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Why did we hand pick Cleopatra Mountain Farmhouse?

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  • Magnificent setting on a trout dam, next to the Mooi River and with the Drakensberg towering up from the garden
  • Opulently luxurious gourmet stay in the heart of the Drakensberg and Midlands region
  • Extensive outdoor pursuits avaiable on site and nearby

Cleopatra Mountain Farmhouse

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Price tier (pps): R200  R1500+

Child policy: 12 years and older

36km from Rosetta


-29.3243, 29.6713


After running the acclaimed Granny Mouse’s Country House in the Natal Midlands for many years, Richard and Mouse Poynton travelled overseas, and came back enthused, deciding to use the family farm to start a luxury gourmet lodge in the Drakensberg.

Located in gardens resplendent with home grown vegetables, herbs and topiary, each of the eleven rooms has its own theme and feature creative décor and articles to reflect this. Standard rooms include the Swedish, Naturalist, Garden, Durban Pioneer and Darjeeling Rooms.

The Luxury and Executive Suites have their own fireplaces, while the cottages are very private, spacious and luxurious, with one containing two lounges and two fireplaces and the other a his-and-hers bathroom.

The inviting dining room at Cleopatra is filled with interesting artefacts, and a large crackling fireplace, and invites you to enjoy a world-class meal lovingly prepared by Richard Poynton.

Richard has built up a large library of gourmet recipes over the years and guests can look forward to a sumptuous 7-course dinner, and an unusual and exciting 3-course breakfast.

Tucked away in the mountainous Kamberg Valley, Cleopatra is located on 500 hectares of beautiful rolling hills. Activities on offer on the farm include hiking, swimming, mountain biking, horse riding, helicopter flips, fly fishing and visits to Bushmen rock art sites. Ask, when you arrive, for the full seasonal range of activities on the farm and in the area. For example, the Highmoor Nature Reserve, a World Heritage Site, makes up 90% of the farm’s border and has three trout dams, extensive birdlife and prolific wildlife. 

Rates & Summary

5 Standard Rooms

Each sleeps 2 in King-size/twin beds
En-suite bath and shower
Rooms look out onto the dam

2 Luxury Suites

Each sleeps 2 in Queen-size bed
En-suite bath and shower
Sitting area
Mountain and garden views

2 Executive Suites

Each sleeps 2 in King-size bed
1 with two lounges and 2 fireplaces
1 with his and hers bathroom
Mountain and garden views 

2 Cottages

Stand-alone private units
Each sleeps 2 in King-size bed
En-suite bath and shower
Verandah overlooking the wetland with mountain views


  • For pricing detail, click on CHECK AVAILABILITY & BOOK ONLINE above


Breakfast, dinner, high tea and a light lunch included


Children 12 years and over are welcome.


Why Stay Here?

Cleopatra is a gourmet getaway tucked deep into KwaZulu Natal’s Drakensberg Mountains, surrounded by the splendour of the Giants Castle Nature Reserve. Beautifully situated on the edge of a trout-filled dam alongside the Little Mooi River, the soaring mountains rise majestically from the bottom of the garden at Cleopatra Mountain Farmhouse. The establishment is well-known for its highly acclaimed food, and offers a variety of luxurious accommodation options and activities in the mountains.


  • Magnificent setting on a trout dam, next to the Mooi River and with the Drakensberg towering up from the garden
  • Opulently luxurious gourmet stay in the heart of the Drakensberg and Midlands region
  • Extensive outdoor pursuits avaiable on site and nearby


The Executive Cottages are particularly private.

Things to consider Bringing

Sunblock, hat, walking shoes, swimming costume, swimming towels, mountain bike, fly fishing equipment, golf clubs, binoculars for bird watching/game viewing.

Road Conditions

The gravel approach road is in relatively good condition, and suitable for all vehicles.

Activities & Attractions

  • Hiking
  • Swimming in the mountain streams
  • Trout fishing
  • Mountain biking
  • Horse riding
  • Bird watching
  • Excursions to Bushmen paintings


Accommodation & Hospitality

  • Communal lounge
  • Fan included
  • Heater included
  • Fireplace
  • Bed linen supplied
  • Bathroom towels supplied
  • Daily housekeeping
  • Self-service tea and coffee available
  • No smoking indoors

Catering & Kitchen

  • Full board
  • Restaurant
  • Licensed


  • Water supply good for drinking
  • Electric geysers
  • Eskom electricity

Leisure Amenities

  • Television
  • Library
  • Garden

Access & Convenience

  • Not child friendly
  • No pets allowed
  • Off street parking
  • Nearest shops further than 10km
  • Nearest fuel further than 10km


  • EFT accepted
  • Cash accepted




Midlands & Kamberg

KwaZulu Natal


The KwaZulu-Natal Midlands is undeniably one of the most beautiful parts of our spectacular country. It’s blessed with a little bit of everything.

