Le Meridien Hotel

Ile Maurice ~ Mauritius 

Type: Accommodation 

Website: http://www.lemeridien-mauritius.com/

We did not visit this one on our BMW R1200GS Adventure, but we celebrated 25 years of marriage here this week and I thought of sharing our experience with you.


Beautiful beaches and sunsets that are out of a magazine… this is really what it looks like here, no photoshop or trying to make it look better than what it really is.

On arrival at the hotel we were greeted by hotel staff that immediately make you feel welcome and offered us a welcome cocktail while they completed the necessary documentation.


Then we were upgraded from a deluxe room to an executive suite, not sure if this was because we are celebrating a very special anniversary. (25 years) We were very surprised and happy for the upgrade.


Nothing can beat a dinner right on the beach with the sound of waves right by your dinner table. The food is signature style quality in look and taste and all the staff are so friendly and helpful, nothing is too much for them or too much bother.

Day 1: was spent getting to know the resort, unwinding at the sauna and reading a book while it rained it the late afternoon. The perfect start to a very relaxed and peaceful break.

Day 2: we decided to take a scooter ride out to Grand Bay, so although it is not on my BMW, the scooter option was a lot of fun and we blended in with the many locals using their small 125cc motorcycles.


Day 3: was spent doing water sports and enjoying the sun, beach and cocktails.


Day 4: we decided to travel a bit further out on the scooter to explore more of the island.

Day 5: we are celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary on a catamaran cruise. I will post a separate blog just on this special day.

Day 6: we will be relaxing once again at the sauna, reading a book and winding down.

Day7: we head back to South Africa

Below are some pictures from this beautiful island, walks on the beach and our time here in Mauritius. 

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Thaba Moshate Hotel

Peermont Metcourt Hotel and Casino 

Type: Accommodation

Website: http://www.thabamoshate.co.za/

We were lucky enough to win a 2 night stay at this luxury Hotel and Casino in Burgersfort. We chose the long weekend to spoil ourselves and rode through Friday morning. It was a 3 and a half hour ride through Emalahleni, Middelburg, Steelpoort and finally onto Burgersfort.

On arrival we were pleasantly surprised at this little piece of luxury situated just on the outskirts of the main town, far enough out to be away from the city, but close enough for the convenience of dropping in at the shops for a bottle of wine.


Rooms are comfortable with mood lighting, large screen TV and all the necessities like hairdryer, safe and a coffee station in the room. The restaurant offers buffet and al a carte menu options and there is more than enough variety and choice to delight your fancy.


We took a ride out to Dullstroom passing through Lydenburg on Saturday, this was an hour and a half ride out through the Waterfall pass. Parts of the road were very bad with huge potholes on a stretch of road, but the most beautiful scenery riding through the mountains.


We had waffles at The Waffle Co and a walk through Dullstroom to the various arts and crafts shops, this was a great day out. The ride back seemed shorter than going there, because we went on the highway going back so the roads were better.

Saturday afternoon we watched the rugby SA vs France in the 2nd test and then turned in for an early night, watching movies with popcorn and a bottle of red wine.

Sunday (Fathers Day) it was time to pack up and head back home.

Espresso Caffe Bistro

In Parkhurst

Type: Restaurant

We have tried something different this week and found this awesome European style cafe along 4th Avenue in Parkhurst. It has a great vibe, great food and friendly staff.


There are a number of small boutique style shops, cafes, bistro’s, pubs and restaurants along this short stretch of road, giving it character and unique atmosphere. People walking their dogs stop by for a drink before continuing on their journey.

A great place for a breakfast or light lunch and supper in the early evening.

Ramkiki Lodge

Type: Accommodation and Restaurant

Website: http://www.ramkietjie.co.za/

This farm style wedding and conference venue set in Ruimsig, Honeydew is literally 7 minutes from our house. It is a beautiful little bit of paradise hidden along the Wilge River banks.


They have a quaint little restaurant on the grounds called Ramkietjie. We were spoilt to be the only guests at the restaurant for breakfast because the venue was hosting a conference and all the conference delegates were checking in at reception.

