Spring is upon us. Soon the short cold days of winter will give way to warmer, more inviting weather making it the perfect time to get away into the country and enjoy some time off. There is plenty to do and explore near Johannesburg, from Hartbeespoort in the west to the lowveld in the east.
Here are some of the top budget getaways within a short drive from Johannesburg:
From R250 per person
The unique rooms of Modimolle Funky Stay offers guests all the small comforts that make a night away from home feel like a treat. The rooms are located in A-frame cabins that fit in perfectly with the surrounding bushveld. The beautiful pond is an attractive feature and is home to some of the prolific birdlife of the Nylsvley wetlands.
A proudly South African touch is brought to life by the multitude of colours displayed in the decor of the rooms. En-suite bathrooms offer a modern shower, elegant wash basin and toilet. There is also ample cupboard space with an open closet snugly fit into the cabins’ unique A-frame build.
From R400 per person
Bali at Willinga Lodge is situated in Kosmos on a large property overlooking Hartbeespoort Dam. All of the suites are built to maximise the views of the dam, whilst maintaining your privacy.
The suites are romantic and are all beautifully appointed. Four of them have a spa bath and five have a fireplace. All suites have a fridge, tea and coffee making facilities, as well as a braai on the terrace.
From R220 per person
Nullarbor Cottages are nestled in the rocky arms of the Magaliesburg Mountains on a private farm and provide an ideal country getaway. The cottages are fully equipped for self catering - all have log fires, 7 have corner jacuzzi spa-baths and each cottage has its own private braai and lapa area.
The farm also has 3 swimming pools which are easily accessible to all. Bring your mountain bike or explore the farm on foot. There are also horse rides which can be arranged by appointment at a nearby venue.
From R200 per person
Rametsi Lodge is situated in the scenic Lyndleyspoort Valley, only 2-hours drive from Gauteng. The lodge is the perfect breakaway, leaving guests rejuvenated and relaxed before heading back to the daily hustle and bustle.
A wide variety of game and bird life provide a unique family holiday experience that guests won't forget. The Lyndleyspoort dam (situated on the reserve), offers unsurpassed beauty and tranquillity for nature lovers and fishermen.
From R300 per person
Mountain Mala is a beautiful private game reserve, a mere 15 kilometres from the town of Brits in the malaria free North West province. It is barely one hour’s drive from the centre of Gauteng, and makes for a great getaway for the whole family.
Mountain Mala borders the Crocodile River giving guests a stunning view of the river valley between the hills. The reserve has a wide variety of wildlife, due to its lush vegetation, which makes Mountain Mala ideal for the avid bird watcher or nature enthusiast.
From R250 per unit
Set in lush surroundings, Alina's Farmhouse lets you unwind and forget about the hectic pace of life. The four bedroomed double storey house offers 360? views of mountains and forests. Guests who stay once are sure to return time and again.
The area is great for star gazing, and the farmhouse is actually situated right opposite the ruins of the Cyril Jackson Observatory. There are many little dams and rivers that make for great fishing and boating. There are also numerous quad and mountain bike routes.
From R150 per person
Surrounded by 1300 hectares of magnificent bushveld, Jacobs Creek offers guests an unforgettable African adventure. It's located on the banks of the Lower Kudu's River in the beautiful Mooketsi Valley. Here, guests can soak up the glorious views and escape life's hustle and bustle.
Enjoy Jacobs Creek's own wine while relaxing in the splendour of the magnificent game farm. Come nightfall, the stargazing panoramas are unsurpassed, whilst in the background you may hear the echoes of the jackal's calling.
From R270 per person
Each of the Luxury Suites is decorated with understated elegance and charm, and sleeps two people. All the suites are air conditioned and offer a truly idyllic and indulgent experience. Each suite has a private patio with Jacuzzi and braai area and offers magnificent views from their secluded positioning.
The Tsanana Log Cabins are more rustic family units which are tastefully furnished with a 'Touch of Africa' décor. These cater for groups of 2 to 11 people. Two of the cabins are attached and can be booked as a family/good friends unit.
From R260 per person
Situated in Hazyview, Mpumalanga, this lodge is within eight minutes’ drive of the Kruger National Park and is also the gateway to the many scenic wonders of Mpumalanga. Enjoy a true African experience in the African bush where you can have an exceptional adventure that won’t hurt your pocket.
The Kruger Adventure Lodge promised to be an experience rather than a destination, and guests can ‘build’ their own unique bushveld encounter. The lodge is eco-friendly and promotes environmental awareness as well as contributing to the conservation of the indigenous tree fund, to ensure its surroundings are not impacted by unnecessary disturbance to the environment.
From R280 per person
Situated about 10km from Hazyview in and amongst banana farms, with a beautiful view over the escarpment, is the tranquil Nabana Lodge. With the Kruger Park just a stones throw away, Nabana Lodge is the perfect stay-over for the traveller and explorer.
Nabana Lodge offers a pleasant and peaceful stay in clean and comfortable room with coffee and tea facilities. The lodge also offers a fully licensed bar and restaurant , a big children's play area complete with jungle gym, mini race track with bikes and jumping castle over weekends. A sparkling blue pool and deck area are ideal for those hot summer days and nights.