Discover Serenity at Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve in Cape Town

Winona Griggs

Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve – Discover the Beauty of Cape Escape

Hey there! Are you ready for an incredible adventure? Let me introduce you to the magnificent Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve, where nature and tranquility are ready to embrace you.

Step into a haven of breathtaking landscapes, stunning wildlife, and an abundance of awe-inspiring experiences. Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve, nestled in the heart of the Cape Winelands District, invites you to immerse yourself in the wonders of nature.

As you explore the diverse terrain of the reserve, from lush green valleys to rugged mountains, you’ll be captivated by the sheer beauty that surrounds you. Listen to the symphony of birdsong as you stroll along the scenic walking trails, or simply sit back and take in the panoramic views of wildflowers painting the landscape in vibrant hues.

But there’s more to Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve than meets the eye. It is a sanctuary for a variety of wildlife species, including the rare Cape Mountain zebra and the elusive caracal. Be prepared to witness encounters with these incredible creatures in their natural habitat, creating memories you’ll cherish forever.

For those seeking an adrenaline rush, Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve has you covered. Strap on your hiking boots and conquer the challenging trails that wind through rocky outcrops and indigenous fynbos. Feel the rush as you summit the peaks, rewarded with breathtaking vistas that stretch as far as the eye can see. Don’t forget your mountain bike, as the reserve boasts thrilling cycling routes that will leave you exhilarated.

At the heart of Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve lies the peaceful Breede River. This lifeline of the reserve offers a range of water-based activities, from gentle kayaking and fishing to leisurely picnics along its tranquil banks. Immerse yourself in the calming embrace of nature’s serenity as you navigate the river’s gentle currents.

As the day draws to a close, find solace in the camping and picnic sites provided within the reserve. Gather around a crackling campfire, sharing stories and laughter under the starlit skies. Let the peaceful ambiance of Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve rejuvenate your spirit, leaving you refreshed and ready to embrace the beauty of the Cape.

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So, what are you waiting for? Unleash your adventurous spirit and escape to Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve – a hidden gem of breathtaking beauty just waiting to be discovered.

Discover Serenity at Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve in Cape Town

As I strolled along the boardwalk on the Heron Trail, I couldn’t help but notice a gentle rustling sound coming from below. To my surprise, a tortoise emerged from the bushes and curiously peered at me and my two companions. We had originally planned to embark on one of the reserve’s longer hikes, such as Rooikat, Boesmanskloof, or Genadendal, or even try out the MTB trail. However, the intense November heat, which had reached a scorching 41°C, made us reconsider. Instead, we decided to search for Vrolijkheid’s beloved mascot, the Robertson dwarf chameleon. Unfortunately, our efforts to find it were in vain. Undeterred, we sought refuge from the sweltering heat in the cool shade of the bird hides near the upper dam. From there, we had the pleasure of observing beautiful herons and elegant plovers as they gracefully went about their business.

Discover Serenity at Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve in Cape Town

When I needed a short getaway from the busy city life, Vrolijkheid provided me with a refreshing escape. It offered untouched natural landscapes and the pleasant scent of Karoo fynbos amidst the beautiful winelands of the Breede Valley. There were five newly renovated cottages to choose from, each providing a cozy and comfortable stay.

One of these cottages was Luiperd, which had a charming thatched roof that provided shade from the hot sun. Despite the tempting offer of tennis and mini-golf, my companions and I decided to cool off in the pool located in the communal braai area. The area also had a fun putt-putt course and a tennis court for those who wanted to engage in some friendly competition. Back at our cottage, I took charge of the braai (barbecue) while enjoying the view of the acacia, guarri, and karee trees from the porch, which was elevated from the ground.

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Discover Serenity at Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve in Cape Town

When I first arrived at Luiperd cottage, I couldn’t help but notice its size. It was big enough to comfortably accommodate two families, making it an ideal choice for a group getaway. As I entered the cottage, I immediately noticed the stunning view of the Langeberg Mountains from our neighbors’ property, Ichelesi. They had a prime location, but Luiperd had its own advantages.

One of the standout features of Luiperd was its spacious grounds. Unlike Ichelesi, Luiperd offered plenty of room for outdoor activities and relaxation. It was the perfect place to unwind and enjoy the beautiful surroundings. But that’s not all – Luiperd also boasted a hot tub. My sister Kimber wasted no time in finding the “cold” setting and sipping her sundowners in style.

As the evening progressed and the temperature dropped, we decided to move indoors. Luiperd had a cozy lounge area where we could gather and continue our board games. The room was beautifully decorated and filled with natural light during the day, but it transformed into a warm and inviting space at night with the help of a small fireplace. We brought our delicious malva pudding inside and enjoyed a cozy winter hang-out.

Luiperd cottage truly provided a perfect balance of comfort and beauty. Its size and amenities made it ideal for larger groups, while its outdoor space and cozy interior created a sense of tranquility and relaxation. Whether you’re looking for adventure or a peaceful getaway, Luiperd cottage offers the best of both worlds.

Luiperd is a unique and spacious cottage with multiple levels, forming an H-shape. It offers four cozy bedrooms and three delightful dining areas, one of which is conveniently located under a covered space near the braai. The cottage is also full of hidden corners and secret spots to explore.

One of the standout features of Luiperd is the loft suite situated above the garage. This suite has its own courtyard entrance, providing a sense of privacy and independence, making it perfect for moody teenagers who crave their own space.

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If I were there with a group of people, I would personally seek refuge from the bustling crowd and enjoy some peace and quiet upstairs on the sleeper couch in the cool attic above the lounge, immersing myself in a captivating novel.

Although Luiperd is located at the entrance of the property, you may hear the occasional car pass by, as a public road divides the reserve. However, it is hardly a nuisance, and the tranquility of the cottage is not compromised.

Discover Serenity at Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve in Cape Town

When I arrived at Luiperd, I was amazed at how it was designed for socializing. There was a covered braai area and a hot tub, perfect for hanging out with friends. The next morning, as I ventured out to explore, my path was sprinkled with fluffy yellow pom-poms from the sweet acacia thorns. Upon my return, I found my friend, Ammaarah, cooking up some eggs to complement our braai leftovers. It was delightful to enjoy my breakfast while taking in the view of the garden, filled with succulents, spiky aloes, and the cheerful heads of Aeonium arboreum (Irish roses).

What makes Luiperd stand out?

Luiperd offers a spacious indoor area and a generous outdoor space, perfect for children to run around and play.

How much does it cost?

You can stay at Luiperd for as low as R1,000 per night, and it can accommodate up to eight people. Each person also gets air conditioning and 50MB of Wi-Fi. Additionally, there is a conservation fee of R40 per person per day (R20 for kids).

I first shared this article in the February 2020 edition of Getaway magazine. If you’re interested, you can easily find the magazine online and get a copy for yourself. Keep in mind that the prices mentioned in the article might have changed, so it’s a good idea to double-check with each establishment before making any bookings or purchases.

Discover Serenity at Vrolijkheid Nature Reserve in Cape Town

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