They have a beautiful chapel on the grounds to be used for weddings…


There is also a pool bar on the other side of the river overlooking the grounds, ideal for pool parties and a Saturday afternoon chillax around the pool, or order one of their famous wood fired pizzas and enjoy a cool refreshing beer.


Breakfast was freshly served, and a Full English breakfast for only R80 is well worth it. Thabiseng the restaurant host was friendly, helpful and a pleasure to deal with.

Make a booking at 011 958 0503.

Leopard Lodge

Type: Accommodation and Restaurant

Website: http://www.leopardlodge.co.za/

We visited this beautiful gem hidden away against the Magaliesburg mountain in a forest gorge overlooking the Hartebeespoort Dam. It transports you from the hustle and bustle of the city to a tranquil secluded tropical forest where the sounds of the bird life is all that is heard. It’s just a short 55km drive from Sandton and 60km from Pretoria, but well worth the trip.


We took a ride out from Honeydew, through Muldersdrift, Hekpoort and along the R560 through Skeerpoort to Leopard Lodge this morning.


On arrival at the main reception, it was evident that excellent service is lived here and the friendly staff were waiting on our arrival welcoming us to the restaurant, and our table. There is a rustic wooden bar, conference rooms and a large veranda which transforms into one of the wedding venues available at Leopard Lodge.


After breakfast we went and sat outside under the trees overlooking the Hartebeespoort Dam. What a magnificent view, they also have an outside boma with tables and chairs to sit and relax and enjoy a fresh garden salad or a light lunch.

An a la carte menu is offered from Wednesdays to Saturdays and a buffet lunch is available every Sunday. Picnics can be arranged for those who prefer a light meal in the bush. (Advance booking required).


We also took a walk through the gardens to the outside chapel which has a unique view which overlooks the dam in the background. We had to take a picture here to show you… maybe one of the best places to tie the knot.


I would strongly recommend Leopards Lodge to any of my friends or family as a place to add to your bucket list, as we attempt to visit 52 places in 52 weeks, this is definitely one we will return to.

Check out their website for accommodation rates and availability.

Kloofzicht

Kloofzicht Lodge and Spa:

Type: Accommodation and Restaurant

Aprox cost: R2370 per room per night

Website: http://kloofzicht.co.za

We were fortunate to have Sunday lunch at this beautiful lodge and spa. On arriving at the main gate on Sunday afternoon we did not know what to expect? Riding down the road to the main lodge we were met by a number of buck (eland, kudu, wildebees, impala and springbok) along the way, almost as if they were welcoming us to their home. The view of the lodge on the dam, from the top of the road was spectacular and set the tone for what was going to be a weekend to remember and a place we would tell our friends about.

The lodge is situated at the feet of the Zwartkops mountain range in the Cradle of Humankind and provides guests with a number of activities to choose from. There is the fine dining experience of the restaurant, relaxation at the spa, fly fishing at one of the trout dams, a walk up one of the trails or just quietly sitting reading a book on a bench – Kloofzicht has it all.


We thoroughly enjoyed our Sunday lunch and decided to spend the rest of the afternoon walking around the dams and watching some newly weds try their hand at fly fishing. Kloofzicht is also a popular wedding venue with the outdoor chapel right on the waters edge, saying your vows to the sound of a mother goose and her babies on the water must be something special.
Try this restaurant or accommodation next time you just want to break away from the city hustle and bustle.

Cradle Moon Game Lodge

Type: Restaurant and Lodge

Website: https://www.cradlemoon.co.za/

We were pleasantly surprised by this gem  right on our doorstep, literally 15 minutes ride from where we stay in Honeydew. You enter the game lodge through a security gate and then ride up this short potholed road up the hill that doesn’t look very promising, but as you come over the rise a lush green paradise nestled in a valley opens up before you.


We made a reservation for breakfast outside at the pool. We were shown to our table and ordered our coffees. What a beautiful setting, with a number of rondavels spread out under the trees and some zebra, giraffe and buck roaming free on the grounds. Breakfast was a buffet with anything and everything to eat. What a spread. After eating our fill and enjoying the outside summer air, we decided to take a walk down to the lake.


