The Rosendal Country Retreat
Nestled in the mountains of the eastern Free State, this newly renovated gem’s cosy rooms are perfect for a romantic budget stay for two or alternatively, a family weekend where slow living is what it is all about.
This is where simplicity meets luxury and it’s a mere three-and-a-half-hour drive from Johannesburg via the N1.
Cost: R650 per person sharing (children between 0-18 years pay R250 per night)
The Old Mushroom Farm
What started out as a mushroom farm, soon evolved into a contemporary artisanal environment as ex-mushroom farmer, architect and artist, Nic Crooks, transformed the property to provide a unique experience.
What was originally used as growing tunnels for mushrooms has been converted into artisanal workspaces and accommodation.
The Old Mushroom Farm will also be hosting a movie night under the stars on 25 September, ideal for a fun family long weekend away.
Cost: R410 per person per night. Children under 12 pay R320 per person per night and babies under two stay for free.
Budget stays at De Pakhuys
Located in the picturesque Agter-Pakhuys Valley outside of Clanwilliam en route to the historic Wuperthal village, De Pakhuys Guest Farm is surrounded by the Cederberg Mountains.
It offers seven self-catering cottages, three glamping cottages and a campsite with 11 sites. It also boasts a permanent caravan and four wooden cabins.
The Kleine School is a lovely farm school that has been transformed into a self-catering unit that can sleep up to four adults – the perfect budget stay for the upcoming long weekend.
Cost: R850 per unit per night for the Kleine School
Long weekend Mountain Magic
An Airbnb property and super host, this property with its 360-degree views is a paraglider’s paradise. Two containers have been converted into accommodation and are joined by a deck complete with a hammock and a braai area.
They have registered a paragliding site on the property, which has a separate entrance, and the accommodation is pet-friendly. It comes with two bedrooms and four beds.
Cost: From R695 per night
The Studio @ The Place
If you’re looking for a proper Klein Karoo experience, this is it.
Located in Ladismith, this Klein Karoo cottage which can be booked entirely for yourself, is the perfect escape. The Studio is easily accessible from Route 62 and the N2 and boasts a modern open-plan, shaded-outdoor seating and spectacular views. Breakfast is included in the stay and they can accommodate four adults and two children.
Cost: From R800 per night
Glenogle Farm accommodation
A rather affordable option for luxury accommodation in the dreamy pine forests of Magoebaskloof, Glenogle Farm is definitely a good option for a long weekend (or even a week-long) getaway.
The Stables is a luxury, double story self-catering residence that has been tastefully decorated with vintage furniture and leather couches.
It is ideal for families with older children (not suitable for kids under six) and boasts ample activities for the whole family, including berry picking at the nearby Blueberry Heights, fishing, swimming and much more.
Cost: From R1,550 for two people sharing
Wolwekrans Eco Lodge
Built with the lowest possible carbon footprint, Wolwekrans Eco Lodge’s luxury tented cabin sleeps four and boasts brilliant views across Mpumalanga’s majestic Schoemanskloof Valley.
The lodge is also wheelchair- and pet-friendly and is perfect for both family budget stays and romantic getaways.
Cost: From R1,500 per four-sleeper tented cabin
Whether you’re keen on a long drive or even a flight to the next best budget-friendly destination, there are ample local options to choose from. Just remember that the early bird always catches the worm.