About Us

Relax, Rejuvenate & Reconnect

Areena is a place to escape the hectic world, relax and rejuvenate. It is a place to reconnect. A place to become grounded. Areena is a wholesome place, a place where family values count. A place where children can wander around in safety. A place that evokes feelings of a time gone by – A time when there were no video games, no cellphones and no high security fences. This is a place where kids and adults can learn to play again, to get outdoors and establish real life friends.

Idyllic setting for an award winning resort

Areena Riverside Resort is situated on the banks of the Kwelera tidal river, 23 km east of East London city centre, at the beginning of the Eastern Cape Wild Coast. Areena offers you unsurpassed views of the river, wildlife, birds and surrounding wild coast vegetation.

Areena is the culmination of the dream of Ed and Karen Rathbone to have a unique family resort. Areena was established 28 years ago and after a lot of hard work and dedication, the Rathbone’s were rewarded when the caravaning fraternity voted them as S.A. Top Resort in 2004.

Other awards include:

  • Winner of the 2009 Eastern Cape Adventure Accommodation Award.
  • Top SA Resort 2004/2005.
  • Top 10 SA Resort for the last 12 years.

At Areena Riverside resort there is something for everyone.

For the children

For children, there are loads of fun activities to keep them entertained, including a playground, trampolines, swimming pool, tennis court, volleyball area and an indoor games room with table tennis and pool tables. Areena is also the perfect venue for safe and funfilled kids parties and camps.

For those seeking a rest

Soak up the views, enjoy the nature or fish from your tent, on river front sites, or park your boat along the jetty directly in front of you. Go for a game drive and meet Abby, the friendly giraffe! Take a swim in the pool or just vegetate and enjoy a book in your luxury chalet.

For those who want to reconnect with nature

Go for a quad bike or horse riding game viewing trail through the 350 hectare, malaria-free game reserve where you may spot a wide variety of game, including giraffe, zebra, wildebeest, kudu, eland, blesbuck, impala, nyala, fallow deer, waterbuck, duiker, bushbuck and ostrich.

For the adrenaline and fitness junkies

The Team Building and Adventure Village – The on-site adventure village is perfectly suited to corporate team building. Motivational outdoor team building games, combined with a choice of a quad bike game rides, an obstacle course, abseiling, archery, pellet gun target shooting, paintball and the amazing zip line trail will cater for all your adrenaline needs. Areena has trained facilitators to plan and supervise activities. Areena is also a versatile venue that is host to various adventure races.

For those who want to soak up the sun

River and Beach Activities – Fish from your campsite on the banks of the river or bass dams, hire a canoe or sea kayak and take a 5km paddle down to the beach. Enjoy a leisurely trip to the river mouth on Kareena, Areena’s 30 person double decker river cruiser. Areena has a slipway and jetties to launch your own boats and canoes.

For those who don’t want to cook

Areena Quays family restaurant and pub – Tired of cooking or braaiing then head to the Areena Quays family Restaurant and Pub on the rivers edge. You’re bound to meet likeminded people opting out just like you. Tel: +27 (0)43 734 3005

Areena Riverside Resort where the fun never ends.