From The Midlands you can view the Drakensburg Mountains in the distance. They were snow-capped this time of year (August), but we were reliably informed that actually the weather should be warmer in the mountains than down in the farming country, so off we set.
Our journey took us no longer than 2 hours with the last half an hour taking us deeper and deeper into rural KwaZulu-Natal. Small, traditional homesteads with their cattle wandering the fields and roads dotted the landscape. Cows, goats, chickens and the occasional dog were to be carefully dodged along the way!
Cathedral Peak Hotel was our destination and our aim was to arrive in time for the complimentary tea and cakes on the balcony, which we made with minutes to spare. Whilst Steve and I relaxed in the sun taking in what can only be described as breath-taking views, Daisy and Hayden dashed off to the playpark that they had spotted opposite reception.
The one thing that really makes Cathedral Peak so special is its location and laidback vibe. These two combine to make an ideal mountain retreat. You can be as active or inactive as you want. Bearing in mind we had 2 children in tow, inactive was not on our radar! Before dinner they had bounced, slid and swung to their hearts content before we all met up to play 2 rounds of crazy golf. Our rooms and dinner would be a very welcome sight!
We were staying in the traditional family rooms. Such a great design with the bathroom as you come in and then a twin bedroom set up for the children, with their own TV. You then carry on through sliding doors into the parent’s bedroom that has its own terrace overlooking the mountains. We also had our own TV which was clearly going to be commandeered by the children so that they could snuggle down in our massive king size bed to watch a film!
Dinner was a real treat. The fire was blazing in the dining area creating a wonderful cosy environment. The evening meals and breakfast are all buffet in style, which works very well for those who like to try a bit of everything. Staff were attentive and the food was just as we had hoped for. Finishing off the evening with a hot chocolate in the bar (no G & T tonight!), we retired to bed.
The following morning over a full cooked breakfast we planned the day’s activities. We were able to persuade the children that maybe we could spend a little time by the pool – after all – one of them was heated, so being British it would surely be warm enough for a swim! We would let the children test that out – or more to the point Hayden.
Spotting Mountain Reedbuck and Baboon on the hotel grounds was of great excitement to the children, particularly as this occurred whilst playing a game of lawn bowls. Traditional games are not always the thing that children are drawn to, however they thoroughly enjoyed it and learnt a new skill. The climbing wall was the real draw card though. With a member of staff to assist them with the equipment they raced to the top in record time – not competitive at all!
Our final activity of the day was a short unguided mountain walk to Belinda Falls. This was an easy 30 minute walk and enabled us to travel further into the mountains. Belinda Falls is a small waterfall that you can climb in, around and over – a great mini adventure for us all.
The most captivating part of our stay at Cathedral Peak however was the fact that whilst we were enjoying all of our activities we were surrounded by the most breath-taking views of the mountains. This made everything from the mini golf to relaxing by the pool extra special.
Exhausted from lots of activity and all that fresh mountain air, we had dinner and snuggled down for our family film as we had an early start back down the mountain roads the following day.