Just three and a half hours drive from Cape Town you’ll find the Cederberg Mountains: an area of the Western Cape filled with dramatic sandstone rocks, mountain zebras, leopards and the rooibos bush (exclusive to these mountains). It’s amazing how the landscape changes so quickly as you go further out of the city. Within moments the wide open planes outside Paarl become the rolling hills of Piketberg and eventually after a short stop in Clanwilliam, the theatrical beauty of the Cederberg.
We arrived at Bushmans Kloof not quite sure what to expect. I had heard it was beautiful but I had no idea it would be quite so secluded. We had driven through severe storms outside of Cape Town and yet, here we were in total calm and tranquility. I haven’t felt so far removed from our man-made environments in such a long time. As the light faded, we hiked up to the rocks opposite the lodge from which we watched as the zebra and buck made their way into the gardens. There’s almost no light pollution in the Cederberg, so we waited until the dark of night to watch as stars filled the sky from back to front, left to right. Tomorrow would be a good day.
Bushmans Kloof is made up of several lodges, spaced out amongst the gardens of the retreat. Each building is beautifully designed similar to traditional bush lodges. Equipped with a small terrace, we were just a couple of steps from one of the pools. I feel fortunate that we were able to experience much of what the lodge has to offer, from mountain biking to game drives and of course the multitude of hikes and trail runs where I passed ostrich, buck, wildebeest and baboons! There’s even the opportunity to canoe and swim on the river that runs from the nearest waterhole right down to the lodge.
There’s something so special about watching the sunrise and fall in the same day yet I can’t quite explain it. The entire landscape is transformed into a bright glow of amber; the few clouds that scatter the sky alight with the last of the suns’ rays. Deep in a reserve such as the Cederberg, there’s no better place to chill, relax and explore. It was just a bonus that the lodge happened to have incredible food from breakfast to dinner; I haven’t eaten so well in a long time.
I feel really lucky to have had the opportunity to visit Bushmans Kloof. It has long been a dream of mine to spend time in the Cederberg and I couldn’t think of a more perfect location to do so; I arrived back in Cape Town feeling super refreshed.
Now, it’s time for a multitude of coffees accompanied by a few days of editing before I head off to Johannesburg to start my next adventure!
Huge thank you to Bushmans Kloof for such an amazing stay. To find out more about their lodge visit: www.bushmanskloof.co.za