We will give you a little bit of a disclaimer: when travelling to this beautiful spot in Hekpoort, PLEASE make sure you take a bakkie or a car that's not low suspension or low on ground clearance, as the dirt road to the property is exceptionally rocky, bumpy and treacherous (trust us, this is from our own personal experience!) But once you get there, it's all worth it.
Rustig is a beautiful, well-established family farm that's run by the Oosthuizen family. This plot was a tobacco farm way back in the 1930s and now specialises in cattle and game, and of course, providing us city slickers with an idyllic country escape from the city. This location offers accommodation, amazing hiking trails, an upmarket wedding venue overlooking the lush gardens, and just a serene place to getaway from everyday life and just unwind.
Now, if you're looking to stay the weekend to chill out and reconnect with Mother Nature, there are many accommodation options available - the Heritage House, the Farmhouse, the Stone House, the four-sleeper tent, the six-sleeper tent or the Backpackers. Each one has it's own unique charm, feel and budget. We stayed in the lovely Farmhouse which can sleep 10 people in its five spacious rooms. Another thing we really loved about this Farmhouse was its LARGE kitchen with heated floors (the weekend we chose to getaway on was FREEZING!) and the big veranda complete with comfy couches and braai area. But as for the other options, here's a few details:
The Heritage House features a Victorian-style bathroom, a rustic farm-style kitchen ( equipped with a fridge, microwave, kettle, and limited cutlery and crockery, however no stove or oven). There's a beautiful formal lounge that opens onto a veranda which overlooks the formal rose garden.
The Stone House is rustic and is one of the oldest buildings on the farm. It sleeps 4 in its 2 bedrooms. The main bedroom features a double bed while the second room a bunk bed. There is a small kitchenette and access to the ablution block is only a 5-7 meters away
The name of this one says it all - it's a backpacker spot. It's literally just a place to sleep for the night. There is a communal kitchenette and easy access to the nearby ablution block. This venue also features a big braai area, a pack of braai wood, camping chairs and three bunk beds per room.
As for the tents, you can take your pick from the four- and six-sleeper on the property. They're both charming and are completely self-contained and self-catering, each with it’s own en-suite bathroom.
There best part about being at Rustig is exploring the property, and what better way to do this than by doing a hiking, going on a game drive or testing out the off road biking trails (just remember to BYOB - bring your own bike!).
Since we didn't have bikes, we decided to try out one of the hiking trails on the farm. There are three trails varying in difficulty available for farm guests and day visitors:
Olivenhout Hiking Trail – 3km - The Yellow Trail
Witstinkhout Hiking Trail – 5km - The Red Trail
Karee Hiking Trail – 13km - The Green Trail
The Witstinkhout Hiking Trail was lovely, offering amazing views of the property and the Magaliesberg Mountains. Once we got to the "top" of the trail, there was a massive and oh-so beautiful "cave" (for a lack of a better word). We took a long rest there before descending back down to the Farmhouse. Just don't forget to take a cap, sunscreen, comfortable hiking shoes and a couple of litres of water with you.
There's a 13km overnight hiking trail for those brave and adventurous at heart. It's perfect if you're interested in an off-the-grid experience. There's no hot water and no electricity. Only what you've packed in your rucksack and the equipment you bring. Click here for more information about this.
They also offer game drives twice a day, the morning game drive at 08:00 and the afternoon game drive is at 16:30. Cost is R150 per person and R75 per child under the age of 12, but just keep in mind that NO children under the age of 10 are allowed on the drive. To find out more about availability, visit reception or give them a call.
Rustig is Gauteng’s best kept secret when it comes to the perfect countryside wedding venue. They have everything you need to pull off the wedding of your dreams without a hitch. The location offers magnificent views, a five-star wedding hall with an expansive veranda overlooking a beautiful terrace garden as well as fine dining catering on offer. Rustig provides couples with affordable sophistication in the countryside. The idyllic grounds are perfect for beautiful photos. There are wonderful packages available to make your experience as easy and enjoyable as possible. Weddings at Rustig offers:
Rustig is also ideal for conferences, corporate functions and team builds. The hall transforms into an ideal work environment including cinema style seating and conference equipment. You can arrange any function imaginable, including:
For more information about this stunning countryside escape, visit their website at www.rustig.co.za.
You can contact them on 079 490 2690 or [email protected].
