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Gift Guide: Wooden toys made in South Africa

When it comes to supporting local, one of the easiest ways we, as parents, can do so, is by buying wooden toys made in South Africa! There's just something extra special about a toy lovingly crafted from nature... It's a win for your child, and a win for your home -...

Gift Guide: Wooden toys made in South Africa

When it comes to supporting local, one of the easiest ways we, as parents, can do so, is by buying wooden toys made in South Africa! There's just something extra special about a toy lovingly crafted from nature... It's a win for your child, and a win for your home -...

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Mini-Break | Kamonande in the Waterberg

by | Jan 17, 2019 | Family Travel, Places we go | 9 comments

At the beginning of the month we were lucky enough to ring in 2019 and spend an entire week at Kamonande Nature Reserve in the Waterberg. For our family there couldn’t have been a better start to this year; traveling and seeing a new part of the world (our country, in this case).

“The Waterberg has been described as South Africa’s best keep secret.” And we agree.

Stretched out over a 150 km arc from Thabazimbi (in the West), Nylstroom (in the centre) to Potgietersrus (in the East). We never knew that merely 2 hours drive from Pretoria laid the incredible, mountainous landscape of Kamonande. A protea and bush veld filled hidden paradise with a diverse collection of wild life.

We stayed in one of the private homes located on the farm.

A beautiful modern thatched roof nestled in the luscious green valley. Kitted out with every amenity and big enough to house at least 13 people, probably more, in the 5 ensuite bedrooms.

The entire house was designed with it’s surroundings in mind. Massive glass windows and big open doors invites the outside, inside.

The private pool and deck with it’s breathtaking views was our favourite hangout in the house and thanks to a massive rainstorm the week before we could enjoy all of nature in complete disconnect from the rest of the world with no WIFI, reception or network coverage. (At first I felt a bit lost but within a day or so we all loved it).

Our days were relaxed.

Filled with game drives on our own private vehicle, afternoon swimming, sunbathing and soaking up the stunning surroundings.

With an indoor and outdoor braai, gas stove, huge oven, dishwasher and all the kitchen equipment anyone could want, this luxury self-catering unit is incredible and we never needed to leave the farm –  except that one time we ran out of essential… Bread, milk, wine…We even had a housekeeper for 3 hours each day – just to help clean and freshen up the place. 

The farm is about 1200ha with a variety of wildlife. We saw all kinds of birds only Mr. Perfect can identify (note to self: learn about birds this year), Impala, Zebra, Kudu, Giraffe, Blue Wilde Beast, Waterbuck, Warthogs, Baboons, Monkeys, meerkats and an impressive lizard too.

A highlight was having front row seats to a dung beetle wrestling match. The girls were captivated seeing two dung beetles fight over their prized dung ball. These little guys put up quite a fight and their moves would impress any WWE star. 

Like most of South Africa, Kamonande also enjoyed quite a bit of rainfall over the new year.

Most late afternoons found the farm covered in a curtain of showers. This transformed the Waterberg into a landscape filled with full dams, streams trickling down the mountainside , frog choirs serenading us in the evening, flooded roads, a plato of water lilies blooming and an array of wildlife coming out to enjoy the emerald green vegetation. It was truly a different world to see.

We were also lucky enough to visit during calving season. Baby Impala were everywhere as well as zebra calves, Blue Wilde Beast and the most adorable warthog families too. Seeing giraffes are always a personal highlight for me – I just think they are so regal and kind. 

Misty mornings, golden sunsets and exciting evening drives…

It was a week we will never forget and we hope to visit Kamonande again, maybe more regularly. The girls loved farm life and as long as we kept the swimming, game drives and evening campfires coming, they were happy. 

Only 180km from Pretoria, Kamonande is an ideal escape from city life – even just for a weekend.

Being lost in such a gorgeous part of nature is what a weekend at Kamonande is all about. We felt rested, recharged, inspired and “full” as a family. Sad to leave but ready to start 2019 refreshed because I guess that’s what being in nature does for the soul.

The particular home we stayed in can’t be rented but you can contact KAMONANDE for accommodation options. Choose from cosy cottages, larger units or luxury homes. You can even own a little piece of paradise through their time share options.


  1. Helen Neale

    Such a fun and a great experience you had. I love how peaceful this place is. Seems like you really enjoyed your trip!

    • Mari-Louise

      Helen it really is. Just some peace and quiet in nature to recharge the soul.

  2. Autumn Murray

    Waterberg, South Africa looks like an amazing place for a vacation spot! I would love to take my family there one day.

    • Mari-Louise

      Autumn, it really is. The wildlife and amazing bushveld is breathtaking. Such a worth while spot to see.

  3. Nicole Hood

    Holy cow this looks amazing! What a stunning place to stay!

    • Mari-Louise

      It really is. We will definitly be going back.

  4. Anna

    Oh wow. Looks like everyone had a blast. Love the rocks creation, beautiful pictures and that places is just amazingly gorgeous.

    • Mari-Louise

      We had the best time building our little tour. Made so many memories. It’s the perfect escape.

  5. kafadan salla

    Pretty! This was an extremely wonderful article.
    Many thanks for providing this information.


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