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New Year, New Resolutions. Here are some you CAN keep…

So 2018 is finally here and to mark the start of the new year most of us come up with a list of resolutions – goals we’d like to accomplish, things to learn, changes to make – many of which we abandon after just a few days. We’d like to help you choose some resolutions you can accomplish. Check out our list below.

Wishing you joy, prosperity, and an adventure-filled 2018 and … Bon voyage

1. SPEND MORE TIME WITH FAMILY

To make sure you have their undivided attention in today’s digital world, look for somewhere remote, preferably without cell phone reception…

India House fits the bill perfectly. Spend the day in the pool and the evening stargazing, then introduce your kids to the games you used to play as a child – board games, card games, charades – or bake cookies in a kitchen big enough for the whole family. Best of all it’s dog friendly, so the whole family is welcome.

Another to consider is Homtini Guest Farm which lies in over 60 hectares of private indigenous forest in Knysna. It’s a working farm, so your children will be able to collect their own eggs from the hen house and can safely ride their bikes on the farm roads. They even offer a babysitting service. Homtini offers luxury couple tents and family tented lodges. The family tents each sleep four in a double bed and double bunk, living space, little kitchenette and an en-suite bathroom, shower and toilet. There are only two family tents, so you’ll need to book ahead.

Wilgewandel Holiday Farm in Oudtshoorn has camel rides, ziplines, waterslides, farm animals, trampolines and mini golf; African Family Farm in Hout Bay has a sandbox and play area for smaller kids, a slackline, a jungle gym and a petting zoo; Mountain Splendour Eco-Resort in Champagne Valley has a superb playground and a built-for-kids mountain bike track, and offers fun activities like pony rides, tubing, swimming, fishing in various dams, white water rafting, canopy tours and zip lines.

Also check out these hotels which offer daily child programmes and activities designed specifically to keep them entertained all day and tired out by sundown: Club Mykonos Resort in Langebaan, Alpine Heath Resort in the Drakensberg, Kurland Hotel in Plettenberg Bay, and Garden Route Game Lodge.

So many options! Find loads more child friendly options here.

2. GET FIT, GET HEALTHY, LOSE WEIGHT, ETC

This one is usually the first resolution to fall by the wayside. Our tip, book yourself into a hydro for a few days to kick start good habits you can maintain all year. Some of our favourites are Cradle Health Spa, Hoogland Health Hydro, Karkloof Safari Villas, The Gorge Private Game Lodge & Spa and Abloom Bush Lodge and Spa Retreat, but find them all here.

Another option, book yourself a wellness retreat. Not now when you’re already motivated, but in a few month’s time, when you might need some encouragement. Little Samadhi Karoo Retreat offers yoga classes, a detox programme, and more. Meals are organic and vegetarian.

3. TRY AN EXTREME SPORT

Not for the faint of heart, but so much fun. How extreme is up to you, but to make sure you follow through, why not make a weekend of it? Think shark-cage diving in Gansbaai, crocodile cage diving in Oudtshoorn, kloofing near Elgin, skydiving in Durban, abseiling in the Drakensberg; there are loads of activities from which to choose.

Take your pick here.

4. MAKE TIME FOR EACH OTHER

Make your relationship better in 2018. Whether you decide on one date night per month, or a romantic weekend away, take some time to focus on each other. Surprise your partner by taking them to wherever you had your first date, or what about a few days at Porcupine Pie Boutique Lodge, a custom built getaway with only 3 double chalets (and no children allowed), voted best honeymoon destination in Southern Africa. Hike through the Cape Fynbos, picnic at the river or cool off in a mountain pool. Dine under the stars before luxuriating in a bath flooded with moonlight.

Some other favourites include Tintswalo Atlantic (if money’s no object), a honeymoon tree house at Teniqua Treetops (if you prefer something more rustic), Faraway Cottage at Tanagra Wine Farm (for complete privacy), The Oyster Box Beach House (for unrivalled views) and just so many more.

For ideas for a romantic getaway, check out our honeymoon destinations, as well as hotels which have been featured in earlier blog articles: Luxury in South Africa, Rooms with a View.

5. RUN A MARATHON

Choose a marathon (or a half, or a 10km) a good few months in the future. To make sure you don’t chicken out or slack off with training, make sure it’s somewhere a few hours’ drive away and book your accommodation now. Then rope in some friends – if they don’t (or won’t) run they can always support.

Our recommendation is the Meiringspoort 21.1 km or 12.5 km race on the 13th of October (entries open 26 May, so you have a few months to work on your possie and it gives you plenty of time to get fit). Stay in De Rust, Oudtshoorn, Beaufort West or Prince Albert. My personal favourite is Prince Albert, as it has so many gorgeous cafes, and cosy self catering cottages, like The French Cottage if you’re a couple, or Karoo View Cottages if you’re a few couples.

6. Popular Destinations to Explore in 2018