will do pick-ups and drop-offs from hostels at Cintsa, Grahamstown and East London five times a week for a fee. There is an old village general store for some food and a few cafes and pubs, but little else in Hogsback. It is like going back in time. The hostel itself is a five minute walk to the main road, but also has direct access from its garden to walking trails which many visitors enjoy, seeing local waterfalls and trails. There are two dorms. The one at the front has two bunks and a single bed. There is also a private double room, and ground for camping. The owner is planning on extending the buildings further for more accommodation. There is a shower room with a clean shower, WC and sink, and also a bathroom, both of which are good sized and clean. In the building with the bedrooms is a large living room with sofas and an open fire, stereo and book exchange. There is also a kitchen with a lovely rustic wooden counter-top, fitted electric stove and all amenities required. In a separete building is a bar with a computer for internet access, and off here is a large dining table where dinner is served nightly, a few sofas around a fire and table football. Throughout both buildings, the walls are painted in fairy themes. There is plenty of outside space. At the back is a nice garden with a small table and two chairs by a small fishpond; in the middle is an outside fire and picnic tables; and on the far side is a treehouse, said to give great views of the area but the steps are in need of better securing. This hostel is both relaxing and sociable. Many people, both foreign travellers and locals from the nearby cities, view this as a great country escape. Often busy at weekends, there is generally more space mid-week. An enchanting place to stay and well worth the change of scenery from the beaches for a few days.
Helen Resuggan
  We spent the weekend camping at "Away with the fairies"and would like to share a few thoughts with you. You have the makings of a wonderful venue. The best part is the Hot water and the new basins. Other than that things leave much to be desired. There appears to be a total lack of maintenance. For example, your septic tank cover is broken and is a health hazard. When one visualizes "Away with the fairies" as portrayed by your web site, one expects peace and tranquility, not constant barking dogs Plus Dog-mines)and disco music until 1/4 to 4 in the morning.Not to mention wandering cattle. As a camping venue it does not rate more than 2 out of a possible 10. It is shocking. I'm afraid your fairies are truly away.

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