The Great Escape: South African Getaway Spot

Down an untrodden path, hidden amongst luscious pear trees abundant in fruit, our cabin awaited. An elegant, rustic, wooden home beside a dam with stunning views of the entire Witzenberg Valley. The cabin was complete with a plunge pool and braai area as well as a log fire for cold winter nights. This is what I call: ‘adventure in comfort’.

We spent the next few days in the mountains shooting images for Victorinox, a Swiss brand known predominately for their Swiss Army Knives but more recently their travel and adventure products. I have been fortunate enough to partner frequently with Victorinox over the last few years and I am so impressed with quality and technology used in their travel accessories. It’s an honour to collaborate with a company who put both quality and adventure, in equal measure, at the forefront of their brand.

To reach Arum Lily Cabins in Wolseley we drove over the Bainskloof mountain pass, avoiding the troop of baboon which roam (and own) the landscape. It was at this moment we should have considered when planning our sunrise hike, the high possibility that the baboons which surrounded our cabin would be equally as territorial. Instead, we found out the hard way. No sooner had we brewed a coffee than we were chased back down the mountain, the barking of baboon echoing in the distance.

Hours of climbing through thick foliage, boulders and trees, the Touring Backpack was surely put to the test but thankfully survived, unharmed. There’s many different compartments to the bag, enough to protect my V60 kit with a padded back panel which made it super comfortable to hike with. There’s even the option to lock the zippers and keep the baboons away from our prized possession: the coffee beans.

For our few days in Ceres I used the Touring Duffel as my ‘weekend bag’ which is essentially an incredibly lightweight, unstructured bag; the perfect size for a few days away. Generally speaking, for a short trip I will only pack a couple of outfits, running clothes, hiking clothes and a towel which all fitted inside comfortably. I’ve never been one for ‘packing light’ but slowly I am learning the art.

Whether hiking the valley, fleeing from wild animals or simply poking the braai, I wore the Alliance Sport Watch for the entire trip and it’s without doubt my favourite watch to date. Classic but robust, this watch is ideal day-to-day wear, however adventurous it becomes.

When we weren’t hiking or taking photos we were contemplating what extravagant meal we could cook over the fire. From a butternut curry to classic toasties (roosterbrood) made with homemade focaccia buns from the local bakery. Don’t be surprised if you see a braai cookbook coming soon – we sure outdid ourselves!

Sunset fell behind the Mostershoek Mountains as we canoed across the dam with nothing but the sound of water passing over the paddle. Dusk turned to darkness as the sky became alight with an abundance of stars. Ceres was the perfect escape.

Until next time.

This blogpost is part of a paid partnership with Victorinox.