Nestled in Mid Illovo and less than an hour away from Durban is Gwahumbe Lodge and Spa. Over the last weekend the girls and I were hosted at this beautiful property and to me it felt like I was in the middle of Africa.
On driving in the Zebras came out to welcome us and at this point the girls reminded me that I was wearing a Zebra print top so maybe they saw that. Not having seeing Zebras in reality they are so beautiful up close and they even pose for a photo.After a few photos we headed up the dusty road to find the lodge and check in. The entrance was so welcoming with carved sculptures of African animals and a water feature. We were warmly welcomed by the team who offered us a selection of warm drinks from a refreshment station that is always set up and shown the ladies room.
Once we feeling a lil more relaxed , we headed down to the spa on the premises for some pampering. The spa is located in a very tranquil spot and all you can hear are the birds chirping away as you have you treatments. The entrance of the spa had the most amazingly beautifully carved wooden doors. To me these doors felt like I was entering a special and secret place. After filling out the client card and selecting what kind oil we wanted for our massages we headed of to our therapy room and slipped away into relaxation mode as the therapists took over and worked sore muscles and stress knots. After my massage I felt so relaxed and calmer. Sipping on infused water we made our way back to the reception part of the Lodge.
Sitting outside on the deck we marvelled at just how beautiful our surroundings were. Then it was time for lunch. On offer were toasted sandwiches, salads and soup. I opted to try out the sweet potato soup and a toasted chicken sandwich both were really delicious and as the temperature had dropped the soup was a perfect warmer.During our meal , we were given the menus for supper and asked to order our choices as well as what time we would be eating. The menu is limited which is not a bad thing because if there are too many options I do get confused.
After lunch we were taken to our “rooms”. Walking down a spiral set of stairs we reached our cottage.Do not be fooled by the word cottage ! Eagles Nest is a 3 bedroom property with 3 bathrooms , a lounge and a kitchen area. Now for the things that made me feel like a princess …. our own private infinity pool and our own outdoor fireplace talk about been spoilt. We were told to be back at reception before 3pm for our Game ride. After loads of pics we headed up to reception ready for our Safari.
The Game ride is a 2 hour guided drive with a game ranger and then drinks and snacks at the Waterfall. Off we set off on our Game Drive with another couple. As we drove the Ranger told us that certain animals were afraid of the flash and we would need to be rather quite. The terrain was a bumpy as can be and we held on for dear life but it was so much fun. We spotted animals hiding in natural habits and learnt the local names of these and the myths and stories behind each animal we saw. I honestly felt that I was in the middle of Africa and felt really humbled to see these animals. From driving through rivers and up rocky pathways it is clearly evident that only a 4X4 vehicle is needed to do this but not all trails are open for guests to explore on their own. I defo would not like to get stuck out there and reception is rather bad so you might have to spend the night out there alone.
There is something magical about waterfalls and it was the perfect location for us to take a break and have our own mini photo shoot. The thing that caught my attention at the waterfall deck was a memorial bench with beautiful words. After our break it was time to head back to the Lodge.
On arrival , we were greeted with warm wet face towels perfect as it was getting colder and to wipe our dusty faces and hands. Small glasses of Old Brown Sherry offered us some warmth. We opted to change our dinner to earlier and just chillout in the bar area.
Feeling rather hungry we were looking forward to dinner. I had chosen Oxtail cooked in Shiraz as my main meal as I had never eaten it before the other option was grilled fish. Both these looked and tasted delicious. And to round off the meal chocolate brownies and ice cream were served.
At this part of the evening a thunderstorm had started brewing and we were glad to have changed to an earlier dinner. The lights starter flickering and this was defo a sign we needed to be inside our cottage before the storm broke. Armed with lanterns, umbrellas from reception and a huge bag of marshmallows we made our to Eagles Nest. Within literally ten minutes the heavens opened and an electric storm was on the go. We huddled up in our cosy lounge with blankets and wine with the lanterns providing light and played digital 30 seconds. It was rather fun spending the time talking and relaxing without watching TV.
When the storm cleared we ventured out to our bonfire area which was kept dry by a huge try. I felt as we were witches with blankets wrapped around us we headed off to make our fire. We used this incredible locally made firelighter that looked more like fancy soap but it worked amazingly well. The rain was far from over and we decided to call it a night. With the lights still off we headed to bed.
The day was rather gloomy and I was sad not to have caught a sunset and sunrise.We packed and headed for a delicious traditional English Breakfast spread. Tummies full we said our goodbyes to the amazing staff and agreed we would be back.
- Gwahumbe is perfect for team building activities.
- The cottages can be self catering or catered for.
- On Sunday there is a chance to have a Sunday Roast Buffet with a Game Drive for only R380 per person. Bookings need to be made in advance.
- There is a Junior Ranger Camp where children can stay overnight to get a real bush experience.
- Guided walking tours can be arranged.
- Day Trips are possible charged at R80 per car and R60 per person.
- Camping is possible on the site.
- The Spa is open to the public and appointments need to be made in advance.
- Gwahumbe can be hired as a wedding venue.
For more information you can log on to www.gwahumbe.co.za or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Would you consider staying here ?
Be Inspired !
I was hosted as a guest of Gwahumbe. My opinions and review are based on personal experience.