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Why did we hand pick Hawklee Country House?

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  • Lush riverbank location offers a picturesque country retreat
  • Elegant, comfortable rooms with luxurious spa baths
  • Flyfishing in the river, and numerous activities in the nearby Natal Midlands

Hawklee Country House

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Price tier (pps): R200  R1500+

Child policy: All ages

14km from Nottingham Road


-29.4387, 29.9362


Occupying a lovely location on a hill overlooking the Lions River, Hawklee Country House offers charming Midlands accommodation in individually-decorated thatched cottages that beautifully complement the surrounding countryside.

Flower artwork and bright splashes of colour give a warm ambience to these country-style cottages, which are equipped with satellite televisions, bar fridges and tea/coffee facilities with nougat. In every room, guests will enjoy the sheer indulgence of a spa bath, and can make use of the complimentary bubble bath to make the experience perfect. In all rooms, bar Kingfisher, those who prefer not to bath can make use of an en-suite shower. 

Every cottage has at least one unique, endearing touch to make a stay especially memorable. Mallard is an interestingly-configured building with three mezzanine levels connected by spiralling staircases, and is a perfect honeymoon cottage. The middle level has a romantic four poster King-size bed, draped in white organza, while the lower level plays host to the spa bath. From the loft lounge, guests can enjoy beautiful views of the river and surrounding lush forest.

Coming with a choice of King-size or twin beds, Rose is decorated with shades of pink and is set in the main house’s pretty garden. Kingfisher has the same sleeping set-up, but a child under the age of 12 can sleep on the single sleeper couch. The in-room spa bath has a spectacular view over the river. The Otter also has a single sleeper couch to go with the Queen-size bed.

Housing a Queen-size bed, Guinea Fowl is the only room to offer a private deck, allowing for sundowners overlooking the river, and equally scenic views can be soaked up from the in-room spa bath. The largest of the cottages, Owl & Pussycat can accommodate two adults and two children, and has a red and silver colour scheme which lends a more modern feel. Again, picturesque river views will accompany a session in the spa bath.

The country-style accommodation is matched by hearty country cuisine, cooked in an authentic farmhouse kitchen. Days start with a cold breakfast buffet and full English breakfast, served on the river-facing terrace in good weather, or in the cosy dining room. Picnic baskets with a variety of tasty treats can be prepared for enjoyment at the river’s edge, while couples celebrating a special occasion can arrange for a romantic honeymoon basket - filled with chocolates, champagne, nuts, fruit, biltong and candles - to be waiting in the room on arrival. 

It is well worth the money to indulge in the three-course dinner, with the menu featuring (amongst other options) smoked salmon, springbok carpaccio, fresh Drakensberg trout, Kesslar Chops and a variety of mouth-watering desserts.

To round off the countryside experience, guests can go for walks alongside the river, fly fish for the resident trout, set off into the hills on a mountain bike or have a fun-filled round at the mashie golf course. A drive along the Midlands Meander is a must, while day trips to the Drakensberg can easily be undertaken. When the weather isn’t playing ball, guests can curl up with a good book in front of the fireplace in Hawklee’s lounge.

Rates & Summary

Mallard (honeymoon cottage)

Three-level cottage
Sleeps 2 in King-size bed
En-suite shower 
Spa bath on lower level
Lounge on top level
View over Lions River

The Rose

Sleeps 2 in King-size/twin beds
Seating area
In-room spa bath and en-suite shower
Garden views

Guinea Fowl

Sleeps 2 in Queen-size bed
In-room spa bath and en-suite shower
Deck with river and forest views

The Kingfisher

Sleeps 2 adults in King-size/twin beds
Lounge with sleeper couch for 1 child
In-room spa bath
River and forest views

The Otter

Sleeps 2 adults in Queen-size bed
Lounge with sleeper couch for 1 child
En-suite spa bath and shower
River and forest views

The Owl & Pussycat

Sleeps 2 adults in Queen-size bed
Lounge with sleeper couches for 2 children
In-room spa bath and en-suite shower
River and forest views


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


Cold buffet and Full English breakfast included
Picnic baskets available
Three-course dinner available


Children of all ages are welcome.

Why Stay Here?

Situated in lush surrounds on the banks of the Lions River, just outside the village of Nottingham Road, Hawklee Country House provides a homely, tranquil Midlands experience. Accommodation consists of six free-standing cottages, and is complemented by hearty country cuisine and friendly owner-managed service. This expansive thatched lodge has a welcoming country feel and offers scenic views over the river and forest. Tantalising picnic baskets can be arranged for guests who want to picnic at a quiet spot next to the river. Each of the guest rooms has a luxuriant spa bath.


  • Lush riverbank location offers a picturesque country retreat
  • Elegant, comfortable rooms with luxurious spa baths
  • Flyfishing in the river, and numerous activities in the nearby Natal Midlands

Things to consider Bringing

Sunblock, hat, walking shoes, swimming costume, swimming towels, fly fishing gear, golf clubs, binoculars for bird watching.

Road Conditions

The gravel approach road is suitable for all vehicles.

Activities & Attractions

  • River walks
  • Fly fishing 
  • 6-hole mashie golf course
  • Mountain biking
  • Nearby: botanical gardens, nature reserves, golf courses,  Midlands Meander, Drakensberg Mountains, hiking, horse riding, canopy tour, hot air ballooning, Zululand battlefields, historical monuments, arts and craft shops, farm stalls.


Accommodation & Hospitality

  • Communal lounge
  • Verandah / patio
  • Bed linen supplied
  • Bathroom towels supplied
  • Hair dryer available
  • Daily housekeeping
  • Self-service tea and coffee available
  • No smoking indoors

Catering & Kitchen

  • Breakfast (dinner by arrangement)
  • Restaurant
  • Licensed
  • Fridge or minibar


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

Leisure Amenities

  • No swimming pool
  • Satellite television
  • Garden

Business & Connectivity

  • No Wi-Fi
  • Good cell phone reception

Access & Convenience

  • Not wheelchair friendly
  • No babysitting
  • Child friendly
  • No pets allowed
  • Off street parking
  • Nearest shops further than 10km
  • Nearest fuel further than 10km
  • No shuttle service available


  • Credit cards 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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