The Nest Hotel provides exquisite Ukhahlamba Drakensberg World Heritage Site views. The Drakensberg is an area rich in history and adventure and is a much-loved destination in the Cathkin Valley of the Central Drakensberg of South Africa. The Nest is unique and one of the favourite hotels in the Drakensberg.
The Nest Hotel Activities include on and off-site pursuits that guests can enjoy.
The Nest Hotel is set in acres of beautiful park-like gardens. Our rooms offer a peaceful escape from busy city life and include an en-suite bathroom, a TV with selection of DSTV channels, radio, telephone and coffee/tea making facilities.
Free internet is provided in the public area.
The Nest Hotel is one of the few remaining Resort Hotels in the Drakensberg offering a sumptuous Table d’Hote menu. This means that we serve three carefully selected meals per day: hearty breakfasts, light lunches, six course dinner as well as morning and afternoon tea, all included in the tariff!
So visit the “Grande Old Dame” of the Drakensberg. A fine country hotel.
“Shawswood” is situated 23 kms from Howick on the Karkloof/Rietvlei Road. The property has been in the Shaw family since the mid to late 1800’s and, until recently, was run as a timber farm and sawmill. Even now, there is evidence of some of the old logging trails through the bush.
The old homestead still stands, having slept 6 generations under its roof. The stables that were home to all the polo ponies over the years have recently been converted into rustic accommodation, and paths to the top and bottom of our waterfall have been cleared and well marked, for people to explore.
The original Shawswood stables have been converted into rustic rooms containing 3 to 4 bunkbeds each, suitable for school, sporting, rambling or church groups (58 beds). There is an additional wing offering single or double accommodation (12 people) and a decent ablution block, with plenty of hot water for showering.
The farm workshop has been turned into a large dining hall, also suitable for indoor activities. Large groups are required to bring their own bedding and eating utensils. Mattresses with covers are provided, as are cooking facilities. Bulk catering can be arranged upon request, and braai facilities and firewood are available.
There are also large grassed areas for group activities and we are always open to new ideas for obstacle courses and team building exercises. We offer guided walks for school children. Similar walks for other groups can be arranged on request, otherwise the paths are well-marked for you to explore at your own pace.
Stone Haven is Shawswood’s latest project! This 1880 sand-stone structure has been turned into a fully contained self-catering cottage, a “haven” for nature lovers to spend a tranquil few days away! A yellowwood staircase leads up to a quaint loft bedroom, complete with brass bed. Awaken to magnificent sights of the indigenous forest and mountain, and breakfast on the verandah, watching the birds and enjoying panoramic views of rural Africa! “Stone Haven” started off as a stable and hay loft, at the time when the original Shaw brothers were renowned for their polo playing skills!
The Antbear Lodge is situated in the Drakensberg Mountains and is a perfect base to explore the very best of what this region offers. The Drakensberg Mountains are renowned for their dramatic natural beauty spectacular mountain scapes, waterfalls and sunsets. And don’t forget about the bushman rock art paintings made by the San people over a period of 4000 years. Come and be inspired by their history and spirituality.
Essentially we are an accommodation provider offering 15 individually styled units as either en-suite doubles, family units or luxury suites. Our most unique accommodation is our luxury cave which blends into its environment to create an atmosphere of privacy and seclusion. Glass doors open onto a wooden deck with hammock chairs with an uninterrupted panoramic view of the Drakensberg Mountains. You could even consider a romantic private dining experience on the deck of your cave under the stars.
The natural setting is stunning and we have managed to make the accommodation fit in with ease. Each of the units are different and are separate from each other creating a feeling of generosity. The rooms are smartly appointed and individually designed for comfort. And have the features like fireplaces and jacuzzi spa baths. We have put a huge amount of effort into making our own wooden furniture which includes tables, chairs, headboards, windows, doors and light fittings. In fact you will discover unique and eccentric wooden furniture everywhere in the lodge. Artistic design is captured through wooden hinges, engraved glass and mosaics. If you feel like seeing how we make our furniture feel free to put your nose into our workshop.
We are one of those places where everyone dines together. It makes for great conversation is and is a perfect opportunity to plan your next day. We use our own organic vegetable garden. We have our own chickens for eggs, cows for milk, make own cheese, butter and yogurt and bake our own bread. Sustainability is a huge part of the ethos of our lodge.
