Need a break before you break? Weekends away are easy to book online. Escape the noise and wake up on top of the world. Literally.
Get a new perspective and change your view with weekend mountain stays. All of these mountain retreats around South Africa are 2 hours from an urban centre.
Find a mountain retreat for your next weekend away
Mountain range: Cederberg
Tall and twisty rock formations and an abundance of wildlife make the Cederberg a favourite inland getaway.
Gecko Creek Wilderness Lodge near Clanwilliam offers a quaint cabin in leopard country and has been Lonely Planet’s top choice for 5 years running.
Stay at: Gecko Creek Wilderness Lodge
Region: Western Cape
Drive from : Cape Town
Cool because: weird rock formations, and wildlife.
Things to do: star gaze, hike, rock climb, wildlife photography, scenic flights and aerobatics
Budget: starts at R330 per night
Guests said: “We were here for 3 days – but it felt like a week.”
Mountain range: Drakensberg
South Africa’s tallest peaks belong to the majestic Drakensberg with mild summers and icy winters.
The undulating grass slopes boast magnificent views and Fisherman’s Cottage lets you float a fishing line while you take in the pristine surrounds.
Stay at: Fisherman’s Cottage
Drive from: Pietermaritzburg, Durban
Cool because: early civilisation vibes. The Drakensberg mountains house the largest array of San rock paintings in Southern Africa.
Things to do: fish, hike, explore caves with San art, horse ride, landscape photography
Budget: R880 per night
Guests said: “Beautiful surroundings, cottage in the pine forest and a short walk to the dam and stunning view of Giant’s Cup. Definitely a place to switch off and reconnect with nature.
Mountain range: Amathole Mountains
Peering over rural lands, the Amathole mountains are niched with friendly folk and secret stays.
“The fox den” has views of the three Hogs and Tor Doone peaks and its rustic charm will awaken your senses.
Stay at: Wild Fox Hill eco-cabin
Region: Hogsback, Eastern Cape
Drive from: East London
Cool because: Sandile Heritage Route nearby. This is part of a tourism initiative that remembers Xhosa kings whose bloodlines brought us Nelson “Madiba” Mandela.
Things to do: visit Madonna and Child Falls and The Big Tree, make snow angels (in Winter), visit local art galleries (all year)
Budget: R370 per night
Guests said: “Stunning little cabin with amazing views. It made it even better that it’s dog friendly. I will definitely be back!”
Mountain range: Magaliesberg
Older than Everest, The Magaliesberg mountains are a favourite getaway for urbanites from big cities. Its quarzite cliffs and tumbling waterfalls are a breath of fresh air.
Plug out of your daily routine in a rustic, clean cabin and forget about your phone as you listen to the animals calls.
Stay at: Kokopelli Eco Farm
Drive from: Johannesburg, Pretoria
Cool because: off-grid life
Things to do: hiking, bird watching, photography
Budget: R800 per night (sleeps 2)
Guests said: “A perfect escape from the busy-ness of the city. Amazing views and quiet surroundings. Great to disconnect and recharge.”