Rolling hills, burbling brooks and surging rivers… history, game reserves and haunting battlefields. Not bad for only a section of one of our nine provinces. 

It’s pressed up against the Drakensberg-Ukahlamba mountains in the west, stretched along the coastal belt in the east and hemmed in by the mighty Tugela River in the north. The Midlands is a fertile area that is dominated by agriculture and wide open spaces.

For many, the Midlands has become synonymous with a small area around Nottingham Road. While this is indeed a cornerstone of the region, the Midlands encompasses a far greater and more diverse area than it is often credited with.

It begins in the south-east where the Umgeni River runs through the Valley of a Thousand Hills, with its crags and cliffs, aloes and thorn trees. Further west is the province’s capital city, Pietermaritzburg. 

This is a small part of Victorian England painstakingly recreated in Africa - complete with an ornate cricket pavilion and the largest red-brick building in the southern hemisphere as its city hall. 

It was after being thrown from a train here that Mahatma Ghandi was inspired to take the first steps of his peaceful protests against discrimination. A statue of the great man still stands in the city centre.

Another great man, South Africa’s iconic Nelson Mandela, also has a firm link to the region and its railways. Just outside Howick one can visit the spot where Madiba was finally arrested, while travelling by train. A plaque marks the otherwise nondescript spot.

The history continues to the north, where the English, Zulu and Afrikaner fought each other at various times in history. While the more famous battlefields are to be found further north and east in Zululand, there are fascinating places to visit in the Midlands, too. These are most notably around the towns of Colenso and Weenen.

In the more westerly parts of the Midlands, where it comes up against the buttresses of the Drakensberg, the Midlands offers some exceptional fly-fishing for trout in rivers and dams. 

Midmar Dam outside Howick is a popular venue for carp and bass fishing, as is Albert Falls Dam further east. There also are a number of excellent courses vying for golfers’ attentions.

Of course, no visit to the Midlands is complete without exploring the Midlands Meander for at least a day or two. The best way to do this is to head north from Howick on the R103, a good tar road that ambles and winds through forests and farmlands. This road is regularly dotted with interesting attractions. 

But don’t stick resolutely to this one road. Pick up a Meander map and explore. Head out to the Dargle, the Karkloof or Curry’s Post. It’ll be quieter, but is just as interesting and picturesque.

Look out for

The Midlands Meander – is what the majority of visitors think of when they hear ‘Midlands’. It deserves its reputation, too. It has become a successful, sustainable tourist attraction that focuses on quality, handmade products and local produce. A few of the highlights are Ardmore Ceramics, the Woodturner, Shuttleworth Weaving and the Zulu Quilt Centre.

Sports – are a major attraction in the Midlands. Every year the Duzi Canoe Marathon starts in Pietermaritzburg and, three days later, ends in Durban. The Midmar Mile is an open-water swim that takes place annually in Midmar Dam. The Comrades Marathon is the largest ultramarathon in the world, running from Pietermaritzburg to Durban, or vice versa in alternate years.

Howick Falls - are a big drawcard in the region, but don’t think that all one can do is gaze at them.  Take a walk into the gorge, through thick indigenous bush filled with bird calls. You’ll be rewarded with the best possible view of the falls, and with a refreshing swim. Adventurers can also abseil over the 107-metre drop, past precariously perching aloes, caressed by the waterfall’s drifting spray.

Hartford House - is a destination worth visiting just for the food. It is also worth spending a night in this historic, luxurious boutique hotel. Situated just outside Mooi River, this romantic getaway on a working horse stud farm is home to an award-winning restaurant. It offers splendid set-course dinners coupled with excellent wines.

Fly-fishing - the first trout to be imported into South Africa were brought to Balgowan in the Midlands. It’s hard to find better fly-fishing than in this region. The dams around Nottingham Road, in the Rosetta/Kamberg District and in the Dargle, are renowned for the trophy rainbow trout. The rivers that flow from the Drakensberg are similarly famed. Indigenous yellowfish are becoming increasingly targeted on fly. They can be fished for in the Tugela, Msunduzi and Umgeni Rivers, amongst others.

Mountain biking - A number of high-profile mountain biking events are held in the Midlands every year. Pietermaritzburg has even hosted the Mountain Bike World Cup. This should give some indication of the quality of the cycling available in the region.

When to go

To Do

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