To our surprise we walked around to the dam wall and found the most beautiful falls. Water gushing over the dam wall after all the rains we have had lately was a sight to behold. We then sat on a bench under the trees and chatted about how lucky we are to experience these beautiful places in nature.

Clifftop Exclusive Lodge

Clifftop exclusive safari hideawayType: Accommodation
Approx cost: R4,200 per person per night
Website: http://clifftoplodge.co.za/
This premium exclusive lodge is situated 3 ½ hours from Johannesburg in the Malaria free Welgevonden Private Game Reserve in the Waterberg Mountains.
Clifftop Exclusive Safari Lodge is a special place where service is exemplary and luxury is evident. We had to leave our vehicle at the main gate parking and was picked up by the owners in a Land Rover as the road leading up to the main lodge was too steep and rocky.

Each cabin is perfectly positioned along the cliff overlooking the Sterkstroom River to offer exclusivity and privacy. Each cabin has its own splash pool, outside deck and outside bed for those long summer nights.
We were introduced to our very own butler who would look after us for the weekend, he served us dinner in a private setting at the main lodge. We felt like royalty as the other cabins were all fully booked, but we didn’t see any of the other couples. Each couple was served the 3 course dinner in their own private setting at the main lodge. Quite extraordinary and exclusive and romantic all at the same time.

The next morning at breakfast was the first time we managed to see that there were in fact other couples staying over the weekend. (the price includes all meals and game drives) After breakfast we headed on the first game drive of the morning and came across a number of animals including, Lion, Rhino, various buck, zebra, giraffe and a troop of Elephants.

We were looking for Leopards on our game drive but these shy animals avoided being detected, hiding in the rocky outcrops. Out of sight to the untrained eye. The weekend was most relaxing and enjoyable. We got our fair share of game viewing, relaxing, privacy and 5-star service and food. Before we knew it the weekend was over and we were being driven back down to the main gate for our 3 hour trip back to Johannesburg.

Stonehaven on Vaal

Type: Restaurant

Website: http://www.stonehaven.co.za/

We took a 45 min ride out to Stonehaven on Vaal in Vanderbijlpark for our breakfast run. The restaurant is set alongside the Vaal River and features indoor or outdoor seating. On a nice summers day it is ideal to take advantage of the outdoor seating where mini gazebos are set up on the grass bank overlooking the Vaal river. This is a beautiful setting on the green grass bank, and if you are lucky you will see some sporting activities like water skiing, jet packs and jet ski’s also pass by from time to time.

stonehaven-2


We enjoyed it so much at Stonehaven a few weeks later, we took my dad there for breakfast . (Not on the bike, we went through by car)

Stonehaven restaurant offers fast friendly service, but they also serve a great breakfast at reasonable prices. Well worth the ride out.

Other attractions at Stonehaven, they offer boat cruises, Sunday lunch cruises and sunset cruises on the Vaal River. This has also become a very popular wedding venue.

While we were there we took a walk-about on the boat while it was docked.


There are also some benches along the waterfront to relax on, a swimming pool, a jungle gym for the kids to play on and a small petting zoo to see some farm animals. Fun in the sun for the whole family.

Budmarsh private lodge

Budmarsh 5 star private lodge

Type: Accommodation and restaurant

Approx Cost: R4,000 per room per night

Website: http://www.budmarsh.co.za/

We took a 40 minute ride out to Budmarsh private lodge situated in the heart of the Magaliesberg. They offer  5-star accommodation and conference facilities in a country styled setting. This makes it the ideal venue for weddings, conferences and team building events. Or alternatively if you just want to come through and book a private picnic outside under the trees.


Guests can relax around the swimming pool, take a walk, or play some snooker, but this place offers the ultimate in quiet, peaceful tranquility and 5-star service.

We did not stay over but asked to view the  rooms, 3 room types are available at Budmarsh – Luxury, Superior and Superior Suite. (prices are available on their website) We did enjoy their breakfast outside on the patio. It was such a pleasant morning. After breakfast we went for a walk around the complex and the grounds.


It was then time to get on the bike and head out. South Africa vs Australia rugby game was coming on later the afternoon and I was already kitted out in my rugby jersey to support the bokke.