5 best mountain getaways on Cape Town’s doorstep

Cedarpeak Mountain Cottages Picture: Instagram

Cedarpeak Mountain Cottages Picture: Instagram

Published May 31, 2023


There are a multitude of compelling reasons why you should plan a trip to the mountains as your next getaway.

The stunning natural scenery that stretches as far as the eye can see, an escape from the hustle and bustle of modern life, no crowds, a switch off from technology, the opportunity to immerse yourself in nature and to enjoy the outdoors.

Why would you miss out on that?

Mountains offer you an opportunity to slow down, pause and find peace by embracing your surroundings.

This could be the perfect time for relaxation, and a time to connect with your family away from distractions.

Mountain hideaways to try

For those considering getting their head in the clouds and escaping for a mountain break, the below list of suggestions – which are all in the Olifants River Mountains (part of the Groot Winterhoek Wilderness area) and right on Cape Town’s doorstep in the Bergrivier region – might help you decide where to go.

Pampoenfontein Guest Farm

The secluded retreat offers five beautifully furnished self-catering cottages tucked into pristine fynbos-covered mountains. Guests can enjoy the trails which wind through the wilderness area and reveal magnificent views as well as stunning flower sightings.

The Cape Floristic Region

With its astounding biological diversity, this region stands out as one of the most ecologically varied areas on the planet, accommodating more than 9 000 species.

The Groot Winterhoek Mountains hold immense significance as a crucial haven for safeguarding numerous native fynbos species, many of which face the risk of endangerment.

Flower viewing at Pampoenfontein is best from August to November when the bulbs are in flower – but from June to December protea's and pincushions are prolific, while from November to February the Erica's are in bloom.

The area is also home to about 100 different species of bird, including some that are uncommon in Southern Africa like Veraux’s (Black) Eagle, the Cape Sugarbird and the Cape Rock Jumper – a fantastic getaway for twitchers.

The Berghoff-Fynbos Chalets

Nomonde Ndlangisa, CEO of Bergrivier Tourism said: “Berghoff has three self-catering chalets situated in remote spots on a commercial protea farm in the mountains above the town of Porterville. A beautiful dam is perfectly suited for swimming and boating – with a row boat and two canoes available for guests to use. Tracts of natural veld are ideal for hiking and sedate wandering to enjoy the lovely mountain views.”


Beaverlac, situated high in the mountains, provides camping and cabins in an untouched natural setting spanning 5 000 hectares. It is home to the ratel (honey badger) and the Olifants rivers, offering visitors an array of hiking trails, rock pools, and waterfalls. The farm features numerous caves adorned with paintings.

The region serves as a haven for various wildlife species, including rhebok, klipspringer, grysbokkie, caracal, African wild cat and leopards.

The diverse bird population includes magnificent species like the black eagle, jackal buzzard, and colourful sunbirds.

Cedarpeak wilderness

“Another not-to-be-missed mountain retreat is the Cedarpeak wilderness area in the foothills of the Groot Winterhoek mountains,” says Ndlangisa. Cedarpeak offers accommodation in several secluded cottages with easy mountain access and sweeping views, as well as an abundance of outdoor activities such as hiking, kloofing, rock-pool swimming, fishing and more. You can also spot ancient rock paintings here.

‘’Cedarpeak allows guests exclusive access to 8 000 hectares of natural wilderness and the largest, most diverse range of endemic plant species in the world. Animals such as duikers, grey rhebok, clawless otters, baboons, and the rare Cape leopard can be found throughout the area, and the rivers host the endangered Western Cape yellowfish.

Whether you're an adventure seeker or simply seeking serenity, a mountain getaway is the perfect choice for your next vacation.

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