There is a little gem just outside Robertson in the Western Cape en route to Bonnivale on the R317. The R317 is lined with glorious wine estates and with colourful kannas and roses most of the year. You drive till you get the Stormsvlei road and turn right. The turnoff towards the river cabins is on your left. It is a 2 hour drive (or 150km) from Cape Town. Alongside the Breede River is a place called The River Cabins (or Oliphantskrants). It comprises of 2 family size wooden cabins and 4 smaller more intimate cabins. It is sandwiched between the Breede River and the vineyards.
On arrival you get your keys at the reception and then travel a few more yards along the sandy track that takes you through the vineyard towards the flowing glory of the river. The cabins have their privacy wooden walls around them. Inside the cabin you are greeted by a bottle of wine, some absolute divine chocolate chip homemade cookies and a block of decadent cheese in the refrigerator. The cabins have the basic rudiments of a kitchen and have a T.V. with the basic channels. But then again you are not there to watch ‘the box’ but to enjoy the peace and quiet that it offers. The rolling grass leading up to the river, the small beach that runs parallel with the river offers a beach like experience without the rolling waves.
Waking up to the sounds of bird life and the slow gurgling of the river is peace personified. To get up and make yourself a hot cuppa and go and sit on the small veranda (or stoep) and just breathe in the fresh crisp morning air is the best way to start the day. What to do? Ah, you can haul out the canoe and do the paddle around the river thing, or you can just put the blanket on the grass and just lay back and relax. The water is crisp and refreshing and very very inviting. There are so many things to do around Robertson. There is the various wine farms to visit and to explore the wonders of wine tasting, there is the river barge where you can take a trip on and have a light picnic lunch with your bottle and enjoy the surrounding views. Take a trip to Bonnivale and explore the Cheese world.
Go into Robertson and visit Klipdrift Brandy or else go have lunch or dinner or even breakfast at the various eating spots, pop into one or two of the antique or art boutiques. Visit the World of Birds and potter around there taking in the various birdlife and then enjoy a spot of lunch surrounded by the squawking sounds of the birds.
Me, well, I just love the peace and quiet that the little river gem holds. I love the sunsets that glow over the vineyard and watching the sun silently slip away behind the mountains. The sunrises are just as amazing, the river life comes alive then.
Being there is like escaping from the world. A place to rejuvenate and regain ones desire to face the working world again. A place to light the evening fire and throw some meat onto the coals and sit around with a glass of ice cold whatever. To be at peace and one with Nature again. A place to relax and just Be.
And the best part is if you are a furchild parent you can bring them along for the holiday as well.