Just a mere hour's drive from Joburg, located in a magnificent private estate, Emerald Resort & Casino offers guests a tranquil and luxurious escape, complete with plenty of exciting gaming, resort experiences and entertainment, perfect for all ages. There's something for everyone. Unwind and relax with a pamper session at the Emerald Spa. Indulge in a delicious meal at the High Stakes or Emerald Hotel Restaurant. Explore and enjoy the many entertainment activities the resort has to offer. And why not try your luck at their onsite casino?
For a gourmet culinary experience, visit the High Stakes restaurant. This restaurant offers an impeccable selection of fine wines, a menu that caters for all discerning tastes, excellent service, and an elegant atmosphere. Situated just off the casino floor, High Stakes restaurant is strictly for guests over the age of 18. This is the restaurant that's perfect for making any occasion extra special.
At the exquisite Emerald Hotel Restaurant, guests can enjoy the stunning bushveld views while dining on a range of delectable dishes – from hearty breakfast buffets to room-service meals – all made with the ultimate care while catering to different tastes. Also, be sure not to miss their delicious Sunday buffet lunches served between 12:30 - 15:30.
Whether you're looking to dine for business or leisure, Cappello aims to bring their guests the most vibrant scene and delicious cuisine in town. What could be more relaxing, trendy and luxurious than a sofa, a refreshing drink and great music? Indulge in you choice of succulent dishes from their menu, tasty cocktails and premium brands, all accompanied by great music and a vibey ambiance.
For a luxurious escape away from the hustle and bustle of the city, the four-star Emerald Hotel is just the place to help you unwind and relax. The hotel boasts 77 rooms and suites, offering spacious comfort, free Wi-Fi and all the amenities and adventures the resort has in store. And for every night booked at the hotel, you'll receive complimentary access to the Aquadome. Guests also have access to their onsite gym facilities whilst enjoying their stay at the Emerald Hotel.
Hidden away in a natural setting, guests can also enjoy accommodation in Emerald Resort & Casino's one- or two-bedroom safari lodges on a semi-self-catering basis. Also, for your entertainment, adventure awaits just outside the door! All of the resorts activities are all within walking distance. Also, every night booked in one of these stylish lodges, you'll receive complimentary access to the Aquadome.
The beautiful, self-catering River Resort Chalets at Emerald Resort & Casino provide guests with two, four and six sleeper accommodation – perfect for weekend getaways or longer stays with loved ones. The chalets offer easy access to a range of adventures available on the property, including boat launching facilities, fishing and access to a private swimming pool. And for every night booked in one of these chalets, you'll receive complimentary access to the Aquadome.
From 22 high stakes table games including Blackjack, Poker and Roulette to more than 430 slots ready and waiting for you to try your luck, the Emerald Casino offers plenty of gaming entertainment on their floor. Emerald's generous Rewards programme allows gamers to earn points to spend on discounted hospitality and resort experiences. Also, Diamond and Gold cardholders enjoy exclusive access to the opulent Privé offering regular entertainment, promotions and cocktail events.
No need to wait for summer. You can take a dip in the pool every day of the year, no matter whether it's hot or cold outside! The Aquadome offers guests an indoor, climate-controlled water world, providing plenty of entertainment for both young and old. There are pools to suit everyone, whether you just want to unwind or have a splashing good time. Slip down the waterslide and explore their shipwreck, or just take a relaxing drift along their lazy river.
Grab the family and head to Animal World for a wildlife adventure! Here, you'll encounter many different species of animals, birds and reptiles while also enjoy a bit of fresh air and sunshine. Be sure to keep a look out for hippos, flamingos, iguanas, antelope, monkeys, lions, snakes and much more. Click here to fins out more about their games drives.
Have some fun while getting a little competitive with family and friends at Emerald's Adventure Golf Course. This 18-hole putt putt course is suitable for visitors of all ages. Everyone will certainly enjoy the Animal Kingdom-themed course that also has ancient Egyptian features. Score cards, pencils, putters and balls are all available for hire at the Adventure Golf kiosk.
For the ultimate relaxation, rejuvenation and pampering, guests can visit the indulgent Emerald Spa. They offer a truly tranquil experience in a soothing, natural setting complete with wonderful treatments for adults of all ages. Their highly trained therapists will ensure you enjoy your experience, all you have to do is select your choice from their menu of treatment options and packages, that offer everything from facials and manicures to hot stone and aromatherapy massages.
From fairytale weddings and extravagant parties to team building and business meetings, Emerald Resort & Casino is the only venue in the Vaal area with the facilities and expertise to host events of up to 3000 delegates. Other than space to host your events and meetings, their riverside estate offers a range of accommodation options as well as team-building activities and resort entertainment to ensure your and your guests' visit is a memorable one. Their banqueting experts are always available to assist in tailoring a package specifically for your requirements.
