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Family Holiday in the Drakensberg: Bushman’s Nek resort

by | Apr 21, 2021 | Family Travel, Places we go | 0 comments

We’ve dreamt about a family holiday in the Drakensberg for years. Somewhere beautiful to escape into nature, breathing in the fresh mountain air while exploring one of the most magnificent parts of South Africa. The Drakenberg is vast and we’ve been to a few other well-known vacation spots but none quite like this…

drakenberg family vacation resort

So Where did we staY for our Family Holiday in the Drakensberg?

Bushman’s Nek Berg and Trout Resort. Situated in the picture-perfect foothills of the Southern Drakensberg, near Underberg. This family resort offers luxury hotel rooms, self-catering apartments and our favourite – rustic log cabins. What could be better than spending a week in a cozy log cabin with the ones you love the most?

wooden log cabin accomadation in the drakensberg

Our 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom log cabin overlooked the most incredible green meadow… Complete with grazing cattle, bustling brooks and a quaint nearby farm.

drakenberg bushmans nek family resort1
bushmans nek drakensberg luxury resort
self catering family accomadation drakensberg
drakenberg bushmans nek family resort2

The cabin is fully self-catering with a private braai area. Wood and firelighters can be bought from reception. Room service is available as well as cleaning and fresh towel service upon request. We were comfortable and enjoyed the unique surroundings.

drakenberg bushmans nek family resort3

Breakfast on our deck, surrounded by the mountains. Afternoons lounging at the pool. And even in February most days end misty or rainy so we got to make good use of our fireplace too.

best family accommodation drakensberg

Waking up to the sounds of nature was like being in another world and thanks to the limited WiFi in our cabin, we had no other choice but to slow down and take it all in.

Things to do at Bushman’s Nek Family Resort

The resort may be hidden far away from city life BUT that doesn’t make it any less luxurious… The hotel boasts with an onsite restaurant, The Bushpot, where we enjoyed numerous tasty lunches served poolside (or indoors).

rock pools in the drakensberg
visiting the southern drakensberg

Not that we spent any time inside… The swimming pools are stunning and echo the mountain surroundings with a rockpool design. One large cool water pool is surrounded by 3 heated pools as well as a small water slide. The older girls enjoyed splashing between the heated and cold water pools while Ava and I spent most of our time either lounging on the deck chairs or playing in the secluded smaller heated pool at the foot of the swimming area.

visiting the southern drakensberg 4
Other activities at Bushman’s Nek
  • The La Vita Wellness Spa offers a variety of relaxing treatments that include massages, anti-aging treatments, manicures, and pedicures. You can even make use of the resort’s child-minding services and book a couple’s treatment or two. Afterward, make use of the jacuzzi and sauna.
  • During our stay, a lot of the usual facilities and services were closed due to Covid, but they still deserve a mention. The resort offers a kid’s club where little ones can play and be safely taken care of and entertained for certain times throughout the day.
  • Other family-friendly services include a games room, bicycle hire and a lovely outdoor playarea.
  • Onsite sports facilities include a volleyball, tennis and squash court as well as bowls.
  • We absolutely had to try our hand at the Adventure Golf Course. It was Ava’s 1st time and we all had a blast. The course is challenging and lots of fun PLUS, you just can’t best the scenery – not even on a misty afternoon.
drakenberg bushmans nek family resort
  • At reception, you’ll find a very small general store stocking all the basics. We would however recommend buying most essentials before your arrival. Either make a stop in the Underberg or Midlands. Trust me, once you’re booked in, you won’t want to go anywhere far.
  • Other fun activities (all within walking distance from the resort) that can be booked and organised at the front desk include: paintball, a ride on the mountain bike trails, fly fishing, horse and pony riding as well a family tractor rides. Day excursions through the Sani Pass (and the highest pub in Africa) are also popular.
  • Pig and Pony Coffee Shop is a beloved little spot just down the road from the resort.
Guests are however free to do their own thing too – just the way we prefer it.

We enjoyed walking everywhere. Taking in the scenery, Ava picked flowers and we actually got to hold hands as the kids skipped and ran ahead.

things to do in the drakensberg
things to do in the drakensberg 1

Some afternoon ice cream and play at the Pucketty Farm Stall was a great “reward” after our stroll through the area.

family outing drakensberg
things to do in the drakensberg

still, The best way to experience the Drakensberg…

Go hiking! Situated just down the road from Bushman’s Nek is the Garden Castle Maloti-Drakenberg World Heritage Site.

garden castle maloti drakenberg world heritage site.
easy hiking trails in the drakensberg

One of South Africa’s 1st cultural and environmental world heritage site and well worth a visit. Various trails lead hikers and horseback riders into the Lesotho grasslands and rocky gorges. Guided tours and overnight hiking excursions where visitors experience sleeping in caves can be organised but we decided to do things on our own. Map in hand, backpacks filled and swimsuits on.

easy hike in the drakensberg

Lia and I were determined to dive into the refreshing, crystal clear, spring mountain water. We just needed to find the right spot.

I was so impressed at how well our little family handled their 1st proper hike… Working together to cross the river, sampling some “wilde braambos” berries, figuring out the map and keeping cheery as we adventured into the unknown. Not even a quick snake encounter could deter us from our mission.

family hiking in the drakensberg
hiking in the drakensberg

A 3km hike (6 in total) turned into an unforgettable 5-hour outing, but no one noticed. We finally found the perfect picnic spot to swim and enjoy lunch and although the water was freezing, everyone loved the experience of their 1st mountain dip. It was a BUCKETLIST MOMENT. Something every person should do at least once in their lifetime…

waterfalls in the drakensberg
waterfall swimming drakensberg
swimming and hiking to waterfalls in the drakensberg

I actually still get a little emotion as my heart wells up with gratitude over getting to do this with my husband and our girls.We must be the luckiest people in the world to have experiences like these waiting, just beyond our doorsteps.

We enjoyed our day of hiking so much, we decided to do it again, fitting in 2 day hikes during our 1 week stay.

family outing drakensberg
* And yes mamas, the mountain does not judge – dimpled bums welcome!

We needed to disconnect from the world, to reconnect as a family

Hidden away from the rest of the world, from work, distraction and the endless “to-do list”. It’s a long journey to Bushman’s Nek – an 8-hour drive from home for us. (We decided to break up the drive and start the holiday early with a night in the Midlands.) However, with all the incredible experiences awaiting in this magical part of the Drakenberg… The long travel was definitely worthwhile.

bushmans nek resort drakensberg

Family time is precious. The years we have with our children, when they are young and want to be with us, are fewer than we think and that’s why holidays like these are important.

We swam, we played, we rested and explored. Got a little lost, laughed a lot… We made forever memories. (The kind movies make us believe in.)

bushmans nek resort drakensberg 2

It won’t be easy finding a better family holiday in the Drakensberg (or anywhere else for that matter). We truly enjoyed our week away and can’t wait to visit again!

family holiday in the drakensberg

Disclaimer: We were NOT hosted for this stay.

For more family travel destinations, CLICK HERE.



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