Canyon Lodge is located among the rocks near to Fish River Canyon.
Canyon Lodge: Our full report
Canyon Lodge (aka Cañon Lodge, or even Canon Lodge) is situated in the Gondwana Canyon Park, just 20km from the Fish River Canyon, and 2km from its sister lodge, Canyon Village. Built around an old farmhouse, it is a charming, rustic lodge which has a similar style but is more upmarket than another sister lodge, Canyon Roadhouse.
Stone pathways lead to each of Canyon Lodge's 30 chalets, which are dotted enticingly amongst huge granite boulders, or kopjies, and seven simpler standard rooms which lie closer to the main building.
At the heart of Canyon Lodge is an old farmhouse, which today plays host to the reception and curio shop – stocked with a variety of locally made items, plus a large restaurant with individual tables, and a separate, well-stocked bar. There's also a self-service tea and coffee station. The building is mostly of natural stone, so is rather dark, but the interior remains cool, and there are cosy fireplaces for those colder winter nights (when temperatures do go quite low!).
Running along the back of the building is a large veranda where more individual tables are set out under shady, tall camelthorn trees – a great place for a meal or just to sit and enjoy the views. Facing the front garden, a pool table is available for staff and guests alike.
During our last visit to Canyon Lodge, in June 2011, we were struck by the immaculate front garden: bursting with colour, with beautifully kept green lawns. Quite an achievement considering that the lodge sits in the heart of a desert environment. Indeed, gardening is important to the lodge's owners, who take pride in their 'self-sufficiency' centre, where many of the salads and vegetables served in the restaurant are grown.
A considerable walk from the main area, in a peaceful and isolated spot down a long pathway past the chalets, is a stunning turquoise swimming pool with beautiful views. Comfortable loungers and plenty of shade make this a good place to relax, and there's also an honesty bar and towels for guests to use.
Activities arranged by Canyon Lodge are similar to those at Canyon Village, and include a sunrise walk, a morning hike (6km), a drive to Fish River Canyon, horseback riding and a sundowner drive or walk. That said, most travellers wit their own car will want to drive to the viewpoints of the Fish River Canyon to take in the spectacle and explore for themselves a bit.
The Canyon Lodge is probably our first choice in this immediate area for most travellers – as the rooms have been designed well to fit in amongst and between huge granite rocks, and have much more character than those of either the Village or the Roadhouse.
The lodge's main area has quite a 'cosy farmhouse' atmosphere; we think that it's a lovely place to stay for exploring Fish River Canyon. Being close to the canyon, it is easy to drive yourself there, although there's also the option to join one of the lodge's guided trips. If visiting in winter, just be aware that granite can get quite cold.
Ideal length of stay: 2–3 nights
Directions: To reach Cañon Lodge, take the well-signposted turning east from the C37 (what was the old D324) towards Canon Village, and continue for about 14km to the lodge.
Owner: Lodge Management Company
Food & drink
Usual board basis: Half Board
Food quality: When we last visited Cañon Lodge in June 2011, meals were simple but delicious. Many of the ingredients consisted of fresh products from their self-sufficiency centre, including homemade salamis and cheeses, and freshly grown salads.
Breakfast is served buffet-style – a selection of fresh fruit, yoghurt from their own dairy, cold meats, cheese and cereals. There is also home-baked bread, and the option of a cooked breakfast.
Lunch and dinner is from an à la carte menu, with international-style cuisine available, with specials available in the evening. There are sandwiches and salads for those who want a lighter snack as well as full meals such as chicken schnitzel and chips.
Dining style: Individual Tables
Dining locations: Indoor and Outdoor Dining
Drinks included: Drinks are at extra charge, to be paid direct at the lodge.
Riding: Cañon Lodge has 15 horses and can cater for most levels of riders. During our last visit we went on an hour-long guided sunrise ride. Several of us were inexperienced riders, but everyone felt at ease and enjoyed the beautiful open scenery.See more ideas for Riding in Namibia
Walking: Canyon Lodge offers wonderful hiking opportunities, with views across the plateau towards Fish River Canyon. There's a 'sunrise walk' throughout the year, where guests are driven out for tea and coffee while enjoying the sunrise, then walk back to the lodge in time for breakfast. One winter (April-August) activity is the morning guided walk, a 6km hike with a knowledgeable experienced guide.See more ideas for Walking in Namibia
Attitude towards children: All children are welcome at Canon Lodge.
Equipment: Canon Lodge has a cot and a highchair for loan to guests on request.
Generally recommended for children: Yes
Notes: Canyon Lodge is set among high granite kopjies which, while spectacular, could pose a danger to children who are tempted to climb. Children must be supervised at all times by their parents.
Power supply: Mains Electricity
Communications: There is a central telephone in the main reception area for guests' use and flexi-call cards (pre-paid phone credit) can be purchased at the lodge. There is no cellphone reception or internet access at the lodge, but guests can make use of the fax machine in the main reception area.
TV & radio: There is no television or radio at the lodge
Health & safety
Malarial area: No
Medical care: The nearest doctor is in Keetmanshoop. In case of any emergency, guests can be airlifted to Windhoek.
Dangerous animals: Low Risk
Security measures: Canon Lodge does not have a security guard, but there is a night bell at the entrance to the reception area which will alert the manager on duty.
Fire safety: There are no fire extinguishers in the chalets, but we were advised that they have a number of fire extinguishers in the main area.
Disabled access: On Request
Laundry facilities: The lodge offers laundry facilities at an extra charge.
Money: Canon Lodge does not have foreign exchange facilities and accepts travellers' cheques only in South African rand.