A trip to the Breedekloof features nature at its finest: breathtaking mountain vistas, lush greenery, vineyards and farmland and the peaceful tranquility that Mother Nature inspires.
Serenely settled in the magnificent Slanghoek Valley on the slopes of the Badsberg conservancy is Slanghoek Mountain Resort, a holiday retreat just an hour’s drive from Cape Town. With self catering chalets and a tented campsite on offer, we opted instead for the Platbos Log Cabins, three self-catering cabins on the water’s edge that overlook the immersive valley. It was a weekend of solitude and silence, punctured only by our laughs and relaxed conversation.
We arrived at the cabin in a white Toyota Hilux (provided by Slanghoek, my tiny Hyundai is ill-equipped for the off-road) to a comfortably furnished log cabin that caters for a maximum of six people. No electricity, which didn’t scare us considering we’d left a home a victim of load shedding. A fully equipped gas kitchen and braai means that evening braaivleis is absolutely mandatory.
Walk the fynbos clad mountain trails, take a dip in the dam that the cabins overlook and soak in the last of the day’s rays as the mountains turn pink with the setting sun. Fall asleep to chirping crickets and croaking frogs, awaken to the sound of birds before relaxing with a book on the jutting balcony. Amidst the relaxation, this area is a prime spot for birdwatching, fly-fishing and hiking (to a cascading waterfall) to further immerse you in nature.
Slanghoek is on the Breedekloof wine route so a day tasting the area’s Chardonnay and Chenin is an added adventure. The wine is reasonably priced and of excellent quality, giving expensive, overpriced labels a real run for their money. It’s an area known for its friendly hospitality and we were greeted with smiles, as people welcomed us into their world. Sakkie Du Toit, owner and mastermind behind Platbos shares, ‘I built the first cabin four years ago, and added the remaining two two years later. People are willing to pay a little more for no Eskom, to feel closer to nature and retreat away from other holiday makers. It’s something for guests who need something more private than what Slanghoek Mountain Resort offers.’
From start to finish our trip to Platbos was exceptional, and we left feeling refreshed and longing for a few days more. Without question we will return (perhaps in winter to make use of the cosy fireplace). It’s a secret valley that swiftly sheds you of life’s demands.
Where Platbos Log Cabins, Slanghoek Mountain Resort, Rawsonville
Cost R1280 for two people per night, R430 pp after, max 6 people per cabin (prices will increase in March 2015)
Contact +27 23 344 3138, www.platboslogcabins.co.za
Photography Lisa Wallace