Quaint Karoo Cottages
As I am stuck in my home office looking out onto a suburban street, I am dreaming of wide open spaces, the smell of dry Karoo shrubs lingering in the air, the dusty gravel roads and pink and orange coloured sunsets and sunrises in the beloved Karoo. This region has always had a special place in my heart and now more than ever I cannot wait to follow Route 62 to the Karoo when we are permitted to travel again. That is why I’ve rounded up some cosy Karoo cottages for you to visit after lockdown.
Secluded in a beautiful valley between Ladismith and Riversdal, lies The Place. There are two free-standing cottages on the farm and each self-catering cottage promises an unforgettable Karoo escape! The Studio has a view of the Touws River Valley and surrounding mountain ranges. Red Rock Cottage is situated at the foot of a red sandstone outcrop which provides a sheltered location. Both cottages have their own plunge pools and outdoor spaces with outdoor furniture for you to enjoy the spectacular environment.
Rates: R800 for 2 people*
Extras: A healthy breakfast can be purchased when available and freshly-baked olive and rosemary bread is always available to order.
Die Skooltjie is a beautifully restored cottage on a working farm in the Karoo and it is known for its true Karoo hospitality and charm. The cottage is ideal for a family of two adults and two children as there is only one bedroom and a daybed in the lounge. The kitchen will give you a true farm experience with the Dover stove and dining table around which you can enjoy delicious meals and each other’s conversation. There is a lovely patio with a sheltered braai area where you can breathe in the clean air!
Rates: R980 for 4 people*
Extras: Children can interact with the farm animals.
Soetdoring Selfsorg offers rustic, wooden cottages on a farm near Oudtshoorn. Whether you want to enjoy a romantic getaway or a family holiday, these cottages are ideal for you! They are equipped for self-catering and open onto lovely patios with outdoor seating, braai facilities and gorgeous views of the Outeniqua Mountains! Each cottage has air-conditioning for the hot Karoo summers and they can be quite chilly in winter, but luckily there are cosy fireplaces to warm them up. The farm offers easy access to Oudtshoorn and this is the perfect accommodation if you want to explore this wonderful area.
Rates: R990 for 2 people*
Extras: Daily cleaning service at an extra fee and spa facilities at the main lodge.
This fruit farm is ideally situated on the famous Route 62 and is perfect for families who want to enjoy a true farm experience. The air is filled with the smell of fruit orchards and they offer the most beautiful view when in bloom during spring! There are three freestanding cottages of different sizes and each cottage offers a comfortable stay. The Appelhuis is the largest cottage and sleeps seven guests, Withuis sleeps four guests and Damhuis is a more rustic stay for four guests. You can enjoy relaxing walks on the farm and explore some of the nearby attractions.
Rates: R700 for 2 people*
Extras: Pets by arrangement and the units are serviced on request.
Matjiesvlei Cottages are situated on a farm near Calitzdorp at the foothills of the Swartberg Mountains. They are tucked away in a quiet valley where you can truly escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. There are three cosy, self-catering cottages dotted along the riverside and they offer the most beautiful views of the landscape. Each cottage is equipped with air-conditioning for the warm summers and fireplaces for when the cold strikes. The area is renowned for stargazing because of the lack of city lights, so enjoy your evenings beneath the star-filled Karoo sky!
Rates: R820 for 2 people*
Extras: Pets by arrangement and please note there is no cellphone reception in the area, but free Wi-Fi is provided.
This eco-friendly cottage is situated on a game and livestock farm near Graaff-Reinet and is the perfect escape for those who want to go back to basics for a while. The cottage is fully equipped for self-catering and the lounge leads to a boma with a braai and a firepit ─ the ideal place to spend unforgettable evenings beneath the stars. You can explore various mountain biking and hiking trails on the farm, cool off in the splash pool when there is water and view game.
Rates: R1 350 for 4 people*
Electricity: No, it is solar and gas powered.
Extras: Game drives can be arranged at an extra cost, fresh meat is available to purchase and wood is available at R20 per pack.
Prince Albert personifies the Klein Karoo and all it has to offer and Wolvekraal Guest House just outside this quaint town is the perfect Karoo escape! There are four cottages on this working farm and each cottage is equipped with everything you need for a relaxing break. Please note that there are no TVs in the cottages, but that gives you more time to sit on the patio and marvel at the towering Swartberg Mountains and veld in front of you while you sip on your morning coffee or enjoy spectacular sunsets.
Rates: R800 for 2 people*
Electricity: Yes, gas and paraffin lamps are also provided.
Extras: Firewood is provided and pets are allowed by arrangement.
Lenies Hof offers picturesque accommodation in two studio cottages on a small organic farm with a vineyard and olive and apricot orchards near Calitzdorp. The self-catering cottages are beautifully furnished and feature patios with a view of the garden. Lenies Hof is the perfect retreat for tired city dwellers who want to recharge in a scenic environment! You can take long walks on the farm and cycle while enjoying the view of the Swartberg en Rooiberg Mountains.
Rates: R695 for 2 people*
Extras: There is a wellness studio on the premises and a farmer’s breakfast with sourdough bread, homemade jam, a boiled free-range egg, butter, cheese, yoghurt, homemade muesli and fruit is available on request. Pets by arrangement.
With nothing but Karoo shrubs and koppies around you, Klein Riviertjie is the perfect hideout in the heart of the Karoo about an hour’s drive from Beaufort West! This simple yet comfortable cottage sleeps four guests and features a true Karoo kitchen with an AGA stove and a gas fridge. The patio is where you will spend most of your time, as it boasts hammock chairs and a small plunge pool in the middle of a dry and arid environment. And if you want to enjoy more of the outdoors, there is an outdoor shower!
Rates: R1 300 for 4 people*
Electricity: Yes, but there is a gas stove and gas fridge.
Extras: The splash pool is only filled during summer if there is sufficient water supply.
Tamboershoek near Fraserburg offers a real off-the-grid experience on a sheep and game farm in the heart of the Northern Cape. The cottage features two en-suite bedrooms and an open-plan living area with a fireplace for the cold winter nights. There is also a braai and a plunge pool outside. This farm is a nature lovers’ dream with vast open spaces, game and birds. You are welcome to explore the beautiful farm on foot or by bicycle. A high-clearance vehicle is recommended to reach the farm.
Rates: R1 300 for 4 people*
Electricity: No, there are oil lamps for lighting and a gas geyser for hot water.
Extras: Please note that there is no cellphone reception or Wi-Fi.
Situated on a game farm near Oudtshoorn is a gorgeous stone cottage for two and a bigger stone house for eight. These free-standing units are beautifully furnished and equipped with everything you need for a comfortable break. The romantic cottage boasts a private deck with braai facilities and there is a lapa with a bonfire near the main house. Enjoy the best of the Klein Karoo on this farm, with a variety of wild animals and birds to be seen. A high-clearance vehicle is recommended to reach the farm.
Rates: R800 for 2 people*
Electricity: Yes, the farm makes use of solar power and river water.
Extras: Game drives are available on the farm.
So which one is your favourite and where in the Karoo will you be celebrating the end of the lockdown? Let us know in the comments below.
* Please note that the rates are correct at the time of publishing.