Email: [email protected]
Tel: 016 982 8000
Address: 777 Frikkie Meyer Boulevard, Vanderbijlpark, Vaal Triangle, South Africa
Senalala Safari Lodge is a peaceful escape in the heart of Klaserie Private Nature Reserve, and it forms part of the Greater Kruger National Park.
They aim to provide their guests with an authentic wilderness experience, exploring the bush exclusively with a group of friends and/or family. Their lodge can accommodate up to 12 people, which gives ample space to relax and enjoy a well-deserved break away from the crowds. Post the national lockdown, Senalala is the perfect escape in the middle of the bush, where you can enjoy quality time with friends and family, surrounded by nature.
The lodge is set on the banks of the seasonal Ntsiri River, overlooking the waterhole which draws a constant flow of wildlife. Senalala Safari Lodge offers vast open spaces and a special kind of atmosphere that few other destinations can match. The rooms are spacious and tastefully decorated to blend in with the serenity of the surrounding bush. All rooms have full en-suite bathrooms, as well as overhead fans and air-conditioning, with a focus on privacy, intimacy, and relaxation.
Amenities at Senalala include a big outdoor pool for guests to revitalize between morning and afternoon activities. They also have a fully equipped gym, where guests can keep up with their exercise routines while staying at the lodge. In the main lounge area, there's a library as well as a coffee station and refreshment centre. They also offer unlimited Wi-Fi.
A wonderful open and shaded deck area overlooks the riverbed where guests can enjoy each other’s company, read a book or be on the look-out for animals coming to drink at the waterhole.
Please note: The “2020 Special” is valid until 15 December 2020 and only for direct bookings with the lodge. A minimum of two nights per booking. They cannot accommodate children under the age of 12 years.
For more information or to book your exclusive group safari getaway, visit senalala.com.
You can also contact them on [email protected] or 087 151 1739.
Whether you're looking to take a short break away from the rush of the city or want to kick back and enjoy well-deserved holiday in the bush, BushTime at Mabula is just the place. Situated at the foothills of the Waterberg Mountains within the Mabula Private Game Reserve, this resort offers a bushveld escape perfect for the whole family, complete with abundant wildlife (which includes the Big 5 and more than 300 recorded bird species), 10 000 hectares of wide unspoiled terrain, plenty of activities and entertainment, and of course, peace and tranquillity.
The accommodation units are located in four separate camps, each offering their own unique essence and setting. First up, Modjadji has the amazing bush and wide open plains as the backdrop to your relaxing, wild getaway. Sunset Hill has stunning views and golden sunsets that only Africa can offer. And last but certainly not least, Bush Lodge and Game Lodge and its magnificent sites over the plains and distant hills. All of the chalets have been spaced out not only to maximise privacy for you and your family, but to enhance the feeling of being in the wild.
The units are fully self-catering and range from one-bedroom chalets to six-bedroom bush camps. Only a two hours drive from Johannesburg, this malaria-free reserve will have you reconnecting with nature, along with meaningful memories of your stay with family and friends, having experienced the wonders and beauty of the bushveld.
BushTime is situated within the Mabula Private Game Reserve, which is home to exceptional scenic landscapes and an abundance of wildlife. You can experience game viewing at its best here, within a setting of flowing rivers, trickling streams and stretches of open vistas. Keep an eye out for elephant, lion, leopard, buffalo, the African Python and the Nile Crocodile as well as the wide variety of bird life. This truly a nature lovers paradise.
Other than the Mabula Private Game Reserve, you can also enjoy the following facilities onsite:
Please note: Keep in mind that the closest petrol station is in Bela Bela which is about 47 kilometres away. So, fill up your tank in Bela Bela before heading to Mabula.
On top of all the facilities BushTime has to offer families looking for a bushveld experience, they also have fun activities available to ensure your stay is a memorable one. Activities include:
BushTime is taking a fresh approach to the outdated concept of timeshare by allowing those who are interested the opportunity to buy into BushTime for a week or rent a unit for a weekend, mid-week or week getaway, dependent on their budget and availability.
With over 300 weeks available, you can select your favourite time of the year to own a week at BushTime. Whether it is the perfect hideaway, a romantic retreat for two or an unforgettable family escape to the wilderness, BushTime will offer a well-deserved break and freedom you’re looking for in an upmarket setting. This destination is not too far away from the city and yet, it is just as far as it needs to be in order to enjoy the beauty of the bush.