We have used alternative materials like straw bales to build the place and use solar for heating water and a reed bed filter cleaning waste water.
There is plenty to do here besides relaxing. I have a pilots license and a microlight at the lodge. If the weather is good I love to take guests with me. To glide together with the vultures or fly along the Drakensberg escarpment is often considered as the highlight of a tour. We practice the softer horse whispering techniques to train our horses and offer out rides that are particularly suited to beginners and first timers. There are hiking trails to fit every level of fitness, even guided. The vulture hides at Giants Castle are perhaps the best options available anywhere to see and photograph these birds. Or add a bit of adrenalin with a canopy tour. Visit the Nelson Mandela Capture site while you explore our local arts and craft route with cheese tastings, chocolate dipping and meeting some of the artists themselves.
So if your looking for a place where art, beauty and time away are important then Antbear Lodge is worth a second look. We invite you to came and share some of our dream, some of our alternative, sustainable and relaxed way of life. We look forward to welcoming you.
What makes this Drakensberg accommodation option so special is that we are offering cozy & comfortable accommodation in a luxury cave. Glass doors open onto a wooden deck with hammock chairs and an uninterrupted view of the Drakensberg Mountains. We also offer accommodation in mountain view suites and garden view suites. This is an upmarket Eco experience.
We are very honored to be able to serve you. We love our work at Antbear Lodge and are proud of what we have achieved together. Some of us have been here from the very first day. We support each other and because we know that together we are stronger. Whats more we would love to meet you and host you at Antbear Lodge soon.
We cook all our meals from scratch and use our own organic vegetable garden. We have our own chickens for eggs, own cows for milk, we bake our own bread and even make our own cheese.
The best way to say this is in the middle of nowhere. We are perfectly located to explore the very best of the Drakensberg offers and are situated towards Giants Castle. Easy access to Kamberg, Champagne Valley and the Kwazulu Natal Midlands
The lodge is artistic in style and offers 2 lounges, a wine cellar, a small bar and a dining room. We offer the option of hosted dinning at a communal table or if you would prefer you can also sit at an own table. We also offer the option of private dining where we setup a table on the deck of your cave and you dine by candlelight under the stars.
This Drakensberg accommodation lodge practices small scale farming permaculture. We have a small flock of sheep, 3 milk cows, horses, donkeys, a pig, and a few chickens, turkeys, ducks and geese. For us it is important that the animals are well kept and live a good life.
There is a lot to do or you could just chill out. The main attraction is the Drakensberg Mountains so a visit to Giants Castle and some hiking is a great idea. Or you could visit one of the best rock art sites in South Africa at Kamberg. We offer horse trails ideally suited to beginners. There is the option to fly in a hot air balloon, glide with vultures in a microlight or a game drive in the Zulu Waters Private Game Reserve.
Tranquility and beauty of nature
As a World Heritage site the Northern Drakensberg are very understated, they don’t offer hip entertainment, however the raw majestic beauty reminds one that it is a privilege to be on this planet and enjoy the sheer tranquility of Mother Nature.
A place to take in the fresh air and scenery and on a cloudless night the majestic starry heavens are breathtaking. A place to walk and refresh ones mind. There are loads of self catering as well as hotels in the Champagne valley. Just over three hours from Durban and four hours by car from Johannesburg, if you love nature spoil yourself and your family, the evenings have time to bond and day time share a walk or an adventure together as a family. We have been regular visitors for the last 20 years and never tire of coming back to have peace on earth, far from the noise of life. Three night here is like three weeks holiday at a coastal resort.
Peter MansfieldJohannesburg, South Africa
After being on my bucket list for quite some time my family and I visited Central Drakensberg. The majestic mountains and the host of activities in the area was beyond our expectations. We look forward to our next visit.
SuriahCape Town, South Africa
This, from my perspective, is the most beautiful part of South Africa, don’t miss it.
Here I visited the Nambiti Wildlife Preserve, The Champagne Valley Area with the amazing Drakensberg Boys Choir School, The Reptile Farm and The Valley Bakery, The San Rock Art and Vulture Hide at the Giants Castle Park and the Phe (hilltop) Zulu Cultural Center near Durban. Great Adventure.