Western Cape South Africa

Travelling (or not) 2018

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Well here we are already in February 2019 and I have made a resolution to myself that I will re-instate the blog as it’s been way too long – how is it possible that a whole year has gone past without writing?

I’m going to partly blame the lack of travel and finding new destinations on the (happy) acquisition of our dog, Duke, in March last year. Our travelling plans were somewhat curtailed due to the fact that we had to make sure that he was well settled at home first before embarking on long trips!

We did manage a few forays away, taking him with us which was wonderful. This year we intend to travel more – having done a 7 hour journey to Bloemfontein after Christmas with him in the car (and he coped really well), we know that we can go on longer journeys without too many worries. The focus now is on pet friendly!

Two places that we did manage last year are well worth recommending:

Firstly the beautiful Reflections Eco Reserve between Wilderness and Knysna.

We have stayed here before and although it does not specify on their website that they are pet friendly, if not too busy they will allow dogs, but it’s necessary to ask first!

Since our last stay a couple of years ago, the trees have grown enormously and it’s a beautiful place to walk around, while the dam is a wonderful place for bird watching. Aside from the wooden chalets, there are also 2 permanent tent structures, built alongside the dam, which are completely private and which take glamping to a whole new level. Spacious with an ensuite bathroom, wooden deck and braai area, there is nothing here to disturb your tranquility. The “tents” are even big enough to accommodate
a dog!

All the accommodation is off the grid so don’t bother to bring the hairdryer or cell charger as they won’t work! Anyway, who needs such things when all around there is peace and nature ready to be
indulged in?

The second recommendation is the gorgeous Matjiesvlei valley just outside Calitzdorp.

It’s an area we haven’t explored before and we were stunned by it’s beauty and tranquility. We stayed in one of the cottages at Matjiesvlei Guest Farm – of which there are six of varying sizes.

They are all pet friendly and set away from the main farmhouse down gravel roads which are excellent for dog walking being very secluded and, apart from the odd bakkie or tractor, traffic free. There are many hiking and 4 x 4 trails which are detailed on a map left inside each cottage, varying in length
and difficulty.

The area also boasts the Old Post Office which is a museum to days gone by and remains set up as a post office complete with old switchboard – it’s well worth a visit and is like stepping inside a time machine and being transported back decades.

Our particular house (Huis Oppie Rant) had no electricity, although there were solar lights in a couple of the rooms, and hot water was courtesy of a “donkey” which we all thought very romantic until someone had to get up before dawn to light the fire so that we could shower! The cottage itself was very comfortable and had everything we needed for a very happy stay.

There is no wi-fi or even cell reception in the valley which means there is no excuse for just relaxing and switching off – literally and metaphorically!

Now we are looking forward to what 2019 will bring in the way of travel and have started planning a few local trips. I shall also be posting more about restaurants and places to stay rather than just destinations, so I hope you’ll keep me company on my journeys throughout the coming year.

Thanks for your continued support and happy traveling!

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