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Cederkloof Botanical Retreat: Cottages, camping, hiking, weddings, private parties
Last updated: Thursday, 18 May 2023
Friends of ours have got this magical place in the Cederberg mountains near Citrusdal: “Where the bubbles are so pure you can drink it”; the Wise Woods lead you on a journey of inner discovery; and that’s just some of the seven special things our team found at this oasis.
Cederkloof is just 15 minutes away from Citrusdal. Image: Cederkloof Botanical Retreat
EXPLORE AN ANCIENT VALLEY
On the road to the famous Baths Hot Springs, you’ll see a steel sign that reads “Cederkloof Botanical Retreat”. The route takes you past an open plain, and once you turn onto the gravel, you are suddenly transported to a secret valley with mountains and small forests.
Even though you are minutes away from Citrusdal, a small town in the Western Cape, all you will hear is a soft wind rustling through the trees and birds tweeting among the cottages. It’s the kind of isolation where the moon is the brightest light source and the stars are perpetually scattered across the sky.
There are two hiking routes in the kloof. Image: Cederkloof Botanical Retreat
COSY UP IN A COTTAGE WITH A JACUZZI
There are 10 self-catering cottages on site, cascading down the kloof and almost completely hidden from the gravel road. The rustic cottages, with French wooden doors and Mediterranean-style tiles, have a long veranda with heated electric jacuzzi.
Every corner of the little house is completely surrounded by nature and has everything you need for a getaway, including fresh coffee beans and a grinder, and big pots and pans to cook a family dinner. Some of the cottages are bachelor-style and others are two bedrooms.
Each cottage has wifi and is loadshedding-proof.
There’s a minimum two-night stay at Cederkloof. Image: Cederkloof Botanical Retreat
CAMP IN A FAIRYTALE TENT
The Bell tents, located across from the main house and swimming pool, looks like something from a fairy garden. A small wooden bridge leads you to tents under an indigenous forest. In each is a cosy double bed, kitchenette and electricity. This is great for additional accommodation for bigger groups and events.
Cederkloof embraces nature with its two outdoor bathrooms, where you can shower under the trees in complete privacy and has a cheeky sign on the bathroom door saying “5 minutes per person (or double up and make it more fun)”.
Each tent can take 1-2 people. Image: Cederkloof Botanical Retreat
HIKE IN THE EARLY MORNING
Cederkloof Botanical Retreat has two magical hiking routes, with some sweet treasures hidden within each route. The Feetjie (fairy) Trail is a quick 25 minute stroll halfway up the kloof and descending along the length of the cottages, with a stream separating the trail and houses. Along the route are inspirational signs “balance”, “truth”, and “love”, guiding you into the kloof and coming to rest in the Wise Woods.
A more challenging hike is the Klein Olifants Trail, a two-hour trek which takes you to vistas over the Olifants River valley, the majestic Cederberg Mountains and the Sneeuberg Nature Conservancy that gets covered in snow in winter. The environment is characterised by little caves and rock arches. The trails are also suited for mountain biking and trail running.
There are stunning pitstops along both hiking trails for meditation or picnics. Image: Cederkloof Botanical Retreat
TIE THE KNOT ON A FLOATING DECK
The Lawn of Love, as Cederkloof calls it, is the heart of the retreat, in between the cottages and tents at the main house. A truly magical site for nuptials, the vintage lounge and lawn can host 36 to 400 people for a wedding reception.
The bride and groom can say “I do” anywhere from the forest, a floating deck on a dam, or in an amphitheatre in the mountain, and come back for an epic party on the large veranda at Opstal House. Book out the entire retreat and let the music and revelry continue into the night. Plus, you won’t have to worry about a wedding venue fee.
All guests can be accommodated on site. Image: Cederkloof Botanical Retreat
EMBRACE THE HOLISTIC ATMOSPHERE
Every inch of land is filled with holistic thought, from the inspirational signs along the hiking trails to the note left on your fridge, saying “bubbles so pure you can drink it”.
All along the trails are random steel chairs hidden within the trees where you can sit in silence. Wooden bridges lead you to massive rock arches and reveal sunset spots, perfect for yoga and meditation (or even a nightcap). It’s like finding Neverland.
The Power Flower Festival held at the retreat also focuses on the holistic atmosphere where it is set. Image: Cederkloof Botanical Retreat
PLAN YOUR NEXT WORKSHOP OR BIRTHDAY
The Opstal House isn’t just a perfect venue for a wedding, it’s a space for all celebrations. Inside it’s snug and cosy, with a built-in bar and leather couches, and the stoep has twinkling lights hanging from the ceiling.
Families and friends can gather to celebrate a 30th, 40th, 50th while the kids run around the lawn or take a dip in the pool.
Or celebrate your team. Two of the cottages have wifi with large dining tables on the veranda, giving your team the chance to bond in nature and clear your thoughts for the ultimate brainstorming session.
Cottage 9 and 10 have wifi. Image: Cederkloof Botanical Retreat
Cederkloof is a healing and rejuvenating getaway, whether you’re there to recharge and reconnect, get married or have a special milestone birthday, work or stay the year.
FIND OUT MORE ABOUT CEDERKLOOF
Find it: R303, Regional Road (The Baths), Citrusdal
Price range: From R1,150 per night; R850 for tents
Book: Via cederkloof.co.za or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact on: 083 285 6766, @cederkloof
By Lara van Zyl
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