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Eliana & Lia’s leopard print girls’ bedroom makeover!

Eliana and Lia have been sharing a room for more than four years. They love being roomies BUT they've outgrown their pretty toddler room. So, it was time for a little makeover! And, with both much older now, I wanted them to be part of the entire process. That's how...

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Family break in the Midlands | Nthaba Moya Cottage

by | May 18, 2021 | Family Travel, Places we go | 0 comments

What started as an overnight stop for our annual beach holiday has now become one of our favourite local travel destinations… There’s just nothing like a family break in the Midlands! With its lush wetlands, quaint attractions and beautiful scenery – it’s almost like escaping to another country, especially for “Vaalies” like us.

just a mamma midlands family accommodation 2994

Where to stay when visiting the midlands

There is no shortage of incredible hotels, lodges and resorts in the Midlands BUT we prefer spending most of our time meandering… So, accommodation needs to be affordable and centrally located.That being said, we aren’t students anymore and enjoy a bit of luxury when traveling. So, if we’re paying to stay somewhere, it better offer all the comforts of home, and then some.

midlands family accommodation

Nthaba Moya Cottage does just that. This beautiful self-catering AirBnB gem sleeps up to 6 people in two double en-suite bedrooms. (* The sofa converts to accommodate the extra guests.) The bathrooms are spacious and include shower and bath options – an important consideration when traveling with younger kids.

family break in the midlands
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nthaba moya cottage midlands family accommodation
nthaba moya self catering accommadation midlands kzn

Both bedrooms open to the wide verandah that runs the length of the house. This may just be my favourite feature – That “stoep” is the perfect spot for sundowners, mealtime, nighttime cuddles or just marveling at the far-reaching views towards the Drakensberg and Maluti mountains.

The house is open-plan with a fully-kitted kitchen that includes a gas hob, electric oven, microwave, dishwasher, washing machine and large fridge-freezer. Nthaba Moya, even offers the use of a generator during loadshedding.

where to stay in the midlands kzn

Other amenities include:

  • The cottage lies inside a large fenced garden providing a safe outdoor play area perfect for kids. The girl could run, play ball and have fun in this wide, open space.
  • Guests are also welcome to walk the 20-hectare property.
  • Outdoor braai area – great for getting lost in the Milky Way and making s’mores…
  • Indoor wood-burning fireplace – a must for the misty Midlands. Seasons change by the hour and you can’t beat snuggling up in front of a crackling fire.
  • Loads of privacy with a separate entrance that makes coming and going easy.
  • Wifi
  • DSTV
  • Enjoying spotting the Blesbok, visiting jackals, porcupines, serval and caracal cats and many birds that call the farm home too.
  • Sue, the host, has also adopted a few rescue donkeys and Rolo the Shetland Pony. “Hands-on farm experiences” for children, which includes feeding the animals can be organised.

Definitely the “hostess with the mostess”

Sue, is incredible! We received a warm welcome upon arrival (from Sue and her fur babies) as well as assistance on how to plan our stay. All cleaning and safety regulations were followed, giving us complete peace of mind. Wood for the fireplace, extra blankets and towels, even a few toys and board games for the kids were provided. The entire house was also scattered with fresh garden flowers – such a special touch. And, just in case we needed anything else, Sue could be found nearby in the main house.

nthaba moya cottage
nthaba moya cottage midland kzn

We can definitely recommend doing a morning hike of the farm. Ava’s little “flora heart” skipped with delight as we wandered around.

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Lia had a blast fishing for tadpoles in the freshwater spring…

just a mamma midlands self catering family accommodation
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Eliana however couldn’t wait to visit the donkeys and pony. Feeding them and getting to interact up close was a holiday highlight!

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Nthaba Moya cottage also has a 100% 5-star guest rating for its location which is understandable seeing as it’s only 3km off the Curry’s Post Road. That’s pretty much in the middle of the Midlands Meander – close to everything you’ll want to see and do.

just a mamma midlands family accommodation 2938

10 Family-friendly things to do in the Midlands

We could probably list a hundred things to do in the Midlands and every time we visit there’s something new to add but these are the tried-and-tested, most loved places and outings you simply don’t want to miss.

1. Coffee and Great Danes at the original Terbodore Coffee. Caffeine snobs and pet-lovers alike wouldn’t want to miss stopping here. Enjoy a bite to eat (breakfast and lunch), while sampling some award-winning coffee.

terbodore coffee midlands kzn

2. A picnic at Swissland Cheese. Like a scene from Heidi, amongst the rolling green hills and adorable Sanaan goats, tasting some of the creamiest goat’s cheese available. I’m not a goat’s cheese fan at all BUT Swissland’s St. Maure (a Camembert style cheese, just creamier), the Chevre options and Pecorino cheeses won me over. Now we always stock up!

3. Enjoy a slice of the best Cheesecake in town at Blueberry Cafe, Netherwood Farm. The views ain’t bad either and you’ve never seen a more gorgeous restroom – trust us.

4. Experience an adrenalin rush at Karkloof Canopy Tours. An incredible activity for the entire family. Kids just need to be 6 years or older and able to fit in the harness securely.

5. Explore the shops and eateries at Yard 41 while the kids play on the most beautiful natural wood jungle gym overlooking the magnificent Karkloof Forest Reserve.

6. For a one-stop experience don’t pass by Piggly Wiggly. Chocolate dipping, put-put, miniature train rides, candle dipping, pizza, shopping, wine tasting, sand art… There’s something for everyone!

7. Spoil the kids with a visit to our number 1 toy shop; Nuts about Toys & Books. A country toy shop in the heart of Howick stocked with an array of QUALITY toys, puzzles, games, crafts and books. The girls save up their money during the year and can’t wait to go choose something special for themselves.

family friendly things to do in the midlands

8. Take in some history (and art) at the Nelson Mandela Capture Site. The exact location where Nelson Mandela was arrested on 5 August 1962, outside Howick.

9. Visit one of South Africa’s oldest pure honey brands, Peel’s Honey. An unexpected option I suppose, but not if you eat honey as much as we do. Plus to this day, Peel’s still only sells honey produced locally!

10. Notties Brewery – I know a brewery doesn’t sound family-friendly but The Nottingham Road Brewery Company is nestling in the shady grounds of Rawdons Hotel providing decks and rolling grass for the kids to play while mom or dad enjoy a taste. If beer is your thing, you’ll want to stop by South Africa’s oldest independently owned craft brewery.

I’m sure we’ve missed a few special spots. Please let us know what your favourite Midlands must-do activity is in a comment below and if you’re a local Midlands business share your details too – we’d like to stop by next time we visit.

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just a mamma family break in the midlands south africa

We enjoyed our stay in the Midlands so much, the girls had a difficult time leaving (even though we were en route to Bushman’s Nek resort in the Drakensberg). It really was the perfect combination of unwinding but also adventuring – which our little traveling family loves doing! I guess we’ll just have to book another family break in the Midlands soon.

Book your own family break in the Midlands at Nthaba Moya Cottage HERE.
family holiday in the midlands

Disclaimer: We were NOT hosted for this stay.

For more family travel destinations, CLICK HERE.

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