There’s a place where the sun paints pictures with lacy leaves against the walls and where birdsong and frog chatter are the main choices on the playlist. Nehema Manor is one of the destinations I regard as a special find. Here you feel far enough from the outside world, but close enough not to feel disconnected.
As with many of our latest travels, the drive to Nehema Manor (even though it was only a 50-minute drive from Pretoria) was particularly difficult. Catha kept saying she was tired of driving and with it being Friday, we were all just tired after a long week. But, I knew all would be well with the world once we arrived. Keeping kids busy in the car is my latest challenge, especially when we’re not keen on entertaining them with YouTube videos and cell phone games.
On arrival, we were surprised to see that Nehema Manor is located across from the Harties Aerial Cableway. We immediately added that to our to-do list for the weekend, as I’ve never been, but we had to postpone due to Catha not feeling well the next day.
Nehema Manor is an absolute haven. It’s almost like a little village, boasting both romantic and perfectly located tree houses and larger, family-friendly cottages. When you hear tree house, you immediately picture a house in a tree. These tree houses, however, are located among trees, rather than in them, but when you stand on the verandas, it does feel like you’re floating between branches.
The four of us stayed in a tree house because we felt like being among trees, but I would honestly recommend these for a romantic stay for just mom and dad. Still, they went out of their way to accommodate us and we comfortably stayed in the tree house as a family for two nights. With a baby and a toddler, it was still manageable, but it will be a bit tight with two toddlers. The cottages are much more spacious and would be the better option for families.
Our favourite part of the tree house was definitely the large windows that opened up onto the veranda that literally transferred us into our own little private piece of forest. And, of course, the lovely outdoor shower. The tree houses are elegantly and tastefully decorated with unique features and lovely colours that make you feel right at home.
A family-friendly stay
The gardens were filled with flowers, lush greenery, large trees and beautiful cycads and lead you to the swimming pool – probably the highlight of the kids’ stay! The pool comes with a small kiddies’ splash pool inside, which kept Catha busy for hours. To top it all off, there are two horses that come to greet you at the swimming pool. You can ask for some carrots from reception if the kids would like to feed them.
There are also four different jungle gyms – one in the shape of a dog, another shaped like a tractor (complete with a John Deere badge), a regular jungle gym with ladders and swings and then also a dino-inspired one with a seesaw. If you’re travelling with kids, this is probably where you’ll spend most of your time at Nehema Manor when you’re not out exploring Harties. So, be sure to pack your picnic goodies. (Nehema Manor is self-catering, with a well-equipped kitchenette, so you’ll be able to prepare a few snacks in your own time).
If you’re travelling with kids, something like the Tangaroa Strawberry Farm or Jasmyn might be an exciting activity to couple with lunch. Harties Aerial Cableway also has three restaurants to choose from: 360 Degrees Mountain Top Restaurant, The Lookout Deck for cocktails and meals with a view and the Pizza Shack with authentic wood fired pizzas.
For something more intimate, a braai on the tree house’s veranda at Nehema Manor is always a must. If you’re keen on going out as a couple, I would recommend the Silver Orange Bistro. And, of course Chef Chantel Dartnall’s Restaurant Mosaic at The Orient Hotel takes the cake. With numerous international awards, this restaurant is definitely something to add to your bucket list for when you’re in the area.
Have a look below for more things to do in the area.
Harties Aerial Cableway – 140m away
Restaurant Mosaic – 18.4km away
Silver Orange Bistro – 6.5km away
Bill Harrop’s Balloon Safaris – 29.3km away
Snake and Animal Park – 3km away
Pretville – 5.6km away
Upside down house – 23.8km away
Tangaroa Strawberry Farm – 17.9km away
Jasmyn – 6.1km away
French Toast Coffee Café – 4.8km away
Harties Harbour – 9.7km away
De Vette Mossel Restaurant – 6.6km away