Bruce Wayne shouldn't be the only person to enjoy the solace and shelter of a converted cave. South Africa, with its rich endowment of mountainous and rocky areas, is filled with mystical caves and hollowed-out areas.
You may have explored many of them yourself, whether it be to check out the art of the First Peoples or to see stalagmites and stalactites - these spaces are exciting for what they hide and have since time immemorial been used as shelter for some of our earliest genetic ancestors.
Caves have come a long way since then - ornately decorated with modern furnishings and amenities. So if the idea of living like a literal caveman - but with some of the comforts of home - sounds like something you may be into, read on and find out where to live out your neolithic dreams.
The Drakensberg is one of South Africa's unique and rather special mountain escarpments. Also known by the Zulu people as uKhahlamba, The Barrier of Spears, this UNESCO World Heritage site is made up of vast cliffs, jagged ridge lines and endless pinnacles. The Drakensberg is also home to some of the best caves to both explore and stay over in. Sherman's Cave is perhaps the most renowned of the Drakensberg area caves.
This deep cave offers enough space for 10 people to sleep in with a relatively flat, level floor and a low overhang. Just be prepared for the fun, but taxing, hike to the cave.
SEE: From grasslands to fynbos: SA camping spots for every ecosystem
Nestled in the magnificent wilderness area of the Cederberg mountain range in South Africa's Western Cape province. The reserve is renowned for its scenic Karoo beauty and dramatic rock formations, rich and fascinating San cultural heritage, ancient rock art sites and a night sky made for stargazing at the Milky Way.
The reserve is also the location of 10 unique cave suites that you can sleep in. Skilfully constructed to integrate with the natural sandstone formations, each cave suite has a terrace with a view and is simply furnished with comfort in mind. The beautiful rock formations can be experienced up close in these man-made suites.
WATCH: Explore the wonders and secrets of Cederberg
Staying in a cave doesn't mean you have to forego the luxuries of a hotel anymore, at least not with the luxury cave at Antbear Lodge. Here, glass doors open onto a deck with an uninterrupted panoramic view spanning more than 180 degrees from Giants Castle right through to the Amphitheatre and beyond.
This comfortable cave experience will see travellers relax in style on a king-sized bed, a jet pool bath and an open fireplace. The furniture is all handmade and the walls are decorated with San art paintings to remind you that you're in a cave - in case the furnishings made you forget.
WATCH: This drone in the Drakensberg will make you pack your hiking bag, stat!
The Baviaanskloof is one of the most ecologically diverse areas, not only in South Africa but in the world. It is a World Heritage Site for plants’ sake and with the most diverse floral kingdom per square kilometre on earth - it hosts seven out of eight of South Africa’s biomes.
It is simply a spectacular stretch of 210 000 hectares with a mix of farming and conservation; peaceful, remote, untouched and with limited cellphone signal. Why not enjoy some of this bounty by spending the night at a natural cave specially fitted to sleep 8 people? This self-catering spot is perfect if you're looking to enjoy a relaxed atmosphere, sheltered by nature in nature.
SEE: Travel the forgotten paths of gentle giants across the Baviaanskloof to Addo
Built as a tribute to the San, the Inkunzi Cave is a wonderful retreat from civilisation and escape into nature. The rock elements of the cave have been preserved as far as is reasonably possible with the rock finish being present inside and out.
Take a bath or shower in a rock bath and rock shower or head out and enjoy the breathtaking mountain views from this comfortable and unique self-catering gem.
SEE: Exploring caves: Safety tips from the experts
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