As South Africans, we love to get away for the weekend, escaping to the countryside to explore new destinations. But, with the cost of living affecting travel and leisurely activities, we sometimes end up being cooked indoors. So, to help you get out, we’ve put together a list of affordable places to visit that aren’t too far from your home.
Lion Roar’s portfolio of country retreats hits all the sweet spots for the perfect weekend getaway: close to the city, luxurious but affordable, in the countryside, and a strong legacy of history and excellent service. These are their top 5 retreats you can check out.
Welgelegen Manor – Mpumalanga
Welgelegen Manor, which is easily accessible from Johannesburg, offers luxury accommodation, and is less than an hour’s drive from Balfour city centre in Mpumalanga. Located within the heart of Cosmos countryside, south east of Johannesburg, this perfect country retreat combines 19th century old-world charm with modern, hotel luxury.
Leeuwenbosch and Cosmos Cuisine – Eastern Cape
Located in the malaria-free Amakhala Game Reserve, Leeuwenbosch is a gracious colonial country house set amidst beautiful indigenous gardens, offering guesthouse accommodation and a family safari experience steeped in settler history. The 3-star rated game lodge includes the historic Country House and the newer Shearers Lodge Suites.
A mere 10 minutes from Addo Elephant Park and 45 minutes from Port Elizabeth, Cosmos offers luxurious accommodation, fine cuisine and traditional countryside hospitality. Cosmo is a 4-star full-service guesthouse.
Hawksmoor House – Cape Winelands
Hawsmoor is located on a 220-hectare wine farm, Matjieskuil, near Stellenbosch in the Cape Winelands. It’s a meticulously-restored Cape Dutch country retreat on a working farm. Its location, alongside vineyards with an expansive view from the verandah towards Table Mountain, means spectacular sunset views from the sundowner verandah – best enjoyed while savouring a glass of wine from the Hawksmoor range.
Rickety Bridge – Franschhoek
Lying still in the stylishly renovated 19th century rooms of this beautiful guesthouse is easy to do. Just five minutes from the historic Franschhoek village, with every luxury of a 4-star hotel, the rooms also offer the comforting pleasures of home. Every detail has been considered; classic Cape Dutch furniture, a fire-warmed lounge, country kitchen, dramatic yellow-wood beamed ceilings and pine floors polished with layers of history.
Tsitsikamma Village Inn – Storms River
The magical Tsitsikamma Village Inn is a 3-star hotel, originally established in 1946. Close to the Tsitsikamma National Park at Storms River Mouth, the hotel consists of 49 free-standing rooms, matching the specific colonial building style found in the Garden Route. Each cottage is individually decorated and overlooks a beautiful Village Green. Each cottage also has its own garden, which is a perfect place to unwind and admire the mountainscapes that surround this scenic part of the world.
Visit www.lionroars.co.za to book your weekend getaway. Lion Roars also offers exclusive tours along the Garden Route (up to St Francis Bay) and into the Cape Winelands, as well as safari packages for each of its country retreats, allowing you the opportunity to tailor your getaway experience exclusively.