Last year in December, Lucy Corne ran a competition on Twitter (#12DaysofBeermas) in which she gave away a beer-related prize every day. I was not planning on entering any of the competitions (there are so many big beer fans who I thought will appreciate it more), but when I saw that there was a Cederberg weekend up for grabs, I just had to enter. And I won!
Hubby and I planned to cash in our prize in the new year and in January (right in the middle of the heat wave) we packed our bags, looking forward to a weekend of peace and quiet…and no cell reception!
There is about a 60km gravel road to get to Kromrivier Holiday Farm and it is not long before your phone may give a last Whatsapp message notification before losing signal. Pure bliss!
We were booked into the Suikerberg luxury cottage which have two rooms, each with its own bathroom and private space. Although it was just me and hubby, I do think that two couples can share the cottage and they would still have enough privacy. In the late afternoon, you can scale the giant boulder behind the cottage, for magnificent views. There is also an indoor braai which made the living space even more cosy.
Of course after a long drive you need something to cool off and a swim in the river was just what we needed to break the heat. We took our bicycles with and it was quite fun exploring the farm. There are several mountain biking trails for bike enthusiasts but due to the heat wave we experienced, I opted for a rather casual ride to and from the river.
Early Saturday morning we decided to visit the nearby Matjiesrivier Nature Reserve to go and see the rock art on the Truitjieskraal route. In the Greater Cederberg area, there are more than 2500 sites of rock art, with those at the Truitjieskraal route dating back 5000 years ago. By the way, being Afrikaans, I thought that “Truijties” referred to a jersey, but it is actually an abbreviation for a lady’s name Gertruida who was believed to be a shepherd’s wife or girlfriend. Truijieskraal was thus thought to be an overnight stop that was named after her. Aaaawwww sweet!
We also had a taste of the Nieuw Brew collection. The Nieuwoudt family started the first brewery and actually use the water flowing from the Cederberg Mountains. Although I am not a avid beer drinker, I did gain a appreciation for the art of beer making after my final year studying Food Science. We had to develop a new product and we brewed a new type of beer. It is there that I realised how much science goes behind it! Melanie Nieuwoudt (who is part of the family operated micro-brewery) completed her PhD in Food Science in the same department where I did my BSc, so I was rather excited to give it a taste!
We were not even home yet and already we were planning a second trip!
To book accomodation: http://www.cederbergpark.com
For more info on Matjiesrivier Reserve and Truitjieskraal: http://www.capenature.co.za
All about the beer: http://www.nieuwbrew.co.za/our-beers