Continuing in our series on great spots to stay and prompted by a reader’s plea to include KwaZulu-Natal breakaways, here are a further collection of peaceful and inspiring destinations that could be your choice for any one of the upcoming long weekends.
Mtunzini, just 135km north of Durban, is one of those places you have to visit at least once. The little town with its own nature reserve and incredible lagoon, and endless beaches, makes a peaceful and welcome break.
This little cottage, which sleeps four, caught our eye because of the artistic attention to detail and use of clever paint techniques that make the self-catering cottage a joy to dwell in (and it has air conditioning, which, if you’ve ever stayed in Mtunzini before, you will know is most welcome).
An artistic translation in the sultry Zulu kingdom.
Stay on a working farm with all the elements of a farm-stay thrown in, but do it from a 4-star tent complete with beds (that’s real beds not stretchers and mattresses) and linen. And if that sounds too far removed from the ‘real’ camping experience, then they’ll do the high density foam mattress on the floor version too.
The ‘campsite’ is set in amongst a forest of trees, shrubs and manicured lawns where you’ll also find luxury private bathrooms, tea on arrival and staff assistance with setting up camp. All this in the Champagne Valley.
Camping gets a boost.
Wow. The owners use the term ‘dream home’ when they describe The Folie, a rather apt description, we think, judging by the pictures. Set in the midst of misty, rolling farmlands this luxurious self-catering space (for ‘cottage’ hardly does it justice) is a sumptuous combination of light, glass, raw wooden eaves, metal support structures and just a hint of barn.
Raw wooden table tops, wooden doors, crystal chandeliers and rich carpets make this a sensory journey as well. There is a chef and man-about-house for those who also want their meals cooked for them.
Decadence at its best.
There are two appealing reasons to venture all the way up the north coast from Durban: one – Kosi Bay is incredible, and two – Amangwane Camp is a community run venture, the profits of which go directly back into the local community. The camp has 10 rustic, reed chalets that don’t have any pretentions other than comfort.
You are there for the incredible landscape, lake systems, marshes, swamp forests, coastal dunes, sandy beaches and wildlife. The camp runs on gas and solar power, although each chalet has a USB port, and the al-fresco dining area and fire circle make meals memorable.
Non-luxury, but a perfect destination with anyone after adventure.
A Bali-style cottage right on the beach doesn’t come better than this. Sleeping eight people (ten at a push), it has four bedrooms and plenty of space to unwind. But you’re here for the views of the sea and beach that you’ll wish were yours for the rest of the year – only a wooden staircase separates you from the beach and the break of the waves.
The bonus is that this venue is a mere half hour drive from Durban.
Abandon yourself to a beach holiday.